Nothing says summer like fresh corn on the cob and, for Verde Valley residents, that means a visit to Hauser & Hauser Farms since 1987.
The local grower is open for business with the area’s best fresh sweet corn for sale. The stand is located at 652 Montezuma Castle Highway in Camp Verde.
The Hauser family has been in the farming business for six generations. Family members have operated farms around Arizona, including Paulden, Tolleson and St. Johns as well as in California’s Central Valley. The Camp Verde farm is operated by Claudia Hauser and other family members, including her grandchildren, with traditions passing down from one generation to the next. She and her late husband, Kevin Hauser, operated the Camp Verde farm together for decades until his passing in 2019. Kevin was a fourth generation farmer of the Hauser family and a respected member of the Verde Valley community.
The Hauser & Hauser Farms stand is open daily from 8 a.m. offering the day’s harvest of sweet corn and watermelons. In addition, local honey from Pleasant Valley Honey Company out of Young is also available to purchase.
The stand is open until the day’s pick is sold out. Sales will continue through the end of the growing season which is usually the first week of August.
Sweet Corn is $8 per dozen this year.
“We’ve had to raise our prices this year,” said Claudia Hauser. “Our inputs have tripled but I didn’t have the heart to raise the price more than $1.”
The efforts to produce the annual harvest of sweet corn are not without challenges.
“As farmers, we battle things like weather, birds, javelina, elk and worms,” said Hauser. “Sadly, the birds and worms have already found us this season, so people will have to cut the tip of the corn off. We battle the worms every year but this year they showed up very early.”
Hauser stressed the importance of protecting family farms and agricultural lands. “We had a customer this year who saw our sign which says ‘No Farms No Food’ and asked what it meant,” said Hauser. “It’s such a simple statement but has so much truth. Agricultural lands are being devoured by development and we will all have to deal with the outcome. We must, as a country, protect our agricultural lands and water from development.”
On the farm’s website, Hauser offers these tips for picking, preparing and preserving your fresh corn:
• Select medium-sized corn ears with bright green husks.
• Cut corn off the cob easily by sticking the husked ear in the tube of a tube cake pan to hold it while you cut down the cob with a knife. The kernels will fall into the pan. Twelve ears of corn equal three to four cups of cut kernels.
• Trim off both ends and take off heavy outer husks, then freeze in bags.
• Soak corn with husks on in water for a few minutes. Grill on a barbecue, turning a couple of times.
Hauser also recommends calling in advance to make sure the stand will be open.
“We don’t guarantee being open every day,” she said. “It’s always best to call 928-567-2142 the morning you’re heading over to make sure.”
Cindy Cole is a freelancer for the Independent. She is a writer, editor, photographer and artist. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.