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COMPANY PROFILES

R.C.F. expanding early mango volume
R.C.F. Distributors LLC enters the new Mexican mango season with the resources of a new packingshed in Chiapas. This shed is in a town with the remarkable name of Ocozocoautla de Espinoza. Malú Crespo, president of the firm, indicated that the new facility becomes the second packinghouse in Chiapas for El Grupo Crespo, the parent company of a firm operated by Malú Crespo and her brothers, Jorge, Jose Angel and Roberto Crespo. Jorge and Roberto are growers. Jose... Read more
E. Armata prides itself on superior customer service
Hunts Point Terminal Market-based E. Armata is a multi-generational, leading produce distribution company with a solid and envious fresh produce industry background and reputation. The company distributes is full line of fresh produce throughout the Northeast and beyond. Michael Armata, the son of E. Armata’s president, Chris Armata, serves as the company’s berry buyer. Chris Armata is also joined in overseeing the company’s operations by his brother, Paul Armata,... Read more
New Limeco to discuss Florida avocado program at Southern Exposure
Eddie Caram, general manager of New Limeco LLC, a Primus Labs certified packing house operating in Princeton, FL, noted the SEPC’s Southern Exposure Conference is an important show for the company and he’s looking forward to traveling to Tampa for this year’s event. “We plan to attend and maintain our presence in the industry as one of the leading importers, packers, and shippers of tropicals in South Florida, primarily Florida green skin avocados,”... Read more
Rice Fruit Co. looking forward to Southern Exposure
Supporters of the Southeast Produce Council are steadfast in their dedication to the organization and to its initiatives. Gardners, PA-based Rice Fruit Co. is among the strongest proponents of the council. Vice President of Sales Brenda Briggs said the company is once again looking forward to the Southeast Produce Council’s 2020 Southern Exposure, being held in Tampa, FL, on Feb. 27-29. “At our booth, No. 119, we will have our great-tasting premium Eastern apples... Read more
Duda Farm Fresh Foods  showcases line of Fresh from  Florida items at Southern Exposure
A loyal devotee to the Southeast Produce Council, Oviedo, FL-based Duda Farm Fresh Foods has been a member and participant since its founding. And it has exhibited every year at the Southern Exposure event since its first expo in 2004. This year, the company will exhibit at booth No. 418 at the event on Feb. 27-29 in Tampa, FL. Duda Farm Fresh Foods will be represented by an impressive group of team members. On hand to meet with customers will be Director of... Read more
Ben B. driven by hard work,  quality and service
Fourth-generation owned-and-operated Ben B. Schwartz & Sons attributes much of its success to giving its customers what they want — quality and service. This has been the company’s mission since it first opened its doors in 1906. Nate Stone“We meet or exceed our customers’ expectations and that’s how the company keeps growing,” said Nate Stone, special projects for the Detroit-based wholesaler. Stone added that co-owner and president, Chris Billmeyer, has... Read more
DelFrescoPure touts strawberries and heirloom tomatoes
DelFrescoPure, based in Kingsville, Ontario, is a leader in the greenhouse hydroponic sector and prides itself on being able to provide consumers with strawberries all year long by putting a lot of time and care into growing the highest quality strawberries possible. The company currently has 17 acres of greenhouses dedicated specifically to strawberries. “Our history with strawberries goes back over 35 years,” said Ray Mastronardi, vice president of sales for... Read more
Nash Produce’s Southern Exposure exhibit to feature  everything from personalized packaging to logistics
Nash Produce’s own President Thomas Joyner and Sales Associate Thomas Webb will be attending this year’s Southern Exposure conference, sitting behind booth No. 830 and welcoming attendees to its exhibit. “We will be bringing each of our conventional varieties to this year’s show, which includes Covington, Murasaki and Bonita,” said Rebecca Scott, grower accounting and marketing director for the Nashville, NC-based company. “We will also be displaying our range... Read more
Coast Produce growing in second season in Nogales
Coast Produce Co. Inc. moved into a new refrigerated facility in Nogales for the last Mexican winter deal. Jerry Wagner, general manager of the firm, is very positive about the subsequent progress. In the Nogales warehouse of Coast Produce Co. Inc. are Jerry Wagner, general manager, Alex Sihas, operations manager, Josias Espinoza, dispatch manager, and Chris Alvarez, warehouse foreman.He indicated to The Produce News on Jan. 29, “We have one season under our belt... Read more
SunFed’s summer program will build Texas distribution
RIO RICO, AZ— Currently, 80 percent of the Mexican produce imported by SunFed enters the U.S. through Nogales. The remaining 20 percent is crossing the border in south Texas for distribution from a SunFed facility in Edinberg. “However, tomatoes are opposite,” according to Matt Mandel, COO of SunFed, “with 80 percent running through Texas.” SunFed continues to develop a summertime program, and tomatoes are key to that program, according to Craig Slate, president... Read more
Divine Flavor’s 12-month grape plan reaches maturity
Divine Flavor LLC, a longtime table grape grower-shipper rooted in Sonora, in recent years has aggressively spread its operations along the Pacific coast. As those vineyards matured, Divine Flavor, based in Nogales, AZ, will be able to consistently fulfill its year-round grape program. Divine Flavor’s sales team will be offering fruit from Peru, Chile, Jalisco, Sonora and Baja Norte. Among produce buyers, “everyone wants value, and everyone wants specialty grapes... Read more
Frello succeeding in first season
RIO RICO, AZ— As Mother Nature angrily stirred in Mexico this fall and winter, it created a remarkable season to launch a produce company. That has been Willy Martinez’ position at Frello. But he smiles, shrugs and expresses relief that his partners, the Stabropoulos family in Culiacan, have had the expertise and good fortune to overcome rain, clouds and humid weather this season. In Frello’s Rio Rico cold warehouse, Willy Martinez and Alexis Inzunza show Roma... Read more
Turek Farms heads into Southern Exposure with sweet corn on its mind
Jason Turek, a partner in both Turek Farms and its marketing arm, Cayuga Produce Inc., noted being a family-owned grower and shipper of fresh market vegetables means dedicating 100 percent to the business at all times and looking for growth opportunities. One of the ways it does the latter is by attending produce shows and the SEPC Southern Exposure Conference has long been one of his favorites. “There’s no better way to catch up with all your friends and people... Read more
Sweet Potatoes a hot topic for Vick Family Farms
Since 1975, Vick Family Farms has been a shining example of how a family can work together and be successful, and the strong family bond has propelled the company to become one of the largest providers of sweet potatoes in North Carolina. And as they start preparing for a trip to Florida for this year’s SEPC Southern Exposure conference and trade show, those at the company are excited to talk about what’s happening with sweet potatoes in 2020. “Sweet potatoes... Read more
Southern Exposure offers ‘home-field’ advantage for Always Fresh Farms
Always Fresh Farms won’t have to travel far to attend this year’s SEPC Southern Exposure Conference, as the Winter Haven, FL-based company is less than an hour’s drive from this year’s Tampa-based show. “We love this show as it offers a lot of exposure to retail buyers and a chance to showcase the best of Florida right in our own backyard,” said Matt Sumner, a member of Always Fresh’s sales team. “This show gives us a chance for face-to-face meetings with current... Read more
Eat Smart Salads get a new look
EAT SMART, the plant-centered, chef-inspired, 100-percent clean, fresh salad kit company continues to show consumers that the foods they should eat can also be the foods they want to eat! EAT SMART’s new logo and package design and exciting flavor combinations attract shoppers that are looking for convenient packaged foods that are both healthy and delicious. With shoppers paying more attention to the store perimeters and eating plant-centered... Read more
Wada Farms sees some of the best quality Colorado potatoes ever
Five months into the shipping season, Michele Peterson, who heads the Colorado sales office of Idaho Falls-based Wada Farms Marketing Group, was seeing the quality of the 2019 potato harvest in Colorado’s San Luis Valley measure up to her expectations. On Aug. 15, one week before the anticipated start date, Peterson told The Produce News that based on test digs “the quality is exceptional. It looks wonderful.”Michele Peterson, who heads the Colorado sales office... Read more
Onions 52 sees big things ahead from Sunions
Onions 52 is one of the nation’s leading grower-shippers of quality yellow, red, white, sweet and organic onions thanks to growing/packaging partners in six states as well as Mexico. Falon Brawley, director of marketing and business development for the Syracuse, UT-based company, noted Onions 52 offers the same quality and care that they started with more than 75 years ago. The family-run business strives to supply its customers with a reliable supply of quality... Read more
Quail H Farms knows automation is key for sweet potato success
Although a relatively young company, Quail H Farms LLC is one of the largest and most reputable sweet potato grower/packer/shippers in the state of California. The company operates with the belief in the words of the great coach Vince Lombardi, “Individual commitment to a group effort — that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work.” “We have been in business since 2008. We have a great management staff... Read more
Vick Family Farms is all about… family
Vick Family Farms is truly an example of a working farm family, as each one of its management divisions is led by a Vick family member. “We each were raised on this farm that began very small and we have grown as it has grown into a large international business,” said Charlotte Vick, partner/sales and marketing manager at Vick Family Farms, based in Wilson, NC. “We each are invested in the company and truly care about our integrity, our growth, our responsibility... Read more