US – FreshPro Food Distributors has appointed Vic Savanello as the new vice president of merchandising, sales, and business development. 

With an impressive career spanning over 35 years, Savanello brings a wealth of experience to his new role.

Savanello’s mission is to leverage his expertise and vision to help FreshPro’s customers gain a competitive edge in their respective market areas.

Expressing his enthusiasm for joining FreshPro, Savanello stated, “I’m ecstatic to join the team at FreshPro and return to my NY/NJ roots.”

Savanello was recently honored with the 2022 IFPA Retail Innovation Award and named one of the esteemed 2022 Packer 25 honorees.

Throughout his distinguished career, he has held key leadership positions in national produce retail and distribution at renowned companies such as Wakefern Foods, Allegiance Retail Services, The Fresh Market, and most recently SpartanNash in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

FreshPro, headquartered in West Caldwell, New Jersey, is confident that Savanello’s extensive experience working with independent supermarket owners and chain retailers in the Northeast will significantly contribute to their growth.

His strategic focus on creating and expanding retail programs aligns with FreshPro’s commitment to enhancing product and service offerings.

Currently in a growth phase, FreshPro is recognized as a distributor to quality retailers, gourmet/specialty shops, convenience stores, food service operations, and various outlets specializing in fresh foods.

As a company dedicated to delivering fresh, high-quality conventional and organic produce, fresh cuts, deli items, cheese, chilled foods, and other perishable products since 1985, FreshPro continues to evolve and adapt to meet the changing demands of consumers.

In 1991, FreshPro established its fresh-cut division to address the market’s need for fresh-cut, value-added products.

Over the years, this division has expanded to include private label, repacking, and other services, offering comprehensive solutions for customers of all sizes.

Acknowledging the growing consumer preference for freshness and convenience, Savanello is poised to lead the charge in capitalizing on the rising demand for fresh-cut, value-added produce.

Despite representing a modest USD 10.4 billion of the USD 71.6 billion fresh produce industry, the value-added category is driving notable growth.

According to recent data from market research company IRI, dollar sales of value-added produce saw a significant 12% increase in 2021, outpacing the 1.1% growth in non-value-added produce.

Notably, value-added fruit sales soared by 27.3%, while non-value-added fruit increased by 4.4%. In the fresh vegetables category, value-added products experienced a 3.6% growth, while non-value-added options declined by 2.3%.

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