G.O. Fresh Inc. updates equipment

G.O. Fresh Inc., a Minneapolis-based fresh-cut processor, has made several equipment and facility upgrades, said Marylou Owen, chief operating officer, and Scott Grow, quality assurance manager.

“We completed an addition for large-scale onion processing and added a state-of-the-art fruit processing line for added volume capabilities,” Owen said.

The onion project was completed in March, and the fruit line was completed in May.

In addition, the company added a packing line for individual fresh-cut fruits and vegetables that will service the company’s expanding school lunch program, Owen and Grow said.


Minnesota Food Charter advances

Efforts to create a Minnesota Food Charter have been in progress for over a year as part of a national trend to develop state food charters.

The goal of the charter is to create a “document that expresses a clear and compelling vision of how all Minnesotans can access healthy, affordable and safe food more easily and enjoy the economic benefits of healthier, stronger communities today and tomorrow,” the group’s website states.

Phillip Brooks, chief executive officer of H. Brooks & Co., New Brighton, Minn., was invited to participate in this process and said he is pleased with the efforts so far.

“I think food and health are connected. If we can have a better food habitat as a state, a better food landscape, it will be a better place to live,” Brooks said.

Brooks said much progress has been made and he is excited about future efforts.

“We want to do what we can to help create a healthier food system,” Brooks said.


Russ Davis Wholsale promotes staff

Wadena, Minn.-based Russ Davis Wholesale recently promoted several employees to new roles as part of a turnover in the executive staff, said president Adam Gamble.

Pat Miller was promoted to vice president, and Joe Ulrich was promoted to Miller’s former role of director of procurement.

In addition, Gary Neu retired as president, though he remains with the company as a board member. Gamble took over as president on Jan. 1.


The Wedge Co-op plans expansion

Dean Schladweiler, produce manager with The Wedge Community Co-Op, Minneapolis, said expansion is in the plans for the future.

“Later this year we will be opening a commissary location with a small market cafe in the front. They will be producing all of our deli product for the Lyndale location as well as the cafe menu,” Schladweiler said.

The bakehouse will be housed there as well.

The second phase of expansion is a remodeling plan for the current Lyndale location with the addition of some full service options.

The company is also looking to add a second co-op location to be announced at a later date.

In addition, hours have expanded to be open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. every day with a full breakfast menu.

“We are looking at adding a full-service cheese department, fresh sliced deli meats and salad bar as well for the remodel,” Schladweiler said.

The Wedge also hired Christa Sorenson in February as an outside sales representative to visit existing customers and potential new accounts.