Brandt Farms achieves PTI milestone 6
Brandt Farms Inc., Reedley, Calif., went live with Produce Traceability Initiative milestones 4, 5 and 6 in October 2011 and plans to continue them into the 2012 season, said Michael Reimer, vice president of sales.
Milestones 4 and 5 involve labeling each case with global trade item numbers, or GTINs, and lot numbers. Milestone 6 involves retailers recording inbound cases.
By the start of this season, the firm also will have doubled cold storage, partly because of increased volumes and partly because of PTI issues.
“Probably the bigger addition that isn’t visible is our increased capacity for precooling fruit,” Reimer said.
Brandt Farms plans to launch an updated website — http://brandtfarms.com — May 1 that’s more consumer friendly and has more of a blog feel, Reimer said.
“It will help us develop a relationship with the consumer who wishes to learn more about us,” he said.
The site also will feature short videos that give a small virtual tour of the operation.
In addition, Brandt Farms plans to tie in social media, such as Facebook, to the site.
Cecelia Packing brings back Dimples
Cecelia Packing Corp. started its second commercial season of Dimples mandarins in the first week of April.
Shipments from the Orange Cove, Calif., company could last through May, sales manager Randy Jacobson said.
“It’s up 30% from last year, not a huge deal but it will be eventually,” Jacobson said. “You take baby steps when you start out. I can see our production tripling in the next five or six years. We’ve made a commitment to this program, and we’re looking forward.”
It ships after other California mandarins are pretty much done.
“It’s a lumpy, bumpy piece of fruit but the taste is amazing,” Jacobson said. “We got a good response from consumers via Facebook and Twitter, and retailers are warming up to the idea. Those who used it did quite well. For export, there seems to be a niche for a good late mandarin around the world.”
The fruit has been grown for four or five years, but Cecelia Packing didn’t brand it until 2011.
Crown Jewels adds two salesmen
Crown Jewels Marketing & Distribution LLC, Fresno, Calif., has added two employees to its staff.
Tim O’Brien, who previously had worked for Cal Fire and also played on a New York Yankees minor league baseball team, joined the sales department, said Atomic Torosian, co-owner.