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    Partnership Creates New Big Berry Producer/Marketer

    Four berry packers merged to form Naturipe Foods LLC.

    Four leading fresh berry vendors have banded together to create a new "value-added berry marketing company" that they say is the largest producer/marketer of berries in the nation.

    The four partners are MBG Marketing (MBG), a Michigan-based blueberry grower; Hortifrut S.A. (HF), a berry-growing corporation based in Santiago, Chile; Munger Brothers Farms (MB) in Delano, Calif.; and Pan-American Berry Growers LLC (PBG) of Salem, Ore.

    The resulting Olympia, Wash.-based company said it will "leverage the brand strength of sister fresh-pack company Naturipe Farms," to produce "berries that provide traceability, sustainability, and seed-to-customer production management."
     
    Established to offer customers year-round access to exceptional berry products, Naturipe Foods will grow, process and source a large share of the blueberries available in North America. It will also have significant reach in other berries, including blackberries, raspberries and strawberries. The partnership aims to create one point of contact for product consistency, tailor-made customer solutions and an expanded product line that includes IQF, purees, concentrates, powders, extracts/essences and more.

    There are over 1,000 grower-owners in the organization, with locations that span across the Western Hemisphere, from Chile to Canada.

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