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M. Levin & Co. welcomes fifth generation family member to its team

Multi-generational family owned and operated, M. Levin & Co. was one of the initial companies to move into the Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market when it opened in 2011.

Company president, Mark Levin, said that in May the company’s long-time tropicals buyer and salesman, Bill DeFelice, would retire. 

“Bill has spent the past 54 years in the produce industry,” said Levin. “We are sad to see him go but wish him the best in his retirement.”

Brian Kriebel has been with the company for 33 years, and also works in tropicals. He will be leading and growing the line going forward.

Olivia-MillerOlivia Lee Miller at 12 weeks old. Born Jan. 21, Olivia is the daughter of Tracie and Ryan Miller. She is the fifth generation of Levin family members at M. Levin & Co.M. Levin constantly adds new items to its already extensive line of fresh produce. As new customers come to the market and demand items they are accustomed to in their native countries, M. Levin responds by sourcing them to add to its product line. 

The company also makes constant improvements and upgrades facility to ensure that it keeps pace with its food-safety initiatives.

Levin continues to be bullish on the PWPM.

“It’s hard to believe we moved into the market in 2011 — it seems like just the other day,” he said. “Our market is unlike any other, and we are proud to be a part of it. Being in such a clean and cold chain-friendly environment has brought us new business because it sets us apart from our competition.

“We look forward to spending many more years here, and perhaps growing and expanding into more units in the future,” he continued. “Two years ago, we acquired two additional units, bringing M. Levin to a total of six units.”

The company installed state-of-the-art ripening rooms in the two units, complimenting the ripening rooms it installed when it first moved into the market.

“We take our commitment to food safety and traceability very seriously,” stressed Levin. “My daughter, Tracie, heads our food-safety program and is in charge of making sure we stay in compliance. We also have an organics certification through CCOF.  This is our second year being organically certified, and because of it we have seen our business grow.”

Now operated by the third- and fourth-generations of Levin family members, M. Levin proudly announced the arrival of a fifth-generation member to the organization.

“My granddaughter, Olivia Lee Miller, was born to Tracie and her husband, Ryan, on Jan. 21,” boasted Levin. “She will be the youngest member of the Levin family to start her produce career. Literally, Olivia will be in the office daily with Tracie.” 

“Olivia’s middle name, Lee, is an homage to my father, Leon, commonly called Lee, who would be so proud of his great-granddaughter if he were alive to see her today,” he continued. “I’m excited to be able to see her every day so I can impart my produce wisdom to her at an early age.”

Tracie’s husband, Ryan Miller, joined M. Levin & Co. over a year ago. His focus is on Western vegetable sales.

Levin feels fortunate to be a part of the business started by his own grandfather back in 1906, pointing out that not many businesses get to experience being over 100 years old — and still be family owned and operated.

“It is nice to be able to work alongside my family and to be able to see how far things have progressed,” he said.

Besides having close-knit family ties, M. Levin also has a loyal staff of long-time team members. And its compassion and generosity extend beyond its business.

“We donate food that has only a short remaining shelf life to our partners at Philabundance and other surrounding non-profit and community groups,” Levin pointed out. “We have a strong partnership with Philabundance, which has a weekly presence in the market. They do a great job of providing nutritious food to our neighbors who need it.”