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Major expansions for Five Crowns

Five Crowns, a family-owned third-generation grower, packer, shipper and processor of fresh produce, announced a major expansion in several areas of the business to include new personnel, products and facilities.maj

Five Crowns has hired two new employees who bring industry expertise to the business: Gary Meadows, vice president of the L.A. division and Cruz Carrera, director of the asparagus division. Meadows was formerly the vice president of sales at Progressive in Los Angeles and director of purchasing for Ralphs Grocery and brings 38 years of experience in produce. Carrera brings 16 years of experience, formerly the director of sales and business development Progressive, the balance at Mission Produce as sales manager.

“To be a part of Five Crowns, a family owned organization with an incredible reputation, is a great opportunity to utilize my experience in the industry,” said Meadows. “I couldn’t be more excited to be here.”

Five Crown’s asparagus production will now double the volume and year-round supply for its customer base, ensuring a consistent, year-round supply from top asparagus growing regions. New growing areas include Washington, central Mexico, Peru, and new regions in Mexico. Berry production will expand beyond their current growing locations in Canada, Washington and California to also include Mexico and Peru. Five Crowns will also add wet vegetable items to the asparagus mix, cabbage, cilantro, Brussel sprouts and Asian vegetable.

To further support the growth of its asparagus and berry business, Five Crowns has opened an office and distribution center in Los Angeles. The new L.A.-based team includes Meadows and Carrera. Both team members bring a wealth of knowledge and experience in the L.A. market, produce distribution and in asparagus sales specifically.

“We are optimistic about the new facilities and our asparagus program, and adding Gary and Cruz to the Five Crowns Family to help build both areas of the business,” said Bill Colace, co-owner of Five Crowns, along with his brother, Joe Colace. “We feel these gentlemen are a unique fit to what we wanted to accomplish long term.”

The company also has plans to open a new state-of- the-art facility in Tracy, CA, to help expand their value-added corn program with GloriAnn Farms and provide regional distribution of corn, watermelons, berries and asparagus. The new facility is scheduled to open in January of 2021 and will help position the company to better serve customers up and down the west coast with enhanced efficiencies. The facility will increase value added capacity 2.5 times the current volume.

“This whole expansion is really about positioning us for the future in a very challenging environment in California, between labor and logistics,” said Daren Van Dyke, director of marketing at Five Crowns. “We are a solution driven company for our customers, and this helps uniquely position us as such!”