The Watermelon Story

Journey through the watermelon story to discover the invaluable people and steps it takes to enjoy one of America’s favorite pastimes.

watermelon icon, small gray and white checkered

The Growers

Meet the people who make watermelon possible.

texas icon, small gray and white checkered background

Meet A Grower

Jesse Wiggins

5th generation grower
Youngest-ever President of the National Watermelon Promotion Board

“The watermelon industry is so unique and special. Everyone has made the decision to dedicate their lives and livelihoods to watermelon, so it’s a real tight-knit group of people that feels more like a family than an organization.”

florida icon, gray and white, small checkered background

Meet A Grower

Lee Wroten

3rd generation grower

“There’s just a lot of satisfaction that goes into the hours and days and months of work that we’ve put into a watermelon crop, and finally getting to see it come out of the field and go out on a semi truck and just knowing that somebody somewhere is going to get to buy that watermelon.”

watermelon icon, small gray and white checkered

In the Field

How are delicious watermelon grown and harvested?

aerial image of watermelon in field

Watermelon is grown in rows and in raised beds composed of well drained sandy soils.

watermelon in field with watermelon packing bus/truck in background

The crop is ready to harvest within 3 months.

watermelon farm worker in field checking watermelon

All watermelon is handpicked and cut from the vine.

watermelon farm worker cutting into watermelon in field

Pickers look for a pale or buttery yellow spot on the bottom of the watermelon, indicating ripeness.

watermelon in the field, passing watermelon to worker in bus/truck

Pitching crews follow the cutters and pitch watermelon hand-to-hand to load into trucks.

watermelon shed, assembly line with watermelon on conveyer belt

At the packing shed, watermelon is inspected for quality, washed and separated according to size.

3 things needed to grow watermelons.

  • sun icon in teal against background of small gray and white checks
    Sun
  • bee icon, in teal, against background of small gray and white checkered background
    Bees
  • water icon in teal set against small gray and white small checkered background
    Water
watermelon icon, small gray and white checkered

In the Store

watermelon cuts on marble slab, wedge, cuts of rind, chunks, juice, sticks, dice and balls

Watermelon is available in a variety of cuts to fit your lifestyle: whole, mini, fresh cuts and juice.

Choosing a watermelon is as easy as 1, 2, 3:

  1. Look the watermelon over. Look for a firm, symmetrical watermelon that is free from bruises, cuts or dents.
  2. Lift it up. At 92% water, the watermelon should be heavy for its size.
  3. Turn it over. Look for a creamy yellow spot on the underside of the watermelon (called the “ground spot”). This is where it sat on the ground and ripened in the sun.

Did you know

Watermelon is available year-round.

world icon set on small gray and white checkered background
Where is my watermelon coming from?
Download
watermelon icon, small gray and white checkered

In Your Kitchen

watermelon balls, chunks, sticks in jars with slate cutting board and knife on side

Once cut from the vine, a watermelon has about 3-4 weeks of shelf life.

Wash your watermelons.

According to the FDA, you should wash all fruits and vegetables (even those with rinds!) in clean, running water before eating them.

Store watermelon carvings in the refrigerator (up to 1 day).

View Carvings

Store cut watermelon in glass or plastic containers in the refrigerator (should keep for at least 3-5 days).

watermelon icon, small gray and white checkered

On Your Table

watermelon cuts, seeds, gazpacho on wooden background

100% of the watermelon is edible.

Flesh: Dice into salsas, add onto salads or grill as kebobs.

Flesh: Dice into salsas, add onto salads or grill as kebobs.

Juice: Blend into smoothies, mix into cocktails or enjoy as pure juice.

Juice: Blend into smoothies, mix into cocktails or enjoy as pure juice.

Rind: Slice into stir fries, ferment into pickles or carve into a serving bowl.

Rind: Slice into stir fries, ferment into pickles or carve into a serving bowl.

How do you enjoy watermelon?

Explore our delicious library of watermelon recipes.

VIEW RECIPES