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Braga Fresh expands organic offerings with new sleeved celery and celery hearts
Braga Fresh, based in Salinas, CA, is now offering sleeved celery and celery hearts under its sustainable produce brand, "Josie's Organics." "We are proud to expand our offerings of fresh, sustainable produce to help retailers meet growing consumer demand for organic vegetables," Rod Braga, president and chief executive officer of Braga Fresh, said in a press... Read more
Dole doubling the love during 2014 tour
Building on the success of last year's Peel the Love tour, when 107,703 recipe samples made from Dole bananas were handed out at 147 tour stops at supermarkets, special events and other local venues, Dole is doubling its efforts this summer with two tours. At the request of retailers and consumers nationwide, Dole and Blue Diamond Almond Breeze are launching... Read more
WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is moving ahead with a new pilot program to test the impact of opening up the popular school fruit and vegetable program to canned, frozen or dried fruits and vegetables. Schools selected to participate in USDA's Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Program are reimbursed for providing free fresh fruits and vegetables during... Read more
In December, the U.S. Customs & Border Protection successfully investigated a Chinese garlic dumping case, and ultimately stopped Jinxiang Hejia Co. from shipping the product into the United States. Through its investigative work, Customs discovered that the firm was not just shipping its own garlic into the United States but that other Chinese producers... Read more
Baloian Farms introduces premium heirloom onion
Baloian Farms has expanded its line of high-quality produce with the launch of its premium heirloom onion, Sophia la Rosa. Grown exclusively in California’s Central Valley near Fresno, Sophia la Rosa is an Italian sweet flat red onion with a mild, sweet flavor. Independent lab tests verify that this onion has virtually no “tear factor” or “hotness factor" and... Read more
California apricot crop appears early with variable set but good quality
The outlook for the 2014 California apricot season varies from grower to grower, from location to location and from variety to variety. In general, however, it appears that the crop will start earlier than usual, the set is variable but averaging lighter than normal, and quality looks very good. For Family Tree Farms in Reedley, CA, which is "a major player... Read more
If they were available, large limes (175 size and greater) could return a shipper $110 or more for a 40-pound box. "That's what you could get if you had any," said Ronald Cohen, vice president of sales at Vision Import Group LLC. in River Edge, NJ. "The trouble is, there aren't any." The lime market has been red hot for more than a month because of bad weather... Read more
Reichel Foods expands the Dippin’ Stix line
Reichel Foods, a fresh‐cut produce snack producer, is introducing four new single-serve products to its line of Dippin’ Stix: Apples & Caramel with Greek Yogurt chips; Apples & Caramel with Peanuts & Chocolate; Sweet Gala Apples & Caramel with Peanuts; and Celery Stix & Ranch Dip. The new Dippin' Stix will be available to retailers and distributors... Read more
April watermelon movement higher than last season
On April 8, the Agricultural Marketing Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported on daily shipments and crossings in the United States for watermelons for the first week of April. The report broke down movement for seeded and seedless watermelon and also provided some data on imports. Units are comprised of a total of 40,000 pounds each. This season,... Read more
Save-A-Lot, one of the nation’s leading hard-discount, limited assortment grocery chains and a wholly owned subsidiary of SuperValu, announced plans that will allow it to more efficiently bring fresh quality food options to local neighborhoods with the development of a new 140,000-square-foot food distribution center in Aurora, CO, in June 2014. Save-A-Lot currently... Read more
Kevin Bartolotta, president of Bartolotta Inc., headquartered in Torrington, CT, held his third annual fundraiser, which ran from Feb. 10 to March 1. The annual project has grown consistently each year since its inception. This year, Bartolotta partnered in the project with Rob Goldstein, owner and president of Genpro Inc. headquartered in Rutherford, NJ. Goldstein's... Read more
Ahold USA appoints Amy Hahn as senior VP of marketing
Ahold USA announced that Amy Hahn has been appointed to the newly created position of senior vice president of marketing, effective April 28. In this role, which will be based in Carlisle, PA, Hahn will lead and drive critical initiatives of strategic marketing, market insights and analytics, advertising, promotion, brand development, corporate communications,... Read more
Stellar Distributing has a Tiger by the tail with new fig variety
If last year's inaugural marketing season is any indication, retailers will continue to pounce on opportunities to move Tiger figs to customers. The exclusive variety was added to the production manifest of Stellar Distributing Inc. several years ago, and Sales Manager Kurt Cappelluti said marketplace excitement would not diminish in 2014. "We have a beautiful... Read more
Frieda's kicks off 'Eat One Fruit a Day That Scares You' campaign
Frieda's Specialty Produce takes another step to further its mission to change the way America eats fruits and vegetables with its new campaign, "Eat One Fruit a Day That Scares You." Frieda's new consumer campaign aims to challenge consumers to put specialty fruits like Dragon Fruit, Kiwanos or Mangosteens in their grocery shopping carts and on plates in their... Read more
Officials are guardedly optimistic that the 2014 runoff season in Colorado’s high country will be a good one. A potential for flooding does exist, however, if meltdown comes too quickly as a result of sustained hot temperatures during the prime runoff months of May and June. Craig Cotten, division engineer for Div. 3 of the State Engineer’s office in Alamosa,... Read more
Viva Tierra's organic Alexander Lucas pears coming to market
Organic Alexander Lucas pears are back this spring, brought to the North American market by Viva Tierra Organic Inc. This heirloom variety has a dedicated following among pear connoisseurs who look forward to its brief season. The Alexander Lucas pears will be packed in 10-kilogram "Viva Tierra Organic" boxes. The volume is limited, with fewer than 45 pallets... Read more
Sage Fruit Co., long-time sponsors of Kasey Kahne Racing, just announced a new associate sponsorship with JR Motorsports, the professional race team owned by Dale Earnhardt Jr.  Based in Mooresville, NC, JR Motorsports fields multiple teams and tours nationally in the NASCAR Nationwide Series. As part of the agreement, the Sage Fruit logo will have placement... Read more
Pear Bureau Northwest names winner of Canadian Culinary Student Recipe Competition
The national finals for the 2014 USA Pears “Pear Excellence” Canadian Culinary Student Recipe Competition were held April 8 at The Dirty Apron Cooking School in Vancouver. Five culinary student finalists from highly competitive regional competitions faced off before a panel of esteemed judges for the National Grand Prize title. The members of the final judging... Read more
Fresno Food Expo New Product Awards adds Buyer's Choice Award
The 2014 Fresno Food Expo, presented by Union Bank, announced the return of the highly anticipated Fresno Food Expo New Product Awards, presented by Baker Peterson Franklin CPA LLP. These awards showcase innovative products and packaging solutions from California's San Joaquin Valley. This year marks the introduction of the Buyer's Choice Award, which replaces... Read more
Five Crowns introduces Origami cantaloupe
Five Crowns Marketing is one of only two U.S. growers licensed to bring retailers the Origami cantaloupe, which is hitting stores in May. It is being harvested out of the Imperial Valley and will be available through the beginning of July. Delivered to stores under the Majesty Brand starting next month, consumers should enjoy the Origami’s deep orange color,... Read more