Business updates: Florida Spring Produce

03/02/2012 10:21:00 AM
Doug Ohlemeier

To help better market its cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day, Hearne is introducing a St. Patty’s Day bin theme. 

Williams said Hearne last year received strong response to its St. Patrick's Day themed 50-pound cartons and said it received requests for use on bulk bins, which hold 600 pounds of cabbage. 

“There’s more interest in bins to keep prices down on the retail end,” Williams said. “With the volume we will have this year, they can take the bins.”

L&M Cos. expands coolers, dock

Raleigh, N.C.-based L&M Cos. Inc. expanded its cooler and dock at its Palatka, Fla., operation.

The addition of 12,000 square feet of cooling capacity gives the grower-shipper a third cooler to cool its cabbage and help improve its shelf life, said Adam Lytch, operations manager.

L&M also enclosed its dock and loading doors. The sealed dock maintains the cold chain from field cabbage unloading to outgoing truck loading, Lytch said.

The climate-controlled room should also help improve efficiencies for its potato packing, he said.

L&M completed the improvements in mid-February.

Mack Farms hires watermelon salesman

Mike Starnes is doing watermelon sales for Mack Farms Inc. and McMelon Inc., Lake Wales, Fla.

Starnes, who joined the potato and watermelon grower-shipper in July, worked as a buyer for the West Palm Beach, Fla., buying office of Topco Associates Inc., the Skokie, Ill.-based retail buying cooperative.

Starnes also sold tomatoes for the defunct Vine-Ripe Specialties, Fort Myers, Fla., and watermelon for the Wauchula, Fla.-based Moye Farms and Heartland Produce.


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