There will be no layoffs when the sales staffs officially merge, Klackle said.
When Global Berry Farms was formed two years ago, the combined annual U.S. sales of its partners — Hortifrut and MBG — was $65 million, officers said at the time. Klackle said the company will easily surpass $100 million in annual sales with the addition of Naturipe, with about one-third of the total coming in strawberry sales.
“Those are conservative numbers,” he said.
Further growth for the company will likely come in domestic raspberry production and winter strawberry supplies from Florida, Klackle said.
Naturipe produces strawberries exclusively from California, and Global Berry’s Florida production was minimal.
Naturipe’s strawberry label will continue in the short term, said John Corrigan, Naturipe’s director of marketing, but “the vision of the partnership will be to move all berries into the Naturipe brand.”
Corrigan said his company has been growing at a pretty fast clip in recent years but wanted to take the proper approach in expanding its berry offerings.
“We have assembled a team of experts who are truly the experts in their fields,” Corrigan said.
Being a one-stop shop for the traditionally fragmented berry category is something unique, he said.
“From the Naturipe side, we have found that with consolidation, buyers are busier and busier and have less time to source product,” Corrigan said. “So we put together a team that, with one phone call, a buyer can get strawberries, blueberries, raspberries and blackberries, and also a level of service that to this point hasn’t been offered in the industry.”