The 2014 Fresno Food Expo, held on Thursday, July 24, featured 126 food and beverage companies from the Joaquin Valley. Participants had the opportunity to meet with 700 pre-qualified regional, national and international foodservice and retail buyers, restaurant chefs and institutions, as well as more than 1,000 members of the public looking to support local business.
These record-breaking numbers reflect a 93 percent growth in number of participating exhibitors, and 250 percent growth in buyers since the Expo first began in 2011.
Kelly Bros. Inc's team of Clem Penrose, Fernando Chavez, Patrick Kelly (owner), Brian Kelly, Chris Kelly, Terry Thomas, Kevin Manning, Abel Chavez and Jihoon Kim showed off the company's newly branded Goldies Sweet Costa Rican Pineapples.
Homegrown Organics Farms' Cherie France and Stephen Paul showed off their new freeze-dried blueberries.
Patti Simonian, Jeff Simonian and Doralie Utecht showed off Simonian Fruit Co.'s Champagne seedless grapes.
Brian Lapin of Stellar Distributing talks California figs with a buyer.
Linda Anderson and Samantha Roe shared Perfect Gems' frozen pomegranate arils and other packaging of arils combined with blueberries and acai berries.
Jessica Kamper and Megan Shanley serve up Shanley Farms' finger limes and Gator Egg avocados.
Valliwide Marketing's Mason Parkinson, Bill Shene, Ashley Martinez and Traci Parkinson displayed their 100 percent organic stone fruit.
Breann Janes and Kyle Sawatsky talk about Bari Olive Oil's many flavors of olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
1st Quality Produce's CEO Mike Kahaian with Falina Marihart and Victor Wilcox.
Family Tree Farms' Parker Anderson and Brenton Helm hold up the companies variety of specialty pluots.
Kingsburg Orchards' Jillian Diepersloot and Dan Spain served up their Dinosaur Eggs.
Rob Taylor of Stafford Famous Chocolates with Kristin Dodd and Mike Smith of Setton Farms showed their chocolate-pistachio sweets and snacks alongside Setton Farms' new flavors of pistachios, including chipotle barbecue and garlic onion.
Joel Salazar shows off Western Fresh Marketing's selection of figs.
Debbie Loyd, Michael Glanville, Sue Der Matoian and Leilani Talty of Nature's Joy boasted about the company's growing line of products.
Jared Murray and Camilo Orsini displayed SGS' grape pouches.
Fowler Packing's Ali Garabedian, Tracy Stacy, Leland Parnagian, Kevin Souza and Julie Rush promoted the company's "Fowler" brand grape pouches.
Gunner White, Jeri Elsasser and Dennis Surabian of Trinity Fruit Sales hold their Juicy Gems pomegranate arils.
Wawona Frozen Foods' Jennifer Lam, Bill Smittcamp, Mat Ribera, Donald Klein and Blake Smittcamp. Wawona has been a major sponsor of the Fresno Food Expo since its beginning in 2011.
Gerawan's Cole Rinehart and Denver Shutz served their "Prima" brand ripe peaches and nectarines. Gerawan has been a major sponsor of the Fresno Food Expo since its beginning in 2011.
Horizon Marketing's team — Robert Delatorre, Valerie Amador, Erminia Sedillo, Crystal Gonzales and Janet Crispin — highlighted the company's focus on service with portioned seedless grapes for foodservice and transportation services.
Dave Maddux, Michael Reimer, Darrin Kirk, Mikaela Kirk and Wayne Brandt of Brandt Farms showed off their ThomCord Seedless grapes, a blend of Thompson seedless and concord grapes.
Jackie Grazier and Stephanie Mejia of SunMaid showed off their variety of dried fruits.