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Avocados from Mexico will run eight major promotions for 2014-15

In the most aggressive marketing plan yet for Mexican avocados in the United States, Avocados from Mexico — which expects to capture a 70 percent market share for the current marketing year, has plans to run eight major promotions this season in what Avocados from Mexico President Alvaro Luque called “the boldest plan we have ever had.”

The campaign consist of five national promotions for the general market presented in key stores throughout the country and three promotions specifically for the Hispanic market.06-MexAvos-AvosFromMex-AlvaAlvaro Luque

The first promotion of the series was launched Sept. 15 in conjunction with Hispanic Heritage month, “and we’ll go up to June without stopping,” Luque said. “We don’t have one month of the year until June 2015 that we are not going to have a promotion out there.”

The next promotion was rolled out Oct. 15. “We are partnering with Conagra RoTel” in RoTel’s sports-related promotion called Hungry for Football, he said. That promotion will feature “our joint recipe” called  Rock & Guac.

Luque said he expects Avocados from Mexico to have more than 7,000 bins of product in the stores for the promotion. It will also involve a free-standing insert and some in-store coupons.

“Right after that promotion, we are going to start one called Guac Fiesta” for the months of December and January, leading up to the Super Bowl weekend. That will be a partnership between Avocados from Mexico and Old El Paso, who is “a great partner. We are going to have a lot of excitement around it.” Old El Paso is “a company, so we are going to have a lot of extra communications in radio and digital that we are working out with them,” Luque said.

“We wanted to develop something different for the brand this year,” so immediately after Guac Fiesta, Avocados from Mexico will roll out a promotion called Fanwich. Having focused on “owning” guacamole during the football season, “we want to  make the switch from guacamole to sandwiches,” he said.

The objective, according to a written statement by Avocados from Mexico to The Produce News, is “to keep momentum strong after the big game through an in-store program and an attractive consumer promotion supported by national media.”

Simultaneously, “we are going to have a crepe promotion, probably partnering with Mission Foods, and we are also  going to have  a foodservice promotion that we are working out with some big partners,” he said. “It is going to be the first time” that Avocados from Mexico has worked promotions “at three different levels at the same time.”

After the Fanwich promotion, “we go immediately into Cinco mode,” Luque said. For the Cinco de Mayo holiday, a prommotion called Ultimate Mexican Fiesta will run April and May with Heiniken and possibly another major brand as partners.

Following Cinco, in May and June Avocados from Mexico will  run a promotion called Summer Salad Festival “to inspire consumers with fresh, healthy new summer salad ideas” using Mexican avocados, according to the written statement.

In parallel with the general market promotions, Avocados from Mexico will run promotions specifically for stores  catering to the Hispanic market, he said. Those will include a Hispanic version of the Cinco festival and, in April and May, a soccer-related promotion “where we are probably going to bring back again, the soccer stars to partner with us” as was the case in 2014.

Supporting the promotions will be an extensive communications strategy, Luque said. It will include an advertising campaign with seven new television ads. “The first four are ready to roll, and we are going to launch our first ad Nov. 11 during the pregame show of the Notre Dame football game,” introducing the new “Made with Love” campaign theme.

In addition to television, starting in October and continuing through May, the campaign will include print and digital ads. The combined effort is expected to build up 16 billion impressions, he said.

Avocados from Mexico will also be doing an extensive re-design of its website, expanding the one website into four: one for the general market, one for Hispanics, one exclusively for the trade, and “for the first time,” one for foodservice, he said. The concepts were unveiled at PMA Fresh  Summit in October and the websites will go live in November.

“The core focus of our plan is to influence avocado consumers to eat more avocados more frequently,” said the written statement.

“We are concentrating our efforts in increasing penetration and frequency with the avocado medium consumers and in building more avocado baskets with the heavy consumers.”

Avocados from Mexico is committed to maintaining and accelerating the growth of avocado consumption in the United States, the statement said.

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

Avocados from Mexico will run eight major promotions for 2014-15

In the most aggressive marketing plan yet for Mexican avocados in the United States, Avocados from Mexico — which expects to capture a 70 percent market share for the current marketing year, has plans to run eight major promotions this season in what Avocados from Mexico President Alvaro Luque called “the boldest plan we have ever had.”

The campaign consist of five national promotions for the general market presented in key stores throughout the country and three promotions specifically for the Hispanic market.06-MexAvos-AvosFromMex-AlvaAlvaro Luque

The first promotion of the series was launched Sept. 15 in conjunction with Hispanic Heritage month, “and we’ll go up to June without stopping,” Luque said. “We don’t have one month of the year until June 2015 that we are not going to have a promotion out there.”

The next promotion was rolled out Oct. 15. “We are partnering with Conagra RoTel” in RoTel’s sports-related promotion called Hungry for Football, he said. That promotion will feature “our joint recipe” called  Rock & Guac.

Luque said he expects Avocados from Mexico to have more than 7,000 bins of product in the stores for the promotion. It will also involve a free-standing insert and some in-store coupons.

“Right after that promotion, we are going to start one called Guac Fiesta” for the months of December and January, leading up to the Super Bowl weekend. That will be a partnership between Avocados from Mexico and Old El Paso, who is “a great partner. We are going to have a lot of excitement around it.” Old El Paso is “a company, so we are going to have a lot of extra communications in radio and digital that we are working out with them,” Luque said.

“We wanted to develop something different for the brand this year,” so immediately after Guac Fiesta, Avocados from Mexico will roll out a promotion called Fanwich. Having focused on “owning” guacamole during the football season, “we want to  make the switch from guacamole to sandwiches,” he said.

The objective, according to a written statement by Avocados from Mexico to The Produce News, is “to keep momentum strong after the big game through an in-store program and an attractive consumer promotion supported by national media.”

Simultaneously, “we are going to have a crepe promotion, probably partnering with Mission Foods, and we are also  going to have  a foodservice promotion that we are working out with some big partners,” he said. “It is going to be the first time” that Avocados from Mexico has worked promotions “at three different levels at the same time.”

After the Fanwich promotion, “we go immediately into Cinco mode,” Luque said. For the Cinco de Mayo holiday, a prommotion called Ultimate Mexican Fiesta will run April and May with Heiniken and possibly another major brand as partners.

Following Cinco, in May and June Avocados from Mexico will  run a promotion called Summer Salad Festival “to inspire consumers with fresh, healthy new summer salad ideas” using Mexican avocados, according to the written statement.

In parallel with the general market promotions, Avocados from Mexico will run promotions specifically for stores  catering to the Hispanic market, he said. Those will include a Hispanic version of the Cinco festival and, in April and May, a soccer-related promotion “where we are probably going to bring back again, the soccer stars to partner with us” as was the case in 2014.

Supporting the promotions will be an extensive communications strategy, Luque said. It will include an advertising campaign with seven new television ads. “The first four are ready to roll, and we are going to launch our first ad Nov. 11 during the pregame show of the Notre Dame football game,” introducing the new “Made with Love” campaign theme.

In addition to television, starting in October and continuing through May, the campaign will include print and digital ads. The combined effort is expected to build up 16 billion impressions, he said.

Avocados from Mexico will also be doing an extensive re-design of its website, expanding the one website into four: one for the general market, one for Hispanics, one exclusively for the trade, and “for the first time,” one for foodservice, he said. The concepts were unveiled at PMA Fresh  Summit in October and the websites will go live in November.

“The core focus of our plan is to influence avocado consumers to eat more avocados more frequently,” said the written statement.

“We are concentrating our efforts in increasing penetration and frequency with the avocado medium consumers and in building more avocado baskets with the heavy consumers.”

Avocados from Mexico is committed to maintaining and accelerating the growth of avocado consumption in the United States, the statement said.

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

Avocados from Mexico will run eight major promotions for 2014-15

In the most aggressive marketing plan yet for Mexican avocados in the United States, Avocados from Mexico — which expects to capture a 70 percent market share for the current marketing year, has plans to run eight major promotions this season in what Avocados from Mexico President Alvaro Luque called “the boldest plan we have ever had.”

The campaign consist of five national promotions for the general market presented in key stores throughout the country and three promotions specifically for the Hispanic market.06-MexAvos-AvosFromMex-AlvaAlvaro Luque

The first promotion of the series was launched Sept. 15 in conjunction with Hispanic Heritage month, “and we’ll go up to June without stopping,” Luque said. “We don’t have one month of the year until June 2015 that we are not going to have a promotion out there.”

The next promotion was rolled out Oct. 15. “We are partnering with Conagra RoTel” in RoTel’s sports-related promotion called Hungry for Football, he said. That promotion will feature “our joint recipe” called  Rock & Guac.

Luque said he expects Avocados from Mexico to have more than 7,000 bins of product in the stores for the promotion. It will also involve a free-standing insert and some in-store coupons.

“Right after that promotion, we are going to start one called Guac Fiesta” for the months of December and January, leading up to the Super Bowl weekend. That will be a partnership between Avocados from Mexico and Old El Paso, who is “a great partner. We are going to have a lot of excitement around it.” Old El Paso is “a company, so we are going to have a lot of extra communications in radio and digital that we are working out with them,” Luque said.

“We wanted to develop something different for the brand this year,” so immediately after Guac Fiesta, Avocados from Mexico will roll out a promotion called Fanwich. Having focused on “owning” guacamole during the football season, “we want to  make the switch from guacamole to sandwiches,” he said.

The objective, according to a written statement by Avocados from Mexico to The Produce News, is “to keep momentum strong after the big game through an in-store program and an attractive consumer promotion supported by national media.”

Simultaneously, “we are going to have a crepe promotion, probably partnering with Mission Foods, and we are also  going to have  a foodservice promotion that we are working out with some big partners,” he said. “It is going to be the first time” that Avocados from Mexico has worked promotions “at three different levels at the same time.”

After the Fanwich promotion, “we go immediately into Cinco mode,” Luque said. For the Cinco de Mayo holiday, a prommotion called Ultimate Mexican Fiesta will run April and May with Heiniken and possibly another major brand as partners.

Following Cinco, in May and June Avocados from Mexico will  run a promotion called Summer Salad Festival “to inspire consumers with fresh, healthy new summer salad ideas” using Mexican avocados, according to the written statement.

In parallel with the general market promotions, Avocados from Mexico will run promotions specifically for stores  catering to the Hispanic market, he said. Those will include a Hispanic version of the Cinco festival and, in April and May, a soccer-related promotion “where we are probably going to bring back again, the soccer stars to partner with us” as was the case in 2014.

Supporting the promotions will be an extensive communications strategy, Luque said. It will include an advertising campaign with seven new television ads. “The first four are ready to roll, and we are going to launch our first ad Nov. 11 during the pregame show of the Notre Dame football game,” introducing the new “Made with Love” campaign theme.

In addition to television, starting in October and continuing through May, the campaign will include print and digital ads. The combined effort is expected to build up 16 billion impressions, he said.

Avocados from Mexico will also be doing an extensive re-design of its website, expanding the one website into four: one for the general market, one for Hispanics, one exclusively for the trade, and “for the first time,” one for foodservice, he said. The concepts were unveiled at PMA Fresh  Summit in October and the websites will go live in November.

“The core focus of our plan is to influence avocado consumers to eat more avocados more frequently,” said the written statement.

“We are concentrating our efforts in increasing penetration and frequency with the avocado medium consumers and in building more avocado baskets with the heavy consumers.”

Avocados from Mexico is committed to maintaining and accelerating the growth of avocado consumption in the United States, the statement said.

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.

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.

Sunrain Varieties announces major land investment

Sunrain Varieties LLC, a producer of fresh potato seed, recently purchased a 1,600-acre farm located in the Victor-Driggs, ID, area.

“This acreage will be used primarily for early generation seed production and we look forward to a great fall harvest,” Aron Derbidge, business manager at Sunrain, said in a press release. 

The company also plans construction of a world-class storage and grading facility on the property.

“With on-site sorting and sizing, Sunrain will be able to offer the trade pre-sized seed lots,” Derbidge said in the release. “Sunrain is continually striving to help our customers save time and money in the planting process so this addition makes good sense.”

Sunrain will be holding a new product showcase and open house Aug. 13 at its Idaho facility. Contact Rainey Carraballo at rcarraballo@potandon.com for more information or a facility tour.

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

Sunrain Varieties announces major land investment

Sunrain Varieties LLC, a producer of fresh potato seed, recently purchased a 1,600-acre farm located in the Victor-Driggs, ID, area.

“This acreage will be used primarily for early generation seed production and we look forward to a great fall harvest,” Aron Derbidge, business manager at Sunrain, said in a press release. 

The company also plans construction of a world-class storage and grading facility on the property.

“With on-site sorting and sizing, Sunrain will be able to offer the trade pre-sized seed lots,” Derbidge said in the release. “Sunrain is continually striving to help our customers save time and money in the planting process so this addition makes good sense.”

Sunrain will be holding a new product showcase and open house Aug. 13 at its Idaho facility. Contact Rainey Carraballo at rcarraballo@potandon.com for more information or a facility tour.

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

Nutrition Facts Label to Get Major Updates

For the first time since it was developed in the early 1990s, the Nutrition Facts label is getting a new look.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today introduced its plans for updating the label to include larger serving sizes, calorie counts in larger type and “added sugars” values, with the hope that it will help consumers reduce their risks of chronic disease such as cardiovascular disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes and stroke.

“These are very important changes and our goal here is to design a label that is easier to read and one that consumers can understand,” said FDA Commissioner Margaret Hamburg at an announcement event with first lady Michelle Obama at the White House Thursday. “This proposal is the culmination of years of research, study and requests for public input.”

“As consumers and as parents, we have a right to understand what’s in the food we’re feeding our families because that’s really the only way that we can make informed choices — by having clear, accurate information,” Obama said at the event which was part of the fourth anniversary celebration of her Let’s Move! campaign to combat the childhood obesity epidemic. “Ultimately, that’s what today’s announcement is all about.”

Key aspects of FDA’s proposed changes include:

  • A greater emphasis — with larger and bolder type — on calories.
  • Added Sugars value listed – The food industry is likely to take issue with this aspect of the proposal. “They do not want consumers to know how much sugar they are adding, especially since so many health authorities are relating sugar intake to obesity.
  • Calories from fat would no longer be listed. (But Total, saturated and trans fat will still be required.)
  • Updated serving sizes that better reflect what people actually eat. Serving sizes are not a recommendation but simply a lens through which people can understand nutrition.
  • The number of servings per package will be more prominent.
  • Updated Daily Values for various nutrients and shifting the Percent Daily Value (%DV)  to the left of the label. FDA wants to help consumers visually and quickly put nutrient information in context.
  • Amounts of potassium and Vitamin D would be required on the label, while listing Vitamins A and C would become voluntary.

Marion Nestle, nutrition expert and professor at New York University, told Food Safety News that she reacted to the proposal with “surprise that it’s as consumer-friendly as it is” and “delight that it did everything I hoped it would.”

Of course, consumers will still need to look at the label. “But even a casual glance ought to tell you something about calories,” Nestle said.

“We realize that the label alone won’t magically change how America eats, but we hope that once consumers decide to implement changes in their diet that lead to healthier lifestyles, it will provide them with the tools to be successful,” Hamburg said.

FDA has divided the changes to the Nutrition Facts label into two proposed rules. One updates nutrition information and the label design to help highlight important information. The other covers the changes to serving size requirements and labeling for certain package sizes.

They will be published to the Federal Register and a 90-day comment period opened. FDA plans to finish the final rule by 2015.

Food Safety News

Hy-Vee’s major entry into Twin Cities market

Hy-Vee Inc., a grocery retailer with 235 stores in eight states, announced plans for a major expansion of its Minnesota operations into the Twin Cities market. Hy-Vee has been a fixture in Minnesota communities since 1969 and currently has 17 employee-owned stores statewide with approximately 5,100 employees.

“Our commitment to excellent customer service, health and wellness, and culinary expertise is unlike anything in the market to date,” Randy Edeker, chairman, chief executive officer and president of Hy-Vee, said in a press release. “Minnesota and its residents have long been important partners, and we are proud to extend that partnership into the Twin Cities area.”

The proposed expansion would add several new stores to the Twin Cities market each year for the next several years. The stores will be approximately 90,000 square feet, with an investment of approximately $ 14-16 million, creating anywhere from 400 to 550 new jobs.

The company has one location under contract in the Twin Cities area, with several more projects in various stages of research and development.

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

Costco Played Major Role in Bankruptcy of Nation’s Largest Organic Peanut Butter Maker

Federal court records show that the Oct. 8 bankruptcy filing by the nation’s largest organic peanut butter processor was sparked by Issaquah, WA-based Costco, a membership-based warehouse club, when it unilaterally terminated a deal it had with Portales, NM-based Sunland, Inc.

It’s left a side dispute for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for New Mexico to figure out. Costco wants to take possession of $ 20 million worth of peanuts currently in storage at Sunland, and Sunland wants Costco to pay it $ 4 million for previously delivered shelled and bagged peanuts and for finished peanut butter, also in storage.

U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge David Thuma has scheduled a Dec. 23 hearing to resolve the dispute. If Costco gets to take possession of the peanuts, it would reduce Sunland’s assets available to be divided up by other creditors, including employees who were stiffed when Sunland shut down.

Costco’s role in turning Sunland’s plans for a Chapter 11 (reorganization) bankruptcy filing into a Chapter 7 (liquidation) is found in the court filings. Sunland began planning as early as April 2012 for a possible reorganization, which would have allowed it to continue operations like airlines often do.

In 2012, an outbreak of Salmonella Bredeney infections of 42 people in 20 states was linked to peanut butter manufactured by Sunland. The U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA) temporarily suspended Sunland’s federal registration, forcing it to cease operations for about four months in late 2012 and early 2013.

It was during the FDA-induced shutdown that Costco agreed to front Sunland the cash to continue buying peanuts under a Dec. 4, 2012, deal between the two companies. But about 10 months later, on Oct. 4, 2013, Costco pulled out, and, just four days later, Sunland filed for Chapter 7 liquidation.

Before it pulled out of the deal, however, Costco put up $ 7.5 million in December and another $ 12.5 million in February, funding a total of about 29 million pounds of peanuts and keeping the market going for raw, unshelled Valencia peanuts. Money was deposited into escrow accounts that apparently could be tapped by growers as the peanuts were processed.

Costco, often seen as a corporate leader in food safety, remains among Sunland’s top three creditors. The other two are CoBank and the Production Credit Association, both part of the federal farm credit system. Cobank participated in the Costco peanut purchases by taking a secondary position in the deal.

The complete meltdown of the nation’s largest organic peanut processor initially caught the Portales community by surprise, even to employees who shut the doors without getting their last paycheck. Surprise turned to anger when they learned the bankruptcy had been in the works since April, and the company even took $ 150,000 from a local economic development fund after it decided to file for bankruptcy.

Sunland’s officers never mentioned bankruptcy as a possibility in their discussions with the Portales economic development program. The Portales City Council is looking into how the town might get its money back.

Costco cash was used to purchased peanuts last December and February, in part to keep payments flowing to Valencia peanut growers along the West Texas/New Mexico border region.

About 75 Sunland employees went without a final paycheck in amounts ranging from $ 100 to about $ 1,000 each. Employee payments typically are considered as priority claims against the assets of a business being liquidated.

Thuma has granted the bankruptcy trustee, Clarke Coil, the power to reopen Sunland’s Portales plant if it is needed to process peanuts, some of which are not held long-term in cold storage. Any reopening would be on a limited basis for the purpose of preserving assets. Some workers might get called back for temporary duty.

Sunland’s problems began with the recall of Trader Joe’s Organic Valencia Peanut Butter, which was produced by the New Mexico company and found to be contaminated. With the outbreak, the recall expanded to include dozens of its other brands.

Also the largest organic peanut butter exporter in the U.S., Sunland was the largest private-sector employee in Portales, an eastern New Mexico community of about 20,000.

Food Safety News

Major packhouse contract for Marco in North America

Major packhouse contract for Marco in North America

Marco have been awarded a significant contract by Canadian vegetable producer Windset Farms for the supply of their Yield Control system (YCM) to improve productivity at Windset’s operation in Santa Maria, California.

The YCM system, which has a proven track record of improving packhouse productivity by up to 30%, will be used to help Windset ramp up throughput of their wide range of pre-packed tomatoes. The YCM concept is designed to simplify and deskill the manual packing process, whilst significantly increasing line speeds and reducing overpack/giveaway. For this installation, Windset will benefit from Marco’s ingenious ‘one light–one fruit’ operator display, which is now a standard feature within the latest version of YCM.

Each light segment on the visual light display represents a single fruit. This feature significantly increases the speed of the packing process and is ideal when the fresh produce being packed in a particular batch run has consistent proportions. The YCM terminals can be pre-programmed to store different types and weights of tomato, making pack line changes very simple and rapid. As pre-packed tomatoes travel down the packing line, they are placed on the scale and then operators are visually prompted to ‘add’ or ‘take out’ individual fruits to ensure pack weight compliance.

Marco’s AO (Automatic Optimization) software runs quietly in the background constantly checking and fine tuning target weights at each station to ensure giveaway is virtually eradicated. This clear visual method of indication target weight compliance also reduces operator training requirements.

Windset’s Chief Operating Officer John Newell has been very impressed with the Marco solution: “The results are very conclusive and there is clear justification for this investment in their YCM system. We are looking forward to benefiting from the subsequent improvements in productivity following completion of the installation.”

For more information:
Marco
Tel: +44 (0)1732 782 380
[email protected] 
marco.co.uk    

Publication date: 8/28/2013


FreshPlaza.com

Major update for United Family’s second-oldest Market Street

A major update of The United Family’s second-oldest Market Street location got under way Aug. 26. The project marks the first significant remodel of the store since its opening in January 2000.

Barring unforeseen delays the remodeling effort should be complete by Nov. 1.

The store will see a floor-to-ceiling makeover in the coming weeks, according to Wes Jackson, chief merchandising officer for The United Family.

“Just about every area in the store will be impacted, but especially our ‘fresh’ departments — floral, bakery, produce, food service and meat-seafood,” Jackson said.

The changes will provide Market Street guests with more products to choose from as well as make shopping easier, he added. “Guests will notice how we’ve opened up the aisles to make them more manageable. In the end, the updates should provide them a more enjoyable shopping experience.”

The update will include the transition to the company’s new signage and brand standards for the “Market Street” banner, featuring the new logo on the outside of the building, new apparel for team members and décor package throughout the store.

The company introduced the new “Market Street” logo and décor package earlier this year as a part of its chain-wide rebranding initiative, which also included the announcement of a name change for the parent company to The United Family.

Other notable updates will include the expansion of several product offerings, including natural, organic and gluten-free foods.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines