(April 30) DALLAS — Specialty produce supplier Coosemans Dallas Inc. is moving to the nearby headquarters of wholesaler Standard Fruit and Vegetable Co. Inc., expanding Coosemans’ distribution area and Standard’s inventory.

The companies will remain independent, and Coosemans will retain its separate sales staff and drivers, said David Vonder-heid, general manager of Coosemans Dallas.

“It’s an alliance between two companies,” Vonderheid said. “Standard has the advantage of having us in their building and can pull from our $100,000-plus inventory, and we’ll have the advantage of their customer base.”

Coosemans serves an area from Austin, Texas, to Oklahoma City, with a majority of customers in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

“This will add so many more cities and states, so it gives us an opportunity to be in more locations,” Vonderheid said.

Dan’l Mackey Almy, marketing director for Standard, said Coosemans’ experience in specialty items will be a plus for food-service customers.

“We’ll be able to share our logistics expertise and help them grow and strengthen their offerings, and they are the leaders in specialties,” she said. “It’s a win-win for each of us.”

Although Standard has locations in Atlanta and Chicago, where independent Coosemans operations are located, Vonderheid said Standard’s Dallas location doesn’t ship to those areas, and there won’t be any competition with other Coosemans opera-tions.

Coosemans inventory, equipment and staff plan to move to Standard’s office and warehouse by the first week of May.
Although the companies have done business with each other in the past, Vonderheid said he expects the new arrangement will boost sales rapidly.

“I expect it to double very, very soon,” he said. “Who knows where the top is?”

Coosemans Dallas opened in 1991, and has been just north of the Dallas Farmers Market for five years. Coosemans carries tropical fruit, mushrooms, herbs, organic produce, and specialty items. Standard, founded in 1933, has locations in Dallas, Atlanta, Chicago, Kansas City, Kan., Monte Vista, Colo., and Phoenix.

Paradise Fruits and Vegetables Inc., which shares a building with Coosemans Dallas, is expanding into some of the space the specialty company is vacating.