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COMPANY PROFILES

Divine Flavor’s 12-month grape plan reaches maturity
Divine Flavor LLC, a longtime table grape grower-shipper rooted in Sonora, in recent years has aggressively spread its operations along the Pacific coast. As those vineyards matured, Divine Flavor, based in Nogales, AZ, will be able to consistently fulfill its year-round grape program. Divine Flavor’s sales team will be offering fruit from Peru, Chile, Jalisco, Sonora and Baja Norte. Among produce buyers, “everyone wants value, and everyone wants specialty grapes... Read more
Frello succeeding in first season
RIO RICO, AZ— As Mother Nature angrily stirred in Mexico this fall and winter, it created a remarkable season to launch a produce company. That has been Willy Martinez’ position at Frello. But he smiles, shrugs and expresses relief that his partners, the Stabropoulos family in Culiacan, have had the expertise and good fortune to overcome rain, clouds and humid weather this season. In Frello’s Rio Rico cold warehouse, Willy Martinez and Alexis Inzunza show Roma... Read more
Turek Farms heads into Southern Exposure with sweet corn on its mind
Jason Turek, a partner in both Turek Farms and its marketing arm, Cayuga Produce Inc., noted being a family-owned grower and shipper of fresh market vegetables means dedicating 100 percent to the business at all times and looking for growth opportunities. One of the ways it does the latter is by attending produce shows and the SEPC Southern Exposure Conference has long been one of his favorites. “There’s no better way to catch up with all your friends and people... Read more
Sweet Potatoes a hot topic for Vick Family Farms
Since 1975, Vick Family Farms has been a shining example of how a family can work together and be successful, and the strong family bond has propelled the company to become one of the largest providers of sweet potatoes in North Carolina. And as they start preparing for a trip to Florida for this year’s SEPC Southern Exposure conference and trade show, those at the company are excited to talk about what’s happening with sweet potatoes in 2020. “Sweet potatoes... Read more
Southern Exposure offers ‘home-field’ advantage for Always Fresh Farms
Always Fresh Farms won’t have to travel far to attend this year’s SEPC Southern Exposure Conference, as the Winter Haven, FL-based company is less than an hour’s drive from this year’s Tampa-based show. “We love this show as it offers a lot of exposure to retail buyers and a chance to showcase the best of Florida right in our own backyard,” said Matt Sumner, a member of Always Fresh’s sales team. “This show gives us a chance for face-to-face meetings with current... Read more
Eat Smart Salads get a new look
EAT SMART, the plant-centered, chef-inspired, 100-percent clean, fresh salad kit company continues to show consumers that the foods they should eat can also be the foods they want to eat! EAT SMART’s new logo and package design and exciting flavor combinations attract shoppers that are looking for convenient packaged foods that are both healthy and delicious. With shoppers paying more attention to the store perimeters and eating plant-centered... Read more
Wada Farms sees some of the best quality Colorado potatoes ever
Five months into the shipping season, Michele Peterson, who heads the Colorado sales office of Idaho Falls-based Wada Farms Marketing Group, was seeing the quality of the 2019 potato harvest in Colorado’s San Luis Valley measure up to her expectations. On Aug. 15, one week before the anticipated start date, Peterson told The Produce News that based on test digs “the quality is exceptional. It looks wonderful.”Michele Peterson, who heads the Colorado sales office... Read more
Onions 52 sees big things ahead from Sunions
Onions 52 is one of the nation’s leading grower-shippers of quality yellow, red, white, sweet and organic onions thanks to growing/packaging partners in six states as well as Mexico. Falon Brawley, director of marketing and business development for the Syracuse, UT-based company, noted Onions 52 offers the same quality and care that they started with more than 75 years ago. The family-run business strives to supply its customers with a reliable supply of quality... Read more
Quail H Farms knows automation is key for sweet potato success
Although a relatively young company, Quail H Farms LLC is one of the largest and most reputable sweet potato grower/packer/shippers in the state of California. The company operates with the belief in the words of the great coach Vince Lombardi, “Individual commitment to a group effort — that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work.” “We have been in business since 2008. We have a great management staff... Read more
Vick Family Farms is all about… family
Vick Family Farms is truly an example of a working farm family, as each one of its management divisions is led by a Vick family member. “We each were raised on this farm that began very small and we have grown as it has grown into a large international business,” said Charlotte Vick, partner/sales and marketing manager at Vick Family Farms, based in Wilson, NC. “We each are invested in the company and truly care about our integrity, our growth, our responsibility... Read more
WP Rawl celebrates 95 years, offers lessons in modern day farming
WP Rawl, a premier grower, processor and shipper of leafy greens, celebrated 95 years of business on Saturday, Jan. 25. The farming legacy began the day founders Walter and Ernestine Rawl were married in 1925. “Love started it all,” said Ashley Rawl, vice president of sales, marketing and product development, and third-generation family member. “The story goes that after their wedding Walter and Ernestine, my grandparents, planted their first crop of cabbage. That... Read more
Three keys to Inline Plastics containers —  leak resistance, tamper-evidence and extended shelf life
Inline Plastics has a dedicated, state-of-the-art innovation center that is home to a strong R&D team. Recent product launches include the PagodaWare and SnackWare lines that are unique in their own right. “PagodaWare has an upscale flavor and the SnackWare offers multi-compartments that fit many types of grab-and-go foods,” said Cindy Blish, brand and communications manager for the Shelton, CT-based company. “The newest product, Snackers, are mini SquareWare... Read more
Allied Potato promoting successful Chipperbec Potatoes brand
When Matt Hornbuckle, director of foodservice sales at Allied Potato set out to build a brand around their premium chipping potatoes, he wanted to bring together the best of the company’s successful varieties, cultural insight, and marketing know-how. “I envisioned a really cool brand that chefs can count on that is hip and current,” he explained. “We created the brand and just started shipping one box at a time and the brand has grown somewhat organically due... Read more
Paterson Pickle Co. going green
Marc and Eric Nadel are no strangers to the pickle business, having been around them their entire life. As president of Paterson, NJ-based Paterson Pickle Co., Marc has helped lead the company to great success, as well as meet customers’ needs. Now, even though it’s more expensive, and even though the company won’t pass along the cost, Paterson Pickle feels a corporate responsibility as business owners to be more environmentally conscious, and the company... Read more
Kurt Zuhlke & Associates  leading the way with clamshells
Today’s produce customers are becoming more and more knowledgeable about the food they purchase—largely due to trends like organic, farm to table and the foodie craze—and that means they want the very best products to include in their diets. That has made clamshell packaging of vital importance and when it comes to clamshells, Kurt Zuhlke & Associates remains a leader in the field. Kurt ZuhlkeClamshell packaging provides exceptional protection of fruits and... Read more
Rainier extends its organic apple season
By better matching growing location, varieties and the timing of sales, Rainier Fruit Company has been able to lengthen the storage capabilities of some of its organic apple varieties and offer the fruit on a year-round basis. “The biggest change for us on the organic front is that we used to run out (of organics) in late spring or early summer,” said Andy Tudor, vice president of business development for the firm. “This season we are going to be able to go year-round... Read more
New MountainKing merchandising program focuses on baby potatoes
As sales of baby Golds, Reds and Medley potatoes continue to climb, MountainKing is embarking on an aggressive program to provide its retail partners with turnkey, display-ready options aimed at driving sales of the smaller, pre-sized variety. “Small potatoes are under-promoted and under-merchandised,” said John Pope, vice president of sales and marketing.  “We’re working to change that narrative in a big way.” MountainKing’s new merchandising package for... Read more
World Fresh Produce proceeding at a fast pace, with enthusiasm
World Fresh Produce was created in 2018. The Cherry Hill, NJ-based company may be a new guy on the fresh produce block, but it’s jam-packed with decades and even generations of experience. Founded by President Michel Matouk, citrus is currently the company’s primarily focus, and it also specializes in kiwi, persimmons, pears and other items. Its citrus fruits are shipped under the PureFect Fruit label. Matouk, who is originally from Montreal, began working for... Read more
Good rains set the stage for strong California citrus season
With citrus roots dating back more than a century, the Visalia, CA-based Chuck Olsen Co. continues to thrive in California’s San Joaquin Valley, providing many services to both its growers and its customers. President Jeff Olsen is the fourth generation of the family to make his living in California agriculture and the second CEO of the Chuck Olsen Co., founded by his father in the mid-1990s. He shares the workload with brother-in-law Tom Salisbury. In the citrus... Read more
Homegrown Organics ramping up citrus production
The citrus category is one of the major sectors for Porterville, CA-based Homegrown Organic Farms. As such, it is a solid growth crop for the San Joaquin Valley grower-packer-shipper Craig Morris, grape and citrus category director for the company, explained the firm’s philosophy to The Produce News in early January. “We have been strategic about planning growth to meet demand,” he said. “We are adding acreage at the rate of about 10 percent per year and we are... Read more