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New Seasons Earns B Corp Certification

PORTLAND, Ore. — New Seasons Market announced that it has become the first retail grocer to certified as a B Corporation. The credential is based on a third-party examination of a company’s business practices.

New Seasons, the 12-store natural and fresh foods independent, received the certification following a comprehensive and rigorous assessment of the retailer’s practices, governance, environmental and community impacts, staff benefits and culture.

ALSO READ: New Seasons Declared Zero-Waste Company

“Since day one, New Seasons Market has placed as much value on taking care of employees, our communities and our environment as growing our business,” said Wendy Collie, the chain’s president and CEO, in a statement.

As part of its community commitment, New Seasons Market was recently verified to be a Zero Waste company, diverting 92% of its waste away from area landfills; the retailer also gives 10% of its after-tax profits back to the community.

“For a business with our level of intricacy to achieve this recognition is simply remarkable,” said Collie. “It’s a testament to our staff’s commitment to using the power of business for good.”

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Wakefern Food Corp. announces $14.7 billion in retail sales

Joseph S. Colalillo, Wakefern Food Corp.’s chairman and chief executive officer, and Joe Sheridan, president and chief operating officer, had good news for Wakefern’s shareholders, store management and staff at the company’s annual shareholder meeting in East Brunswick, NJ, Oct. 30.

The company reported that the cooperative had reached a record sales level of $ 14.7 billion in retail sales for the fiscal year ending Sept. 27, a 4 percent increase from the same period last year, and $ 11.9 billion in Wakefern sales. The cooperative opened six new ShopRite stores, five new Price Rite stores and six The Fresh Grocer stores during the same period. In addition, the company expanded its ShopRite from Home services to include 214 stores.

At the meeting, it was announced that four members have retired from the company’s board of directors: Rocco Cingari of Grade A Market Inc.; Bernard Kenny of Delaware Supermarkets Inc.; Joel Perlmutter of Perlmart Inc.; and James Sumas of Village Super Market Inc.

Four new members have been added to the board of directors, effective immediately: Jordan Coe of Waverly Markets LLC; Harry Garafalo of Milford Markets LLC; Nicholas Sumas of Village Super Market Inc.; and David Zallie of Somerset Stores LLC.

“The strength of our cooperative lies in the strength of our family businesses and their enduring commitment to their customers, which is handed down from generation to generation,” Colalillo said in a press release. “The decades of service, wisdom and expertise that Rocky, Bernie, Jim and Joel have brought to Wakefern will continue to guide us as we move forward as a company. They will remain active in their own companies and at the Wakefern committees on which they serve. We welcome our new members and look forward to their new perspective on our businesses and their contributions to future successes.”

“Year after year, Wakefern continues to grow and adapt to meet the needs of an ever-changing industry and an increasingly demanding customer,” Sheridan said. “After more than 65 years in this business, we rely on the lessons from past successes while always looking to the future for new and better ways to help our members succeed.”

Wakefern shareholders re-elected the following members to the board of directors: Joseph S. Colalillo as chairman and CEO; Larri Wolfson and Irv Glass as vice chairmen; Lawrence Inserra Jr., treasurer; Richard Saker, Jeffrey Brown and Kenneth Capano as assistant treasurers; Dominick J. Romano as secretary;  Ned Gladstein and Steven Ravitz, assistant secretaries; as well as Robert Clare, Lawrence Collins, Jon Greenfield, Charles Infusino, Vincent Lo Curcio III, Leonard Sitar, Richard Tully and Richard McMenamin.  Joe Sheridan was also re-elected as president and COO.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Next Action in Rancho Feeding Corp. Criminal Case Delayed to Sept. 24

Except for finishing up the arraignment of the defendants, who are being freed on bail, the criminal case involving the former owners and employees of the Rancho Feeding Corporation won’t really get underway until Sept. 24. Federal Judge Charles R. Breyer continued the “initial appearances” in the case until that date, and, under agreement with both the prosecution and the involved defense attorneys, the U.S. District Court for Northern California won’t start the speedy-trial clock until then.

Breyer, who was appointed in 1997 to the federal bench in San Francisco by then-President Bill Clinton, has also signed an order connecting the government’s Aug. 14 indictment against Rancho owner Jesse “Babe” Amaral Jr. and two employees with the plea bargain it has with the other former Rancho owner, Robert W. Singleton.

The delay to Sept. 24 for the first status hearing in the case came about due to scheduling conflicts among the various lawyers and the court’s schedule.

The Aug. 14 indictment, unsealed four days later, stems from an eight-month-long federal investigation of the Petaluma, CA, slaughterhouse that was previously owned and operated by Rancho. Various units of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) were involved in the federal probe, including the Inspector General (IG); the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS); Investigations, Enforcement and Audit, and Compliance and Investigations.

In addition to Amaral, 76, two former slaughterhouse employees were also charged in the indictment. They are Eugene Corda, 65, and Felix Cabrera, 55. Amaral and Corda are both residents of Petaluma, and Cabrera lives in nearby Santa Rosa.

Separately, and the lightest charged, is Singleton, 77, who is accused of just one count of distribution of adulterated, misbranded and uninspected meat. He is cooperating with prosecutors against his former partner and their ex-employees. Singleton will make his initial appearance before a magistrate judge this morning in San Francisco.

Amaral and Corda were immediately freed on secured bonds of $ 50,000 each. Cabrera’s release pending trial was also expected no later than today. The docket for his case indicates that a Spanish interpreter assisted the defendant during the legal proceedings.

Amaral and the two former Rancho employees face a package of federal felony charges, including multiple counts of distribution of adulterated, misbranded and uninspected meat, along with mail fraud and conspiracy.

The indictment alleges that Amaral and Singleton directed Cabrera and Corda to circumvent USDA inspection for cattle showing signs of disease, including eye cancers.

Earlier, the USDA investigation brought about the recall of almost 9 million pounds of beef produced at the facility during the previously year.

Food Safety News

Next Action in Rancho Feeding Corp. Criminal Case Delayed to Sept. 24

Except for finishing up the arraignment of the defendants, who are being freed on bail, the criminal case involving the former owners and employees of the Rancho Feeding Corporation won’t really get underway until Sept. 24. Federal Judge Charles R. Breyer continued the “initial appearances” in the case until that date, and, under agreement with both the prosecution and the involved defense attorneys, the U.S. District Court for Northern California won’t start the speedy-trial clock until then.

Breyer, who was appointed in 1997 to the federal bench in San Francisco by then-President Bill Clinton, has also signed an order connecting the government’s Aug. 14 indictment against Rancho owner Jesse “Babe” Amaral Jr. and two employees with the plea bargain it has with the other former Rancho owner, Robert W. Singleton.

The delay to Sept. 24 for the first status hearing in the case came about due to scheduling conflicts among the various lawyers and the court’s schedule.

The Aug. 14 indictment, unsealed four days later, stems from an eight-month-long federal investigation of the Petaluma, CA, slaughterhouse that was previously owned and operated by Rancho. Various units of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) were involved in the federal probe, including the Inspector General (IG); the Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS); Investigations, Enforcement and Audit, and Compliance and Investigations.

In addition to Amaral, 76, two former slaughterhouse employees were also charged in the indictment. They are Eugene Corda, 65, and Felix Cabrera, 55. Amaral and Corda are both residents of Petaluma, and Cabrera lives in nearby Santa Rosa.

Separately, and the lightest charged, is Singleton, 77, who is accused of just one count of distribution of adulterated, misbranded and uninspected meat. He is cooperating with prosecutors against his former partner and their ex-employees. Singleton will make his initial appearance before a magistrate judge this morning in San Francisco.

Amaral and Corda were immediately freed on secured bonds of $ 50,000 each. Cabrera’s release pending trial was also expected no later than today. The docket for his case indicates that a Spanish interpreter assisted the defendant during the legal proceedings.

Amaral and the two former Rancho employees face a package of federal felony charges, including multiple counts of distribution of adulterated, misbranded and uninspected meat, along with mail fraud and conspiracy.

The indictment alleges that Amaral and Singleton directed Cabrera and Corda to circumvent USDA inspection for cattle showing signs of disease, including eye cancers.

Earlier, the USDA investigation brought about the recall of almost 9 million pounds of beef produced at the facility during the previously year.

Food Safety News

Wakefern Food Corp. unveils new Elizabeth, NJ, warehouse

WakefernElizabethribboncuttThe ribbon is cut at Wakefern’s newest warehouse facility in Elizabeth, NJ, during an April 17 ceremony.Making a return to its roots, Wakefern Food Corp. celebrated the opening of its new Elizabeth, NJ, warehouse with a ribbon-cutting ceremony April 17.

“We are proud to be back in Elizabeth,” Joe Sheridan, Wakefern president and chief operating officer, told a crowd of nearly 200 attendees.

Sheridan and Joseph Colalillo, Wakefern chairman and chief executive officer, joined a roomful of dignitaries — including New Jersey Acting Gov. Kim Guadagno, Elizabeth Mayor J. Christian Bollwage, Sen. Ray Lesniak and Elberon Development Co.’s Chairman and CEO Anne Evans Estabrook — to celebrate the opening of a facility that is expected to create 150 additional permanent jobs over the next decade.

This 524,000-square-foot facility replaces the former Wakefern grocery warehouse at the same site and increases storage capabilities by more than 58 percent to better distribute non-perishable food products to ShopRite, PriceRite and The Fresh Grocer stores across New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts , Rhode Island and Virginia. In addition to the expanded square footage, this new building will feature ceilings 36 feet high, increasing the storage space significantly. There are currently 345 associates who work in the facility.

In June 2011, Wakefern transitioned its non-perishable operations to a temporary facility in Carteret, NJ, to allow for the demolition and subsequent re-construction of its original grocery warehouse in Elizabeth, which was built in the late 1950s. This new location was completed in November 2013 and was fully operational by February of this year.

“The city of Elizabeth continuously strives to grow our economy and create opportunities that generate jobs, as well as increase options within our municipality,” said Mayor Bollwage. “Working together with dedicated partners such as Wakefern Food Corp. and Elberon Development Co. LLC, we are providing assistance and delivering the services that residents want and deserve. This wonderful expansion is a great addition to the Elizabeth business community.”

“Wakefern’s strength comes from its core focus of ‘families serving families,’” said Colalillo. “This personal connection to our business makes a partnership with Elberon and the Evans family — more than 50 years in the making — a natural extension of our commitment to our customers, our stores and the communities we serve. We are also thankful to Mayor Bollwage and the city of Elizabeth for continuing to welcome us as a member of their community and we are pleased to mark our return to our Elizabeth roots with the opening of this new facility.”

Since it was founded in 1946, Wakefern has become one of the larger retailer-owned cooperatives in the U.S. Headquartered in Keasbey, NJ, it operates more than 2.5 million square feet of grocery and non-food warehousing.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Beef Producer Announces Own Recall in Connection to Rancho Feeding Corp

LeftCoast GrassFed is recalling all its beef processed in 2013, in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s investigation into Rancho Feeding Corporation – the facility that processes many of the company’s cattle.

Rancho Feeding Corporation of Petaluma, CA, recently recalled approximately 8,742,700 pounds of beef because it processed diseased and unsound animals and carried out these activities without the benefit or full benefit of federal inspection.

LeftCoast GrassFed said it had contracted with Rancho to process cattle “on a handful of days” in the summer and fall of 2013. “While we have been provided no evidence that our product has been compromised and there have been no reported illnesses from the consumption of our product, the safety and health of our customers is our utmost concern,” read a statement on the company’s website.

“We are sorry for this inconvenience and saddened by the waste of millions of pounds of meat, some of which, like ours, was raised with meticulous care and attention to the health and well-being of the animals that produced it.”

LeftCoast GrassFed is asking customers how purchased the recalled product to return it for a full refund.

Food Safety News