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Nickey Gregory Co. is dedicated to Georgia Produce

By
Keith Loria

The Nickey Gregory Co. is so devoted to Georgia’s produce scene that it proudly displays the Georgia Grown logo on the side of its trucks and trailers.

“We’re all about Georgia-grown products when in season,” said Andrew Scott, director of marketing and business development for the Nickey Gregory Co., which has warehouses in Atlanta and Miami. “That logo tells people that we buy locally, and we support the Georgia economy and farmers. Nickey worked on a farm in his early days, with his family down in South Georgia and they moved up to Atlanta at a very young age.”

The company is a full-line produce distributor that provides overnight deliveries throughout the Southeast. With spring here, that means the organization is working on such Georgia-grown vegetables and fruits as cabbage, Bell peppers, yellow squash, zucchini, cucumbers, eggplant, and greens including collards, turnips, mustard, and kale. Then there’s also corn, blueberries, peaches, and the all-important Vidalia onions, which started around April 19.

“It’s a nice array of products,” Scott said.

While retail sales have been strong during the COVID-19 era, Scott said there is optimism that as we turn the corner toward normal life again, foodservice is starting to become stronger again.

“Concerts and baseball games are coming back,” he said. “We do a lot of foodservice business and sell to a lot of food-service companies across the Southeast.  We see their case movement is getting close to pre-COVID-19.”

Another trend that has been strong are companies like HelloFresh and Home Chef that deliver meal kits for people to cook at home.

“That business is still going pretty well with people cooking and making their meals at homes these days as opposed to going out to restaurants,” Scott said.

He noted that one big issue the industry is facing is logistics, which are making deliveries costly.

“Logistics are just going get tougher and tougher,” Scott explained. “Rising fuel costs and costs in general are going up, and being able to deliver partials — smaller orders — to your customers across the southeast is getting costly, and that’s what we do. We have our own trucks and trailers and drivers, but the logistics piece is a big issue. Some companies are going to face a lot of challenges, there are some very high freight rates right now, and us being asset-based in owning our trucks has really helped.”

The company delivers overnight out of Atlanta to distribution centers and customers across 10 Southeastern states. The excellent reputation it has been built allows it to add to its success.

“People know us,” Scott said. “We have advertised quite a bit in the past and we’ve been around for 21 years. Word of mouth for the good job we do helps. Plus, there’s been some consolidation in this business. Everybody kind of knows us. We’ve done a great job of getting our name out there and the services we provide.”

He added that Nickey Gregory Co. works with clients of all sizes, ranging from smaller, independent companies to large ones.

“We have people calling us, as opposed to us calling them, it’s a great thing,” he said. “We try to be a part of that supply chain for every-sized company.”

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