Progressive Produce LLC, Los Angeles, and Keystone Fruit Marketing, Inc., Greencastle, Pa., formed a merger agreement. Marty Kamer, president of Keystone, will now be an owner in the Progressive management interest controlled by president Jim Leimkuhler and vice presidents Victor Rodarte and Jack Gyben. Kamer will continue in his role as president of Keystone, a division of Progressive.
Keystone, founded in 1977, specializes in sweet onions, hybrid onions, asparagus, peaches, apples and watermelons with offices in Pennsylvania, Florida, Washington, Texas and California. Marty Kamer has been president since the untimely death of former president Kurt Schweitzer in February 2016.
“Our 50th anniversary is [in] 2017, and our positive momentum will be accelerated by combining our successful business with another great business in Keystone,” says Leimkuhler. “Keystone is also a proud company with 40 years of growth, and brings quality brands, great people and geographic breadth to the growing Progressive family. We have compatible business values, and we expect that the combination of our two companies will be very positive.”
“We are already an international company with our Mayan Sweet Onion program from Peru and Mexico, plus our asparagus grower base and acreage in Peru adds an important dimension,” says Kamer. “We are excited about expanding our global footprint as part of Progressive, and we anticipate future growth in our business in the coming years.”
Progressive Produce specializes in conventional and organic lines of asparagus, potatoes, onions, citrus and Hispanic fruits and vegetables under the AMERICAS label.
This merger comes on the heels of Progressive Produce partnering with Seaview Packaging to expand its citrus packaging capabilities.