The Giumarra Companies
LOS ANGELES – June 15, 2017 – The Giumarra Companies is pleased to announce it will be working with family-owned Glacier Fresh to market the orchard’s Montana-grown cherry harvest this summer.
“We are excited to partner with a like-minded company to expand our premium cherry category,” says Craig Uchizono, V.P. Southern Hemisphere of the Giumarra Companies.
Founded in 2001, Glacier Fresh is based in the Flathead Lake region of western Montana, an area with an ideal cherry-growing microclimate due to long summer days and cool nights. The cherry orchards are fed with mountain glacial water, resulting in large-sized fruit with sweet flavor.
“Our farms have traditionally been focused on growing high-quality fruit for the export market,” says Cody Herring, owner of Glacier Fresh. “In working with Giumarra, we both felt it would be advantageous to introduce this fruit to retail customers in the U.S.”
Harvest will begin in late July, with both Rainiers and Dark Red varieties available. The cherries will be available bulk or packaged in Glacier Fresh-branded pouch bags.
“We are excited to see our cherries coming to U.S. stores this summer, as most consumers don’t know we grow such incredible fruit right here in Montana,” says Dusti Herring, co-owner of Glacier Fresh and wife of Cody Herring. “We are very proud of our fresh cherry varieties and look forward to working with Giumarra to place them in stores both in our local area and across the country.”
Glacier Fresh employs local students and teachers in its custom packinghouse each summer to help pack and ship their crop. The company also hosts permanent field staff in cabins on nearby wooded property.
“We have a large team here every summer who help harvest our fruit, and we consider them part of the Glacier Fresh family,” says Mr. Herring.
Currently, Glacier Fresh works with local Montana growers to pack and ship more than one million pounds of fruit, making up more than 25 percent of the state’s annual cherry harvest. Mr. Herring visited large growing operations in Europe and New Zealand during his most recent off-season, and ultimately invested in sorting equipment with advanced computer software to digitally monitor size and quality on the pack line.
“We are expanding our growing operations annually to meet domestic and international demand, and it’s important for us to maintain quality and be competitive with large growers in the marketplace,” says Mr. Herring.
As an added touch, the Herring’s are planning to offer a farm stand in Flathead Lake to be managed by their son Quinn, age 10.
“While we have not previously sold our cherries to the public, we decided our son is old enough to begin learning the business and this would be a great way to teach him the value of a dollar,” says Mrs. Herring.
Glacier Fresh is the first Montana-based cherry orchard Giumarra has worked with.
“Cody and Dusti are excellent examples of progressive, young family farmers who are committed to growing their business using modern technology,” says Hillary Brick, senior V.P. marketing for the Giumarra Companies. “We’re proud to include them in our family of growers as we work together to feed the world in a healthy way.”
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.”