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Further expansion in progress for Calixtro Distributing Co.

Calixtro Distributing Co. Inc., which is located in the Rio Rico Industrial Park north of Nogales, AZ, already has a sizeable warehouse and office complex that not only serves the company’s own needs, but also accommodates several tenants, and now further expansion is in progress.

“We have an addition coming up on our building over here,” said Frank Calixtro, one of five brothers in the family business. “We are adding on another 25,000 square feet to our warehouse.” It is all “state-of-the-art cold storage,” he said.

The additional space will be used for “a combination” of Calixtro’s own use and for leasing, he said.

Calixtro Distributing, which is principally a buying brokerage operation, was officially formed in 1989 and will mark its 25th anniversary in 2014.

CalixtroAt the Calixtro Distributing sales office in Rio Rico, AZ, were Charlie Calixtro (seated), Robert Calixtro, Artie Calixtro, Fernando Calixtro, Chama Calixtro, Frank Calixtro, Richard Calixtro and John Tuccini. (Photo by John Groh)All of the brothers in the company have “30-plus years experience in the produce business,” except for Robert, the youngest, who started his produce career at Calixtro Distributing at age 17 and has been in the business now for 15 years, Calixtro said.

Before starting Calixtro, the other brothers all worked for different produce companies, he added.

Calixtro himself worked for Tac T. Kikuchi, W.K. Tawa, Dave Westendorff Sales, S&H Sales, Gonzales Packing, Al Harrison Co. and Tricar Sales. Joe (Chama) Calixtro, the company’s president, worked for Meyer Tomatoes and Arnold Papazian. Richard Calixtro worked for Arnold Papazian and Charlie Calixtro worked for Z&S Distributing.

Another family member is Arturo (Artie) Gonzales, a nephew, who works in quality control.

Two non-family members who do buying and sales at Calixtro Distributing are Fernando Huerta and John Tuccini. Prior to joining the company, Huerto was owner of Fred Itule Sales.

Tuccini has been dealing in produce for 38 years, starting with a family business in the Detroit area. He has been in Nogales for the past 17 years, with Tom Lange Co. and then with A&E, before joining Calixtro Distributing three years ago.

Calixtro noted that before any of the brothers got involved in produce, “we all worked in a family business downtown” that was a different kind of business. “My dad had an electronics store,” he said.