River Point Farms calls itself “America’s largest grower, packer, shipper and processor of onions.” Pretty impressive for a company formed in 2007. Even more impressive when you experience the honest, small town values that shape their operation.
President Bob Hale started the company in the early 1980s, with his brother Rick and friend and Farmers Ending Hunger board member Bob Levy. Today they grow a variety of red, white, yellow and sweet onions that adds up to 500 million pounds annually. They ship 200 trucks loaded with nothing but onions weekly, 52 weeks of the year.
River Point Farms believes in sustainable agriculture, as evidenced in the resource and energy-efficient farming methods they employ. And knowing that food safety is important to every customer and brand, they’re a high-tech operation, with traceability playing a major role in their value proposition. Hale says, “Quality is an expectation. Safety is an expectation. Traceability is an expectation.”
Once processed, the onions have a 14-day shelf life. River Point Farms’ processed products are fresh-cut–not cooked or frozen, and free of chemicals and preservatives. Their short shelf life demands a well-orchestrated shipping and delivery process to destinations across North America, where they must also be consumed within that time.
Its association with Hale Farms makes River Point’s involvement with Farmers Ending Hunger a natural one. They donate onions on an ongoing basis of one truckload per month, for a total of more than 300,000 pounds of onions donated in 2009.