Hazel Technologies Inc. announces a partnership with Wapato, WA-based Valicoff Fruit Co., a supplier of apples, pears, peaches, nectarines, apricots and cherries. Valicoff Fruit, a family-owned business, is part of the Sage Fruit marketing group.
Valicoff Fruit grows more than 2,000 acres of fruit and ships to major retailers and other customers in the Americas, Asia and Europe. Due to highly demanding global markets and complex post-harvest management requirements, apples require skill and technology to successfully grow, pack and market. In 2020, to protect the quality of fruit in bins following harvest, Valicoff incorporated Hazel 100™ bin sachets to ease logistics at receiving and lower labor costs.
Left to right: Brett Valicoff, Aidan Mouat
“We utilized Hazel 100 bin sachets for treatment of our 2020 crop of Honeycrisp Apples,” said Brett Valicoff, fourth-generation grower and president of Valicoff Fruit Company. “We experienced great quality of fruit coming out of storage and noticed a reduction of internal browning from long-term storage. Hazel’s application allowed us to protect the fruit immediately which simplified receiving and storage logistics. This immediate treatment allowed us to get the right fruit in the right storage time frame. We eliminated transferring of bins from conditioning rooms which greatly improved the process and helped to produce excellent fruit condition for our customers.”
Apples are Valicoff Fruit’s largest commodity but the supplier is also committed to stone fruit. Valicoff has expanded its usage of Hazel 100™ box sachets for two consecutive seasons of stone fruit after repeated quality improvements in trials compared to untreated controls. Hazel’s solutions for apricots, first validated by UC Davis in a 2019 trial, help maintain color and firmness, preventing chilling injuries, and ensure optimum quality during long-distance transit.
“We are proud to support Valicoff Fruit’s growth and to protect their fruit across multiple categories,” said Aidan Mouat, CEO of Hazel Technologies Inc. “Hazel is committed to listening to our customers’ goals and challenges and developing academically proven solutions that address customers’ needs while integrating across the supply chain.”