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Nathel & Nathel: a growing Hunts Point Terminal Market legend

Strong growth, evolvement and expansion are in Nathel & Nathel’s very nature. The past year has been no exception.

The company was founded by Daniel Nathel and his partner in 1922. Today it is overseen by his grandsons — Ira Nathel, serves as company president, and his brother, Sheldon (Shelly) Nathel.

Due to its strong growth, the company is continually increasing its team of produce professions, and is now basically creating its own new generation.

P1060484 Ira NathelOne of the newer team members is Joe Eisinger, director of organic buying and sales. He told The Produce News that some new items the company is currently strongly promoting are geared toward chefs at foodservice operations.

“Specifically citrus, such as Meyer lemons, are in this category,” said Eisinger. “It also includes imported cherries, apricots and other stone fruits — from around the world —including Asia, as an example.”

He added that Nathel & Nathel now offers year-round supplies of stone fruits. Packaged fresh produce items are also on rise at the company. “We have always sold these items in bulk, but we are now targeting more retailers with packaged items,” said Eisinger. “Our organic line is also increasing, and we see it as an important and growing category.”

Nathel & Nathel received a Superior rating on Good Distribution Practices audit in November 2018, of which the company is very proud.

The company has updated its logo and renovated its website, www.nnproduce.com, as well as modernizing its social media initiatives, all in a rebranding program that began in 2018.

Paul Milito is the director of vegetable sales for Nathel & Nathel. He has been with the company for 16 years, and is now also learning about the buying end of the business.

“The fresh produce market is always subject to weather conditions and climate,” said Milito. “As of mid-February the weather in growing regions was very volatile. This is why Nathel & Nathel does not lock in with one particular region, but sources from where it needs. We often do some creative sourcing so we can ensure that our full line is available year-round, supported by our outstanding customer service.”

He added that the company supports local programs when they are in play, including from growers located in states such as New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

Director of Corporate Operations Angel Helck said the company continues on its fast track in updating its facility.

“We have renovated our administrative offices and our dock store,” said Helck. “Brand new warehouses and refrigeration units have been installed. These upgrades exceed industry standards and are above and beyond what others are doing. We continually upgrade and add to our fleet of trucks.

“Nathel & Nathel has an outstanding team who work closely together to ensure that we are sourcing and selling the highest quality fresh produce,” added Helck.