Little Bear Produce’s James Bassetti Talks Rebrand
EDINBURG, TX - When Jimmy and Diane Bassetti founded J&D Produce in 1986, they developed the Little Bear Brand both as an ode to Jimmy’s father, Jim “The Bear” Bassetti, as well as a nod to their future with the birth of their son James V. Bassetti III. Now, 34 years later, J&D Produce has fully embraced the name, rebranding as Little Bear Produce. I got in touch with James, Chief Operating Officer, to learn more about the company’s decision behind the rebranding.
“We have been contemplating this rebrand for a number of years now, and the decision was not as easy as you would think. There are a lot of mixed emotions as we undergo this change,” James comments. “At the end of the day, our heartbeat will always be J&D; it’s where we came from. And if you don’t know where you came from, it’s very difficult to know where you are going. Evolving into Little Bear is a natural progression. The brand has matured and enjoys a strong following, and it is recognizeable and synonymous with high quality and service. Those are the core principles that Mom and Dad built this company on.”
The Little Bear label represented the work ethic and dedication to family, customers, personal relationships, passion, and quality that Jim “The Bear” Bassetti instilled in Jimmy Bassetti, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Texas-based powerhouse. Over time, as J&D Produce grew and developed a reputation as one of the highest quality grower/packer/shippers in the business, the Little Bear label had become synonymous with quality and service.
“As the years went by, the Little Bear Brand really stood out above the crowd. That was a tribute to the hard work, commitment, love, and sacrifice of my Mom and Dad. Today, the outside world recognizes us more often as Little Bear than J&D,” James explains. “For our employees, many of whom have been with us since the very beginning, they have witnessed the growth and evolution of the Little Bear firsthand. That same thing can be said for our customers, many of whom we have been doing business with for decades because of our commitment to quality and service. They already see us as the Little Bear family.”
That beautiful produce will now adopt an updated branding. With this refreshed launch, the image of a little bear will remain in the logo, but the new brand and branding guide will be seamless for industry members and consumers, since the Little Bear Brand is the face of the company. The brand will undergo subtle changes in color and design to be implemented in letterheads, logos, business cards, invoices, the website, social media, and packaging materials.
A premium label backed by premium customer service, the Little Bear brand exemplifies J&D’s core values of family, quality, honesty, integrity, and transparency. The name transition signifies a full embrace of those values and carries the weight of a legacy that started over 60 years ago, bearing the weight of the future of the Bassetti's and fresh produce.
“We always focus on doing things the right way—the Little Bear way. My Father in particular has always told us, ‘Do things the right way and treat people right. Everything else will take care of itself.’ And I truly believe in that philosophy, as I think our entire Little Bear family does,” James continues. “Change is never easy, but this particular change represents the growth of what my parents initially set out to create, and we are focused on continuing in that tradition through hard work and a commitment to quality and to serving our customers like family.”
Flying under this new visage, the sky is the limit for Little Bear. For as long as family and fresh produce are at the heart of this industry, legacies like the Bassetti's and Little Bear Brand can live on.