( File photo )

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has cited a Philadelphia company for failing to pay for about $550,000 for produce, and is allowing a McAllen, Texas, company to return to business.

GK Produce Inc., Philadelphia, failed to pay eight sellers for almost $550,000 for produce from November 2013 to March 2014, according to a USDA Perishables Agricultural Commodities Act news release.

GK Produce is not allowed to operate in the produce industry until October 2020, when it can apply for a PACA license. The company’s principal, Gary Klinghoffer, may not be employed by or affiliated with another PACA licensee for a year, according to the release. He must post a USDA-approved surety bond to do so.

In Texas, Maria Soto, doing business as Mary’s Produce, has satisfied a PACA reparation order. In meeting its PACA obligations, is free to operate in the produce industry, according to a news release. Soto was listed as the sole owner of the company and can again work in the produce industry.

 
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