2020 Produce Business 40 Under Forty Award Winner: Kraig Loomis

Age: 39
Sales and Marketing Manager
GreenFruit Avocados
Newport Beach, CA

Loomis has more than 20 years of produce experience, 15 of which were spent in retail as a produce clerk, produce manager, produce inspector, produce specialist, and produce buyer with companies including Kroger and Fresh & Easy. He transitioned to the grower/shipper side of business as the sales manager for asparagus, wet veg, and varietal berries at Progressive Produce. In July 2018, he accepted a new role at GreenFruit Avocados where he is responsible for building on the existing sales and marketing programs of GreenFruit and creating a culture of quality and service experience for every customer. This includes mentoring the sales and marketing team to achieve company goals, as well as personal goals. He has helped create a positive culture for the company. He is credited with securing new business for the company and helped grow sales revenue of about $12 million in 2019. He is actively involved with the Fresh Produce & Floral Council Apprentice Program where he is currently the Chairman for the Task Force and also a mentor for the program.

Hobbies: Soccer, Baseball, Hiking, Backpacking, Coach daughters’ soccer teams

Family/Personal/Community: Married, three kids

Motto in life: Always have goals, prepare, plan and give it your all to succeed.

Q: How did you begin working in the produce industry?
I started working in produce as a grocery combo clerk and I received a chance to work the third man produce shift at my store. I instantly loved working in produce, from merchandising the items and building displays to learning about the items in the department and the interesting customer interactions. After that shift, I set my goal to become a produce buyer.

Q: What do you know now you wish you knew when you first started your career?
I wish I knew more about the pathway programs that are available to someone that is just starting their career. There are so many resources and amazing mentors that can help guide you.

Q: What accomplishment are you most proud of in your career?
I’m proud to be part of the FPFC Apprentice Taskforce and being a mentor for the past six years. Going into year seven, I have taken on the new position as the Apprentice Taskforce Chairman. Overall, I love being part of this program to give back to the industry that has given so much to my family and me.

Q: What advice would you give someone new to the produce industry?
Be willing to learn and work hard everyday to make an impact in the industry. Also to treat people how you want to be treated.

Q: What was the “aha” moment when you knew the produce industry was the best choice for you?
It happened when I was promoted to produce manager at Ralph’s Grocery Company. I learned about the different career pathways in the produce industry and the numerous opportunities available.

Q: What do you see as the most critical “hot button” issue facing the industry in the next decade?
Labor is a major issue we are currently facing and one we will continue to face in the future. The key will be immigration reform that needs to happen. Without labor to plant and harvest fruits and vegetables, the consumer will not be able to buy their produce and eat healthy.

Q: What would you like consumers to know about the industry?
The amount of time and effort it takes for consumers to receive their produce. There are a lot of people that plant, harvest and transport their produce from farm to table and I think consumer education about the process is very important.