New Michigan apple partnership adds Elite Apple supply

The newly formed joint sales alliance of Grand Rapids-based Michigan Fresh Marketing and BelleHarvest has added Sparta, Mich.-based Elite Apple as another supplier.

The 500,000 cartons Elite Apple has committed to Michigan Fresh Marketing and BelleHarvest represents about half of Elite Apple’s 2019 projected volume, according to the release.

“After having more than doubled our packing capacity, we’ve decided to add Michigan Fresh and BelleHarvest to our sales group,” Rich Kent, Elite Apple partner, said in the release. 

In the past month, Elite has added a second packing line to their facility, according to the release.

“In order to keep up with retail consolidation and industry changes, this allows us the versatility to pursue larger programs for sustained periods of time,” Elite partner Ken Hubert said in the release.

Selling fruit from eight packing facilities, Michigan Fresh Marketing and BelleHarvest project that they will sell more than three million cartons of Michigan and Wisconsin apples in the upcoming season, according to the release.

“We are looking at a favorable apple crop in the Midwest and are excited to work with the exceptional team and partners at Elite”, Michigan Fresh CEO Joe D’Ottavio said in the release.

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