Hayes, former vice president of sales at River Ranch Fresh Foods, Salinas, Calif., directed commodity and private-label programs at that company, which closed in November. He is now based at Malena Produce’s sales office in Rio Rico, Ariz., according to a news release.
“We are very excited to have Peter lead and help grow our sales organization,” said Gonazalo Avila, CEO of Malena Produce, in the release. “He brings superior business development expertise as well as unique service strengths that will help our customers build their business.”
Before River Ranch, Hayes was director of new business development and sales manager for Newstar Fresh Foods. He was also with Dole Food Co. for 26 years in various positions.
Malena Produce is expanding commodity and value-added programs, and he will lead those efforts, according to the release, as well as supervise all sales and marketing activities.
In 2013, the company added more items to its lineup, now totalling more than 20. In May, Malena Produce began a partnership with growers in Georgia, and the company plans to increase overall domestic and Mexican volume in the 2014-15 season, according to the release.