Nominations being accepted for Retail Produce Manager Awards Program
United Fresh is accepting nominations for the 2021 Retail Produce Manager Awards Program. This program recognizes 25 outstanding retail produce managers for their innovative merchandising, produce-related community outreach, increased store sales and recognition among company peers.
The Retail Produce Manager Awards Program, sponsored by Dole Food Co. Inc. and now in its 17th year, pays special recognition to produce managers on the front line in supermarkets working every day to increase sales and consumption of fresh fruits and vegetables. This year, this recognition is most important as we call attention to the dedication of retail produce managers across the supply chain — our industry’s essential workers — who never ceased to serve consumer’s needs during the pandemic.
"Once again our produce shelves are fully stocked. After so many months we may come to expect it; but let us not forget that there is still a pandemic and that stores and produce managers continue dealing with it directly every day," shared Johan Linden, CEO of Dole Food Co. "Yes, we are proud to again sponsor the United Fresh Retail Produce Manager Awards that recognizes the best of them, but more than that, it is a privilege to be able to honor and thank every one of them."
Twenty-five award winners, along with their corporate produce directors, will receive complimentary airfare, hotel accommodations and registration to United Fresh 2021 Convention & Expo, taking place in-person June 24-26 in Los Angeles, alongside southern California’s Fresh Produce & Floral Council trade show.
“Effectively merchandising produce is a critical component to get the best product into the consumer’s basket, and a great consumer experience will drive repeat traffic,” said Rich Gonzales, vice president of global produce sourcing for Walmart Stores Inc. and vice chair of the United Fresh Retail-Foodservice Board. “The hard work that retail produce managers do to incentivize the consumers to buy fresh produce creates a win-win for the consumer and the industry.”
Since the program’s inception, over 350 produce managers from over 106 different retail banners have been honored. Nominations are now being accepted for the 2021 program. Nomination forms may be accessed online at www.unitedfresh.org and must be received by Jan. 8.