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Down $35 million, Fairway may face bankruptcy
Fairway Market, which operates 15 locations in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, said it intends to grow its store base in the New York City metropolitan area for the next several years; however, the company continues to experience significant losses, which could result in its need to file for bankruptcy protection. "Unless we are able to raise additional... Read more
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has filed an administrative action under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act against Andrews Farming Inc. of Hillsville, VA. The company allegedly failed to make payment to 11 produce sellers in the amount of $513,226 from December 2014 through June 2015. Andrews Farming Inc. will have an opportunity to request a hearing.... Read more
Chipotle commits $10 million to help local farmers
Chipotle Mexican Grill announced the formation of the Chipotle Local Grower Support Initiative, a new program to help smaller, local suppliers meet its heightened food-safety standards. The company plans to commit up to $10 million to help local farms meet its food-safety standards and to make more local ingredients available across the country. The news comes... Read more
CAC shows marketing savvy with #BigGameAdd program
When your marketing budget is dwarfed by a heavy-spending Goliath, it’s time take a cue from David. That’s what the California Avocado Commission did with its #BigGameAdd program Super Bowl weekend, joining in the Big Game action on social media by celebrating commercials from food and beverage companies. The commission took to Twitter to respond to ads in real... Read more
Stemilt sees apple sales trend up
Apples contributed more dollars on average to U.S. produce departments in December 2015 than in 2014, despite volume being down slightly year-over-year, according to the latest Stemilt-O-Graphic. The latest apple category insights from Stemilt are based off of four weeks of data from Nielsen FreshFacts, which compare the timeframe of November 29-December 26,... Read more
Black Gold Farms: Red is the new color of St. Patrick’s Day
Black Gold Farms is letting retailers know that that this year, red is the new color of St. Patrick’s Day. While the color green may be synonymous with the holiday, red potatoes are already part of St. Patrick’s Day feasts, whether they’re Irish or not — and the sales numbers show it. To help make red potato sales even stronger in March Black Gold Farms will... Read more
Meijer program generates $2.4 million for food pantries
The Meijer Simply Give program set a holiday record with $2.4 million for food pantries throughout the Midwest, making it the most successful holiday campaign in the program’s history. Meijer customers donated more than $936,000 during the holiday Simply Give campaign, and combined with a donation from Meijer, set the donation total to more than $2.4 million.... Read more
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has imposed sanctions on three produce businesses for failure to pay reparation awards issued under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act. The following businesses and individuals are currently restricted from operating in the produce industry: The Lexy Group, operating out of Santa Maria, CA, for failing to pay a... Read more
Frieda’s makes big splash with attention-grabbing citrus bags
Citrus fruits are enjoying their time in the spotlight, from everyday shoppers to foodies to chefs. And it’s not just during the winter when shoppers are looking for healthier options to brighten up their foods on dreary days. Specialty citrus is here to stay. Once a limited specialty item, Meyer lemons have become increasingly popular. New and unusual citrus... Read more
The New Jersey State Agricultural Convention & Trade Show will be held Feb. 9-11 at the new Harrah's Resort Waterfront Conference Center in Atlantic City, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the creation of the New Jersey Department of Agriculture. The department is hosting the convention in cooperation with the Vegetable Growers Association of New Jersey... Read more
Second annual Viva Fresh Expo sells out with increased buyer attendance
For the second year in a row, the Viva Fresh Expo, presented by the Texas International Produce Association, has sold out the exhibit hall with increased retail and foodservice attendance. The expo will be held March 30 to April 2 at the JW Marriott Hill Country Resort & Spa in San Antonio, TX. “Once again, the response from retail and foodservice buyers... Read more
Giant Food Stores introduces new fresh meal kits
Giant Food Stores has launched its new fresh meal kit program in 12 greater Philadelphia and Lehigh Valley stores. Each kit features pre-measured fresh ingredients to make two servings of the selected meal as well as step-by-step instructions. Giant's fresh meal kits will be featured in the produce, meat or deli sections. “Our customers are busy and these... Read more
Super avocado sales in 2015 portend very bright future
As of this writing, Super Bowl 2016 — and another Avocados from Mexico commercial — is right around the corner. While the game is surely being anticipated by more people, all segments in the avocado industry are excited about what the ad might do for this year’s sales. Although it’s impossible to directly credit AFM’s Super Bowl ad in 2015 for the great year... Read more
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has imposed sanctions on three produce businesses for failure to pay reparation awards issued under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act. The following businesses and individuals are currently restricted from operating in the produce industry: Da Vinci Carriers Inc., operating out of Garden Grove, CA, for failing... Read more
Ontario's greenhouse cucumbers 'Always in Season'
Ontario Greenhouse Vegetable Growers has launched its annual winter cucumber program “Always in Season” on Feb. 1. This program signifies the ramp up of production for all varieties of Ontario greenhouse-grown seedless cucumbers and informs Ontario consumers of their availability during the cold winter months. “Consumers can find fresh, locally grown Ontario... Read more
Winn-Dixie's next generation store the first of 50 remodels in 2016
After five years absence, Winn-Dixie Baymeadows reopened its doors today and revealed an entirely new store concept. With a focus on stunning quality food, serving with personality and great value, this store has been tailored to the Baymeadows community in Jacksonville, FL, and represents the start of an extensive store remodel program for 2016. Sourcing from... Read more
Florida ag continues to receive brunt of  El Niño’s impact
Average rainfall numbers as much as 800 percent greater than normal continue to stack up in Florida, wreaking havoc on many different annual crops from peppers to strawberries to sweet corn. “During November, December and January, we had about three-and-a-half inches of rain last year,” said Tony DiMare of DiMare Homestead Inc. in Homestead, FL, speaking of... Read more
Wonderful Halos promotes healthy snacking with Boys & Girls Clubs of America
Actress, television personality, designer and philanthropist Kristin Cavallari helped kick off the second year of a partnership between Wonderful Halos California mandarins and Boys & Girls Clubs of America to promote healthy living. Wonderful Halos, the No. 1 selling brand of mandarins in the country, is donating another $100,000 to Boys & Girls Clubs... Read more
United Family celebrates 100th anniversary with $100,000 in school donations
As part of United Supermarkets’ 100th anniversary celebration, The United Family will donate $100,000 to local schools throughout west Texas, Dallas-Fort Worth and eastern New Mexico, as part of its Shop to Support Schools program. Beginning Jan. 13 and running through Oct. 15, guests may link a school of choice to their rewards account at any United Supermarkets,... Read more
Nogales top receiving point for Mexican produce, with tomatoes leading the way
NOGALES, AZ — Nogales remains the top U.S. port of entry for receiving Mexican fresh fruits and vegetables, according to a report released by the Fresh Produce Association of the Americas, based here. On Feb. 2, the association released The Nogales Produce Import Report 2014-15, which revealed that Nogales received 5.6 billion pounds of fresh Mexican produce... Read more