(Oct. 23, 12:19 p.m.) A leading Mexican greenhouse grower has bought into Jem-D International, Kingsville, Ontario.

Agricola El Rosal SA de CV, Numaran, Mexico, on Oct. 20 bought an undisclosed but substantial amount of Jem-D stock, said Jem-D’s owner and president Jim DiMenna. DiMenna, who also owns JD Marketing Inc., declined to disclose further details of the transaction.

The stock purchase agreement involves only Jem-D, not JD Marketing, DiMenna said.

DiMenna said Jem-D has had a trading relationship with El Rosal, a family-owned, 120-acre greenhouse operation in Michoacan that packs tomatoes on the vine under its Red Sun label and its bell peppers under its Golden Sun label. Jem-D has been buying from El Rosal since 2004.

“Over the summer, we came up with this idea that they would buy part of our marketing company, Jem-D,” DiMenna said. “This gives us the chance for us to build our business with a real door-opener like the Red Sun label and the products. It gives them a great opportunity to go into both Canada and U.S. in our distribution system.”

The purchase agreement should boost Jem-D’s volume from 7 million cases to 10 million cases, DiMenna said.

El Rosal, DiMenna said, operates a fully computerized, temperature-controlled hydroponic operation that features modern food safety procedures. DiMenna called El Rosal one of Mexico’s most advanced hydroponic producers.

“Its existing capacity and expertise will help to market our product effectively,” El Rosal president Roberto Saldaña, said in a prepared statement. “We can achieve economies of scale through a direct partnership with a highly established sales and marketing company. The resulting efficiencies will enable us to be more competitive in the marketplace.”

In February, JD completed its merger with Flavour Pict Produce Sales, Blytheswood, Ontario. DiMenna said the merger has gone well and has given Jem-D more opportunities to advance.

Jem-D has operations in Canada and grower relationships in the U.S., Mexico, Holland, Spain, Israel and Belgium. It has distribution centers in Leamington, Ontario; Montreal; Michigan; and Texas.

Jem-D packs under a dozen labels, including the J-D label, Golden Jem and Flavour Pict.