Jeff Church of Church Brothers Farms Talks Leveling Up Service and More
SALINAS, CA - Customer service is the unsung hero of the produce industry. Innovating and expanding are cornerstones of growth, but in order to keep business thriving, service has to be at the center. As I continue to explore the pillars of Church Brothers Farms’ Our Roots Run Deep campaign, I connect with Jeff Church to learn more about this element of the company.
“When we talk about service, it’s really about bringing our customers solutions that make their lives easier,” the Chief Operations Officer tells me. “We pride ourselves in offering the broadest array of products in the industry, encompassing both commodities and value-added items. A customer can come to our dock and pick up everything they need all in one stop, whether that’s in Salinas, California, or Yuma, Arizona.”
Jeff also touches upon the importance of vertical integration that Brian Church spoke of, noting that being able to load, test, and ship products all in one space makes Church Brothers Farms indispensable.
“This really allows us to give people the kind of service that we provide, and that makes us a real value to our customers,” he adds. “We pay attention to the little details; I think that’s what always sets us apart. I’m sitting here at my desk, and there’s a postcard on the wall of our field-pack carton labels. We sent this to customers to show them exactly which lot their product came from, what date it was packed, and any other information they might need. It’s a small thing, but that makes everybody’s job easier.”
With service always top of mind for Church Brothers Farms, the company knows this is critically important as it expands further into retail and broadens its foodservice reach.
“Our acquisition of a 200,000-square foot distribution facility in Salinas earlier this year will help us up our service game in terms of loading times. It will also allow us to carry more items that we don’t do ourselves. For instance, a broad-line distributor might need a pallet of strawberries. Currently, we don’t have the room to bring in pallets of strawberries. But with the new facility, not only will we be able to load all of our products, we’ll be able to bring on additional products for our customers if that’s what they need. It’s just about being able to do more things that customers want,” Jeff concludes.
Everybody wants to hear “Yes” when they ask for something, and for Jeff, whose experience runs deep in sales, he always wants to give it.
We’ll be back with another deep dive into Church Brothers Farms, so stay tuned.