California firm posts two $250,000 employment bonds

Los Angeles Produce Distributors LLC, operating out of Los Angeles, Calif., has posted two $250,000 surety bonds to employ Fernando Patoja and Tony Perez, as required by the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act.

Rain Forest Produce Inc., Los Angeles, Calif., failed to pay multiple awards issued against the company. Fernando Patoja and Tony Perez were listed as the officers, directors and/or major stockholders of the business at the time of the violations.

Any PACA licensee wishing to employ individuals who have failed to pay a reparation award, or have been subject to a USDA disciplinary action, must post a USDA-approved surety bond.

USDA will hold each $250,000 bond for four years and nine months, providing assurance to the industry that the firm will be able to pay for produce purchased and to conduct its business according to PACA rules.

The PACA Division, which is in the Fair Trade Practices Program in the Agricultural Marketing Service, regulates fair trading practices of produce businesses that are operating subject to PACA, including buyers, sellers, commission merchants, dealers and brokers within the fruit and vegetable industry. In the past three years, USDA resolved approximately 3,625 PACA claims involving more than $104 million. PACA staff also assisted more than 7,600 callers with issues valued at approximately $166 million. These are just two examples of how USDA continues to support the fruit and vegetable industry.

Click here for an overview of companies who previously violated PACA.

For more information: 
John Koller
USDA
Tel: +1 202 720 2890
Email: PACAdispute@usda.gov 
www.ams.usda.gov  


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