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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

GIUMARRA: Kellee Harris, Western region business director for Los Angeles-based The Giumarra Cos., says the firm is offering Australian mangoes through February. With the addition of the keitt variety, which ships from late January through February, the company now has four varieties of Australian mangoes, she says. The fruit is air freighted and is ripe and ready to eat, Harris says. The company also imports the Kensington Pride, R2E2 and Calypso varieties from Australia.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

HOUWELING’S: Jaymee McInerney, brand manager for Houweling’s Group, Camarillo, Calif., says the company is responding to retailer requests and plans to use Apeel Sciences’ shelf life technology to keep its English cucumbers fresh starting in late January. “We’re looking to be sustainable,” she says, so the product no longer will be wrapped in plastic. Apeel uses plant-based protein that can’t be smelled or felt, she adds, and is free of wax.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

JMB: Dan Miller, director of operations for JMB Produce, San Ramon, Calif., says JMB, the largest asparagus shipper in California, is adding seasonal tags to its asparagus to celebrate major holidays, such as Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter. This is the first year for the program. The company also supplies melons from California’s Central Valley and Mexico from June through November and pomegranates and arils from California’s Central Valley from September through December.

 

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

LITTLE POTATO CO.: Christa Wagner, director of advertising and promotion for The Little Potato Co., Edmonton, Alberta, introduced the company’s Easy Sides pre-seasoned, pre-cooked, pre-sliced creamer potatoes at Fresh Summit. They come in four flavors — Sea Salt & Black Pepper, Onion & Garlic, Paprika & Red Bell Pepper and Sweet Bell Pepper and Onion. “You open the bag, put them into a hot skillet with a little bit of oil and they sizzle in about 5 to 7 minutes,” she says. The product launched in Canada in July and now is rolling out in the U.S. from east to west. She also says the company will add a fourth flavor to its Microwave Ready Line. A Lemon & Herb Garlic selection will be available in late January.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

MUCCI FARMS: Emily Murracas, director of marketing for Kingsville, Ontario-based Mucci Farms, shows off the company’s greenhouse-grown CuteCumber Poppers. “They’re a lot smaller than a cocktail cucumber,” Murracas says. “It’s really like a one-bite snack.” They’re great for dipping, with no chopping required, she says. CuteCumber Poppers come in 9-ounce, 1-pound and 1.5-pound sizes as well as a 3-ounce snack pack.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

MELISSA’S: Robert Schueller, director of publicity for World Variety Produce Inc., Los Angeles, which markets the Melissa’s brand, says the company has added three ready-to-cook items to its line of heat-and-serve fresh products, and they’re packaged in an innovative aluminum tray that can be used in the microwave, oven or grill. New selections are Dutch Yellow potatoes with a peppercorn or four-cheese sauce and Dutch Red potatoes with Dijon mustard sauce.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

NATUREFRESH: Ray Wowryk, director of business development for NatureFresh Farms, Leamington, Ontario, shows off the company’s newly introduced 8-ounce pack of shishito peppers. “Shishito peppers are a very trendy commodity right now,” he says. “The younger generation likes the flavor and the fact that you can roast them and put multiple flavors on top of them by seasoning.” The company’s recently launched high-flavor tomatoes on the vine also have been popular, he says. “We’ve been putting (them) under our premium black label because the black label represents quality and our highest flavor profile,” he says. They’re also available in red, yellow and orange, and promoted in a mixed cherry pack.

The mixed package was launched in September, and red cherries-on-the-vine debuted a couple of years ago, he says. “The first year was more of a trial basis, but now they are in full production, and they are available year-round from our farms in Leamington, Ontario, and Delta, Ohio.” Cherry tomatoes-on-the-vine have been well received, he says. “Consumers are looking for flavor and texture and something that is consistent,” Wowryk says.
“By leaving them on the vine to fully color up, the consumer is assured that when they receive the tomato, they are getting the highest quality possible.” The company will pack them to order in packages ranging from 9 ounces to 1.5 pounds.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

ONIONS 52: Trevor Flint, chief financial officer for Onions 52 Inc., Syracuse, Utah, says this year’s crop of Sunions tearless sweet onions should be ready to ship to retailers by early December. “The longer they’re in storage, the sweeter they get,” he says. Sunions have a “nice, mild flavor without the burn,” he says. They come in conventional and organic and should be available until March.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

ORGANICS UNLIMITED: Daniella Velazquez de León, logistics manager for Organics Unlimited Inc., San Diego, says the company is promoting the fact that its GROW label is a fair trade label. The label indicates that the company follows ethical labor practices and gives back to the community by providing scholarships, promoting environmental health and establishing health clinics. That’s all being made apparent on the label, she says. “When you’re shopping at the supermarket, you can see it right there, and that’s something that really resonates with consumers.”

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

PACIFIC TRELLIS: Dan Carapella Jr., senior salesman-East Coast, and Angela Eastham, West Coast import manager for Los Angeles-based Pacific Trellis Fruit, show off Jam Grapes, a new black seedless table grape variety. The proprietary grapes are available from Brazil from October until January and from late April until mid-July, he says. Their size and appearance resemble the thomcord variety, and they have a high brix count and a concord jam flavor, Carapella says. “The niche in the market that we see these fill is for the thomcord/concord customer,” he says. Concord grapes are in production during a window over the summer in California, and then productions stops, he said. There is some production in Michigan, but that ends by late October, he said. The new variety fills in during the winter months and in the spring/early summer before the California season gets started again.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

PETE’S: Butter lettuce wrap kits from Pete’s, a Carpinteria, Calif.-based producer of hydroponically grown living greens, will enable consumers to make their own lettuce-wrap meals, says Corrie Hutchens, head of marketing. There will be three flavors — California Chicken, Asian Chicken and Southwest Chicken — which should be available in January. The pack includes 100% white meat all-natural chicken, a head of butter lettuce, and other ingredients such as slaws and dressings.

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Tom Burfield

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Packer correspondent Tom Burfield collected these new items on the expo floor at the Produce Marketing Association's Fresh Summit. 

WHOLESUM: Joanna Jaramillo, marketing specialist for Wholesum Family Farms, Nogales, Ariz., says the company has new packaging and a new retail merchandiser for its high-flavor organic tomato line. The line includes cherry-on-the-vine, cocktail and mixed grape tomatoes. “We want to bring back flavor to tomatoes,” she says. The new packaging is more eye-catching than the previous pack and should add excitement to the category, she says. Brand names are Poppies cherry tomatoes, Kaleidos mixed baby tomatoes, Brites cherry tomatoes and Darlings grape tomatoes.

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