Verdant Technologies established a Mexican entity and plans to serve produce and floral customers in Mexico with its shelf-life extension solution, HarvestHold. Mexico is the first country targeted in Verdant’s plans to scale internationally across the globe.
About 40 percent of fruit and 50 percent of vegetables imported into the U.S. come from Mexico, and Mexican growers represent a vital part of the food supply to the United States and the rest of the world. Verdant plans to establish footholds in Sonora, Sinaloa, and Bajio — key growing regions for tomatoes, broccoli, melons, papayas, and avocados — with its headquarters in Mexico City. The company is focused on these crops as primary targets for the initial market proliferation of HarvestHold.
Verdant partnered with Centro de Investigación en Alimentación y Desarrollo, Mexico’s chief food science and technology research center, and conducted trialing on tomatoes, broccoli, avocados, melons and papayas over the past year. Results from the trials with CIAD have validated results from U.S. trialing, with maintained quality and color, improved firmness, reduced water loss — and overall increased shelf-life and reduced shrink — as the key benefits.
“The most unique and competitive property of HarvestHold is having a very practical, safe application to providing a prolonged, slow and consistently uniform release of 1-MCP, without needed to add water or any other materials,” said CIAD researcher and professor Manuel Alonzo Báez Sañudo. “The fruit ripening process is slowed down, significantly extending produce shelf-life/enhancing quality throughout the supply chain/marketing/final consumer.”
“It has been a very inspiring opportunity working closely with Verdant Technologies to make our mutual contributions consistently successful, introducing, demonstrating, validating, and promoting the outstanding novel HarvestHold technologies, internationally,” said Sañudo.
Verdant hired its first in-country employee, Jesús Gutiérrez, sales director – Mexico, in September. Based in Hermosillo, Gutiérrez comes to Verdant as an international sales and logistics executive, and has worked for Citrison, S.A. de CV and Grupo Paisano, Inverpaisa, SAPI de CV. He has extensive experience bridging the gap between growers and customers and is well-acquainted with challenges in the supply chain.
“Most of the produce grown in Mexico is exported to the U.S. and around the world. HarvestHold provides a solution to one of the most common problems the supply chain has faced for many years, extending shelf-life,” said Gutiérrez. “Verdant will impact the whole industry in Mexico with HarvestHold. Until now, many growers have not had this type of tool in their toolbox. HarvestHold’s easy application delivers proven shelf-life extension technology right into the box, which is a gamechanger for growers looking for a simple solution they can rely on.”
The company also recently hired Saul Garcia, based in Sinaloa, as an account manager. Garcia comes to Verdant with over a decade in the agriculture industry, most recently with sales and product positioning experience from BASF and ADAMA. Verdant is also actively recruiting for multiple account manager and field technician/operations positions in various parts of the country.
“We are building a fantastic team in Mexico. With experienced and well-trusted sales and technical professionals in the agricultural business, we can generate value for growers from a revenue and new technology perspective, helping them, through HarvestHold, expand to new markets unavailable today,” said Gutiérrez.