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Always Fresh Farms touts berries and Florida citrus program
Always Fresh Farms continues to meet the needs of the berry trade through food safety and social accountability, while staying relevant with packaging. “We continue to expand our knowledge of current trends, which could improve food safety, traceability, packaging, point of sale displays and logistics,” said Wayne Giddings, president and chief executive officer of the Winter Haven, FL-based grower, packer and shipper, which operates under the Always Fresh... Read more
Year-round tomato sales are sweet at NatureFresh Farms
PMA Fresh Summit attendees who want to see the fruits of 20 years of innovation should stop by NatureFresh Farms at booth No. 4061. The greenhouse grower of tomatoes, bell peppers and cucumbers is embarking on its 20th year in 2019 and is planning a number of local events to celebrate its milestone. A NatureFresh Farms technician programs a robot to look for pests on tomato plants.“Sharing our story and our journey is all part of our marketing plan for 2019,”... Read more
Family is key to success for Topashaw Farms
With more than 30 years of growing sweet potatoes in Vardaman, MS, the family-owned and operated Topashaw Farms is one of the Mississippi’s top producers of the Beauregard variety of sweet potatoes. “We plant and harvest approximately 4,500 acres annually. It is never our intention to be the biggest, but we strive daily to be the best,” said Joe Edmondson, owner and operator of Topashaw Farms. “Success is achieved by listening to what is desired from the customer,... Read more
Nash Produce introduces carry mesh bags for sweet potato products
Nash Produce was created in 2006 by farmers to handle the processing, distribution and sales for their sweet potatoes, so there’s no better authority on the subject. “Farmers just want to farm and these North Carolina farmers realized that it would be better to invest in people who were experts on the business side, so they could concentrate of farming,” said Tami Long, director of marketing and business development for Nash Produce, based in Nashville, NC. “We... Read more
Innovation matters at Quail H Farms
As a grower-packer-shipper of conventional and organic, premium California sweet potatoes officials at Quail H Farms LLC, understand that consistent quality and excellent customer service will only get them so far. They know that innovation and forward thinking that will take the company to the next level.   “The California sweet potato industry is one of the last industries to integrate any type of automation,” said Larelle Miller, sales manager for... Read more
New uses keep mushrooming at Giorgio Fresh
Officials at Giorgio Fresh have put the fun back in fungi by developing new value-added uses for mushrooms that are extending consumption far beyond the traditional steak topping and as an ingredient for fall stews and Thanksgiving stuffing. One of the company’s newest creations is Savory Wild — a plant-based, healthy snacking solution in the on-trend jerky category. “We have seen an emerging trend of mushrooms as a snack,” said Bill Litvin, senior vice president,... Read more
Kegel’s Produce celebrating 70th anniversary with open house
Kegel’s Produce is celebrating 70 years in business and will be hosting an open house Oct. 17 for its loyal customers and the community. Facility tours will be given throughout the day. Vendors will be on hand with displays, samples, product tastings and demonstrations. Earl P. Kegel opened an Engleside building in 1948 and began distributing produce to stands at Lancaster Central Market and grocery stores. In 1967, the business moved and became Kegel’s Produce. The... Read more
Mann Packing Co. to tout Del Monte connection at PMA
Mann Packing Co. Inc. will be exhibiting both new products and a new corporate connection at the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit in Orlando, FL, this month. “We want customers to leave the booth feeling excited about Mann’s joining the Del Monte family,” said Jacob Shafer, senior marketing and communications specialist for the Salinas, CA-based vegetable grower-shipper. “Del Monte Fresh is one of the world’s leading vertically integrated producers,... Read more
Sunny Valley touts cranberries for the holidays
The state of New Jersey is the third-largest cranberry supplier in the United States, and because the Glassboro, NJ-based Sunny Valley International harvests a few weeks later than most other growing areas, it enables the company to ship a fresher product. “We offer locally grown cranberries that are packed fresh to order to ensure the highest quality,” said Robert Von Rohr, director of marketing for the company. “Sunny Valley’s cranberries are marketed under the... Read more
Chelan Fresh prepping for Fresh Summit
With only a few weeks before the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit in Orlando, FL, Chelan Fresh is making arrangements to ensure its presence at this year’s show is as valuable as ever — both for the Chelan, WA-based company and its customers. “At PMA, like always, we’re going to feature what’s new and different about us,” said Mac Riggan, director of marketing for the company. “We have a growing organic program, which we are excited... Read more
Innovation fuels Setton Farms
Innovation drives everything at Setton Farms, from the way it processes its pistachios to the products it creates. Joseph Setton, a principal for the Terra Bella, CA-based company, said the Setton Pistachio team is consistently creating new and more efficient methods to create the highest quality product. “We believe that all food is better with pistachios and our position in the market allows us to continuously create original snacks containing pistachios,” he... Read more
Okanagan Specialty Fruits expands Arctic family
Okanagan Specialty Fruits is gearing up for the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit, preparing to occupy booth No. 1183 at the Orange County Convention Center in October. Neal Carter, president of the Summerland, BC-based company, said the plan at the event is to showcase how much the company has grown the Arctic family of products. “Last year our Arctic Golden fresh slices were a hit with those that love the convenience of a healthy snack on the go,”... Read more
Chef recipes with ‘genuine’ Idaho spuds drive IPC foodservice ads
For many years, the Idaho Potato Commission has been energetically promoting its registered brand, Famous Idaho Potatoes, and the fame of Idaho potatoes is a testament to the success of that campaign. The commission has also been promoting the trademarked Grown in Idaho seal, which states “Certified 100% Idaho Potatoes,” highlighting the slogan, “You know it’s real when you see the seal.” Those are all ways of identifying genuine Idaho potatoes. Don Odiorne,... Read more
A.J. Trucco continues its rich family history of Italian chestnuts
For more than 70 years, A.J. Trucco has specialized in importing and distributing dried fruits and nuts, in addition to a wide range of other specialty items. The Bronx, NY-based company is known as a premier produce distributor throughout the east and beyond. In early September, Nick Pacia, president of A.J. Trucco told The Produce News that the company was currently getting ready for its fresh Italian chestnut season. “Trucco is well known as program experts... Read more
Setton Pistachio looking  forward to outstanding season
Setton Pistachio is the second-largest pistachio grower and processor in the United States, offering bulk and retail pistachios to customers around the world. “With our position within the industry, we are able to innovate unique value-add items such as Flavored Pistachios, Dark Chocolate Pistachios and Pistachio Chewy Bites,” said Elise Silvester, sales and marketing manager for Setton International Foods Inc., based in Commack, NY. The 2018 pistachio... Read more
Babé Farms ‘Breaking Rad’ over radishes
Radishes are all the buzz at Babé Farms Specialties Inc. It’s led to a company-wide phrase of “Breaking Rad!” “Two new items we’re introducing are the large size Purple Ninja radish and a brand-new radish variety aptly named the French Violet,” said Ande Manos, marketing manager for the company. “The French Violet is petite and cylindrical in shape, much like the French Breakfast radish, but it’s a brilliant violet color that transitions to a white tip. The French... Read more
Wilcox celebrates 70 years, undertakes total equipment rebuild of potato facility
The Wilcox family has been packing and shipping Idaho potatoes since 1948 when Floyd Wilcox and his three sons, Keith, LeRoy and David, built their first 7,000-square-foot potato warehouse to pack potatoes grown on family farms. After 40 years and three additions to the warehouse, Floyd Wilcox & Sons built a new 88,000-square-foot facility in Rexburg, ID. This year, the company celebrates its 70th year in business. In what is probably its most extensive remodel... Read more
Early, good-quality crop for Central Produce
Like many other Treasure Valley onion operations, Central Produce Distributors in Payette, ID, saw an early start to the 2018 season, and General Manager Ray Burzota said in late August the company was “real busy and packing hard” as it shipped yellows, reds and whites. Central Produce Distributors’ crew shows off the company’s labels. Pictured are Ray Burzota, Austin Wagstaff, Dan Phillips, Dan Conklin and Oscar Nuñez. Burzota said, “The growing season turned... Read more
J.C. Watson ‘turning challenges into opportunities’
Transitioning into the 2018-19 Idaho-Eastern Oregon onion shipping season on Aug. 10, J.C. Watson Packing Co. in Parma, ID, saw not only an earlier start to the season but also a smooth one. “The season has been going very well,” J.C. Watson President Jon Watson said in late August. “The onions are moving at a good pace, and our early crop has been exceptionally good.” Noting the first onions to come in were “a bit smaller than normal,” Watson said the storage... Read more
Golden West’s 2017 facility  sees new expansion in 2018
Last year’s onion season saw Golden West Produce packing and shipping from its brand new facility in the Parma, ID, and this year the company has expanded that operation to include double automated bagging and an increased buffer hopper capacity, along with additional upgrades and enlargements. Golden West, previously located in Nyssa, OR, was among the harder hit Treasure Valley onion operations during winter 2017’s destructive snow and ice storms. The company... Read more