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When trying to call a business, have you ever had problems with getting through to a person? How often have you heard, “Listen carefully to the following options as our menu choices have changed,” and then you try dialing zero, hoping to reach an operator, only to hear, “That is not a valid selection.” It can be frustrating when your time is precious, but it won’t happen when you call Pacific AgPak Inc.

“You can always contact somebody by phone,” said President David Baum. “We don’t have any voicemail systems. Anytime somebody calls, someone will personally answer the phone. You will always be able to contact a Pacific AgPak employee.”

According to the company’s website, Watsonville, CA-based Pacific AgPak is “a leading provider of plastic consumer packaging and accessories for shippers and grocery retail use,” not only for strawberries but for raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, tomatoes, grapes, mushrooms and more.

“We offer an extensive range of size configurations, including special accessories for additional product protection, special ventilation, snap-lock closure system and stacking flexibility,” the website states. A custom labeling program gives customers “the opportunity to receive packages with labels pre-applied and ready for use.” UPC barcoding is another service the company can provide to enhance customer efficiency, and Pacific AgPak also offers custom-designed packaging for customers who so desire.

New packaging concepts for the company are the high cube “Freight Busters” clamshell and a two-pound smooth-wall clamshell.

“Freight Busters” clamshells have interlocking stacking features with benefits for stacking on the retail shelf.

The new smooth-wall two-pound clamshell under development from Pacific AgPak has a reduced draft angle, helping the clam to accommodate some of the larger-size strawberries — such as are encountered with the Albion variety — by giving more room to the interior of the clamshell, Mr. Baum explained. “We are making sure that [the clamshells] make weight” and also show off the product well.

“We have service compared to none,” he said. “We are very service oriented and know that is what it takes” to keep customers.

Last year, the company relocated to a 50,000-square-foot warehouse with eight labeling lines, higher production capacity and more room for inventory, he said.

“We have a 24/7 operation” that can meet a 24-hour turn-around time when customers require it,” he said. “Timely deliveries in the company’s own trucks, building inventories for customers to make sure they don’t run out of product, and pallet pre-builds in requested volumes are all part of the company’s focus on service.