OPN Connect Newsletter 327 · July 6, 2023

Pacific Coast Trading Company Expands with New Organic Onion Partnership in Mexico

Pacific Coast Trading Company’s new plot of organic onions in Baja, California, bridges the growing season gap, allowing the company to offer organic onions year-round.

The more than 400-acre piece of land, located on the central Pacific coast of the Baja peninsula of Mexico, sprouted after 10 years of work by father-and-son team Elias and Gabriel Berry. Elias is credited as the founder and developer of this growing region, which now holds more than 5,000 acres of fertile, agricultural land. Enrique Rubio serves as the operation’s CEO.

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Enrique Rubio, Gabriel Berry, Brad Sumner, and Elias Berry

While brussels sprouts, strawberries, and other crops grow prolifically in this valley, onions are the focus of this partnership with Pacific Coast Trading Company. Pacific Coast Trading Company was initially established as a subsidiary of Pacific Coast Fruit Company. Pacific Coast Fruit began in 1977 and grew into one of the largest independent conventional and organic produce distributors in the Pacific Northwest.

The Pacific Coast Trading Company subsidiary spun off of Pacific Coast Fruit in spring 2022 in order to "invest in specialized employees and strategically placed warehouses, to increase its buying power and to help distribute a vast variety of produce from both large and small growers,” according to the company’s press release.

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Brad Sumner, Category Sales Manager, Pacific Coast Trading Company

Brad Sumner is the category sales manager for conventional and organic onions at Pacific Coast Trading Company. Sumner has added the assortment of red, yellow, and white organic onions from Mexico to his portfolio of onion suppliers in Washington, Idaho, and the Antelope Valley of California with whom he has partnered for decades.

After 30 years in the onion industry, this new plot in Mexico represents the “final piece in a year-round plan” to supply customers with high-quality onions. Both unpredictable weather patterns and supply chain interruptions prompted Pacific Coast Trading to shift to a model with more opportunity to influence strategy, marketing, and overall direction, said Sumner.