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Tom Karst

The Packer's Editor Tom Karst gathered these updates at the 2019 Organic Produce Sumit in Monterey, Calif. on July 11. 

 

SUNKIST GROWERS: Sunkist Growers, Valencia, Calif., is touting its expanded lineup of organic citrus, with the marketer offering three more organic citrus varieties compared with a year ago and marketing 1.5 million cartons of organic citrus to its customers this year.

Jose G. Fu (from left), director of lemon/lime operation of fresh fruit sales; Julie DeWolf, director of retail marketing; Destiny Dulaney, marketing associate; and Gini Richards, strategic account manager say Sunkist organic volume has grown over the past 10 years, Fu says, and will continue to expand. Sunkist is working to offer year-round organic citrus, focusing mostly on oranges and lemons to begin with, he says.

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Tom Karst

The Packer's Editor Tom Karst gathered these updates at the 2019 Organic Produce Sumit in Monterey, Calif. on July 11. 


RAINIER FRUIT: Andy Tudor, vice president of business development for Rainier Fruit, Selah, Wash., says the company sampled its organic blueberries at the expo and found a great reception. With harvest starting June 12, Rainier’s organic blueberry volume was entering peak supply and the crop will continue to the end of September, he says. Rainier Fruit has experimented with top-seal packaging with blueberries this year. With about one-third less plastic, the pack is well received by retailers, he says.


 

ops19karst8web.jpg
Tom Karst

The Packer's Editor Tom Karst gathered these updates at the 2019 Organic Produce Sumit in Monterey, Calif. on July 11. 

 

PURE FLAVOR: Chris Veillon, chief marketing officer for Pure Flavor, Leamington, Ontario, displays the firm’s organic Aurora Bites mini peppers, which will be sourced from Mexico and introduced to the market this fall.

Veillon says the firm, with operations in Canada, the U.S. and Mexico,  has added acreage in multiple regions and for multiple products, which he says strengthens its presence across all seasons.
 

ops19karst9web.jpg
Tom Karst

The Packer's Editor Tom Karst gathered these updates at the 2019 Organic Produce Sumit in Monterey, Calif. on July 11. 


STEMILT: Briana Shales, communications manager for Stemilt Growers, Wenatchee, Wash., says the organic and conventional cherry season will extend toward the end of August, but the transition to the 2019 apple and pear crops is in full swing.

Shales says Stemilt is celebrating its 30th year in organic tree fruit production and marketing and will be in a strong position for the 2019 crop.

With a big crop of apples expected in Washington state this year, she says Stemilt’s organic apple output will represent about 30% to 35% of the firm’s total apple volume. 

Stemilt’s share of organic fruit exceeds 40% for some apple varieties and that will spur great promotion opportunities, she says. Stemilt Growers will also offer good volume of organic pears this year, she says.
 

ops19karst10web.jpg
Tom Karst

The Packer's Editor Tom Karst gathered these updates at the 2019 Organic Produce Sumit in Monterey, Calif. on July 11. 

 

WHOLESUM: Joanna Jaramillo, marketing specialist for Wholesum, Amado, Ariz., displays the two-toned pack of organic Bright Cherry Tomatoes on the Vine.

Jaramillo says the company also was highlighting its Fair Trade certified organic artichokes from California, its newest product.

Wholesum is launching an interactive and educational Fair Trade Roadshow with participating retailers. With onsite visits to select retailers by members of the Wholesum staff, produce department managers and staff will have the opportunity to become “Fair Trade Gurus” through an exclusive online quiz, she says. The education efforts will help retailers explain the Fair Trade program to consumers, she says.

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