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Jessica Donnel's Picks for United Fresh 2016

Jessica Donnel's Picks for United Fresh 2016

CHICAGO, IL- At this point we all know that United Fresh is one of the major playing fields for the best and brightest innovations for the produce industry, and thankfully for me, my second visit to the annual show was no exception. From beautiful product debuts, to trending packaging pushes and beyond, here are some of the companies that stood out from the crowd. 

Double Diamond Dolce Mix 

Vaulting off the success of its Rosso Dolce peppers, it is no surprise that Double Diamond Farms looked to even more innovation in the sweet long pepper category. The Dolce Mix looked gorgeous on the show floor obviously, but the sweetness of the red, yellow, and orange collection is an asset that will undoubtedly marry well with summer grilling recipes, salads, and sauces to come. 

CMI’s Cherry Pop-Top Lid 

Something I know about my cherry buying is that a beautiful display truly makes all the difference. When you see the idyllic scene of the Columbia River Valley right on the display, it's not hard to get a little dreamy thinking about taking a stroll through those cherry orchards and biting into a few juicy Reds and Rainiers. All Produce Managers have to do in-store is pop the lid open and lock it in place to create an easily impactful display.

Naturipe’s Compostable Organic Top Sealed Blueberries

Compostable and Top Seal have made their way to blueberries! Much to my delight, two of my favorite packaging trends can now be found together in Naturipe’s recently launched blueberry offering. A molded, pulp fiber tray is top sealed, compostable, recyclable, and made from renewable resources—making it the perfect addition to the company’s Cultivate with Care™ program. That’s without even mentioning how lovely the green and natural looking packaging pops against the organic blueberries. 

Volm's Volmpack AutoPack

Two of the company’s best machines have joined as one in Volm’s new Volmpack AutoPack. With new features that allow for a fully-automated system, it is a combination of the company’s popular Volmpack Semi-Automatic Bagger and its new Bag Placer, cutting out the need for packers to manually place bags. Reducing the need for manual labor and allowing for filling paper and mesh bags anywhere between 10 and 100 pounds sounds like a match made in heaven to this produce gal. 

Hollandia's Live Gourmet Living Baby Romaine Lettuce 

There’s nothing quite like biting into the crunchy goodness of dark, vitamin-rich Romaine, and with Hollandia’s latest living lettuce variety, you can do that more easily, and for a longer period of time. Harvested with roots-on for longer lasting freshness and perfectly portioned for one- or two-servings, I don’t have to stress about whether or not my salad will be fresh if I don’t get around to making it for a few days. Less food waste is always a great selling point, but of course it doesn’t hurt that the flavor and crunchiness are out of this world.

If you missed part one of our series, check out Melissa De Leon's favorites from the show by clicking here, and stay tuned to even more content from the show!

Double Diamond CMI Naturipe Farms Volm Companies Hollandia Produce

Companies in this Story

CMI Orchards

CMI Orchards is one of Washington State’s largest growers, shippers, and packers of premium quality apples, pears,...


Our people, products, and philosophies exist within greenhouse walls. Growing some of the highest-quality, best-tasting...

Naturipe Farms

At Naturipe®, sustainability is incorporated into every decision we make. It is a priority in all aspects of our company...

Volm Companies

It all started in 1954 as a small family-run operation in Bryant, Wisconsin. The Volm family sold groceries and hardware...

Double Diamond Farms

Double Diamond Farms has been supplying North American consumers with premium hydroponic produce for over 40 years....