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Hazel Tech partners with Valicoff for apples, apricots

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Valicoff Fruit integrates innovative Hazel Tech solutions across their tree fruit offerings with the goal of further reducing food-waste

CHICAGO, IL – Hazel Technologies Inc., BB #:302595 a USDA-funded technology company delivering new technology solutions for fresh produce to extend shelf-life, increase sales, and fight food waste, announces a partnership with Wapato, Washington-based Valicoff Fruit Co., one of Washington State’s largest suppliers of apples, pears, peaches, nectarines, apricots and cherries.

Valicoff Fruit, a family-owned business and part of the Sage Fruit marketing group, prides itself on premium quality and variety across their programs.

Celebrating 100 years of farming, Valicoff Fruit grows over 2,000 acres of fruit and ships to major retailers and other customers in the Americas, Asia and Europe. Due to highly demanding global markets and complex post-harvest management requirements, apples require skill and technology to successfully grow, pack, and market.

In 2020 to protect the quality of fruit in bins following harvest, Valicoff incorporated Hazel 100 bin sachets. Hazel’s bin treatment helps ease logistics at receiving and lower labor costs.

“We utilized Hazel 100 bin sachets for treatment of our 2020 crop Honeycrisp Apples,” commented Brett Valicoff, fourth generation grower and President of Valicoff Fruit Company.

“We experienced great quality of fruit coming out of storage and noticed a reduction of internal browning from long-term storage. Hazel’s bin sachet application allowed us to protect the fruit immediately which simplified receiving and storage logistics. This immediate treatment allowed us to get the right fruit in the right storage timeframe. We were able to eliminate transferring of bins from conditioning rooms which greatly improved the process. This simplified process helped to produce excellent fruit condition for our customers.”

Apples are Valicoff Fruit’s largest commodity, but what sets them apart from other Yakima Valley growers is their commitment to stone fruit. Despite the inherent risks that go along with farming stone fruit, Valicoff has successfully expanded to be one of the largest stone fruit suppliers in the Pacific Northwest.

Valicoff has expanded their usage of Hazel 100™ box sachets for two consecutive seasons after repeated quality improvements in trials compared to untreated controls. Hazel’s solutions for apricots, first validated by UC Davis in a 2019 trial, help maintain color and firmness, preventing chilling injuries, and ensure optimum quality during long-distance transit.

“We are proud to support Valicoff Fruit’s dynamic growth and to protect their fruit across multiple categories,” commented Aidan Mouat, CEO of Hazel Technologies Inc. “Hazel is committed to listening to our customers’ goals and challenges and developing academically proven solutions that address the customers’ needs while easily integrating across the supply chain.”

About Hazel Technologies, Inc.:

Hazel Technologies, Inc. is a USDA-funded startup company that develops new solutions to extend the quality shelf life of fresh produce and reduce food waste. Founded in 2015, Hazel Tech services over 150 of the world’s largest fresh produce packers, shippers, and retailers. Selected as a Finalist for Fast Company’s 2020 World Changing Ideas and winner of “Best Sustainable Packaging” at the 2020 World Food Innovation Awards, the company’s patent-pending technologies have been tested by top academic research programs. In 2020, Hazel products were used with over 3.2 billion pounds of fresh produce, preventing more than 270 million pounds from going to waste.

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About Valicoff Fruit Co.:

Valicoff Fruit Co., Inc. is headquartered on the Wapato, Washington and Washington State’s premier suppliers of apples, pears, peaches, nectarines, apricots and cherries. The Valicoff family farm, formerly known as Valicoff Gardens, has been in Washington State’s Yakima Valley since 1921. Valicoff Fruit Co. is co-owner of Sage Fruit Company.
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