(May 29) REEDLEY, Calif. — Buyers should see twice as many Wayne’s Flames grapes in the 2003 season.

Belmont Produce Sales Inc., Reedley, has joined Kirschenman Enterprises Inc., Edison; Cal-Sales Marketing, Visalia; and Mountain View Fruit Sales Inc., Reedley, in the growing, packing, selling and shipping of Kirschenman’s Wayne’s Flames label table grapes.

Through the partnership, the four companies will pack and market about 2.5 million cartons of table grapes under the Wayne’s Flames label, said Mike Thurlow, sales manager of Mountain View Fruit Sales.

That is about double the volume shipped by Kirschenman Enterprises, Cal-Sales Marketing and Mountain View Fruit Sales as partners in 2002. Those three companies and Belmont Produce Sales are all involved in growing the product under the partnership this season.

Mountain View handles cold storage of the grapes, and sales are conducted by Mountain View and Cal-Sales Marketing.

Beginning with the Coachella Valley harvest and moving north as the season progresses, the group expects to have steady supplies of table grapes from all the major California growing regions.

“We will be working together from May through December to make this program meet the increased demand for quality table grapes from our customers,” said Dan East, grape sales manager for Cal-Sales Marketing.

East noted that Cal-Sales has been storing and shipping grapes side-by-side with Belmont Produce Sales in Mountain View Fruit Sales’ Reedley cold storage shed. So it seemed natural to maximize the strengths of the companies through a partnership arrangement, East said.

Gary Scarborough, owner of Belmont Produce Sales, said his company began working with Kirschenman Enterprises on joint marketing projects in 2002 and decided to expand the partnership based on success of the projects.

Grape varieties produced by the four companies include flame, black seedless, princess, thompson, autumn royal, crimson and red glove seeded.