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USDA Restricts PACA Violators in California From Operating in the Produce Industry

USDA Restricts PACA Violators in California From Operating in the Produce Industry



WASHINGTON, DC - Multiple companies in the fresh produce industry recently had sanctions imposed on them by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA). The three companies were sanctioned for allegedly failing to meet contractual obligations to the sellers of produce they purchased and failing to pay reparation awards totaling $50,869.

These sanctions include suspending the businesses’ PACA licenses and barring the principal operators of the businesses from engaging in PACA-licensed business or other activities without approval from USDA.

Direct from the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service:

The following businesses and individuals are currently restricted from operating in the produce industry:

  • Promised Land Farms, operating out of Corona, California, for failing to pay a $22,269 award in favor of a Texas seller. As of the issuance date of the reparation order, Juan Carlos Torres was listed as a member of the business

  • Los Traviesos Produce, operating out of Los Angeles, California, for failing to pay a $21,600 award in favor of a Florida seller. As of the issuance date of the reparation order, Laura Villegas was listed as the officer, director, and major stockholder of the business
  • Fresh by Nature, operating out of Norco, California, for failing to pay a $7,000 award in favor of a Missouri seller. As of the issuance date of the reparation order, Manuel Pinon was listed as the officer, director, and major stockholder of the business

PACA provides an administrative forum to handle disputes involving produce transactions; this may result in USDA’s issuance of a reparation order that requires damages to be paid by those not meeting their contractual obligations in buying and selling fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables. USDA is required to suspend the license or impose sanctions on an unlicensed business that fails to pay PACA reparations awarded against it as well as impose restrictions against those principals determined to be responsibly connected to the business when the order is issued. Those individuals, including sole proprietors, partners, members, managers, officers, directors, or major stockholders, may not be employed by or affiliated with any PACA licensee without USDA approval.

By issuing these penalties, USDA continues to enforce the prompt and full payment for produce while protecting the rights of sellers and buyers in the marketplace.

For contact information, and to read the release in full, click here.

USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service



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