Novemeber 14, 2013
In Today's Issue:
You Can't Beat Miami in January for the 2014 Winter Leadership Meetings

Join us this January for the 2014 United Fresh Winter Leadership Meetings in Miami, FL. The picturesque location is the perfect place to celebrate the accomplishments of legend Joe Procacci and enjoy the world-renowned golf courses at Trump National Doral Resort. On January 21, The Salute to Joe Procacci Golf Tournament takes place on the exclusive Gold Course at Trump National Doral Resort. PGA Tour legend Raymond Floyd recently redesigned the Gold Course to incorporate contoured greens, strategic bunkering and water surrounding 16 holes. The course features narrow, tree-lined fairways and finishes with a dramatic par-4 island green on the 18th hole.

The Produce Legends Reception & Dinner kicks off the evening of January 21. During the event, the entire produce industry comes together to honor Joe Procacci, Chairman and CEO of Procacci Brother Sales Corporation/Garden State Farms, with the United Fresh Lifetime Achievement Award.

All proceeds from the Golf Tournament and Produce Legends Reception & Dinner will support United Fresh Foundation's programs to increase the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables to children – a critical step in combating childhood obesity and launching a lifetime of healthy choices. 

For more information about the events, including golf, dinner tickets and sponsorships, click here. If you have questions, please contact Angela Tiwari at 202-303-3416.


Learn about the Progress, Barriers and Benefits of Implementing Produce Traceability

The Produce Traceability Initiative (PTI) Communications Working Group released the latest PTI FYI last week, a newsletter describing the latest trends in the Produce Traceability Initiative. This edition includes an update on the Leadership Council Meeting in New Orleans, the PTI Workshop in Miami targeting retailer requirements and the Institute for Food Technologists plans for the new Global Food Traceability Center. The e-newsletter also describes the results of the Advance Ship Notice pilot project conducted by The Oppenheimer Group, Safeway and iTradeNetwork. The pilot project aimed to explore the costs, benefits and barriers of implementation.

As 2014 quickly approaches the requests for PTI compliant labels on each case of produce will gain momentum as retailers, food service distributors and wholesalers complete their system requirements to record and store the key elements to attain whole chain traceability. 

"The updates from the PTI Leadership Council members indicate most of the large and medium size U.S. supply side trading partners are ready and willing to label cases when requested by the buy side," said United's Dan Vaché, vice president of supply chain management. "Many of the smaller suppliers and importers are still waiting on the sidelines and now beginning to realize the need to participate and looking for solution providers."

The good news is solution providers have been able to scale their PTI offerings to meet the needs of small, medium and large organizations with costs reflecting each participants needs.  Some companies are already labeling each case and have found it enhances their operations as it becomes a standard practice.

To read the September/October 2013 PTI FYI newsletter, visit the Produce Traceability Initiative website. If you have questions, please contact Dan Vaché at 425-629-6271.


Invest In Yourself and Your Business Today!

The 2014 United Fresh Produce Executive Development Program is specifically designed to help today's produce industry executives sharpen their business expertise and enhance their executive leadership skills. Plan to attend this year's program on March 9-14 at the Cornell University Statler Hotel & Executive Conference Center in Ithaca, NY.

United Fresh is partnering with the Cornell University Food Industry Management Program to deliver this unique learning experience. Executives will be exposed to the latest business trends, learn effective tools to advance their companies, and master skills to navigate economic challenges.

Space is limited so don't wait to invest in your success today! To learn more about the program, visit the United Fresh website. If you have questions, please contact Shannon Young at 202-303-3405.


Fall 2013 Market Segment Newsletters Bring You the Latest on Recalls, Produce Branding and Effective Marketing Strategies

The Fall 2013 Market Segment Newsletters feature the latest on legal liability in recalls, branding in produce departments and strategies used by restaurants and retailers to increase fresh produce consumption. Read more about the issues and challenges facing the produce industry in the e-newsletters now available online! 

The Grower-Shipper newsletter features stories on increasing sales to schools, EPA pesticide restrictions and new pre-harvest harmonized standards. The Fresh-Cut Processor newsletter explores the use of private labels within produce departments and growth in value-added sales. The Wholesaler-Distributor newsletter brings you the latest on the Wholesaler-Distributor Benchmarking Survey, when to build a new distribution facility and highlights from the Washington Public Policy Conference. The Retailer-Foodservice newsletter discusses top dining trends in 2014 and increasing produce consumption.

To learn more about the United Fresh Market Segments, visit our website at the following links.

Does the Load Make Good Delivery or Not? Find out at the USDA Webinar

The USDA Agricultural Marketing Service is answering the question "Does the load make good delivery or not?" during the free webinar on interpreting USDA fruit and vegetable inspections on December 5 at 2 pm EST. The interactive webinar is part of a series conducted by the Agricultural Marketing Service's Fruit and Vegetable Program focusing on issues facing the fruit and vegetable industry. These webinars are designed for fruit and vegetable growers, packers, shippers, processors, wholesalers and retailers of all sizes.

The topic for the upcoming webinar came from the Perishable Agriculture Commodities Act (PACA) Division customer service line. The majority of questions asked by the produce industry related to USDA inspections. This webinar provides participants an opportunity to ask questions regarding USDA inspection certificates, when you should call for an inspection, the difference between quality and condition defects and your responsibilities after receiving an inspection certificate. Jacob Garcia, Marketing Specialist for PACA, will provide a presentation and then lead an interactive discussion and answer period.

The webinar is free but registration is required. Space is limited so register today! You can register online by visiting the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service website.

United Officers Participate in Western Growers Annual Meeting

United Chairman Ron Midyett (right) welcomes Bruce Taylor as new Chairman of Western Growers.

United Fresh Chairman Ron Midyett, CEO of Apio Inc. in Guadalupe, CA, and President Tom Stenzel attended the Western Growers Association (WGA) annual meeting this week in Honolulu to support our many mutual members and common interests. WGA and United share numerous members in the California and Arizona community.  
"Tom Nassif and the team at Western Growers are strong partners in all of the major legislative issues we address," said Stenzel. "It was great to see so many old friends, and share perspectives on the way forward for immigration reform and food safety." Bruce Taylor, Chairman and CEO of Taylor Farms, was inducted as the new Chairman of WGA, succeeding Steve Barnard, President and CEO, Mission Produce.


Don't Miss the Program Designed for Produce Inspection Industry Leaders on the Front Line

The Produce Inspection Training Program is designed for industry leaders who conduct produce inspections every day, including quality control managers, produce buyers, warehouse managers and field inspectors. United Fresh, in partnership with the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service, is offering this expert-led program three times in 2014. This unique five-day course includes the fundamentals of produce inspection, essential terminology and practical information. The course also involves Commodity Labs, which apply the principals learned in the fundamentals course to real produce inspections. USDA experts show hands-on examination of a range of commodities.

The Produce Inspection Training Program will be held January 13-17, June 2-6 and September 22-26 at the USDA SCI Training and Development Center in Fredericksburg, VA. Visit the United Fresh website to learn more about the program. You can also watch a video and hear from participants about their experiences in the course. Click here to register online or you can download the registration form and email it to If you have questions, feel free to contact Shannon Young at 202-303-3405. 


Chairman's Roundtable Thanks 2013 Supporters

The Chairman's Roundtable provides extra support for programs in government relations, food safety, nutrition policy and other areas to help grow the produce industry. We are pleased to recognize the following companies who have committed to the 2014 Chairman's Roundtable:

  • Andrews Bros., Inc.
  • Blue Book Services, Inc.
  • Cabbage, Inc.
  • Domex Superfresh Growers
  • Fresh Solutions Network, LLC
  • Frieda's, Inc., Los Alamitos, CA
  • Heartland Produce Company
  • Indianapolis Fruit Company, Inc.
  • JAB Produce/Jack Keller Co.
  • John Vena, Inc.
  • Liberty Fruit Co., Inc., Kansas City, KS
  • Horton Fruit Company
  • North Bay Produce, Inc.
  • O.P. Murphy & Sons
  • Paramount Citrus
  • Paul Marshall Produce
  • Strube Celery & Vegetable Company
  • SunFed
  • Torrey Farms, Inc.

The Chairman's Roundtable is an opportunity for United Fresh member companies to contribute above and beyond their basic dues. Roundtable members are industry leaders who set the pace in building United Fresh's strength in areas that do not generate their own revenue. Members of Chairman's Roundtable enjoy special recognition throughout the year for their support.  For more information on the Chairman's Roundtable, please contact Senior Director of Membership Miriam Wolk at 202-303-3410.


Upcoming United Fresh Events

Join us for events designed to grow your business:

Produce Inspection Training Program
Jan 13-17, USDA SCI Training & Development Center, Fredericksburg, VA

The Salute to Joe Procacci Golf Tournament and Produce Legends Dinner
Jan 21, Trump National Doral Miami, Miami, FL

2014 Produce Executive Development Program
Mar 9-14, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Produce Inspection Training Program
Jun 2-6, USDA SCI Training & Development Center, Fredericksburg, VA

United Fresh 2014
Jun 10-13, McCormick Place, Chicago, IL

2014 Washington Public Policy Conference
Sep 8-10, Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill, Washington, DC

Produce Inspection Training Program
Sep 22-26, USDA SCI Training & Development Center, Fredericksburg, VA