Stop & Shop has appointed Dean Wilkinson as the Fresh Formats Bfresh lead, effective today. Scott Miller, interim senior vice president of operations at Fresh Formats, has decided to leave the company in order to pursue other opportunities.
Wilkinson has a retail career that spans more than two decades, first working at Stop & Shop as a customer service director and eventually being promoted to district manager before taking a regional vice president position at the Giant Landover Division. At Giant Landover, Wilkinson was also the director non-foods and divisional vice president sales, merchandising, and marketing. In 2015, Wilkinson joined the Ahold USA organization as the senior vice president, store strategy and execution.
“Dean brings years of retail operational experience, and he will be a valuable resource as we develop new and innovative format opportunities,” Mark McGowan, president of Stop & Shop, said in a press release. “We are proud of the excellent work of the Fresh Formats team as they just brought the third bfresh store to life in Somerville, Mass.”
Glenn Hogan, currently vice president of regional operations for the Stop & Shop New England division, will leave that role to join Ahold USA and replace Wilkinson in the store strategy and execution role on an interim basis.
Foxy Produce is gearing up for its annual St. Broccoli Day and National We Love Broccoli Day promotion. St. Broccoli Day, March 18, was created to increase consumption of fresh broccoli and BroccoLeaf in the lead-up to National We Love Broccoli Day on March 22.
Starting March 2, Foxy Produce will use Instagram Stories as a way to encourage fans and followers to watch and win as they learn more about healthy lifestyle tips, delicious recipes and nutrition facts centered around broccoli.
“We’re asking our fans to follow @FoxyProduce on Instagram and watch our Instagram Stories for a chance to win prizes almost every day,” Laura Hastie, Foxy Produce marketing assistant, said in a press release. “We thought this would be a new and exciting way to engage our audience, especially since each Foxy Story is live for only 24 hours.”
Special grand prize giveaways will be awarded March 18 on St. Broccoli Day and March 22 on National We Love Broccoli Day. On these dates, followers can enter for a chance to win a top-of-the-line juicer — perfect for juicing Foxy Produce products — or a top-rated vegetable steamer. Fans are encouraged to share images of themselves enjoying broccoli to the Foxy Produce Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages with the hashtag #StBroccoliDay for an extra entry into each grand prize giveaway.
Additionally, Foxy Produce will host its first Facebook Live interview with Tori Schmitt, founder of Yes! Nutrition, who will share delicious recipes and healthy tips to start spring-cleaning your body.
The Organic Produce Network and California Certified Organic Farmers are teaming up to host the first-ever Organic Grower Summit in Monterey, CA, Dec. 13 -14.
The OGS will bring together the entire organic production chain, as well as service and supply partners, at one informative event. Organic growers, producers and handlers from fresh produce, dairy, meat and grain sectors will have the opportunity to network and learn with suppliers, service providers, packaging and technology companies, equipment manufacturers and other companies critical to their success.
“CCOF growers look forward to this rare opportunity to network with each other and with other organic sector leaders and innovators,” Cathy Calfo, chief executive officer of CCOF, said in a press release. “Growers are key to meeting the demand for organic products and grower-driven events like this summit are important to their success.”
Following an opening night networking reception Dec. 13, informative and educational sessions on core issues related to organic production start a full day of thought-provoking and inspiring presentations the next day. Keynote talks by industry leaders and a trade show floor with exhibitors from packaging, technology and related service providers crucial to organic production success will round out the day.
“There is a tremendous appetite for information and education as it relates to organic food production and we are thrilled to be partnering with the nation’s leading organic certification organization to bring together the various facets of the organic production community under one roof to exchange ideas and information that will make our industry stronger," Matt Seeley, cofounder of OPN, said in the release.
The event will be held at the Hyatt Regency Monterey, with further information on educational session, keynote presenters and exhibiting opportunities available in the weeks to come.
Monterey Mushrooms Inc. is the first mushroom grower to join The Produce Mom’s trusted family of partners. The partnership will promote Monterey Mushrooms’ entire product lineup with a focus on The Blend, a technique used to incorporate fresh mushrooms into meat dishes.
The Produce Mom will educate consumers on the locally grown nationwide nature of Monterey Mushrooms and will cross-promote Monterey’s innovative, consumer-facing campaigns and publications, such as its three eBooks.
“Mushrooms are truly a superfood," Lindsey Roberts, marketing specialist for Monterey Mushrooms, said in a press release. "A three-ounce portion can easily provide 100 percent of the daily recommended value of Vitamin D. Monterey is dedicated to helping people achieve a healthy diet. We know our partnership with The Produce Mom will assist us in educating consumers on the powerful health benefits of mushrooms.”
“The Produce Mom audience is always looking for cost-effective ways to incorporate more produce into their family meals,” Lori Taylor, president of The Produce Mom, said in the release. “The Blend technique adds veggies to the plate while enhancing the flavor and texture of the dish. I received great feedback on my recent IndyStyle segment that demonstrated the The Blend and featured Monterey Mushrooms."
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has filed an administrative action under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act against Organic Avenue LLC. The company, operating out of New York, allegedly failed to make full payment to four produce sellers in the amount of $249,272 from August 2015 through September 2015.
Organic Avenue LLC will have an opportunity to request a hearing. Should USDA find that the company committed repeated and flagrant violations, it would be barred from the produce industry for two years. Furthermore, its principals could not be employed by or affiliated with any PACA licensee for one year and then only with the posting of a USDA-approved surety bond.
In a complaint filed on Dec. 14, 2016, the U.S. Department of Agriculture cited Opa Locka, FL-based American Fruit & Produce Corp. for failure to make full payment promptly in the total amount of $2.8 million to 38 sellers for multiple lots of produce in violation of the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act. American Fruit has now paid the produce sellers in full and paid a civil penalty in the amount of $45,000.
Subsequent to the complaint being filed, USDA and American Fruit entered into a consent decision and order finding that the company committed repeated and flagrant violations of the PACA. Because American Fruit has satisfied the terms of the consent decision and order, the company remains licensed under the PACA and this case is closed.
In the past three years, the USDA resolved approximately 3,500 PACA claims involving more than $58 million. Its experts also assisted more than 8,000 callers with issues valued at approximately $140 million.