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SHERMAN OAKS, Calif. -- Mark Tompkins, produce industry veteran and former head of Sunkist's domestic sales network, is returning to take the helm of Sunkist's global sourcing organization, Sunkist Global, LLC here. He replaces Rick Eastes, who is leaving after three years to pursue other interests.
"Our customers ask us to supply a wider range of high-quality citrus products without seasonality limits, including varieties such as limes, which are not traditionally grown by our grower-members," said Sunkist s.v.p/sales and marketing Russ Hanlin. "Sunkist Global increases our global footprint, allowing us to meet those customer demands for consistent supplies, marketing, and logistical services with a wider range of high-quality citrus products."
As Sunkist's global sourcing general manager, Tompkins is responsible for securing production and folding it seamlessly into the Sunkist international sales and delivery network. Sunkist is currently sourcing complementary citrus fruit from South Africa, Australia, and Mexico, and delivering it to customers in North America and Asia.
"Mark is a unique resource," said Hanlin. "He understands the citrus industry from both the production and marketing perspectives. And he has a stellar reputation with the trade, having many long-term relationships built on mutual trust and respect."
Tompkins has spent more than 30 years with Sunkist, serving in many capacities, including director of sales operations and head of domestic marketing. He began his Sunkist career as a sales clerk and inspector in Canada, rising quickly through the ranks to sales merchandiser, assistant manger, and then district sales manager of Sunkist's Vancouver, B.C. office. He is a winner of the prestigious President's Award for Marketing Excellence.
Tompkins emigrated to the United States as director/sales operations, where he directed Sunkist's supply management, projection, and pricing functions, working closely with the sales force, packing houses, and customers. From there, he was promoted to director/domestic marketing, where he was responsible for Sunkist's entire domestic sales network (U.S. and Canada). In that capacity he planned sales and marketing efforts with key retailers, wholesalers and foodservice customers in the United States and Canada, coordinating them with the production end of the business.
In addition to his knowledge of Sunkist's operations and sales, Tompkins brings extensive experience gained from his stint as general manager and director of marketing/sales with Sage Fruit, LLC, where he integrated three apple packers under one label and created the marketing and sales operations for the new company.
"I enjoyed my work in the apple industry," said Tompkins, "but after all my years in the citrus industry, I missed it. It's what I know best. And I'm very pleased to be rejoining the Sunkist sales team. Sunkist's expanding global footprint and its abilities to meet customers' needs continue to add even more value to the famous Sunkist brand. I'm proud to have a part in that once again."