Cutting-edge USDA kitchen adapts to changing consumer demands
INDIANAPOLIS, IN — FreshEdge’s CIBUS Fresh, a USDA-certified kitchen, recently added new products and automation in response to its massive growth and changing consumer demands. To augment the kitchen’s production of fresh salads, sandwiches, wraps, parfaits, and numerous grab-and-go snack offerings, CIBUS Fresh implemented an automated sandwich and snack production line as well as an automated parfait creation line.
CIBUS Fresh—along with Indianapolis Fruit, Garden Cut, Get Fresh Produce, Piazza Produce, Papania’s, McCartney Produce, and Leonardo’s Produce—is part of the growing FreshEdge family of fresh food distribution companies backed by Rotunda Capital Partners, of Bethesda, Maryland.
“We are excited to be aggressively growing our value-added operations to support our customers’ needs and distribute these products through our extensive fresh food distribution network,” said Steve Grinstead, CEO of FreshEdge. “New product innovation is key to meeting the needs of consumers seeking healthy snacks that are delicious and nutritious.”
FreshEdge employs approximately 1,400 people, operates more than 560,000 square feet of warehouse space, and distributes fresh food through a fleet of 600 trucks.
Greg Corsaro, president and COO of FreshEdge said, “We continue to expand our capabilities and efficiencies at CIBUS Fresh to increase our production output to meet growing consumer demands. Our recent automation has doubled our production on a couple of key product lines. We are further employing technology to improve production efficiencies at CIBUS Fresh, as well.”
FreshEdge is backed by Rotunda Capital Partners, a private equity firm that invests equity capital in established lower middle-market companies. Rotunda provides opportunities for management teams to reach strategic, financial and operational objectives. Rotunda entered the food business in 2017 with the acquisition of Indianapolis Fruit and Piazza Produce. In 2018, Piazza Produce acquired CIBUS Fresh and has taken it from a fledgling operation to today’s go-to supplier of fresh grab-and-go foods for several universities and convenience stores. FreshEdge was created in 2019 when Get Fresh joined the platform. Together, Rotunda and FreshEdge intend to continue expanding FreshEdge by welcoming more companies into the group—all focused on high quality produce and specialty food products, along with exceptional service—to build a unique team of complementary entities.