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People, week of June 27, 2011

Curry & Co., based in Brooks, OR, has expanded its sales team with the addition of ANTHONY HARMON, who will work on the company's full product line of onions, sweet onions, blueberries, potatoes and Vidalia sweet carrots. He will initially be based in the company's Birmingham, AL, office.

Anthony Harmon

Mr. Harmon's working career started in the professional golf industry in 2001 with Global Golf Management, where he was the operation's manager and was in charge of sponsor sales for golf events including the PGA Tour, Champions Tour and LPGA Tournaments. In 2006 he joined Credit Suisse, an international financial services group, where he was a sales trader until joining the C. Lane Co. in Birmingham, AL, in 2010.

"I've been in sales my entire career, and my experience with the C. Lane Company opened my eyes to what great opportunities and people there are in the produce industry," Mr. Harmon said in a June 17 press release. "I was impressed by the scope of Curry & Company's domestic and international business programs and look forward to helping them grow."

Curry & Co. launched its Birmingham office in 2010 to assist with its growing Southeast onion operation and to help introduce its Vidalia sweet carrot program.

"Tony brings a unique sales skill set to our team," Matt Curry, president of Curry & Co., said in the press release. "We're especially excited about the promotional abilities he developed during his golf tenure, as we have more and more of our retail and foodservice partners asking us to help them with promotional activities."

Mr. Harmon earned a bachelor's degree in business administration from Saint Louis University in St. Louis, MO.


JOE CARDENAS joined J&J Ranch Produce in Indio, CA, June 15 as the company's sales and commodity manager for tropical fruits and Chilean grapes.

Joe Cardenas

Mr. Cardenas, a 19-year veteran of the produce trade, came to J&J Ranch Produce from the Giumarra Cos. in Los Angeles, where he worked for three years.

Mr. Cardenas resides in Riverside, CA. In his free time, he is a fitness and jiu jitsu enthusiast.


PETER LEIFERMANN has been appointed vice president of sales and marketing at Pantai USA, a 10-year-old importer and distributor based in Miami.

Mr. Leifermann has worked for more than 20 years in the fresh produce industry and has experience in the foodservice, wholesale, import and grower-shipper sectors.

"I believe this to be the perfect time to give a new direction for the activities of Pantai. Peter is the perfect person to make that transition by offering our customers a higher level of service [and] more products, and developing the sale of papaya in another level," Guy Fernandes, chief executive officer of Pantai, said in a company statement.

"I am excited about the opportunity to work with Guy on a day-to-day basis. We've worked together in various respects over the past 10 years. Our values have always aligned, and I'm happy to be in a position to further extend those values to the marketplace," Mr. Leifermann said in the statement.

As exclusive distributors for Interfruit Alimentos Ltda. in Brazil, Pantai USA imports Brazilian papaya under the "Interfruit" label and Brazilian ginger and eddo. Pantai also offers its clients Florida-grown tropical produce.


Columbia Marketing International, one of Washington state's larger grower-shippers of premium conventional and organic apples, pears and cherries, has hired LOREN FOSS to its export sales team.

Loren Foss

Wenatchee, WA-based CMI focuses on premium-quality fruit and strong customer partnerships. It has been providing value-added services with accounts for many years and continues to expand those programs to meet customers' needs.

Mr. Foss has extensive experience handling various world markets, particularly India and Jordan, and has accumulated a wide range of sales experience representing fresh apples, pears and cherries.

"We are very pleased to have Loren on board," Tony Buak, vice president of export sales at CMI, said in a press release. "He will be a valuable member of our team."

"I am very excited to be joining the team at CMI," Mr. Foss added in the press release. "They are a great company with family values, and I am really looking forward to becoming part of the team."

A native of Spokane, WA, Mr. Foss enjoys outdoor recreation such as mountaineering, skiing and biking.


CHRISTIAN HAUB, former executive chairman and chief executive officer of the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co., has joined New York City-based BrightFarms LLC as a senior adviser.

Christian Haub

Mr. Haub will assist BrightFarms in developing and executing strategies for understanding and satisfying the business requirements of major supermarket chains by providing better produce, at better profit levels, in a way that is better for the environment.

BrightFarms designs, finances, builds and operates hydroponic greenhouse farms at supermarkets, eliminating time, distance and cost from the food supply chain. There is no cost to the supermarket retailer, only an obligation to purchase the produce.

"U.S. supermarkets must innovate to differentiate themselves from their competitors," Mr. Haub said in a June 13 press release. "Rooftop greenhouses are powerful tools for supermarkets to satisfy growing demands of consumers for better quality, more sustainable and locally grown food."

"We are delighted to benefit from Christian Haub's involvement. With more than 20 years as a top executive of a large U.S. supermarket chain, his insights are invaluable," Paul Lightfoot, chief executive officer of BrightFarms, said in the release.


To announce personnel changes at your company, please contact Assistant Editor Terry Sokol at 201/986-7990, ext. 107, or Photos are encouraged.