NORTHUMBERLAND - Not everyone gets to experience the rich earthy fragrance of a farm field in summer or the gentle, yielding tug of a tomato as it's pulled from the vine. Some of us have had the pleasure of rummaging through a roadside vegetable stand, but many of today's consumers feel alienated from the foods they eat - not knowing where it came from or how it was grown.

To help change this, Furmano's - a family owned, Northumberland-based food company - is working to bring consumers just a little closer to the farm and help them rediscover the goodness of some of their favorite foods.

Furmano's has redesigned its label to highlight its local family farms and give shoppers a better sense of the nutritional content of fresh-packed produce. The company has developed an 'Our Growers' section on its website (www.furmanos.com) where consumers can meet Furmano's growers and see how the tomatoes are grown, harvested and packed.

"Consumers are looking for greater transparency," said Chad Geise, president of Furmano's. "I believe that the 'Buy Local' movement stems from people wanting to support the local economy, have fresher tasting food, and food that is safe; to not have to worry about the origins of the food they're feeding their families. Consumers feel it's becoming increasingly more important to know where their food comes from."

At Furmano's, 80 percent of the fresh-packed tomatoes are grown in Pennsylvania. Half of that is grown on farms less than a 20-minute drive from the plant. The rest come from fields no more than four hours away in Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland and New Jersey. This means tomatoes can be canned within hours of harvesting.

Furmano's is a family-owned company founded in 1921 by J.W. Furman and his wife, Emma. Nestled in the heart of Pennsylvania's fertile Susquehanna Valley, Furmano's grows and produces quality foods, including canned tomatoes, beans and vegetables. Over the years the company has grown, currently serving the retail grocery and foodservice segments with more than 10 million cases of product per year.