The Giumarra Companies
LOS ANGELES – Apr. 7, 2016 – Giumarra Nogales is currently shipping expanded volumes of its Sonoran watermelon crop. Giumarra recently hosted Bob Morrissey, executive director of the National Watermelon Association, Inc., on a tour of the growing, harvesting, and packing operations of its watermelon partner, Videxport.
“Mexico is such a significant part of our watermelon business in the United States, and it was important for me to visit the western side of Mexico,” says Mr. Morrissey. “I consider this trip to be a major part of my educational tour in learning about the industry.”
Giumarra has continued to trial watermelon crops in different areas of Mexico in order to offer a robust Mexican watermelon program in both spring and fall, with a move toward 52-week availability. The company markets Nature’s Partner®-brand watermelon grown in the Mexican states of Sonora, Baja California Sur, Sinaloa, Colima, and Michoacán. Sonora represents the largest producer of Nature’s Partner watermelons, with more than 50 percent of the total annual crop.
“We felt it was essential to host Bob [Morrissey], as well as our domestic melon partner, Art Perry of Perry & Sons, in Mexico so they could experience firsthand the sophistication of Videxport’s growing operation and worker welfare programs,” says John Corsaro, CEO of the Giumarra Companies.
Videxport has been Fair Trade Certified™ by Fair Trade USA as of 2012 and has practiced its own internal social responsibility program since its founding in 1999.
Mr. Morrissey noted the collective care taken by Videxport employees to harvest and pack a high-quality product for the North American market.
“Both workers and management took meticulous care of their farm and investment. It was the cleanest farm I’ve ever seen from a weed perspective,” says Mr. Morrissey. “Videxport represents a major investment in the land and its people. It was impressive to see a family of three generations all working in concert with one another. It’s clear the Videxport family owners are very committed to taking care of their employees, with the Fair Trade program front and center. As a result of the tour and hospitality from the ranch owners, their family is now a welcomed part of our watermelon family.”
Videxport’s most recent worker welfare developments include an on-site health care center and improved employee housing. These benefits, along with education, childcare, and counseling, are provided at no cost to the workers. Additionally, a worker council annually votes on how they want to apply the funds generated by Fair Trade premiums to better their communities.
“Videxport is deeply invested in social responsibility and producing healthy, high-quality products,” says Mr. Corsaro. “We hope to continue to strengthen this area of our industry as we work together to increase fresh produce consumption.”
About the Giumarra Companies
The Giumarra Companies is a leading international network of fresh produce growers, distributors, and marketers that encompasses a world of freshness. Since its inception in 1922, the Giumarra group of companies has taken pride in a longstanding commitment and tradition of quality, service, and industry leadership to feed the world in a healthy way.
The Nature's Partner brand represents the core of what we do: a partnership with our people, customers, growers, and the land and its fruits. Products packed under the Nature's Partner label represent some of the highest-quality fruits and vegetables in the marketplace, having met strict standards for food safety, quality control, and flavor. The Nature’s Partner Brand Promise:
“We are committed to the people we work with and those we serve. Very simply, we look to provide the best service and improve upon it every day.”