(April 24) LOS ALAMITOS, Calif. — Specialty produce distributor Frieda’s Inc. received the Red Book-Mixtec Produce Excellence Award for 2001. The award recognizes organizations within the produce industry for outstanding accomplishments and service.

The presentation was made by Sharon Winschel, publisher of Red Book Credit Services, Lenexa, Kan., and Chris Nelson, president of Mixtec Group LLC, Pasadena, Calif., April 23.

Representatives of Red Book, the Mixtec Group and three major trade organizations pick the recipient. Red Book is a subsidiary of Vance Publishing Corp., Lincolnshire, Ill., publisher of The Packer.

In presenting the award during a quarterly employee meeting at Frieda’s, Winschel emphasized that the honor is bestowed not to recognize individual achievements but to acknowledge the contributions of all employees.

She said the award recognizes such attributes as quality of products and services, community responsibility and credibility in the industry.

Nelson said Frieda’s was selected because of factors such as its “sterling reputation,” the quality of its products, its innovation and imagination and its strong management team.

In accepting the award, Jackie Caplan Wiggins, Frieda’s vice president and daughter of chairman and founder Frieda Caplan, thanked the firm’s nearly 130 employees for working together to earn the honor and for “keeping Frieda’s name out there.”

Previous recipients are: Tanimura & Antle Inc., Salinas, Calif.; Grimmway Farms, Bakersfield, Calif.; Driscoll Strawberry Associates Inc., Watsonville, Calif.; A. Duda & Sons Inc., Oviedo, Fla.; and Ready Pac Produce Inc., Irwindale, Calif.