GEM-Pack Berries' Paul Kawamura Details Berry Industry Resiliency and Current Outlook
IRVINE, CA - California growers weathered many a storm this winter, but producers like GEM-Pack Berries are hard at work ensuring their retail partners have high-quality berries heading into upcoming spring and summer promotions.
I spoke with Paul Kawamura, Chief Marketing Officer and Director of Sales for GEM-Pack Berries, to learn more.
“Although we have suffered some tough blows from Mother Nature this winter, we are back to harvesting at a steady clip,” Paul explained to me. “The California storms were very difficult, to put it mildly, but GEM-Pack and the berry industry, in general, is resilient and bouncing back.”
As spring progresses, Paul noted that the plants that made it through the storms are looking fantastic.
“Our crops have been delayed but as temperatures warm, promotable volume is just around the corner. Late spring and early summer will see terrific quality and steadily increasing volume,” he remarked.
Although the industry did suffer acreage loss, Paul assured me that he and the company believe there will be higher per-acre harvest yields.
“That will probably help offset the decreased acres,” he added, before diving further into the aspects of GEM-Pack’s program that help the grower stand out. “We are investing in genetics for better tasting and quality berries. For retailers planning for upcoming holidays, like Mother's Day, we will have the Stem packs available, which is a popular option.”
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