Bridges Produce Welcomes Former Kroger Buyer, Jose Merced
PORTLAND, OR - As we embark on our yearly pilgrimage to PMA Fresh Summit, many of us are wondering what lies ahead for our industry. Bridges Produce is ringing in the festivities with a big announcement—the company has brought former Kroger buyer Jose Merced, who has almost 20 years of produce experience, to his new role in sales and business development. Merced will be based out of Bridges’ Nogales office and will manage and develop retail program business.
“I feel very excited and privileged to be embarking on a new career path in the produce industry with Bridges,” Merced said. “Produce, to me, has always been about cultivating relationships based on trust and respect where all parties involved benefit and thrive. These are values that the people at Bridges exemplify, 'produce with heart.' I look forward to being part of an excellent team and contributing to their success.”
In his most recent role at Kroger, his title was Lead Commodity Buyer of Organic Produce, but he started in the industry as a produce clerk in 2000 at QFC in Seattle, WA. Merced’s resume boasts of store management, warehouse inventory, local sourcing, and replenishment and commodities buyer experience.
“The role of chain store buyers and buying departments is evolving rapidly in the fresh produce industry which puts more responsibility on vendors to provide seamless programs for retailers,” says Ben Johnson, Bridges Produce President. “Jose brings years of experience and knowledge in developing supply chains that work. Jose will be a great resource for both our grower partners as well as our customers.”
Merced’s strategic thinking and collaborative work style caught Bridges’ eye, and makes him a valuable addition to the team, according to a press release.
Check in with Jose Merced and say congratulations to him at Bridges Produce’s PMA Fresh Summit Booth: #2189!