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Big growth for Fruit Attraction

Photo report
Big growth for Fruit Attraction

Fruit Attraction 2014 was held from October 15 to 17. With 800 exhibitors, the fair had grown quite a bit compared to last year. The exhibition room had also grown by a quarter. Fruit Attraction was organized by IFEMA and FEPEX for the sixth time.

It is clearly gaining an increasingly international character each year. When it comes to exhibitors, Spain is still in the majority, but interest was global once again this time, both from exhibitors and the public. 800 companies from 21 countries had applied to present their products at the fair. The increasing interest was partially related to Russia disappearing as a buyer for many companies.


 
Growth Poland
The increasing number of Polish participants was significant. When it comes to exhibitors, the number had quadrupled compared to last year. The Netherlands, Belgium and Sweden were also better represented than last time.

For the third time, innovations were shown in a separate space, between halls 3 and 5. Here, exhibiting companies’ innovations can be admired. The visitor numbers are not yet known, but with the increasing number of exhibitors, the number of visitors is also expected to grow compared to previous editions. The photo report shows a mix of French, Belgian, Dutch and other exhibitors and visitors.

Click here for the main photo report

Click here for Spanish companies

Click here for Italian companies
 

Publication date: 10/20/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

Huge growth in China for Banabay

Huge growth in China for Banabay

Banana importer Banabay has seen huge growth in its first few years in business and following rapid growth in China, recently opened a dedicated office in Shanghai. David Guo (Guo Sihao) has been appointed Operations Manager for the new office.

According to managing Director Mark O’Sullivan, this is an extremely important move for BanaBay, as the company perceive huge market potential for the brand.


Hao Wang, David Guo and Magan Dunmore from BanaBay.

“A dedicated BanaBay office in Shanghai, enables us to provide our customers with a direct contact, strategically based at the port, with an Operations Manager who understands the local marketplace and can respond immediately and effectively to all requirements.”

The company now has 5 significant customers in China and is shipping 60 containers of bananas per week into 6 ports across China, aiming for a total of 150 containers of bananas worldwide by the end of the year. The target in China is the high-end market.

At the beginning of the year they had nothing going to China, Banabay are also looking at extending their product range to meet rising demand.

The company now sources products from Mexico, Costa Rica, Philippines and Dominican Republic as well as Ecuador.

Banabay are not stopping at China, when they are established there they will be looking at more countries such as Japan, Korea and Singapore. At the moment China is the fastest growing market in the world, there is competition but the market is huge. They are looking into the possibility of importing pineapples into China too, but this will depend on demand.

 

Publication date: 9/12/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

US: Jet Precoolers continue growth

Jet-Ready Portable Precooler/ReCooler™
US: Jet Precoolers continue growth

After a product launch earlier this year, the Jet-Ready Portable Precooler/ReCooler™ has already proven itself against many competitive precooling designs. Jet users are cooling cherries, grapes, asparagus, herbs, citrus, apples, pears, apricots, tomatoes, bell peppers, and many other products.

According to one Pacific Northwest user (who presently operates six Jet Precoolers), “Committing to a program with your company allows for the end user to have a consistent set up of machinery, instead of a bunch of different repurposed fans. This consistency is huge, as once a warehouse is using consistent machinery you are able to create a standardized ‘recipe book’ for how long each package type and commodity takes to cool. No longer is it necessary to constantly send employees into the tunnel location and conduct temperature tests.”

In this installation, the Jet Precoolers were able to cool almost 4-times as fast as the legacy equipment. “The decrease in time necessary to complete the cooling process allows a facility to reduce truck load times,” according to the Shipping/Receiving manager, “and this is a piece of every warehouse’s internal metrics. If you can get the trucks out of the yard faster because you don’t have to wait so long on cooling, you’ll make a lot of warehousemen very happy.”

“The benefits to the packhouse owners are just over the top,” explained Jim Still, founder and president of Global Cooling Inc. “The products have much longer shelf life, there is greater net weight for retailers to sell, the fruit is more disease-resistant, the fruit stays pretty and doesn’t wrinkle so much, there are nowhere near as many tractor trailers backed up in the year, and it just goes on and on and on.”

Still, known to many as “Banana Jim” for his invention of Tarpless Ripening 20 years ago now, continued to explain. “Our Jet Precooler uses two 10 HP fan motors, and the fan propeller design is so unique, we deliver more than 30,000 cfm, running at over 2 inches of static pressure, with under 20HP. Our Jet Precoolers are so powerful and affordable,” explained Jim Still, who is also Global’s CVO, “they just flat out make money for everyone who owns one just about everywhere you could use powerful forced-air cooling in your operations.”

“Prompt and proper precooling,” Still explained, “is a postharvest magic that reduces produce and floral respiration, and in so doing, minimizes water loss, which is the key to maximizing shelf life and salable weight, and preserving curb appeal and flavour.”

“What goes unnoticed by many,” according to Still, “is that all postharvest gains, achieved by operating a better cold chain, drop straight to the bottom line as pure profit.” Continuing with his example, Still added “If a grower or packer can suddenly realize an extra 1% product weight to sell, if he or she sells by the pound or kilo, that additional revenue is all pure profit, in many cases adding 25% or more to the company’s total profit amount.”

For more information:
Jim Still
Global Cooling Inc.
Tel: +1 610-248-9800
Email: [email protected]
www.PreCoolers.net

Publication date: 9/12/2014


FreshPlaza.com

US: Jet Precoolers continue growth

Jet-Ready Portable Precooler/ReCooler™
US: Jet Precoolers continue growth

After a product launch earlier this year, the Jet-Ready Portable Precooler/ReCooler™ has already proven itself against many competitive precooling designs. Jet users are cooling cherries, grapes, asparagus, herbs, citrus, apples, pears, apricots, tomatoes, bell peppers, and many other products.

According to one Pacific Northwest user (who presently operates six Jet Precoolers), “Committing to a program with your company allows for the end user to have a consistent set up of machinery, instead of a bunch of different repurposed fans. This consistency is huge, as once a warehouse is using consistent machinery you are able to create a standardized ‘recipe book’ for how long each package type and commodity takes to cool. No longer is it necessary to constantly send employees into the tunnel location and conduct temperature tests.”

In this installation, the Jet Precoolers were able to cool almost 4-times as fast as the legacy equipment. “The decrease in time necessary to complete the cooling process allows a facility to reduce truck load times,” according to the Shipping/Receiving manager, “and this is a piece of every warehouse’s internal metrics. If you can get the trucks out of the yard faster because you don’t have to wait so long on cooling, you’ll make a lot of warehousemen very happy.”

“The benefits to the packhouse owners are just over the top,” explained Jim Still, founder and president of Global Cooling Inc. “The products have much longer shelf life, there is greater net weight for retailers to sell, the fruit is more disease-resistant, the fruit stays pretty and doesn’t wrinkle so much, there are nowhere near as many tractor trailers backed up in the year, and it just goes on and on and on.”

Still, known to many as “Banana Jim” for his invention of Tarpless Ripening 20 years ago now, continued to explain. “Our Jet Precooler uses two 10 HP fan motors, and the fan propeller design is so unique, we deliver more than 30,000 cfm, running at over 2 inches of static pressure, with under 20HP. Our Jet Precoolers are so powerful and affordable,” explained Jim Still, who is also Global’s CVO, “they just flat out make money for everyone who owns one just about everywhere you could use powerful forced-air cooling in your operations.”

“Prompt and proper precooling,” Still explained, “is a postharvest magic that reduces produce and floral respiration, and in so doing, minimizes water loss, which is the key to maximizing shelf life and salable weight, and preserving curb appeal and flavour.”

“What goes unnoticed by many,” according to Still, “is that all postharvest gains, achieved by operating a better cold chain, drop straight to the bottom line as pure profit.” Continuing with his example, Still added “If a grower or packer can suddenly realize an extra 1% product weight to sell, if he or she sells by the pound or kilo, that additional revenue is all pure profit, in many cases adding 25% or more to the company’s total profit amount.”

For more information:
Jim Still
Global Cooling Inc.
Tel: +1 610-248-9800
Email: [email protected]
www.PreCoolers.net

Publication date: 9/12/2014


FreshPlaza.com

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Though Asia is the continent to which the most grapes from California are shipped, there is still much potential for growth. A booming population and a rising middle class, especially in China, makes the region very attractive for California’s grape shippers.

“Out of the top 15 export markets we have, 10 of them are in Asia,” said Susan Day, vice president of the California Table Grape Commission at last week’s Asia Fruit Logistica. “So it’s a significant market that is still offering lots of potential for growth.” She pointed to China, which is the second biggest destination for California grapes, only behind Canada, as a prime example of the growth potential in Asia.

“China has a lot of people and shows a lot of growth,” said Day. “Along with the population increasing, the middle class is also increasing, and that gives more people the opportunity to enjoy grapes from California.” But opportunities in the region for shippers are not limited to just China. California grapes find their way to many Asian countries, and all of the countries that import those grapes import the top 15 varieties grown in the state. That means that not only are many of the top importers of California grapes in Asia, and not only are those countries spread out through the continent, but those countries are also interested in the plethora of varieties California’s growers offer throughout the season. The commission is looking to take advantage of that potential.

“We’re in the middle of a pilot program that will promote grapes during the holiday season,” said Day. “We’ve spoken to retailers about doing Moon Festival promotions, where they’ll display grapes along with moon cakes, and that will give consumers more opportunities to see and buy grapes from California.”

Publication date: 9/11/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Though Asia is the continent to which the most grapes from California are shipped, there is still much potential for growth. A booming population and a rising middle class, especially in China, makes the region very attractive for California’s grape shippers.

“Out of the top 15 export markets we have, 10 of them are in Asia,” said Susan Day, vice president of the California Table Grape Commission at last week’s Asia Fruit Logistica. “So it’s a significant market that is still offering lots of potential for growth.” She pointed to China, which is the second biggest destination for California grapes, only behind Canada, as a prime example of the growth potential in Asia.

“China has a lot of people and shows a lot of growth,” said Day. “Along with the population increasing, the middle class is also increasing, and that gives more people the opportunity to enjoy grapes from California.” But opportunities in the region for shippers are not limited to just China. California grapes find their way to many Asian countries, and all of the countries that import those grapes import the top 15 varieties grown in the state. That means that not only are many of the top importers of California grapes in Asia, and not only are those countries spread out through the continent, but those countries are also interested in the plethora of varieties California’s growers offer throughout the season. The commission is looking to take advantage of that potential.

“We’re in the middle of a pilot program that will promote grapes during the holiday season,” said Day. “We’ve spoken to retailers about doing Moon Festival promotions, where they’ll display grapes along with moon cakes, and that will give consumers more opportunities to see and buy grapes from California.”

Publication date: 9/11/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Though Asia is the continent to which the most grapes from California are shipped, there is still much potential for growth. A booming population and a rising middle class, especially in China, makes the region very attractive for California’s grape shippers.

“Out of the top 15 export markets we have, 10 of them are in Asia,” said Susan Day, vice president of the California Table Grape Commission at last week’s Asia Fruit Logistica. “So it’s a significant market that is still offering lots of potential for growth.” She pointed to China, which is the second biggest destination for California grapes, only behind Canada, as a prime example of the growth potential in Asia.

“China has a lot of people and shows a lot of growth,” said Day. “Along with the population increasing, the middle class is also increasing, and that gives more people the opportunity to enjoy grapes from California.” But opportunities in the region for shippers are not limited to just China. California grapes find their way to many Asian countries, and all of the countries that import those grapes import the top 15 varieties grown in the state. That means that not only are many of the top importers of California grapes in Asia, and not only are those countries spread out through the continent, but those countries are also interested in the plethora of varieties California’s growers offer throughout the season. The commission is looking to take advantage of that potential.

“We’re in the middle of a pilot program that will promote grapes during the holiday season,” said Day. “We’ve spoken to retailers about doing Moon Festival promotions, where they’ll display grapes along with moon cakes, and that will give consumers more opportunities to see and buy grapes from California.”

Publication date: 9/11/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Though Asia is the continent to which the most grapes from California are shipped, there is still much potential for growth. A booming population and a rising middle class, especially in China, makes the region very attractive for California’s grape shippers.

“Out of the top 15 export markets we have, 10 of them are in Asia,” said Susan Day, vice president of the California Table Grape Commission at last week’s Asia Fruit Logistica. “So it’s a significant market that is still offering lots of potential for growth.” She pointed to China, which is the second biggest destination for California grapes, only behind Canada, as a prime example of the growth potential in Asia.

“China has a lot of people and shows a lot of growth,” said Day. “Along with the population increasing, the middle class is also increasing, and that gives more people the opportunity to enjoy grapes from California.” But opportunities in the region for shippers are not limited to just China. California grapes find their way to many Asian countries, and all of the countries that import those grapes import the top 15 varieties grown in the state. That means that not only are many of the top importers of California grapes in Asia, and not only are those countries spread out through the continent, but those countries are also interested in the plethora of varieties California’s growers offer throughout the season. The commission is looking to take advantage of that potential.

“We’re in the middle of a pilot program that will promote grapes during the holiday season,” said Day. “We’ve spoken to retailers about doing Moon Festival promotions, where they’ll display grapes along with moon cakes, and that will give consumers more opportunities to see and buy grapes from California.”

Publication date: 9/11/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Though Asia is the continent to which the most grapes from California are shipped, there is still much potential for growth. A booming population and a rising middle class, especially in China, makes the region very attractive for California’s grape shippers.

“Out of the top 15 export markets we have, 10 of them are in Asia,” said Susan Day, vice president of the California Table Grape Commission at last week’s Asia Fruit Logistica. “So it’s a significant market that is still offering lots of potential for growth.” She pointed to China, which is the second biggest destination for California grapes, only behind Canada, as a prime example of the growth potential in Asia.

“China has a lot of people and shows a lot of growth,” said Day. “Along with the population increasing, the middle class is also increasing, and that gives more people the opportunity to enjoy grapes from California.” But opportunities in the region for shippers are not limited to just China. California grapes find their way to many Asian countries, and all of the countries that import those grapes import the top 15 varieties grown in the state. That means that not only are many of the top importers of California grapes in Asia, and not only are those countries spread out through the continent, but those countries are also interested in the plethora of varieties California’s growers offer throughout the season. The commission is looking to take advantage of that potential.

“We’re in the middle of a pilot program that will promote grapes during the holiday season,” said Day. “We’ve spoken to retailers about doing Moon Festival promotions, where they’ll display grapes along with moon cakes, and that will give consumers more opportunities to see and buy grapes from California.”

Publication date: 9/11/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Though Asia is the continent to which the most grapes from California are shipped, there is still much potential for growth. A booming population and a rising middle class, especially in China, makes the region very attractive for California’s grape shippers.

“Out of the top 15 export markets we have, 10 of them are in Asia,” said Susan Day, vice president of the California Table Grape Commission at last week’s Asia Fruit Logistica. “So it’s a significant market that is still offering lots of potential for growth.” She pointed to China, which is the second biggest destination for California grapes, only behind Canada, as a prime example of the growth potential in Asia.

“China has a lot of people and shows a lot of growth,” said Day. “Along with the population increasing, the middle class is also increasing, and that gives more people the opportunity to enjoy grapes from California.” But opportunities in the region for shippers are not limited to just China. California grapes find their way to many Asian countries, and all of the countries that import those grapes import the top 15 varieties grown in the state. That means that not only are many of the top importers of California grapes in Asia, and not only are those countries spread out through the continent, but those countries are also interested in the plethora of varieties California’s growers offer throughout the season. The commission is looking to take advantage of that potential.

“We’re in the middle of a pilot program that will promote grapes during the holiday season,” said Day. “We’ve spoken to retailers about doing Moon Festival promotions, where they’ll display grapes along with moon cakes, and that will give consumers more opportunities to see and buy grapes from California.”

Publication date: 9/11/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Large potential for growth for California grapes in Asia

Though Asia is the continent to which the most grapes from California are shipped, there is still much potential for growth. A booming population and a rising middle class, especially in China, makes the region very attractive for California’s grape shippers.

“Out of the top 15 export markets we have, 10 of them are in Asia,” said Susan Day, vice president of the California Table Grape Commission at last week’s Asia Fruit Logistica. “So it’s a significant market that is still offering lots of potential for growth.” She pointed to China, which is the second biggest destination for California grapes, only behind Canada, as a prime example of the growth potential in Asia.

“China has a lot of people and shows a lot of growth,” said Day. “Along with the population increasing, the middle class is also increasing, and that gives more people the opportunity to enjoy grapes from California.” But opportunities in the region for shippers are not limited to just China. California grapes find their way to many Asian countries, and all of the countries that import those grapes import the top 15 varieties grown in the state. That means that not only are many of the top importers of California grapes in Asia, and not only are those countries spread out through the continent, but those countries are also interested in the plethora of varieties California’s growers offer throughout the season. The commission is looking to take advantage of that potential.

“We’re in the middle of a pilot program that will promote grapes during the holiday season,” said Day. “We’ve spoken to retailers about doing Moon Festival promotions, where they’ll display grapes along with moon cakes, and that will give consumers more opportunities to see and buy grapes from California.”

Publication date: 9/11/2014
Author: Nichola Watson
Copyright: www.freshplaza.com


FreshPlaza.com

4Earth Farms seeing major growth in organic division

4Earth Farms has recently expanded its organics division and has experienced double-digit sales growth in both sales and SKUs under the “4Earth Organics” label.4earth

“More and more we are seeing organic produce becoming mainstream,” Mark Munger vice president of sales and marketing at Los Angeles-based 4Earth Farms, said in a press release. “While organics have always been a part of our product mix, over the past two years, we have put significant investments into branding, time, acreage and strategic growing partnerships. This has allowed us to develop consistent year-round supply on our organics items to meet this demand. Our goal is to continue to add additional organic items and achieve year-round availability on as many items as possible. We move closer to that goal every day.”

4Earth Farms’ organic sales increases are being seen in the company’s retail, foodservice and in wholesale divisions.

“The combination of our recent ’4Earth Organics’ brand refresh and industry awareness of our organic expertise has really resonated with key decision-makers, which has resulted in significant sales gains,” Munger added in the press release. “We have become a ‘one-stop’ organic solution for our customers and we are passionate about helping our customers capitalize on the growing consumer demand for organic fruits and veggies.”

“Besides expanding to year-round supplies on key items, we are also working hard to bring new items to market,” Anthony Innocenti, vice president of organic sales, added in the press release. “We are leading the industry with our cultivation of organic Kalettes — the exciting new hybrid of brussels sprouts and kale. We are also expanding into additional programs, such as organic pineapples, sweet potatoes, and expanded vegetable items, all brought to market under the ’4Earth Organics’ label.”

4Earth Farms sells over 100 organic SKU’s including potatoes, pineapples, green beans, cilantro, spinach, kale, brussels sprouts, Napa cabbage, green and yellow squash, cantaloupe, avocados and a full citrus line.

“Anthony and his team deserve a lot of credit for all they have done to make our vision for 4Earth Organics a reality,” David Lake, chief executive officer of 4Earth Farms, added in the press release. “This is the most excitement we’ve seen in our organics division since we started it 18 years ago, and I couldn’t be more pleased.”

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

4Earth Farms seeing major growth in organic division

4Earth Farms has recently expanded its organics division and has experienced double-digit sales growth in both sales and SKUs under the “4Earth Organics” label.4earth

“More and more we are seeing organic produce becoming mainstream,” Mark Munger vice president of sales and marketing at Los Angeles-based 4Earth Farms, said in a press release. “While organics have always been a part of our product mix, over the past two years, we have put significant investments into branding, time, acreage and strategic growing partnerships. This has allowed us to develop consistent year-round supply on our organics items to meet this demand. Our goal is to continue to add additional organic items and achieve year-round availability on as many items as possible. We move closer to that goal every day.”

4Earth Farms’ organic sales increases are being seen in the company’s retail, foodservice and in wholesale divisions.

“The combination of our recent ’4Earth Organics’ brand refresh and industry awareness of our organic expertise has really resonated with key decision-makers, which has resulted in significant sales gains,” Munger added in the press release. “We have become a ‘one-stop’ organic solution for our customers and we are passionate about helping our customers capitalize on the growing consumer demand for organic fruits and veggies.”

“Besides expanding to year-round supplies on key items, we are also working hard to bring new items to market,” Anthony Innocenti, vice president of organic sales, added in the press release. “We are leading the industry with our cultivation of organic Kalettes — the exciting new hybrid of brussels sprouts and kale. We are also expanding into additional programs, such as organic pineapples, sweet potatoes, and expanded vegetable items, all brought to market under the ’4Earth Organics’ label.”

4Earth Farms sells over 100 organic SKU’s including potatoes, pineapples, green beans, cilantro, spinach, kale, brussels sprouts, Napa cabbage, green and yellow squash, cantaloupe, avocados and a full citrus line.

“Anthony and his team deserve a lot of credit for all they have done to make our vision for 4Earth Organics a reality,” David Lake, chief executive officer of 4Earth Farms, added in the press release. “This is the most excitement we’ve seen in our organics division since we started it 18 years ago, and I couldn’t be more pleased.”

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

Fairway tempers store growth plan

Fairway Markets is treating its growing pains with more powerful medicine, taken less frequently.

Officials of parent Fairway Group Holdings in a conference call Thursday said the company would open just one or two projects per year in coming years, with an eye toward sites that can draw considerable customer attention and regional draw. One such project will be on the way in fiscal 2016 in the New York borough of Staten Island, where officials announced a newly built Fairway would anchor a planned redevelopment of the Staten Island Mall. That project draws some 12 million visitors a year, Edward Arditte, Fairway’s CFO and co-president, said.

“That’s the type of thing we want to be able to do,” Arditte told analysts. “And I would tell you that just about everything in our pipeline is of that type of characteristic. Those are the things we’re focused on.”

Fairway has built its prospects on growth but has encountered issues including cannibalization when its new stores open, and a portfolio of widely varying fortunes. It recently opened a store on Lake Grove, N.Y., and expects to open a new store in Manhattan’s Tribeca neighborhood early next year.

A store in Manhattan’s Hudson Yards and the Staten Island location are the only announced projects for respective fiscal years 2016 and 2017 at this point, although officials said they expected a second store in 2017 and could add one to the 2016 schedule if an opportunity arose.

Analyst Kelly Bania of BMO Capital, who had anticipated Fairway’s growth pace would be more in the range of two to three new stores a year, termed the new pace “cautious” and portends a slower outlook for growth, she said in a research note published Friday.

“Fairway’s differentiated store format, which offers a combination of organic, prepared, specialty and conventional foods, supports an outlook for significant long-term new store growth,” Bania said. However, she considered less visibility and predictability into new store openings as an “executional hurdle” for the retailer.


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The Lake Grove store, which opened on Long Island’s Suffolk County earlier this summer, is the chain’s “best new store,” Bill Sanford, Fairway’s interim CEO, said. That store is piloting design and productivity elements that officials intend to roll into additional units in coming months.

Officials made their remarks during a conference call reviewing first-quarter financial results.

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Supermarket News

Natural Grocers continues focus on store growth

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage ,Lakewood, Colo., said Thursday it will continue to focus on new-store investments, including infrastructure, to support future growth.

The company said it plans to continue 20% unit growth into next year, with plans to open 18 new stores in fiscal 2015, compared with 15 scheduled to open this year.

Kemper Isely, co-president, said the company also plans to control expenses and maintain profitability while growing its store base. “We have clear direction on how we intend to manage expenses and margin going forward while we work on various initiatives to increase sales,” he said.

“We are excited about the increasing demand for natural and organic food and believe this supports the growth opportunity we see ahead of us.”

Net income for the third quarter ended June 30 rose 16.6% to $ 3.4 million, while sales increased 18.4% to $ 134 million and comparable store sales increased 3.1%. For the year to date, net income climbed 23.6% to $ 10.3 million and sales grew 22% to $ 385 million, with comps increasing 6.3%.

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage operates 84 stores in 14 states, including 12 stores opened through the first three quarters and three more set to open during the fourth quarter. The company said it has seven signed leases for stores set to open in fiscal 2015 in Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Kansas, Nevada and Oklahoma.

Supermarket News

Baloian Farms continues growth momentum

As a leader in West Coast pepper production, Baloian Farms has recently completed improvements to its packing facility. The facilities were completed just in time for its local mini-sweet, baby Bell, green pepper, red pepper season, as well as all repack and value-added packing operations.Baloian-1

The plans for renovations were started in the fall of 2013, and construction commenced in early spring of this year.  Key improvements include the enclosure and cooling of approximately 42,000 square feet of the existing facility.

When asked about the renovations, the staff at Baloian noted the importance of an enclosed environment for temperature control and food safety to increase product quality and reduce the potential risk of contamination by improving the overall cleanliness of the environment. Another important purpose of the renovations was for the comfort of the employees.

“Not only do we take pride in pampering our products, we also take great pride in the way we treat our employees,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release. “Creating a positive working environment for our employees that yields the quality we are known for is a win-win for everybody.”

Despite the completion of renovations, Baloian Farms is already planning ahead, and all plans include room for growth. The existing packinghouse sits on a piece of land that allows for additional expansions and the new enclosure also allows for the addition of expanded cold storage, as well as processing areas that could be used if Baloian Farms pursued certifications for ready-to-eat products.

“As a leader in the pepper category and a fourth generation family farm, we believe we have a responsibility to plan for the future,” Lane said in the release. “This facility keeps us on our path of growth and innovation and we’re excited about the possibilities.”

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm, with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

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

Baloian Farms continues growth momentum

As a leader in West Coast pepper production, Baloian Farms has recently completed improvements to its packing facility. The facilities were completed just in time for its local mini-sweet, baby Bell, green pepper, red pepper season, as well as all repack and value-added packing operations.Baloian-1

The plans for renovations were started in the fall of 2013, and construction commenced in early spring of this year.  Key improvements include the enclosure and cooling of approximately 42,000 square feet of the existing facility.

When asked about the renovations, the staff at Baloian noted the importance of an enclosed environment for temperature control and food safety to increase product quality and reduce the potential risk of contamination by improving the overall cleanliness of the environment. Another important purpose of the renovations was for the comfort of the employees.

“Not only do we take pride in pampering our products, we also take great pride in the way we treat our employees,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release. “Creating a positive working environment for our employees that yields the quality we are known for is a win-win for everybody.”

Despite the completion of renovations, Baloian Farms is already planning ahead, and all plans include room for growth. The existing packinghouse sits on a piece of land that allows for additional expansions and the new enclosure also allows for the addition of expanded cold storage, as well as processing areas that could be used if Baloian Farms pursued certifications for ready-to-eat products.

“As a leader in the pepper category and a fourth generation family farm, we believe we have a responsibility to plan for the future,” Lane said in the release. “This facility keeps us on our path of growth and innovation and we’re excited about the possibilities.”

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm, with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

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