NEWS ROUNDUP

NAFPP Votes to Change NameNational Association of Fresh Produce Processors here has voted to change its name to the International Fresh Cut Produce Association.The name is intended to reflect the international flavor of the association, said Bob Swartwout, president of the association and director of food service sales for Fresh Advantage, Grand Prairie, Texas.According to Swartwout, 15% of the association's

NAFPP Votes to Change Name

National Association of Fresh Produce Processors here has voted to change its name to the International Fresh Cut Produce Association.

The name is intended to reflect the international flavor of the association, said Bob Swartwout, president of the association and director of food service sales for Fresh Advantage, Grand Prairie, Texas.

According to Swartwout, 15% of the association's membership is international. The association's next show, its eighth, is slated for March 16 to 18, 1995, in Albuquerque, N.M. The new name, as well as a new logo, will be unveiled at the show.

In other association news, the board, at its recent semi-annual meeting, said it will deal with the recent departure from NAFPP of its executive director, Robin Sprague. Sprague has joined J.R. Brooks & Son, Homestead, Fla. Shelly Sapone, NAFPP program assistant, has been promoted to program manager. In that role, she will coordinate events, programs and the daily activities of the organization.

Flower Sales Break Record

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Mother's Day this year was a record-breaking sales period for California's fresh-cut flower growers, who provide more than 60% of the cut flowers marketed in the United States.

Sales were up 25% from the same period a year ago, according to recently released results from a grower survey by the California Cut Flower Commission here.

"Some growers reported their sales increased by 50% or more, while the majority of our members reported a healthy 10% to 30% boost in sales over the 1993 holiday," said Lee Murphy, president of the commission.

California flower growers credit the sales boost to stronger consumer confidence in the economy.

The survey found that wholesale prices held steady this year and that the quality and supply of flowers was particularly strong, due mainly to cooler than normal weather in northern California and drier than normal weather in the south.

Consumer demand for such traditional Mother's day blooms as roses appeared to give way to other flowers like iris, lilies, gerbera and snap dragons. Color preferences seemed to move toward hotter, brighter colors, according to the survey.

Dole Buys 35% of Distributor

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. -- Dole Food Co. here has announced the acquisition of 35% of Jamaica Fruit Distributors, a leading produce distribution company in the United Kingdom.

Consistent with previously announced plans to build a distribution network in Europe and Asia, Dole's joint venture with Jamaica Fruit Distributors will provide warehouse distribution points for all Dole fresh products as well as ripening facilities for bananas in the United Kingdom.

The agreement will also provide Dole with a major source of bananas in Jamaica and licenses to import Latin American bananas into the European Community.

In addition, Jamaica Fruit Distributors will be able to use Dole's outlets in Europe to market its range of produce from Jamaica.

With the addition of Jamaica Fruit Distributors, Dole and its affiliates' sales in Europe will exceed $1 billion. In addition to its many European Community offices, Dole has recently opened offices in several Eastern European countries. Last year, Dole had revenues of $3.4 billion worldwide.

Suma Breaks Ground for Facility

SANGER, Calif. -- Suma Fruit International has broken ground for a 25,000-square-foot controlled-atmosphere fruit storage facility here.

The $1.4 million facility will extend the time in which the company can market its premium Gala and Fuji apple varieties up to 10 weeks after their harvest season ends.

The company plans to market California Gala apples from September through November. Fuji apples will be marketed from January to April. The facility will expand Suma's California apple program to more than 200,000 boxes.

Suma Fruit International grows, markets and imports more than 50 varieties of fresh apples, other tree fruits and grapes worldwide.