Fresh Produce Wholesalers
Companies in this industry distribute fresh fruits, vegetables, spices, and herbs. Major companies include Caito Foods, Coast Citrus Distributors, FreshPoint, and Tom Lange Company (all based in the US), as well as Fyffes and Total Produce (both in Ireland), Fresh Produce Group (Australia), IG International Pvt Ltd (India), Oppy (Canada), and Tokyo Seika (Japan). Vertically integrated fruit and vegetable producers such as Chiquita, Del Monte Foods, and Dole have major global distribution operations.
The global revenue of fresh vegetables amounts to about $630 billion in 2021 and forecast to grow annually at a 3.3% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) within the 2021-2025 forecast period. On the other hand, the global revenue of fresh fruits amounts to about $560 billion in 2021 with a 3.51% CAGR within the 2021-2025 forecast period, according to Statista. Increased global trade in fruits and vegetables creates opportunities for fresh produce distributors. The US dominates the international trade of fruits and vegetables, accounting for about 18% of the $40 billion fresh produce world trade, according to the Food Agricultural Organization of the United Nations (FAO). Crop output forecast to be 70% higher in 2030 than the current output. Major suppliers in the international trade of fresh fruit commodities include Chile, South Africa, and New Zealand.
The US fresh produce wholesalers industry includes about 5,000 establishments (single-location companies or units of multi-location companies) that generate annual revenue of about $90 billion.
Demand is driven by consumption of fruits and vegetables. Profitability depends on maintaining a high quality and varied selection of produce and on efficient operations. Larger distributors benefit from economies of scale in purchasing and transportation. Smaller companies may compete by specializing in certain products, such as tropical fruits or organic products, or by focusing on a geographical area. The US industry is fragmented: the 50 largest companies account for about 40% of industry revenue.
Produce cooperatives, in which growers work together to process and distribute their products, compete with traditional distributors. Major retailers or food service contractors may choose to deal directly with growers, bypassing distributors.
Products, Operations & Technology
Distributors' main operations involve getting fruit and vegetables from producers to customers, which include food retailers and food service providers.
Sales & Marketing
Finance & Regulation
Regional & International Issues
Also includes the following chapters:
Quarterly Industry Update
Trends and Opportunities
Call Preparation Questions
Glossary of Acronyms