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Steady growth defines Krichmar Produce

By
Tim Linden

If you are doing something well, continue doing it and success will follow seems to aptly describe the business philosophy of Krichmar Produce Co.

“We’re always expanding and willing to look at new opportunities, but we aren’t doing anything different this year,” said Matt Rieti, chief operating officer of the Vineland, NJ-based company.

He did say the operation has hired a couple of new people in the office, including an office manager, which is representative of its year over year growth.  Krichmar Produce sources product from throughout the United States with its main year-round items being parsley, cilantro, escarole, endive and other commodities in the lettuce and herb categories. “We buy from Florida, California, Texas, everywhere,” Rieti said, adding that the more than 25-year-old company also carries a full line of items from the East Coast regional deals.

Speaking to The Produce News in early May as spring production in its home state was starting to ramp up, Rieti said “we carry all the Jersey product from asparagus to peppers.”

He noted that New Jersey vegetables should hit their peak volume in June and stay at an elevated level in to September. “New Jersey will have product until the first cold snap,” chimed in Troy Krichmar, who occupies the sales office along with Rieti.

The majority of the company’s customer are located along the Eastern Seaboard, which allows Krichmar to use its fleet of trucks and trailers to help facilitate that business. Rieti said each year they expand their fleet to keep up with their business. “Transportation is another slice of our company that helps us gain more control over the product,” he said.

While Krichmar Produce is always looking for more product and more customers, Rieti noted that its philosophy is steady, manageable growth. “We are always looking to expand our customer base but we are only looking for good business,” he said, defining “good business” as “paying customers.”

Rieti has been with Krichmar for seven years, starting as a dispatcher and has taken on more roles over the years, and is now COO. He said this year’s New Jersey vegetable deal appears to be fairly normal with no bad weather situations that appears to be adversely impacting production. He said on May 8 that cabbage was already being harvested and it would soon be followed by many other vegetbles.

Photo: Danny Levari, Matthew Rieti, Brian Bessetti, Victor Najera, Dagan Lightner, Troy Krichmar and Jerry Mongalluzzo

Tim Linden

Tim Linden

About Tim Linden  |  email

Tim Linden grew up in a produce family as both his father and grandfather spent their business careers on the wholesale terminal markets in San Francisco and Los Angeles.

Tim graduated from San Diego State University in 1974 with a degree in journalism. Shortly thereafter he began his career at The Packer where he stayed for eight years, leaving in 1983 to join Western Growers as editor of its monthly magazine. In 1986, Tim launched Champ Publishing as an agricultural publishing specialty company.

Today he is a contract publisher for several trade associations and writes extensively on all aspects of the produce business. He began writing for The Produce News in 1997, and currently wears the title of Editor at Large.

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