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If a retailer is selling blueberries, grapes or stone fruit — such as peaches, plums and nectarines — during the winter months, chances are the fruit is from Chile, said Karen Brux, managing director of the San Carlos, CA-based Chilean Fresh Fruit Association, North America. “As the largest fruit exporter in the Southern Hemisphere, Chile exports more than 800,000... Read more
Oppy's Anderson earns lifetime achievement award
At the 17th annual Friend of Chile Awards Luncheon, the Chilean & American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Philadelphia honored accomplished business leaders, including John Anderson, chairman, president and chief executive officer of The Oppenheimer Group, who received a Lifetime Achievement Award. Anderson was acknowledged for several achievements, including... Read more
Whole Foods names Bill Jordan its Rocky Mountain region president
Whole Foods Market has named Bill Jordan its president of the Rocky Mountain region, effective immediately. “Bill has been an incredible asset to Whole Foods Market for many years, and we’re so glad that he is now leading our Rocky Mountain region,” David Lannon, executive vice president of operations at Whole Foods Market, said in a press release. “He’s the... Read more
Will Obama's immigration reform package serve as a catalyst for legislation?
WASHINGTON — President Obama announced sweeping new executive actions on immigration reform Thursday that will likely set up the White House for a battle with the Republican-controlled Congress, but the produce industry hopes it will serve as a catalyst for a legislative fix. During his prime-time televised speech, Obama criticized the House for failing to hold... Read more
This holiday season, Food Lion is partnering with customers in its more than 1,100 stores, Nov. 19-Dec. 23, to help solve hunger through its Food Lion Feeds "Holidays Without Hunger" campaign. Through the campaign, customers can purchase and donate a specially marked "Holidays Without Hunger" food box for $5, while supplies last, or make a cash donation at checkout.... Read more
Double-digit increase anticipated for Chilean cherry imports
The Chilean Cherry Committee, an entity associated with the Chilean Fruit Exporters Association, commonly referred to as ASOEX, expects total exports of fresh cherries from Chile to reach 100,000 tons this year. As the second-largest export market for Chile, North America anticipates a 45 percent increase in volume over the 2013-14 season. To support this dramatic... Read more
Record sales and revenue for Blue Diamond
Blue Diamond Growers' global almond sales soared to $1.2 billion, up $189 million in fiscal year 2012-13. Value-added sales volume increased by 14 percent, even with a crop that was 7 percent smaller, according to Mark Jansen, president and chief executive officer, who addressed the cooperative's grower owners at the 103rd annual meeting. Value-added sales now... Read more
C.H. Robinson collaboration results in Twin Cities Food Fight
C.H. Robinson has teamed up with Twin Cities NBC affiliate KARE 11 to create a one-day food and fund drive called the KARE 11 Food Fight. The unique collaboration aims to fight hunger in Minnesota with all donations benefitting Second Harvest Heartland. During the 2013 event, more than 860,000 pounds of food was collected. The Food Fight, which takes place on... Read more
The Alliance for Food & Farming, a non-profit group founded to deliver credible information to consumer about the safety of fruits and vegetables, recently launched its newly updated website — “We’re working hard to raise the profile of our organization within the produce industry,” Matt McInerney, executive vice president of Western... Read more
S.C. watermelon production up 64 percent over 2013
Aided by good weather, South Carolina’s 2014 watermelon crop recorded a robust gain of 64 percent over last year’s total, according to a National Watermelon Report by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As production ended in early August, the state had shipped almost 81 million pounds of seeded and seedless watermelons. Georgia, usually the leading state for... Read more
College football reporter Heather Cox signs on with IPC for a second year
Heather Cox is back with a new lineup of weekly videos and contests that are scoring big points with college football and Idaho potato fans across the country. The popular college football sideline reporter and Boise resident was recruited by the Idaho Potato Commission last year to help promote Idaho potatoes during the fall season, one of the heaviest... Read more
Bi-Lo Holdings, parent company of Bi-Lo, Harveys and Winn-Dixie grocery stores, is enhancing customers' data security by supporting Apple Pay across its entire Southeast footprint. The new payment option will also make checkout faster and more convenient for customers. “Customers want a shopping experience that is convenient, easy and secure, which is why we’re... Read more
Del Monte Fresh opens fresh-cut facility in Toronto
Del Monte Fresh Produce N.A. Inc. announced that its first state-of-the-art Canadian distribution center, which opened in January, is now being complemented by the opening of a fresh-cut facility in Oshawa, ON. The facility services the Toronto, Montreal and Ottawa metropolitan areas with fresh produce. Del Monte has distributed product in Canada for some time,... Read more
Moroccan clementine quality is up, says Lange's Bill Weyland
A joint effort to boost the quality of Moroccan clementines is apparent this fall, according to Bill Weyland, vice president of Tom Lange Co. International, based in Springfield, IL. Producers, packers, exporters and the Moroccan government have cooperated to "implement new control processes to export product from Morocco with higher quality than past years,"... Read more
CMI rolls out Ambrosia apples in record numbers
Columbia Marketing International Inc., a leading grower and distributor of more than a dozen apple varieties, is rolling out Ambrosia apples in record numbers nationally, showing that consumers increasingly favor up-and-coming varieties over the legacy apples. With a name that means "Food of the Gods," Ambrosia apples live up to this name by offering a naturally... Read more
Abate Fetel pears feted at New York gastronomic event
The legendary pear of Italy's Emilia-Romagna region was the star of a tasting event for produce professionals that took place Nov. 13 at Eataly NYC in New York. A specially designed meal prepared by Eataly NYC's Chef Nicoletta Grippo was a gastronomic journey starting with a Prosecco and amuse-bouche reception, followed by a three-course tasting showcasing this... Read more
With tense negotiations continuing between dockworkers and West Coast ports, drivers from a handful of Southern California drayage companies set up picket lines at those firms causing some disruptions at the twin ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. The dockworker negotiations have been ongoing since the last contract expired between the Pacific Maritime Association,... Read more
Pretty Lady and Pink Lady get together for holiday party recipe
What happens when two great things get together? Something extraordinary — and in this case, also delicious. Pretty Lady grapes and Pink Lady apples are partnering in a special seasonal promotion featuring a new holiday recipe. “I’ll never forget the day I saw a story in the produce press featuring Pretty Lady grapes,”  Alan Taylor, marketing director... Read more
Retail View: Bins offer merchandising opportunities
When Sunkist’s director of retail merchandising, Julie DeWolf, came from a consumer product group company to the nation’s largest citrus marketer, she was surprised that retail display bins weren’t in the firm’s marketing arsenal. On the consumer products side, it was a well-developed and well-used strategy. “They offer an excellent opportunity to get a display... Read more
Eat Smart innovates with pre-cooked vegetables in Superfood Salad Kits
Eat Smart is bringing something new to the salad kit category in North America. Apio Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Landec Corp. and a leading national producer of fresh-cut vegetable products, has launched two new Eat Smart Gourmet Vegetable Salad Kits as part of its superfood product line. The Beets & Greens Salad and Roasted Yam Salad offer a gourmet... Read more