SAN ANTONIO, TX – Of the top 22 finalists for this year’s Viva Fresh Innovation Showcase, three progressive and forward-thinking companies took top spots during the Best in Show voting segment that occurred on the trade show floor. I spoke with the teams behind the products and a few innovative voices shared their excitement with me.
Let’s take a look at what the winners had to say…
1st Place: Triple H – Triple H Grower’s App
“We are excited and grateful for receiving the Best of Show Award in the Innovation Showcase, recognizing all the new ideas and ways to do things better among the fresh produce industry,” said Jesus Claudio Zazueta, Operations VP, Triple H. “In this ever-changing atmosphere, it becomes crucial to embrace innovation as part of our DNA and, in Triple H, we are betting on technology as the pathway to strive as a company.”
Allan Cardel, IT Manager, added: “The Grower’s App project was born out of the need and desire to offer transparency giving access to real-time information for the grower in a friendly platform that helps them run their business smoothly and timely. The grower’s profile has evolved over the last years, and so has our way to communicate and do business. This technological solution reduces the barrier of distance shortening response times and presenting critical information in real time.”
The mobile app is designed for associated growers where they can do real-time tracking on the status and location of their products being shipped from Mexico into the U.S. The app allows growers to monitor their product’s commercial performance on the facility where it will be sold from (inventory, conditions, selling prices, expenditures, financial breakdowns) allowing them to make the necessary adjustments, thus taking wiser and timely decisions to maximize profitability.
2nd Place: Frontera Produce – Sostena ProducePlan.com & GroundSight technology in collaboration with Crescent Fruit & Veg
“Thank you all who voted for our Innovation Showcase! We are elated to be part of this emerging technology, which is sure to revolutionize the produce industry, by promoting full supply chain visibility,” said Amy Gates, President, Frontera Produce. “One of our core values at Frontera is transparency, and this technology pairs wonderfully with that aspect of our culture and allows us to continue to enhance communication with our customers to ensure a spectacular consumer experience.”
The development of Golden Crush was a cooperative effort by Sostena and Origene Seeds and was in direct response to declining consumer consumption and sales of cantaloupes at retail. ProducePlan.com and GroundSight were both conceived due to serious shortfalls in the produce supply chain. ProducePlan.com helps to ensure all key stakeholders have a coordinated supply chain by building supply plans based on demand plans, no more “plan and pray.” And with the precision irrigation technology of GroundSight, the companies have been able to help growers get increased yields and better quality.
3rd Place: National Mango Board – In-store Mango Display
“It’s an honor to be recognized by the Innovation Committee and we deeply appreciate Viva Fresh for bringing together such value and talent in our industry into one space for the expo each year,” said Angela Serna, Communications Manager, National Mango Board. “We are working really hard to get the mango message out to our consumers and partners. The super fun superfruit message is resonating and continuing to grow.”
The National Mango Board’s (NMB) in-store display provides retailers with a resource to showcase mangos and ultimately educate their customers while increasing sales. The reason? There was a need, according to the board, for a disruptor in the produce section that would call attention to mangos and provide a vehicle to present the fruit to their customers in a pleasing and consistent position. In 2018, the NMB distributed over 5,000 displays to retail partners and plans to double that distribution in 2019. Retailers benefit by having a visually pleasing and engaging resource to help them build sales incrementally 30% and more.
Congrats to the winners and to all the finalists from this year’s Viva Fresh Innovation Showcase!