Sunkist Growers and Fruit Growers Supply Company Consolidate Management

August 16, 2017, VALENCIA, CA — The Boards of Directors of Sunkist Growers and Fruit Growers Supply Company (FGS) today announced a consolidated management structure to lead both companies moving forward.

“Sunkist Growers and Fruit Growers Supply are sister cooperatives that service the same constituencies,” said Chairman of the Sunkist Board of Directors Gerald Denni. “A shared management structure will increase efficiencies in both organizations and drive a culture that best serves our membership.”

The two companies will remain legally separate entities with a shared leadership structure headed by Russ Hanlin as President & CEO of both organizations. Given the different natures of the two cooperative’s business activities, Chief Operating Officers at both organizations will manage day-to-day operations – John Striff at Sunkist and Ted Pajak at Fruit Growers Supply. Legal, finance, information technology, human resources and government affairs services will be shared across the two cooperatives.

“These organizational changes at Sunkist Growers and Fruit Growers Supply will streamline operations of both companies,” said Russ Hanlin, President & CEO. “This structure will allow us to fully utilize talent and resources across both organizations to optimize service and value to our constituents.”

The Sunkist cooperative of family farms offers more than 40 fresh citrus varieties. With thousands of grower members in California and Arizona, the Sunkist cooperative reflects the values and legacy of its nearly 125-year history: family-owned farms where traditional growing practices, stewardship of natural resources and a dedication to innovation are proudly passed through the generations. Founded under the principle that more can be accomplished by working together, Sunkist continues to promote a culture of family and collaboration with growers and customers to drive positive results for all.

Fruit Growers Supply Company (FGS) was established in 1907 by the same growers who formed the Sunkist marketing cooperative to supply wood for their crates. In addition to supplying Sunkist’s needs, FGS delivers vertically integrated services throughout the industry. Services include manufacturing shipping pallets, corrugated cardboard cartons, coatings as well as providing equipment designs, irrigation services along with parts and materials, and also offering a wide array of agricultural supplies in our walk-in stores. In addition, FGS operates a sawmill that produces the lumber used in making our pallets, made from the timber harvested from the organization’s sustainably managed forests. This broad scope of services allows FGS to provide efficient business solutions for a wide array of customers within the agricultural industry.


Sunkist Growers is a citrus marketing cooperative, founded in 1893, which is owned by and operated for thousands of family farmers growing citrus in California and Arizona. For more information, visit

Founded in 1907, Fruit Growers Supply Company is the oldest non-profit supply cooperative in the nation, serving the agricultural industry with products and services for growing, harvesting, packaging and shipping. For more information visit

SUNKIST is a registered trademark of Sunkist Growers, Inc., USA. ©2017

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