Cutting-edge USDA kitchen adapts to changing consumer demands
FreshEdge’s CIBUS Fresh, a USDA-certified kitchen, recently added new products and automation in response to its massive growth and changing consumer demands. To augment the kitchen’s production of fresh salads, sandwiches, wraps, parfaits, and numerous grab-and-go snack offerings, CIBUS Fresh implemented an automated sandwich and snack production line as well as an automated parfait creation line.
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CIBUS Fresh—along with Indianapolis Fruit, Garden Cut, Get Fresh Produce, Piazza Produce, Papania’s, McCartney Produce, and Leonardo’s Produce—is part of the growing FreshEdge family of fresh food distribution companies backed by Rotunda Capital Partners, of Bethesda, Maryland.
"We are excited to be aggressively growing our value-added operations to support our customers’ needs and distribute these products through our extensive fresh food distribution network," said Steve Grinstead, CEO of FreshEdge. "New product innovation is key to meeting the needs of consumers seeking healthy snacks that are delicious and nutritious."
FreshEdge employs approximately 1,400 people, operates more than 560,000 square feet of warehouse space, and distributes fresh food through a fleet of 600 trucks.
Greg Corsaro, president and COO of FreshEdge said, "We continue to expand our capabilities and efficiencies at CIBUS Fresh to increase our production output to meet growing consumer demands. Our recent automation has doubled our production on a couple of key product lines. We are further employing technology to improve production efficiencies at CIBUS Fresh, as well."
FreshEdge is backed by Rotunda Capital Partners, a private equity firm that invests equity capital in established lower middle-market companies. Rotunda provides opportunities for management teams to reach strategic, financial and operational objectives. Rotunda entered the food business in 2017 with the acquisition of Indianapolis Fruit and Piazza Produce. In 2018, Piazza Produce acquired CIBUS Fresh and has taken it from a fledgling operation to today’s go-to supplier of fresh grab-and-go foods for several universities and convenience stores. FreshEdge was created in 2019 when Get Fresh joined the platform. Together, Rotunda and FreshEdge intend to continue expanding FreshEdge by welcoming more companies into the group—all focused on high quality produce and specialty food products, along with exceptional service—to build a unique team of complementary entities.
FreshEdge was formed in 2019 through the combination of Get Fresh Produce (Bartlett, IL, founded in 1982) and the IF&P Foods family of companies, primarily composed of Indianapolis Fruit (founded 1947) and Piazza Produce (founded 1970). McCartney Produce (Paris, TN) joined the FreshEdge family in November 2020 followed by Leonardo’s Produce (Detroit, MI) in December 2020. Collectively, these leading fresh food distribution companies have nearly 400 years of combined experience serving the grocery and food service industries. In addition, FreshEdge includes two Garden Cut branded fresh-cut processing facilities, a tomato re-packer, a USDA fresh kitchen (CIBUS Fresh), and two transportation companies. FreshEdge’s fleet resource includes over 600 trucks servicing the Midwest and beyond from 14 facilities totaling over 560,000 square feet of warehouse space. Today, FreshEdge is a category leader in providing both the foodservice and retail industries with fruit, vegetables, fresh grab-n-go offerings, dairy, floral and specialty products. For more, visit www.freshedgefoods.com.
About Rotunda Capital Partners
Rotunda Capital Partners is a private equity firm that invests equity capital in established, lower middle market companies. Rotunda partners with management to build data-driven growth platforms within its targeted sectors, including value-added distribution, asset light logistics and industrial/business services. Founded in 2009, the firm has a long history of helping management teams achieve their goals for growth. The Rotunda team actively provides guidance and draws on deep industry and financial relationships to contribute to the successful execution of Rotunda’s companies’ strategic plans. For more, visit www.rotundacapital.com.
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Rotunda Capital Partners