While lettuce and cole crop acreage may be off in northern Central Coast fields, some of that acreage in places like the Salinas Valley is being diverted to strawberries. According to several sources, acreage continues to increase for high valley strawberries, amid shrinking returns for traditional Salinas Valley vegetable crops.

According to the most recent Monterey County Crop Report, the value of the county’s strawberry crop increased 38 percent in 2007 to more than $600 million on increased acreage, good production, and higher prices. Strawberries surpassed head lettuce to become the county’s second largest crop.