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Steady as it goes for Collotti and Sons

Collotti and Sons, occupying units I-7 and I-8 in the green banner section of the Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market, has more than 60 years of experience working with locally grown produce (such as Jersey Fresh), and distributing it throughout the Northeast and as far south as Virginia.

“Our customers are within a couple-hundred-mile radius, and more are outside the city than inside,” said Jack Collotti, president of the company. “There’s more people coming into this market and the place is very efficient so they are in and out of here very fast. They can come in and load a whole trailer and be out of here in less than an hour.”

Although Collotti and Sons specializes in berries, the company works with a full line of fruits and vegetables, and also works with growers in Canada and Mexico.

“We keep pushing along; there’s no exciting changes here, but we stay consistent with what we’ve been doing well for a long time,” Collotti said. “We’re on a good pace for 2019, comparable to last year.”

He credits his team of seasoned professionals and the good service they provide with keeping customers happy.

“We’re always trying to find new things and we’re reaching out to new customers in an attempt to expand and trying to get more things going,” Collotti said. “You name it and we sell it.”

People come to the Philadelphia market, he noted, because it offers just about everything.

“Under this roof is just about every item you could possibly want, which is why it’s thriving,” Collotti said. “Organic and some specialty items are always strong sellers, but people are just looking for good quality and the right price.”

The biggest challenge Collotti faces is one that has been a problem since the beginning — collections.

“You can sell all you want but if you don’t get paid for it, what good is it?” he said. “It’s something that everyone has to deal with, though.”

Collotti, who grew up in the business and now runs the company with his brothers and sons by his side, enjoys the selling side of the business and loves being part of the produce world in Philadelphia

“Every day is an adventure,” he said. “It’s just like a sport but it’s very challenging. There’s always surprises and things pop in and you never know what to expect. That’s the fun part of it.”