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Coast Produce revitalizes its Nogales operation

NOGALES, AZ — Coast Produce Co., Inc., based in Los Angeles, has had a Nogales presence for decades. Owned by the Dunn family in California, Coast Produce is 64 years old.

Jerry Wagner, general manager of the Coast Nogales operation, said John Dunn told Wagner 18 months ago that Coast in Nogales needed to be more deeply invested in the warehousing business; parallel to the firm’s direction in southern California. Wagner then began working with Nogales’ Panousopoulos family to have a large warehouse space in Nogales.

Among the Panousopoulos’ holdings are the large tomato and vegetable distributor, Delta Fresh.

Jerry-Wagner-Ryan-Jacobsen-Coast-Produce Jerry Wagner and Ryan Jacobsen of Coast Produce Co. stand on a stair landing leading from their new Nogales office into their cold chain-controlled warehouse facility.The family is also very much in the cold and dry warehousing business.

Delta Fresh and Coast Produce have an agreement for Coast to occupy 70,000 square feet of warehouse space — and 13,000 square feet of offices —in a cavernous new Delta Fresh warehouse that will be officially completed later this month.

Wagner and Ryan Jacobsen, Coast’s Nogales sales manager, said they received the right permits to use the building in early November, as the last of the construction efforts were still underway.

Now, per plan, logistics are a greater component of the Coast business in Nogales. From the new facility, Coast offers to third parties load consolidation, in-and-out and cold storage services, gassing facilities, repacking and LTL distribution.

Wagner told The Produce News that the addition of 31-year-old Jacobsen to the Nogales staff is a critical component of the Coast expansion.  

According to an Oct. 30 Coast Produce press release, Jacobsen, previously with Jacobsen Farms, has 12 years of experience in the Nogales deal. He will lead sales in the newly reopened office for Coast Produce.

Coast had closed the sales portion of its Nogales business, while consolidating sales in the Los Angeles home office. Until recently, Coast had, then, simply maintained a Nogales logistics office.

Wagner adds, “We are really excited to have Ryan join our team.  Ryan is an extremely talented, young produce professional. The knowledge and expertise he brings with him will well serve our shippers and customers this season and hopefully for many years to come.”

Jacobsen is joined in the new office by Joshua Thuet who will be assisting in sales.

The Produce News reported in February 2014 that Wagner retired in August 2013 as director of sales and marketing at Farmer’s Best International LLC in Nogales, after 27 seasons with the company.

Wagner exited retirement in early 2014 to become the vice president of business development for Coast Produce.