American Farm Family: Proudly growing gorgeous greens in California’s Central Valley for four generations!

Now run by its fourth generation, Ratto Bros. is an expansive lettuce and herb farm in California’s Central Valley region that grows just about “everything in a salad.” America’s Heartland takes us along to visit this week’s American Farm Family.

This is Modesto — home to Ratto Brothers Fresh Produce, a family farm four generations strong — located in California’s Central Valley, where nearly half of all the fruits, vegetables, and nuts produced in the United States are grown. Almost everywhere are tapestries of almond trees in full bloom, and row after row of gorgeous greens. That is where America’s Heartland brings us to meet this week’s American Farm Family.

More than a century since its founding, Ratto Bros. continues to thrive in the fertile crescent of the state’s Central Valley. It is a sprawling operation, growing 35 vegetable and herb varieties on more than 1,500 acres of land. Theirs is a story of a hard-working immigrant family that tamed and cultivated new ground to plant seeds that still thrive more than a century later.

Frank Ratto, president of Ratto Brothers, has deep roots in this land. He has been farming here since he was four years old, learning from his grandfather, founder Antone Ratto. Antone’s father, Giovanni Ratto, emigrated to America from Italy in 1878.

“I always think, what would my father and his brothers and my grandfathers say today about where our business is -- what we’re doing and how we’re doing it?” Frank said. “And what we’re doing today, for my grandfather, would be like going to the moon to him. And that gives me chills, just to talk about it.”

While Ratto Bros. now farms more than a thousand acres near Modesto, the company’s headquarters still remains in Oakland near some of the farm’s original acreage.

Marion is a digital content manager for RFD-TV and The Cowboy Channel. She started working for Rural Media Group in May 2022, bringing a decade of experience in the digital side of broadcast media as well as some professional cooking experience to the team.
Rural Lifestyle & Entertainment Shows
The affable and unassuming international singing star Daniel O’Donnell is one of Ireland’s best known performers – from Australia to Alaska.
Join popular polka performer Mollie Busta as she hosts the weekly “Mollie B Polka Party” on RFD-TV! The one-hour program features the nation’s top polka bands and a wide variety of ethnic styles produced on location at music festivals from around the country.
First introduced to RFD-TV on Larry’s Country Diner, The Malpass Brothers, modern day troubadours, bring you their very own, brand-new show to RFD-TV. Viewers can enjoy traditional country music from the brother duo of Chris & Taylor Malpass, a featured celebrity guest on each episode, and loads of clever humor.
Ray’s Roadhouse is a weekly program featuring the music of Ray Benson and Asleep at the Wheel. Ray and his band Asleep at the Wheel has had a more than 50 year career in the music industry and over the years have earned nine Grammy Awards. The program also will feature guest performers such as Pat Green, Stoney LaRue and Kelly Willis.
“The Marty Stuart Show” is a must-see during RFD-TV’s Saturday Night Music Row. Each exciting episode features Mr. Stuart and his band “The Fabulous Superlatives.” Episodes also feature his wife — “Country Queen,” Ms. Connie Smith—who has helped make the show a celebrated success.