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FPAA expresses worry about inspection provisions in proposed new Tomato Suspension Agreement
The Fresh Produce Association of the Americas responded Aug. 21 to the news that the United States Department of Commerce and Mexican tomato growers have produced a new draft of the Tomato Suspension Agreement that will end the current duties on tomatoes exported from Mexico to the U.S. The FPAA release, which was sent by Lance Jungmeyer, FPAA president, indicated... Read more
Officers with U.S. Customs & Border Protection Office of Field Operations at the Pharr International Bridge cargo facility foiled a smuggling attempt of nearly $2 million of cocaine in a shipment of fresh limes. Port Director Sylvia Briones credited teamwork and perseverance for the "outstanding interception of narcotics." On Aug. 17, CBP officers... Read more
72nd QPMA Convention united industry as one
The Quebec Produce Marketing Association held its 72nd annual convention Aug. 8-10 in the majestic setting of the Fairmont Le Château Frontenac Hotel in Quebec City. This year’s theme, Together, let’s join the Movement! was clearly reflected in the convention’s networking activities and events where exchanges between QPMA members generated a shared sense of being... Read more
Key Albertsons exec announces departure
Albertsons announced that Shane Sampson, executive vice president and chief marketing and merchandising officer, has decided to leave the company Sept. 7.  The company has launched a search for a successor. “Shane has been instrumental in building the Albertsons Companies we know today — both at a division level and nationally,” said Vivek Sankaran, president... Read more
Deal reached for Tomato Suspension Agreement
Mexican tomato growers have reached a deal with the U.S. government to avoid an anti-dumping investigation. Dante Galeazzi, president and chief executive officer of the Texas International Produce Association, confirmed early on Aug. 21 that the agreement had been reached.Dante Galeazzi Galeazzi said, “I received notice late last night — several minutes before... Read more
Wish Farms, Feeding America celebrate successful Superhero Summer campaign
International grower and year-round marketer of strawberries, blueberries, blackberries and raspberries, Wish Farms, was excited by the results of its summer partnership campaign with Feeding America.   “The Superhero Summer campaign was a great success on many levels. We reached a nationwide audience of over 1.1 million, with over 2.1 million impressions... Read more
BrightFarms names new CEO
BrightFarms has hired Steve Platt as chief executive officer, while the company’s founder, Paul Lightfoot, will continue as the company's president. Both Platt and Lightfoot will be members of the board of directors. “I am privileged to be the next CEO of BrightFarms. This is an exciting time for the company and I look forward to working with Paul and the entire... Read more
Walmart's BuzzFeed partnership stirs together meal planning with shoppable recipes
Walmart and BuzzFeed’s Tasty are serving up shoppable recipes. Now, customers can add the entire ingredient list from a menu of 4,000 Tasty videos right to their Walmart Online Grocery carts with one click. From there, they can place their order for pickup from more than 2,500 stores nationwide or have the groceries delivered to their homes from more than 1,100... Read more
Fresh Arctic apple slices launching into foodservice markets
Okanagan Specialty Fruits Inc. introduced nonbrowning Arctic apple fresh slices to a receptive foodservice industry at the Produce Marketing Association’s recent Foodservice Show in Monterey, CA. “It was exciting for us to exhibit at the PMA Foodservice show for the first time and to give attendees the opportunity to experience the orchard freshness of Arctic... Read more
FPAA to celebrate 75 years at November convention
It’s been 75 years since the forerunner of the Fresh Produce Association of Americas was established in Nogales, AZ, in 1944. This anniversary will be celebrated Nov. 7-9 at the beautiful Tubac Golf Resort & Spa, at the association’s 51st Nogales Produce Convention & Golf Tournament.Lance Jungmeyer at last year's FPAA produce convention. The FPAA said... Read more
Target's new brand has everything from Avocado toast salad kits to Z
Target announced Good & Gather, the company’s largest owned food and beverage brand, which will include new and trend-forward products such as avocado toast salad kits and beet hummus alongside everyday staples such as milk, eggs and cheese. Good & Gather is Target’s largest owned brand launch. By the end of 2020, it will include more than 2,000 products... Read more
Rainier Fruit moves beyond organics to regenerative agriculture
Yakima, WA-based Rainier Fruit Co. is planting more than just fruit these days. Without much flair and very little promotion, the grower-shipper is dedicating extensive time and space to building healthy pollinator spaces on its ranches. The story here is more than just a business decision. “Our pollinator initiatives and collaboration with the Xerces Society... Read more
Wisconsin cranberry crop gets a boost from summer heat
July and early-August heat accelerated the development of the 2019 Wisconsin cranberry crop. The state's marshes had a slow start with snow and a long, chilly spring. The recent warmth “helped us immensely. We’re almost caught up to normal,” said Bob Wilson, managing member of Wisconsin Rapids-based The Cranberry Network LLC, a sales and marketing company specializing... Read more
Giant acquires Pennsylvania chain
Giant Food Stores has entered into an agreement with Musser’s Markets to acquire its three Pennsylvania locations located in Columbia, Lebanon, and Quarryville.  Greg Musser, Gray Musser, Giant Food Stores’ Nicholas Bertram, Mike Musser, Brian Musser, Brent Musser, Matt Musser and Eric Musser. “We were honored when the Musser family contacted us about purchasing... Read more
Superior Fresh leading the way in aquaponics
Nestled in the Coulee region of Wisconsin is one of the largest aquaponics facilities in the world. It sits on a 720-acre native restoration property and raises leafy greens as well as Atlantic salmon and Steelhead. Superior Fresh, located in Hixton, WI, is taking sustainability to the next level. “The restoration property has been converted from conventional,... Read more
In my early days as a produce manager, I had the opportunity to learn from some of the best in the business. They really knew how to sell produce and did so without spreadsheets or category management programs to influence them. They simply chose certain items, pushed them over the phone and visited store to make sure that product was out on the floor in massive... Read more
$2.3 million jalapeño pot-per bust
CBP officers assigned to the Otay Mesa cargo facility seized almost four tons of marijuana co-mingled in a shipment of jalapeño peppers, valued at $2.3 million. “I am proud of the officers for seizing this significant marijuana load,” said Otay Mesa Port Director Rosa Hernandez.  “Not only did they prevent the drugs from reaching our community, they also... Read more
POM Group launching fresh Royal brand pomegranate arils
The POM Group of Mississauga, ON, announced the release of a new line — fresh pomegranate arils — under the Royal brand. Distribution will be nation-wide in both Canada and the United States. Royal brand pomegranate arils will be offered as a year-round program. Fresh pomegranates will be facilitated through its Canadian manufacturing facility to produce sweet... Read more
In the third quarter of 2019, it’s looking as though most of the chaos that formed the story of 2018 has subsided. That doesn’t mean it is business as usual. There are plenty of questions unanswered as it relates to how transportation and logistics will impact produce shippers in the immediate future — From the agricultural exemption for hours of service more... Read more
Industry Viewpoint: The future is bright for independent retailers
The National Grocers Association has been the voice of the independent supermarket industry for nearly 40 years. Together, we have had the honor of working at NGA for over a decade. After an extensive national search, NGA’s board of directors announced that Greg Ferrara was selected as the new president and chief executive officer of NGA. On Sept. 1, I officially... Read more