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Steve Koran joins Bengard Ranch as general manager
Bengard Ranch, a leading grower-shipper of vegetables providing a year-round supply from California and Arizona, with extensive operations in Mexico and Florida, announced that industry veteran Steve Koran has joined the company as general manager. Koran has held a number of executive positions in sales during his career. Most recently, he was vice president of sales and customer service at Earthbound Farm in San Juan Batista, CA. Prior to that, he worked at Martori... Read more
IGA names president and CEO
John Ross, current president of Inmar Promotion Network, has been named president and chief executive officer of IGA Inc., succeeding current IGA Chairman, President and CEO Mark Batenic. Ross will begin his tenure mid-October, working closely with Batenic during the transition. Batenic will remain chairman of the board until his retirement Dec. 31, 2018, transitioning in January of 2019 to non-executive chairman. As president and CEO of IGA Inc., Ross... Read more
Oneonta Starr Ranch Growers expands organic, marketing staff
To keep pace with its expanding product line and volume increases, Wenatchee, WA-based Oneonta Starr Ranch Growers has expanded its staff in two key areas. Joining the company as organic category manager earlier in the season, Dan Davis brings a strong background in organic Washington tree fruit farming. Brent Shammo has added his expertise in retail marketing, produce analysis and procurement as national marketing representative.Dan Davis Davis is a Washington... Read more
FPAA names policy analyst/communications coordinator
The Fresh Produce Association of the Americas, based in Nogales, AZ, has named Erika Dominguez as its new policy analyst/communications coordinator. Dominguez has previous experience at the association, having served as a membership programs coordinator. Dominguez, a native of Nogales, AZ, and a Nogales High School alumna, graduated from the University of Arizona with a bachelor’s degree in political science in 2015. Since graduating, she has worked as a... Read more
Coast Tropical expands team with three new hires
Coast Tropical has announced the addition of Monica Izaguirre, Lindelly Rajo and Edgard Torres to its sales and procurement team. Izaquirre will be joining the Texas team. She was most recently with CABE Fruit Produce, where she spent 10 years in sales, including sales manager roles. She will provide sales direction as well as share her knowledge to the sales team, while staying in contact and servicing numerous customer friends and growers she has cultivated... Read more
Trish Lovell returns to Curry & Co. as onion sales manager
With more than three decades in fresh market onion and potato sales and marketing, Trish Lovell has returned to Curry & Co. in Brooks, OR. Lovell, who had been with Agri-Pack in Pasco, WA, for three years, told The Produce News her return to the Oregon operation on Sept. 11 is a good fit. “I worked here for seven years before going to Pasco,” she said, saying she’s happy to work with the company’s owners, Aaron and Holly Ensign. “[Former... Read more
Emily Kohlhas takes director of marketing role at John Vena
John Vena Inc. announced last week that Emily Kohlhas will assume the position of director of marketing effective immediately. In this new role, Kohlhas is responsible for managing the John Vena Inc. brand across channels, business development and coordinating the strategic growth of products and services to enhance client relationships in foodservice, retail, meal kitting and processing. Kohlhas has been with the company since 2015 as sales and marketing coordinator,... Read more
Terra Exports has added Joe Cardenas to its leadership team as the West Coast sales director. Cardenas holds 24 years of professional experience in the industry, but has been involved with produce since the age of 12, when he would pick fruit in the fields with his parents. As a part of Terra Exports continuing growth plans, Cardenas (who is fluent in Spanish) will dedicate his focus on domestic sales. Cardenas will also be building and leading Terra Exports’... Read more
Terry Sokol retiring from The Produce News
Terry Sokol, associate editor for The Produce News, is retiring after 13 distinguished years with the publication. Her last day at the office was Aug. 30. "While we are certainly happy for Terry as she enters this new phase of her life, we (and I especially) will miss her steady hand on the editorial desk and her dedication to making our editorial product the best it can be," John Groh, editor and publisher of The Produce News, said in a recent memo to the staff.... Read more
Industry veteran retiring from Tom Lange Co.
After 28 years of service, Account Manager Tony Machi is retiring from Tom Lange Co., effective Aug. 31. Machi began his career at an early age at a produce company founded by his grandfather, Machi Produce, while also working alongside his father. After several years spent on the Pittsburgh wholesale market, he joined Tom Lange Co.’s Pittsburgh office in 1989, where he flourished and developed into the company’s top account manager for 15 years.  Greg... Read more
Robert Verloop joins Coastline Family Farms as COO/general manager
Coastline Family Farms, based in Salinas, CA, has named Robert Verloop as chief operating officer and general manager, a newly created position.  “Coastline Family Farms continues to innovate and evolve as our industry addresses the opportunities and challenges of today’s dynamic marketplace. We decided now was the right time to expand our leadership team so we can better manage our growth and maintain our focus on premium products and services,”... Read more
Suntreat names Sergio Rodriguez as director of sales
Suntreat, the provider of Sumo citrus, Oro Blanco grapefruit, Gold Nugget mandarins and other California-grown citrus varieties, has announced the hiring of Sergio Rodriguez as director of sales. “These are exciting times for Suntreat under the new ownership,” Rodriguez said in a press release. “This is a great career opportunity. I am very excited to join the leadership team at Suntreat. My vast background in accounting, finance and sales are... Read more
Ippolito International expands sales team with two industry veterans
Ippolito International has expanded its sales team with the addition of Henry Dill as vice president of sales and Sarah Clarke as sales and commodity manager. Dill was most recently with PIM of Salinas, CA, where he spent 22 years in sales and sales manager roles. He began his foray into the produce industry in 1979 with the Garin Co., and did sales stints at Bruce Church, Code (which later merged with Fresh Network) and D’Arrigo Bros. before joining... Read more
Harps Food Stores has promoted Mike Roberts to director of produce operations. Prior to taking on this new role, Roberts was produce merchandiser and before that produce manager. Roberts is succeeding Dennis Baker, who is retiring. “I am very excited to have the opportunity to lead our produce department and look forward to guiding us in the right direction. To be able to do what I have a real passion for with such wonderful people at a great organization... Read more
Dan Vaché named sales director at FreightFlow
FreightFlow, which offers easy-to-use 3PL logistics software, announced that longtime industry leader and former United Fresh Produce Association Vice President Dan Vaché has joined the company as a sales director. Vaché joins Bobby Grinstead, who was hired by the company earlier this year, as part of a dynamic and highly knowledgeable sales force. Both Vaché and Grinstead bring a wealth of experience and passion to FreightFlow and are committed... Read more
Sarah Burns joins T&A as senior manager of organic sales
Veteran organic produce sales pro Sarah Burns is the latest addition to Tanimura & Antle’s growing organic team. She joins the company as senior manager of organic sales. Burns’ deep experience comes from an entire produce career in organic sales, having spent 11 years on the sales team at Earthbound Farm. During her tenure at Earthbound, she developed strong relationships with retail and wholesale accounts in the western United States and Canada. Burns... Read more
SpartanNash has appointed Mark Shamber as executive vice president and chief financial officer, effective Sept. 11. Shamber previously served as CFO for United Natural Foods Inc., a specialty and organic food distributor. Following his departure from UNFI at the end of 2015, Shamber has been working as an independent consultant and serving as the vice chairman, board of directors of Day Kimball Healthcare Inc. Earlier in his career, Shamber worked in the audit... Read more
Joe Sbrocchi will assume the general manager role at the Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers, effective Sept. 18. He has been active in a number of roles in the greenhouse sector for the last eight years. Previously Sbrocchi held management roles with national retailers like Sobeys and Walmart, providing a solid body of work throughout the entire value chain. "We are pleased to have a quality leader join the OGVG at a point where his experience, skills and leadership... Read more
Idaho Potato Commission hires Northeast retail promotion director
Produce industry veteran Dave Rhodes has joined the Idaho Potato Commission as retail promotion director-Northeast, based in Indianapolis, IN. He replaces Ken Tubman, who is retiring after 15 years of service. Rhodes will work with retail produce managers in the northeastern United States and Canada to help drive sales of Idaho potatoes through marketing and promotions, competitive research and point-of-sale materials, in addition to representing the Idaho potato... Read more
Erik Katenkamp has been named vice president of omnichannel and application development. Katenkamp has been instrumental in launching the Publix Delivery online shopping solution, including formalizing Publix’s collaboration with Instacart. In this role, he will focus on the continued development and execution of the company’s omnichannel strategy. “We are proud of the work Erik and his team have accomplished. With dedicated resources, we will... Read more