Food safety company aids with certifications

Cherry season is proving to be a busy time for Doug Mattes and his Linden, Calif.-based company, Agricultural Production Safety LLC.

A former agriculture regulator with San Joaquin County, Mattes assists grower-shippers gain food safety certification through programs like SQF2000 or PrimusGFS.

Pressure from retailers and consumers to prove their crop is safe is driving much of the interest in the fields and the packinghouses, he said. And with the cantaloupe recall of last fall fresh in their minds, Mattes said the grower-shippers are scrambling to earn certification for cherry season so they can carry it on through to other crops.


Family Tree Farms adds sales staff

Brenton Helm and Ryan Howard are two new members of the sales staff at Family Tree Farms, Reedley, Calif.

Helm has been with the company for two years, according to a news release, serving primarily as a liaison between farming/production and the marketing department. His promotion to the sales position came after he graduated from Fresno State University in December.

Howard comes to the produce industry after 15 years in the real estate development/home construction field. He has a degree in business administration from The Maters College in Santa Clarita, Calif.