CHICAGO, IL – Hazel Technologies, Inc. developer of new USDA-funded technologies to protect produce quality, announces a collaboration with Spicewood, TX-based The Fredericksburg Peach Company, a family-owned grower/shipper/wholesaler with over 35 years of experience. Fredericksburg Peach trialed Hazel’s flagship technology, Hazel 100™, in 2021 and saw successful results with their peaches, leading the company to commit to Hazel for their 2022 season.
Established in 1984 by owner Frank Davis, The Fredericksburg Peach Company is a Texas grower and shipper managing over 400 acres of fresh peach production, sourced internally as well as from over 30 outside growers. With a reputation for customer service and produce quality, the company services major retailer chains in the Southern US including Kroger, HEB, and Whole Foods.
Locally sourced ingredients have become extremely important for consumers over the last few years. Studies have shown that over three quarters of consumers are willing to pay up to 20% more for local food. Locally sourced produce is also often seen as a fresher more sustainable option with better eating quality.
In the peach industry, growers often achieve the best eating quality by tree ripening to achieve more flavorful, ready-to-eat fruit. Although tree-ripened local fruit programs offer the best taste to consumers, these programs frequently run the risk of losing firmness in route to the supermarket or on the shelf, leading to shrink.
In 2021, Fredericksburg turned to Hazel for a shelf-life solution to better ensure the quality of their peaches. Alongside a local Texas retailer, Fredericksburg and Hazel completed an 8-week commercial trial. Results proved Hazel 100-protected peaches were 23% more firm than control after 3 days in cold storage and 3 days at ambient temperature. In many instances, the difference exceeded 1lb of pressure after the 6 days. In addition, the fruit had a better internal quality during QC inspections at receiving.
“While trialing Hazel 100, we saw our percentage of rejections go down about 5% at retail. That’s huge for our bottom line as a provider of locally grown peaches,” said Frank Davis, President at The Fredericksburg Peach Company, “Hazel is definitely a technology that we plan and look forward to using going forward.”
“Retailers are pushing for larger local displays in the fresh produce department to help drive their sales and revenue,” said Tommy Caruana, Director of Business Development-Retail at Hazel Technologies, Inc., “Hazel 100’s ability to slow down the ripening process gives retailers firmer fruit to present on their shelves while consumers can have local produce that’s the ideal eating pressure within a day or so of it hitting their kitchen counter. It’s a win-win.”
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 250 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.
For more information, visit www.hazeltechnologies.com.
About Fredericksburg Peach Company:
Fredericksburg Peach Company is a family owned and operated fresh produce supplier based in Spicewood, TX. Founded in 1984, Fredericksburg Peach is the largest supplier of locally grown peaches in the state of Texas.
For more information, visit https://www.instagram.com/fredericksburgpeachco/.