Our Grower Origins
Fresh Kist Produce, LLC was formed in 2000 by a group of grower-shippers in order to more effectively market their collective fresh vegetable production. The companies that make up Fresh Kist Produce, LLC are, Byrd Farms, Gold Coast Packing Co. Inc. and Rancho Guadalupe in Santa Maria, California.
The owners were concerned about the changes in the marketplace and the poor market conditions that the industry had experienced during the years leading up to Fresh Kist’s formation. They realized they needed to make some dramatic changes in how they were doing business – not only to survive, but to make a profit growing and shipping fresh vegetables.
Each of the owners felt that, individually, they could not produce a full line of vegetables, nor the consistent volume needed to effectively serve the newly evolved retail and foodservice customers in the marketplace. The owners felt that by combining their collective vegetable production under a strong new marketing entity, they would be able to better service their customers.
All the partners agreed that the emphasis of the company would be on providing an excellent quality product as well as great customer service. They knew that having year-around production, volume, quality and a service-minded sales staff, would enable their new marketing entity to better serve the large retail food chains, export markets, processors and foodservice customers.
Today we are still made up of hands-on grower-owners who work together to grow high quality vegetables that are marketed and sold by Fresh Kist. Our grower-owners are joined by several local growers in growing, harvesting and shipping of fresh, local produce.