Ohio produce shippers find connection with local food movement

06/02/2011 01:39:00 PM
Dan Gailbraith

The retail operation has about 50 customers a day, which accounts for just a fraction of the business, said Todd Michael, vice president. About half of those customers purchase a carton size and the other half buys smaller quantities.

The company typically sells most of its commercial volume of produce within a 150-mile radius, to buyers in Ohio, central Michigan, Indiana, and Pennsylvania, Michael said.

“It is a help, and it has always been kind of our hook,” he said.

Many customers feature Michael Farms in pictures or point-of-sale signs so that the public can relate to growers.

“It may not always be practical, but when local is in season, there is a lot of benefits for everybody,” Michael said.

Deborah Hanline, office manager for John F. Stambaugh & Co., Plymouth, said that local demand has become very important to the dry onion marketer.

 “It never used to make a difference where the onions or any of the produce items came from, “she said.


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