MONTEREY, Calif. — Editor Greg Johnson and staff writer Mike Hornick collected these news items on the exposition floor at the Produce Marketing Association’s recent Foodservice Conference and Exposition.
Oxnard, Calif.-based Boskovich Farms began shipping organic bunched vegetables just a week before the PMA Foodservice Conference, said vice president of sales Don Hobson.
The items include parsley, cilantro, green onions, chard, beets and carrots, among others. Secured with a yellow twist, they mirror the company’s conventional offerings.
They’re available year-round, Hobson said.
California Avocado Commission
The California Avocado Commission, Irvine, garnered this year’s Sensory Experience award for its recipe, Spicy Shrimp Lettuce Wrap with California Avocado.
Chilean Avocado Importers Association
The Chilean Avocado Importers Association plans a new logo without the hass variety name, said Xavier Equihua, executive director.
“More than 90% of avocados consumed in the U.S. are hass, so that doesn’t matter now,” he said.
As of July 22, the new design had not been finalized. Chilean avocado production runs from October to March.
The current logo has been in use for about a decade.
Mike HornickChurch Bros.
Church Bros. LLC introduced heirloom red spinach in limited quantities under its Tuscan specialty label. The company won the Best New Product Launch award at the PMA Foodservice Conference and Expo for this entry.
Classic Salads LLC, Watsonville, Calif., has expanded its baby leaf line to five products with the addition of Super Mix and Baby Kale. Two-pound clamshell packaging is a new option for all five products, says John Burge, vice president of sales and marketing.
Colorful Harvest LLC added Mexico as a source for its red corn, and plans to add deals in Maryland, Illinois and Toronto next year, says business development manager Steve Johnston.
Coosemans Worldwide began shipping hand-carved, star-shaped organic beets and flower-shaped organic beets, radishes, carrots and potatoes about a month before the PMA Foodservice Conference. Processed in Los Angeles, the products are available in 5-pound foodservice bags.
Country Fresh Mushroom
Avondale, Pa.-based Country Fresh Mushroom Co. is planning a 50,000-square-foot packaging and shipping site in Kennett Square, Pa.
“We’re undersized at our current facility and needed to expand,” said Jim Howard, president.
The site is expected to open around March 1.
Dennis Christou, vice president of marketing, and Melissa Athanasopulos, director of key account sales, fresh-cut, for Del Monte Fresh Produce, Coral Gables, Fla., show the company’s avocado pulp pack for foodservice.
Christou says the high-pressure hass avocado pack comes in 2-pound bags, eight in a box. Earlier this year, Del Monte’s package earned a three-star Superior Taste Award from the International Taste and Quality Institute in Brussels. Since the package consists of only avocados, Christou says restaurants can use it as a base for their own signature guacamole dishes.
Greg JohnsonDole Berry Co.
Greg Mixon, vice president of sales for Dole Berry Co., displays the company’s convenience-sized blueberry packs, “Brainberries.” The Watsonville, Calif-based company introduced the packs at the foodservice expo and plans to market them as seasonal but eventually ramp up to year-round production.
Duda Farm Fresh Foods
For the second year in a row, Duda Farm Fresh Foods, Oviedo, Fla., won the People’s Choice award for its produce stand-themed booth. Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers won Best of Show, with Gills Onions second.
Nichole Towell, director of marketing, said the key to winning the award was creativity and promotion, which included promoting the company’s products and booth through advertising, e-mail and social media.