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The Ultimate Guide to Buying Organic Unpasteurized Raw Almonds Part 3

Updated: Jul 1

Since we now understand you can only buy truly raw, unpasteurized almonds direct from the farmer and store- bought almonds are not raw, isn't there a concern about salmonella when buying raw almonds?

Yes or No, depends on where you buy your raw almonds.

Let me expand, the whole reason the USDA began the pasteurization requirement was due to cases of salmonella poisioning in almonds, attributed to the harvest method. Almost all almonds are harvested onto the ground. The trees are shaken, the nuts fall on the ground, a machine sweeps and pushes the almonds (plus dirt, dust, manure, sticks, rocks- use your imagination) into a windrow, see picture.

 Next another machine comes around and sucks up the contents of the windrow and sorts out as much debris as possible. This process is an extremely dusty and dirty operation and from a distance it looks like a fire, but is a huge plume of dust and dirt. The ideal orchard floor in this case is one completely devoid of anything organic and living. This typical shake/sweep/pick-up method is a small but real threat to a sanitary nut. Keep in mind the nut kernal is inside a shell (some less permeable than others) and inside a split open hull. This is why the USDA mandated pasteurization to address a real food safety concern.

At Capay Hills Orchard, we DO NOT HARVEST THIS WAY. We are unique in that we do not harvest onto the ground, we harvest onto tarps and avoid the mechanical contact with the ground. So we are proud to say, not only are our almonds the healthiest, they are the safest, best almonds you can buy. See and taste the difference.

Clean and Tasty

You can buy unpasteurized raw almonds directly from the California farmer at Capay Hills Orchard. Order off the website, www.chorganicalmonds.com or by calling or texting 530-507-8222. Talk or text directly with the farmer, Brian Paddock Alternatively email capayhillsorchard@gmail.com Please share this post with your friends.


Capay Hills Orchard is a small family farm growing the best raw almonds, raw almond butter and smoked almonds. Capay Hills Orchard is Veteran owned, Bee Friendly certified, and of-course Certified Organic using Regenerative farming practices.




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