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WATSONVILLE, CA -- Driscoll Strawberry Associates Inc. has announced changes in the company organization to better serve its global customers, growers and marketing partners. The changes were effective Jan. 31.

"Our mission is to continually delight berry consumers through alignment with our customers and our berry growers," J. Miles Reiter, Driscoll's chairman and chief executive officer, said in a Feb. 1 press release. "Over the last 25 years, we have seen Driscoll's grow and develop into a multi-faceted leader of the North American fresh berry industry, with expanding capabilities in other parts of the world. This new company structure will help us build a foundation for the next 25 years of continued growth in this exciting industry."

He added, "As we move into the future, we will have a broader global reach and must be well coordinated to pursue our core mission across a wide range of geographies and cultural traditions. The company structure we are announcing today will position Driscoll's to better meet this challenge."

Foremost among the changes is the formation of a new regionally aligned organization within Driscoll. Kevin Murphy has been promoted to president of Driscoll's of the Americas. He has been elevated from his current position as senior vice president of supply and operations. "Kevin has demonstrated the skills, focus and leadership required to take our business in the Americas to the levels called for in the strategic plan," Mr. Reiter said in the release.

All of Driscoll's North American (U.S. and Mexico) operations as well as marketing will be brought into the new Driscoll's of the America's business unit. Responsibility for South American (Chile and Argentina) operations will be transitioned later in 2011.

Driscoll's of the Americas will be joining the recently expanded Driscoll's of Europe and Driscoll's Australia business units. Driscoll's of Europe and Driscoll's Australia will continue to operate under the direction of Soren Bjorn, senior vice president of international business.

Driscoll's executive team will remain unchanged and includes: Mr. Reiter as CEO and chairman; Sean Martin as chief financial officer; Steve Stein as vice president of human resources; Kelley Bell as director of community and environmental initiatives; Mr. Bjorn as SVP of international business & global technologies; Mr. Murphy as president of the Americas; and Michael Hollister as SVP Market Group, the Americas.

This team will lead the development of Driscoll's strategic direction while creating corporate capabilities and resource allocation guidelines that serve the global enterprise.

"By focusing on developing a corporate wide capability, Driscoll's will not only better serve the operations that are currently established in 18 countries and five continents but also position itself to integrate any further business units or geographic extensions quickly and effectively," Mr. Reiter said in the release.