Posts Tagged “Berry People”

Berry People Announce New Berry Deals to Fill Key Supply Gaps

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By the Berry People

Hollister, CA – Berry People, an integrated, year-round grower-shipper of a full line of branded organic and conventional berries and avocados, has announced new berry shipments from Mexico to fill critical supply gaps in the North American market during the fall and winter.

New supplies of premium-quality fruit include organic blueberries from Jalisco and conventional strawberries from Guanajuato and Michoacán. These volumes will complement Berry People’s existing supply from Latin America and the U.S.

Meanwhile, the company is also expanding its U.S. operations from Long Beach, CA to McAllen, TX, to better serve its growing customer programs in the Midwestern and Eastern U.S. and Canada.

New Berry Suppliers

Berry People recently began harvesting the first-ever blueberries from its new high-elevation plantation in Jalisco, which will fill a key niche in the market from now until the end of January.

“We will have predominantly organic production from this ranch, filling a generally undersupplied October-through-January window, with a focus on customers looking for the crunch, snap, and sweetness that Mexico can readily provide,” said Jerald Downs, President of Berry People

“While our South American organic blueberries are key to supporting volume retail blueberry sales at attractive general consumer pricing, this Mexican organic production will be targeted to specific programs for customers who desire to further differentiate themselves at the consumer eating experience level.”

In addition to the new blueberry deal, Berry People started harvesting high-quality conventional strawberries at its ranches in Irapuato and Zamora in October. Volumes will peak from December through January, wrapping up by the end of February.

These supplies will fill the gap perfectly between the company’s crop in Santa Maria, CA, set to peak in October and November, and its crop in Baja California, Mexico, which will peak in February through April.

“This deal is a milestone in giving us our desired transitional overlap and increasing our continuity and quality of supply in a tricky market window for strawberries,” said Downs.

Downs said that expectations are high for the inaugural season of these new blueberry and strawberry crops, which are grown on farms belonging both to company shareholders and experienced third-party growers.

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The new berry deals also fit in with Berry People’s strategy to grow its customer-driven programs sustainably and fill market windows to offer a true year-round supply of organic and conventional blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries.

“While the company’s individual commodity and overall category growth rate is projected above triple digits both for 2019 and 2020, we are very focused on building balance in our daily portfolio of berries,” Downs explained.

“We are working on filling our summer gaps and lulls on cane and strawberries, completing our pack-style and niche varietal offerings, and on getting better at harmonizing our supply and promotional activity, as well as our weekly fulfillment business, for week-over-week customer-grower satisfaction.”

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Berry People Makes Seasonal Transition for “Blues” to Pacific NW

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By Berry People

Hollister, CA – Berry People, a year-round, full-line supplier of organic and conventional branded berries and avocados, is transitioning to its blueberry supply to the Pacific Northwest as the Mexican and California seasons wind down.

The company is offering branded blueberries from Washington State that started in late June and from British Columbia in Canada starting around July 10.

Its North American blueberry shipments will grow significantly this year and be available through the arrival of its imported fruit towards mid-September.

 “Our overall blueberry supply has grown by over six-fold year-to-date, largely based on the groundwork laid in 2017-18,” says Jerald Downs, President of Berry People.

“Berry People has a substantial untapped blueberry supply base from shareholders and alliance partners, but we are being careful to expand based on our customer programs.”

Berry People’s North American blueberry volumes specifically look to be up around three-fold over last year. 

“This means we have plenty of room to grow domestically as we manage our year-round distribution footprint and counter-seasonal supply balance,” Downs adds.

Late-season organics in a critical window

Berry People is excited about its new late-season Oregon and Peruvian blueberry deals as well. These supplies will give the company its desired continuity of supply for the critical window from mid-September until the end of October.

“The majority of this new production will be organic, with peak volumes in October,” says Downs. “Additionally, we expect significant growth from our existing northern Chilean supplier base, after a successful season last year. This fruit is also primarily organic.”

In addition, Berry People will begin harvest on its shareholders’ new organic blueberry planting in Jalisco, Mexico, which has been developed especially for the fall harvest window.

 “As we reach critical mass in the blueberry category, we are dedicating more resources to its management to improve our overall genetic position, pack-style and packaging offering, market prediction and pricing, as well as program placement,” Downs comments.

Berry People’s Growth

Berry People is experiencing steady and strong development on multiple fronts, as it becomes as first-class supplier of organic berries to the U.S. market. 

“Some developments include the refining of processes, systems and personnel in anticipation of future growth, the recent closing on a substantial cash flow line of credit, and an eminent office move to accommodate the personnel increase towards the fourth quarter,” said Downs.

He added that these developments are initiated and sustained on the basis of mutual trust in the relationships with its customer and grower partners.

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About Berry People: Berry People is a year-round, full-line shipper of organic and conventional strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and avocados, and owner of the Berry People® and Avo People brands®. Headquartered in Hollister, California, the company’s ownership and key alliance partners hold important production assets in California, Mexico, Chile and Peru.

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Berry People Expands Baja California Organic Strawberry Program

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Hollister, CA – Berry People has announced the start of its organic strawberry season from Baja California in Mexico, having recently completed a successful first year of operations.

These top-quality strawberries, which are now available in both an 8x1lb and 12×8.8oz formats, will ramp up in volume in January, peak from February through April, and taper off in June.

The Baja season comes at a time when U.S. domestic production is limited, providing retailers and their customers an attractive alternative for a reliable supply of organic strawberries. Work is also underway to develop acreage for substantial November and December volumes next season.

The company has grown since it started operating in late 2017 and is now set for further controlled expansion in 2019 by developing important summertime production to finish out its year-round shipments.

Jerald Downs, President of Berry People, noted shareholders recently completed a substantial 2018 equity capital contribution in preparation for 2019’s projected growth.

“A strong balance sheet and sufficient capital resources are important to stay in the vanguard as to the marketplace’s product and service needs, whether that be in the development of new varieties, pack-styles and technologies, investment into new facilities, or in the provision of harvest advances to key outside growers,” said Downs.


About Berry People: Berry People is a year-round, full-line shipper of organic and conventional strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and avocados, and owner of the Berry People® and Avo People brands®. Headquartered in Hollister, California, the company’s ownership and key alliance partners hold important production assets in California, Mexico, Chile and Peru.

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