UPDATED: Eastern apple pioneer 'moved a lot of fruit'

01/11/2012 05:25:00 PM
Doug Ohlemeier

(UPDATED COVERAGE, Jan. 12)  Remembered as an apple industry icon, friends and colleagues mourned the death of Robert Norinsberg.

NorinsbergAn apple grower, shipper and wholesaler, Norinsberg died Dec. 25. He was 76.

Norinsberg entered the produce industry in 1958 working for his father, Jack Norinsberg, in the New York-based The Norinsberg Corp. In 1992, the company transitioned into Bronx, N.Y.-based Natures Best Produce, a wholesaler on the Hunts Point Terminal Market.

During the 1970s, Robert Norinsberg grew apples on up to 4,000 of his own acres in Vermont and Maine, said son Mike Norinsberg, Natures Best’s president.

“He was a real builder and a real entrepreneur who touched many people, and many people knew and loved him,” Mike Norinsberg said. “In the 1970s, he basically ran the eastern apple business.”

Harold Albinder, president of Milton, N.Y.-based Hudson River Fruit Distributors, a subsidiary of Allstate Apple Exchange Inc., said Robert Norinsberg was the biggest mover of Vermont and Maine apples.

“He was formidable in his time, and very big in his days, during the 1960s,” Albinder said. “He was important to the eastern apple industry. He moved a lot of fruit.”



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tea cummins    
vermont  |  December, 18, 2013 at 07:32 PM

...and by the mid-late 1990's his company wasn't paying its bills, such as suppliers, contractors, and rent for orchards he leased, mine included. He was big once upon a time. But by 2004 his company was "bankrupt" while he and the family lived comfortably, while those that were shafted certainly suffered. Bad checks were written a-plenty and a federal criminal check-writing investigation ensued amongst local banks carrying the corporation's accounts. There is little love lost about the Norinsberg Corp in upstate NY/Vermont, leaving hundreds out of work and certain orchards and packing plants shut down even to this day. Who was responsible for these wrongful actions from within the corporation, they will never say.

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