Tonya Antle and Matt Seeley to Launch The Organic Produce Network
SALINAS, CA - Matt Seeley, former VP of Marketing for The Nunes Company, and Tonya Antle, former VP of Organic Sales for Earthbound Farm, have teamed up to develop The Organic Produce Network (OPN) in response to double-digit growth in the category.
“There is a clear gap in industry-focused resources that inform, educate, and even inspire all constituents about the value and also the values of organic,” said Co-Founder and Executive VP, Tonya Antle. Antle is recognized as a top spokesperson and trailblazer for the organic produce segment, helping to propel organic produce from the fringe to mainstream mass market. She currently serves as adjunct faculty, fresh fruit and vegetable marketing, at Cal Poly.
“As pointed out in the 2015 Deloitte Food Value Survey, the reason organic produce is such a robustly growing category is because it sits squarely in the sweet spot for evolving consumer value drivers: health and wellness, safety, social impact, experience, and transparency,” she continued. “There’s a continuum of consumers who buy organic produce and they’re moving along that continuum at a faster rate than ever before and this impacts what they expect from the companies that provide their organic produce.”
With the new company, the two industry veterans plan to connect facets of the organic produce community through education, information, and live events, according to a press release.
“The organic fresh produce community is energized about the opportunity to help change the way we eat and with that, change our health outlook,” said Co-Founder and CEO, Matt Seeley. Seeley spearheaded Foxy Brand’s entry and expansion into the growing organics market, which now offers more than 30 organic products. “We believe that OPN can become the modern high-tech, and high-touch, source of new information, ideas, and inspiration for continued organic produce growth.”
Scheduled to launch both its website and weekly digital newsletter, OPN Connect, in February, OPN’s mission is to inform and educate through a strong digital presence with:
- An emphasis on original content.
- Engaging live events to bring together various components of the organic food community.
- Topical and relevant content related to organic fresh produce.
- A special emphasis on thought-provoking commentary and analysis from leaders and influencers in the organic produce and food arena.
“Those of us who provide organic produce constitute the largest segment of the organic food business, but this segment often lacks the voice it deserves in either organic-focused or produce-focused organizations. The OPN will be that strong voice, a trusted resource that connects us all through information, education and networking events,” Antle said.
OPN noted that the lack of having a unified voice or resource dedicated exclusively to the multi-billion dollar organic produce industry was also a driving factor in making the company a reality.
Congratulations Matt and Tonya on your new venture!