Packer 25 — Dick Peixoto

Nov 15, 2019 by Tom Burfield
Ironically, Dick Peixoto, who owns Lakeside Organic Gardens, spent part of his childhood dragging spray hoses through apple orchards with his father, who worked for a fertilizer and pest control company.

Packer 25 — Raina Nelson

Nov 14, 2019 by Tom Burfield
Raina Nelson wanted to become a doctor until she found a shortcut that enabled her to accomplish her goal of saving lives without spending years in medical school.

Packer 25 — Aidan Mouat

Nov 13, 2019 by Tom Burfield
If you’re familiar with Aidan Mouat and someone asks you who is the smartest person you know who is affiliated with the produce industry, he’s probably the one who comes to mind.

Packer 25 — John Jackson

Nov 12, 2019 by Tom Burfield
When Landec Corp. acquired Guadalupe, Calif.-based Apio Inc. 20 years ago, Apio needed someone with experience in reverse mergers to help with the process.

Packer 25 — Nick Dulcich

Nov 11, 2019 by Tom Burfield
Nick Dulcich got his start working on the family farm in McFarland, Calif. He still works there, but his job description and his perspective on the produce industry have evolved over the years.

Packer 25 — Tom Brugato

Nov 08, 2019 by Tom Burfield
When Tom Brugato was about 9 years old, he and his dad would stop off at Pacific Coast Fruit Co. in Portland, Ore., to pick up a supply of produce for the Thriftmart grocery store his father managed.

Packer 25 — Dan Davis

Nov 05, 2019 by Tom Karst
Growing up in apple country, Dan Davis found the tree fruit industry early in life — or perhaps the industry found him.

Packer 25 — Lauren Scott

Oct 31, 2019 by Ashley Nickle
Lauren M. Scott’s third anniversary as chief marketing officer of the Produce Marketing Association has arrived; it is easy to remember because her first day on the job was at Fresh Summit in 2016.

Packer 25 — Kathryn Grandy

Oct 30, 2019 by Ashley Nickle
Kathryn Grandy knew she would be part of something big when she signed on three years ago as the director of marketing for Yakima, Wash.-based Proprietary Variety Management.

Packer 25 — Andrew Marshall

Oct 25, 2019 by Tom Karst
Growing up in the Queens borough New York City, Andrew Marshall was little aware of the workings of the produce industry, such as the nearby sprawling Hunts Point Terminal Market in the Bronx.

Packer 25 — Nikki Rodoni

Oct 22, 2019 by Tom Karst
Helping companies measure and expand their sustainability efforts is the career hyper-focus of Nikki Rodoni, founder and CEO of Measure to Improve LLC.

Packer 25 — Viraj Puri

Oct 18, 2019 by Amy Sowder
At 38, Viraj Puri is aware he is a young, first-time CEO of an agriculture business type that the global, commercial-scale world of fresh produce has only begun to take seriously the past several years.

Packer 25 — Paul Coronella

Oct 17, 2019 by Amy Sowder
Paul Coronella shows up to buy and sell vegetables at 1:30 a.m. six days a week at Peter Condakes Co., nestled in the Chelsea, Mass.-based New England Produce Center.

Packer 25 — Doug Feek

Oct 14, 2019 by Amy Sowder
Every morning, Doug Feek takes a walk and prays for his family, staff, the Florida citrus industry and for the right direction to take that day.

Packer 25 — Vic Smith

Nov 08, 2018 by Tom Karst
As CEO of the JV Smith Cos., Vic Smith manages a growing operation that includes thousands of acres of both organic and conventional vegetable output.

Packer 25 — Dan Bourgault

Nov 07, 2018 by Tom Karst
Dan Bourgault, recently with Instacart and now headed to a new grocery tech startup in the Northwest U.S., is a man seeking to stay one step ahead of rapidly evolving technology in online grocery sales.

Packer 25 — Jesus Gonzalez

Nov 06, 2018 by Tom Karst
Since Jesus Gonzalez grew up in Nogales, Ariz., perhaps it is not surprising that he found his start in the produce industry. The fact that he stayed in it, he says, is because the business lit a fire in him.

Packer 25 — Bart Minor

Nov 01, 2018 by Ashley Nickle
Bart Minor, president and CEO of the Mushroom Council, encountered quite the challenge when he first started with the organization 20 years ago.

Packer 25 — Jennifer McEntire

Nov 01, 2018 by Ashley Nickle
The intersection between fresh produce and food safety has been a busy one, and Jennifer McEntire has witnessed major collisions as vice president of food safety and technology at United Fresh.

Packer 25 — Peter Leifermann

Oct 30, 2018 by Tom Karst
Peter Leifermann remembers working in the foodservice sector in Atlanta in the 1990s when importers were flying in hass avocados from Chile and mangoes in South Florida were priced at $15 per carton.

Packer 25 — Heather Hammack

Oct 26, 2018 by Tom Burfield
After Heather Hammack graduated from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, she decided to follow her brother’s advice and go through a practice interview before trying for a job she really wanted.

Packer 25 — Merrill Dibble

Oct 25, 2018 by Tom Burfield
He may be president and CEO of a major table grape grower-shipper, but it’s not unusual to see Merrill Dibble walking the vineyards conversing with workers.

Packer 25 — Adam Cooper

Oct 24, 2018 by Ashley Nickle
Vice president of marketing Adam Cooper has been involved in major initiatives at The Wonderful Co., from the development of its Halos brand to the company’s transition from its identity as Paramount Citrus.

Packer 25 — Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak

Oct 23, 2018 by Tom Karst
Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak has always been a fan of the Produce for Better Health Foundation. Now, she is responsible for helping to steer the foundation forward into a new era.

Packer 25 Takeaways — Get Involved

Nov 29, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
Staff writer Ashley Nickle recaps how produce industry leaders David Garcia, Rick Alcocer, John Halverson and Mike Roberts have gotten involved in the broader industry. Read more about them in their Packer 25 profiles.

Packer 25 Takeaways — Embrace Ideas

Nov 15, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
Staff writer Ashley Nickle recaps how produce industry leaders David Garcia, Bonnie Spencer Swayze and Danny Dumas embrace ideas as part of leadership. Read more about them in their Packer 25 profiles.

Packer 25 — Aaron Hamer

Nov 09, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
With about three years of experience in the produce industry and as an executive for Ontario-based Highline Mushrooms, CEO Aaron Hamer knows well the value of a company’s culture in its past and future success.

Packer 25 — Dave Haun

Nov 09, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
If “old school” is defined as being a good story-teller, a problem solver, an industry veteran with a deep reservoir of integrity and a pinch of fun, Dave Haun is as old school as they come.

Packer 25 — Chalmers Carr

Nov 08, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
Chalmers Carr may be a first generation farmer, but he has accomplished quite a bit since the time he began growing vegetables and peaches in Florida in 1990.

Packer 25 — Paul Lightfoot

Nov 07, 2017 by Cynthia David
Paul Lightfoot and his 110 “true believers” are on a mission: to grow local greenhouse produce on a commercial scale for major supermarkets across the country.

Packer 25 — Mike Roberts

Nov 07, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
Mike Roberts, the director of produce operations for Harps , started in the business years ago as a part-time clerk. So did Josh Rector, produce category manager, who was a teen when he began there nearly a decade ago.

Packer 25 — Jerry Baker

Nov 06, 2017 by Jim Offner
The suggestion that Jerry Baker’s success in the onion business is an individual accomplishment is one way to get under his skin.

Packer 25 — Jeff Oberman

Nov 06, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
Jeff Oberman has tackled some major projects in his produce career, from working on the image of fresh-cut in the wake of the spinach crisis to researching how to get more produce in convenience stores.

Packer 25 — David Garcia

Nov 03, 2017 by Ashley Nickle
Diamond Fruit president and CEO David Garcia, the newest chairman of Pear Bureau Northwest, started his career in the produce industry as a 25-year-old with an accounting degree.

Packer 25 — Bonnie Spencer Swayze

Nov 03, 2017 by Jim Offner
Bonnie Spencer Swayze politely sidesteps individual accolades when it comes to the growth of the company over which she presides, Hot Springs, Ark.-based Alliance Rubber Co.

Packer 25 — John Halverson

Nov 02, 2017 by Chris Koger
As the chief operating officer for Black Gold Farms, which has growing operations in nearly a dozen states, John Halverson certainly has firsthand knowledge of what’s going on in different growing regions.