Wholesaler-Distributor Resources


Welcome to the United Fresh Wholesaler-Distributor Resource Page!

This page offers a range of resources of potential interest to Wholesaler and Distributor industry members, including United Fresh publications, whitepapers, articles and presentations, as well as resources contributed by industry peers, and more.


In these unprecedented times, we’ve created an aggregate of coronavirus/COVID-19 resources to help the fresh produce industry and supply chain partners address commonly asked questions, and resources that can help keep you and your business informed.


Providing Liquidity for Uncollectable Sales (PLUS) Act

On July 21, Representatives Darin LaHood (IL) and Jimmy Panetta (CA) introduced the Providing Liquidity for Uncollectible Sales (PLUS) Act. This legislation provides a tax credit to offset uncollectable debt incurred as a direct result of COVID shutdowns. It is supported by the United Fresh Produce Association, the International Food Distributors Association, and National Fisheries Institute.

Foodservice Associations Applaud Introduction of Providing Liquidity for Uncollectible Sales (PLUS) Act

LaHood, Panetta Introduce the PLUS Act to Support the Food and Beverage Industry

USDA “Buy Fresh” Program

The “Buy Fresh” program is part of the larger Coronavirus Farm Assistance Program (CFAP) that was announced by President Trump and Secretary Purdue on April 17. The program will purchase $100 million per month, for six months, in fresh produce from regional and local distributors whose workforce has been significantly impacted by the closure of restaurants, hotels, and other food service entities.

USDA Food Box Distribution Program

United Fresh/USDA-AMS ‘Buy Fresh’ Informational Webinar (originally aired April 23, 2020)

Connecting with Retail Operators on Produce Procurement:

United Fresh is working with our retail operator members, as well as members of FMI – The Food Industry Association and the National Grocers Association, to connect retailers in need of fresh produce products with fresh produce distributors.  If you would like your company to be included in this network, please contact Miriam Wolk, Vice President, Member Services, at 202.303.3410.

Wholesaler-Distributor Board:

The Wholesaler-Distributor Board is focused on the needs and issues of greatest concern to wholesalers and distributors of fresh produce. Its goal is to ensure a strong and robust produce supply chain connecting shippers and processors with retailers and foodservice operators.

View Board Roster

If you have any questions about the board, please contact Miriam Wolk, board staff liaison, at 202.303.3410.

Produce Operations Training Checklists:

Developed by the United Fresh Wholesaler-Distributor board, this resource provides checklists for interviewing, safety, warehouse training, loading skills, receiving and driver delivery. 

Download Checklist

Wholesaler-Distributor Peer Resource Library:

The Wholesaler-Distributor Peer Resource Library, initiated by the United Fresh Wholesaler-Distributor Board,  is an opportunity for members of United Fresh to share insights and learning experiences from their company operations with their industry peers.  All content is produced directly by member volunteers and reviewed by an editorial committee of the Wholesaler-Distributor board.  The views and opinions in the resources solely represent the views of the author, and authors provide their contact information for comments and questions.

The opinions and ideas expressed in peer resource library articles do not necessarily apply to every company in the industry, but instead are intended as a way to initiate business conversations within your company.  United Fresh makes no representations, warranties, or assurances as to the accuracy, currency or completeness of the content of the peer resource library.

United Fresh member companies are invited to contribute articles to the library. You can review our submission guidelines here.  For more information about the library, or to volunteer as a contributor, please contact Miriam Wolk at 202.303.3410.

Employee Relations & Development

Delivering Disruptive Change
Do your associates have a clear understanding of company strategy? See Four Seasons Produce’s story of the development of its Root Strategic Learning Map® and the ensuing dialogue with associates at all levels of the company.

Developing a High Performance Sales Culture
In the past two years, Hardie’s Fresh Foods made a number of changes to enhance their sales performance, resulting 20% year-over-year growth. Learn about the strategies and tactics the company used to transform their culture and drive energy throughout the company.

Engaging Team Members in the Continuous Improvement Process
Four Seasons Produce’s Production Department was struggling with its overwrap machine performance. Learn about how the department used the continuous improvement (CI) method to engage associates in setting performance goals and overcoming challenges to improve performance.

Leadership – A Nicety or a Necessity
Every company needs to invest in a leadership development process, but where do you start? See a company’s key elements for a successful executive development program.

Military Veterans – A Great Fit for Service Center Leaders
Learn how Robinson Fresh has matched veterans’ unique experiences and abilities with service center management positions.

Facility Operations & Efficiency


Analyzing and Upgrading Selection and Loading Operations
In the past few years, Sid Wainer & Son overhauled their selection and loading process, resulting in significant cost and man hour savings for the company. Learn about their analysis of their operational needs, the implementation process and the effect on company culture.

Confronting Extreme and Sudden Uncertainty
In 2016, Capitol City Produce Company found itself in the path of Baton Rouge’s “1,000 Year Flood.” Read about the company’s experience with making critical decisions in the midst of a natural disaster and the lessons they learned for future disaster planning

Developing a Consistent Food Safety Platform
With multiple locations and third party warehouse partners, as well as corporate acquisitions, Robinson Fresh determined that having a consistent food safety platform across all of its operations was a key strategic priority. See the decisions the corporate food safety team made and how this strategy benefitted the company.

Disaster Preparedness Case Study – The “What If’s”
Is your company disaster prepared? In 2004 and 2005, the Southeast United States experienced record size hurricanes. Learn how one company weathered the storms, creating a plan to ensure employee and community safety.

Efficiency Management
Wouldn’t we all like to maximize efficiency, especially in an industry that is so reactive that we can barely get through a day following a schedule?

How To: Implement Enterprise Resource Planning
Implementing a new ERP system can be challenging for an organization, but with the right planning in place, the process can go more smoothly.  Hear from David Donat, President, Produce Pro, on considerations for building your implementation team, establishing a timeline, communicating with your associates, planning your training process and more!

Keeping Our Most Valuable Assets Safe
Your employees and team members are a company’s greatest asset, but how do you protect them in the event of a confrontation or violent incident? Learn how Pacific Coast Fruit Company has developed plans to ensure employee safety during these types of crises.

Operational & Purchasing Metrics: Key Performance Indicators
Baldor Specialty Foods’ goals include providing skillful logistics and a seamless customer experience. Hear from Michael Muzyk on how the company employs benchmarking metrics for back orders, shrink, rejections and returns, days on hand, margins and SKU analysis.

SKU Rationalization Project
Frieda’s strategy team was challenged to find ways to improve overall profitability and efficiency for the company. See how the company made the decision to focus on SKU reduction to maximize its return on inventory investment.

Sustainability Reporting
Reporting on a company’s commitments to sustainability and environmental stewardship can be an incredibly powerful tool for engaging both internal and external stakeholders. Ricky Ashenfelter, Chief Executive Officer, Spoiler Alert, shares practices for developing and highlighting sustainability goals, as well as the most effective ways to communicate your efforts.

The Value of a Distributor
Learn more about the value a distributor brings to the supply chain through CDS Distributing’s history and innovation.

Working Smarter, Not Harder With Cost Management
Get your team working smarter, not harder. Learn how J&J Distributing increased efficiency by making cost management a companywide effort.

Succession Planning

Employee Stock Ownership Plans: Benefits and Challenges
Are you considering a transition to ESOP? Hear the story of how Russ Davis Wholesale made the decision to transition their business, along with the benefits and unique challenges of this program.

Private Equity Consideration for Produce Distribution

Produce Distribution companies in North America have traditionally multi-generational family owned and operated businesses. As companies prepare to transition to the next generation who may or may not want to work in the industry, selling to private equity is one option. If your company is exploring the private equity option, an industry veteran suggests key items to consider.

Supplier Relationships

Get Engaged with Fresh Local Produce
Local produce has the power to excite customers – but how do you successfully integrate it into your product offerings? Review Horton Fruit Company’s experience with working with small, local farmers in their area.


United Fresh Publications & Resources:

Marketing, Merchandising & Sales