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Marni Karlin is the CEA Food Safety Coalition’s first executive director
The CEA Food Safety Coalition, comprised of leading controlled environment (CEA) leafy greens producers, has named Marni Karlin the organization's first executive director.Marni Karlin A seasoned public affairs expert with an extensive background in the food and agriculture industry, Karlin will work closely with coalition members, government agencies and industry experts to develop leading food safety standards for the CEA leafy greens industry. In addition to... Read more
Oppy promotes Roosdahl to vice president of operations
With a tenure of 24 years working up through the ranks at Oppy, Steve Roosdahl is taking on a new role as vice president of operations. Starting as an application developer in the IT department, Roosdahl has surpassed successive management positions since then adding responsibilities in transportation, manufacturing, quality control and operations, warehouse and inventory administration and most recently, sustainability, food safety and government relations and... Read more
Sunkist Growers hires new VP of strategy
Sunkist Growers recently hired citrus-industry veteran Matt Shekoyan to serve as vice president of strategy for the 126-year-old citrus cooperative and its sister co-op Fruit Growers Supply. In this new role, Shekoyan is working closely with both Sunkist and FGS to optimize and bring to life the companies’ strategic direction. “We’re excited to welcome Matt to the team,” said Jim Phillips, president and chief executive officer at Sunkist Growers and FGS. “This... Read more
Good Foods hires Malin Benicek as newest VP
Good Foods, a category leader of plant-based dips and good-for-you products, announced the hire of Malin Benicek as vice president of technical services. Benicek will lead the global food-safety initiatives as well as the quality-management strategies, programs and standards. Benicek brings more than 30 years of experience to his new role, having previously served as the executive vice president of quality assurance, food safety and regulatory affairs for Schuman... Read more
Ryan Talley elected new Western Growers chairman of the board
Western Growers announced that Ryan Talley, co-owner and farm manager of Talley Farms, will assume the role of chairman of the board of directors. Talley, who has been committed to agriculture for more than three decades, will serve as chairman for a one-year term, taking over the responsibilities of outgoing chairman, Ron Ratto, president of Ratto Bros. Inc.Outgoing Chairman Ron Ratto passing the gavel to Ryan Talley during the Western Growers Annual Meeting. “Ryan’s... Read more
Church Bros. Farms hires Grace Ho
Church Bros. Farms hired Grace Ho as the company’s new vice president of food safety and quality. “This role is critically important and we wanted to hire the right person that could lead our strong FSQ team that consists of more than 120 knowledgeable employees,” said Chief Executive Officer Brian Church. “Grace is at the forefront of food-safety innovation; she has the expertise and leadership we need to guide us in the use of new technologies and processes.” Ho... Read more
Chelsea Van Acker has  fruit farming in her veins
Like so many members of the next generation in the produce industry, Chelsea Van Acker was born and raised on a farm, so she hasn’t a clue of how to respond to a question like “how long have you been working in the industry?” other than to say “my entire life.” Today the 27-year-old works in field service for New York Apple Sales in Glenmont, NY. “My family has been farming for generations in Williamson, NY,” said Van Acker. “More recently my dad is focusing on... Read more
Y-Pulse leader to address FreshStart conference
Sharon Olson, co-founder and executive director of Y-Pulse, a food-focused youth marketing research firm dedicated to young consumer eating habits and trends, will present during the 2020 FreshStart Conference’s education workshops taking place Wednesday, Jan. 15. Olson will provide insight into the minds of kids, and the strategies of the foodservice professionals who feed them, as it relates to food, nutrition, promotion and marketing.   Following her presentation,... Read more
CAC promotes Monica Arnett to VP of finance and administration
Monica Arnett, a seven-year veteran of the California Avocado Commission, has bee promoted to its vice president of finance and administration. In her new role Arnett oversees the management of finance, administration, human resources and information technology. “In her previous roles with CAC, Monica has demonstrated continual growth and mastery of the unique skills needed to spearhead the finances and administration of the organization,” said CAC President Tom... Read more
IPC appoints three new commissioners
During the Idaho Potato Commission’s October meeting, three new commissioners were sworn in. Grower Julie VanOrden of Garth VanOrden Farms in Pingree; processor Paul Sato from McCain Foods USA Inc.; and shipper Bryan Wada of Wada Farms will each serve three-year terms. Nick Blanksma of Legacy Farms and Todd Cornelison of High Country Potatoes were appointed chairman and vice chairman, respectively.   Pat Kole, IPC's vice president of legal and government... Read more
Alicia Adler joins USHBC, NABC as vice president
Alicia Adler, an experienced grant writing and marketing executive who’s secured over $10 million in state and federal grant funds for U.S. specialty crops, has joined the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council and the North American Blueberry Council as vice president. Adler brings a wealth of experience to her new role, both in writing grant proposals and developing export markets. She nearly quadrupled the U.S. highbush blueberry industry’s USDA funding from $350,000... Read more
Muzzi Family Farms expands sales team
Muzzi Family Farms, headquartered in Salinas, CA, has added two new members to its sales team: Max Hoularis (sales) and Bryan Fregoso (sales coordinator). Hoularis joins the Muzzi sales team with eight years of experience in the produce industry.  A Salinas native and graduate of Cal State Monterey Bay, Hoularis started his career in produce as a fresh produce inspector for Kroger. Other previous positions include vegetable trader for Tradin Organics and more... Read more
Progressive Produce welcomes industry veterans to citrus team
Progressive Produce has hired Christine Toy as sales manager and Seth Tillery as sales and grower relations manager. “We are excited to have two experienced industry professionals joining the company. Christine and Seth are an excellent fit with Progressive’s core values. Their knowledge of the produce industry as well as organics will assist us to drive our strategy forward. Both will report to me and will be located in our Visalia citrus office,” said Vice President... Read more
Moxxy hires two dynamic account coordinators
Moxxy Marketing has expanded its account service team with the re-hire of Allie Coombs and addition of Emilia Rodriguez as account coordinators. Coombs worked for Moxxy previously (2014-16) after a career start in fresh produce sales; and Rodriguez brings extensive project and event management experience to the team, with roots in Salinas, CA, where Moxxy is headquartered.Allie Coombs Keeping up with a growing national and international demand for Moxxy’s specialty... Read more
The 2019-20 Produce Marketing Association board of directors took office Oct. 17 during PMA’s 2019 Fresh Summit Convention & Expo in Anaheim, CA. New Chair Joe Don Zetzsche, director of floral and BLOOMS for H-E-B, is joined on the board by six other officers and 32 directors. “I am excited for the opportunity to collaborate with a diverse group of female and male industry leaders from around the global on the PMA board, which includes representation from Australia,... Read more
RFG promotes Raina Nelson, hires Mark Lodge
Renaissance Food Group, a fresh food company that is a wholly owned subsidiary of Calavo Growers Inc., has announced that Raina Nelson has been promoted to executive vice president of business development, one of two newly created executive vice president positions at the company. Mark Lodge, formerly with Revolution Foods, joins RFG as the new executive vice president of operations. In her role as RFG’s executive vice president of business development, Nelson... Read more
D’Arrigo California welcomes new talent to the sales and marketing departments
D’Arrigo California has hired Maya Capurro as a sales assistant and Morgan Tinari as a marketing and culinary assistant. Capurro graduated from California Polytechnic State University in just three years.  She majored in agribusiness management, and as a student was active in the National Agri-Marketing Association, Food Distribution Research Society and was an Agribusiness Management Club officer.  Prior to joining D’Arrigo California, Capurro worked... Read more
Sunkist grows fresh fruit sales force
Sunkist Growers is ready for citrus season and made some sales team changes to grow its service to customers. Jeff Gaston has been promoted to managing director of North American sales, while Brian Slagel will take on the new role of director of southeastern sales. Additionally, Timothy Forseth will be joining the sales team as director of western sales. “Sunkist is a name that means great quality citrus to so many people around the world,” said Christian Harris,... Read more
Church Bros. Farms hires Rick Russo
Church Bros. Farms hired Rick Russo as the company’s vice president of strategic growth and planning. The focus of the new position will include building competitive sales/marketing programs to grow new and existing business, vetting potential partnerships, fostering alliances and leading competitive product line development and profitability for the company’s domestic and international operations. “Rick is joining us at a pivotal time in our company’s development,”... Read more
Scott Rossi is the new director of sales and marketing for Fresh Farms. Rossi will lead and develop Fresh Farms’ sales and marketing strategy “as we continue to expand our Mexico grape and vegetable programs and our California grape and specialty fruit programs,” the company indicated. He is a proven industry leader with previous executive sales experience with Four Star Sales and Pandol Bros. Rossi started his career in Minneapolis with Castle & Cook/Dole. Fresh... Read more