A set of core values, which has been passed from generation to generation at Liberty Fruit Co. Inc., has laid a strong business foundation and allowed the company to thrive.
“Service, quality and competitive pricing are what I believe in,” Arnold Caviar, owner and chief executive officer, told The Produce News. “I have always been a believer in hiring good people and paying them well. My people know — from the COO down — I spend money to make money. I have instilled this in my children and employees as a core company value.”
Liberty Fruit is located in Kansas City, KS. The wholesale produce company began operation in 1965. Mr. Caviar is the company’s second-generation patriarch, and his children are deeply involved in key company operations.
“I am very blessed to have Allen as president, Cory as IT director and Allison as a secretary,” he said.
Mary’s Pride is the company’s fully secured, refrigerated repacking division, and Carol’s Cuts is the company’s processing division. Liberty Fruit maintains a fleet of more than 60 GPS-monitored trucks and tractor-trailers to keep product moving.
Today the wholesale produce company moves quality product to its customers in a 500-mile radius. “My business is very diversified,” Mr. Caviar said. “We sell to all market sectors.”
“Retail business continues to grow for us,” Scott Danner, chief operating officer, said. Liberty Fruit is also placing greater emphasis on school programs, moving typical fare as well items such as jicama sticks, papaya cubes and mangoes. “It educates children about how to eat better,” he said. “Over the past year, school business has been a real success.”
Business with military commissaries is another feather in the company’s cap. “DeCA continues to be a success for us,” Mr. Danner stated.
Allen Caviar, company president, said some important changes will go live later this year. “We provide a high level of service. We will be completely changing our computer software,” he told The Produce News. The new software will increase efficiencies in all aspects of product inventory and warehouse management.
He said it is important to stay ahead of the curve in the area of food safety, and Liberty Fruit recently upgraded overwrap equipment. According to Mr. Caviar, Liberty Fruit will be PTI compliant by October.
Roadnet Technologies vehicle routing and scheduling software, which Liberty Fruit fully integrated into its logistics services, continues to create transportation efficiencies. Use of the software helped the company plot the best and most-direct routes, and it allows customers to log into the system. Deliveries can be determined within a 15-minute window.