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Produce Business

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American Food & Ag Exporter

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Dole Expands
Marketing Team

Jim Prevor’s Perishable Pundit, January 15, 2008

We have been covering the transition in Dole’s marketing department. First we ran Dole Transitions Marketing Heads, pointing out that Rick Utchell, Dole’s Vice President of Marketing, would be retiring and that Ronda Reed would be assuming a new position as Vice President of Marketing for Fresh Fruits and Vegetables.

We followed this piece with an article entitled, Dole Marketing Team Strengthens, Pushes Plush Toy Promotion, which explained that David Bright would be the new Director of Marketing for Dole Fresh Fruit.

Now Dole sends word that the team is being expanded:

DOLE ANNOUNCES LATEST CHANGES TO
FRUIT & VEGETABLES MARKETING TEAMS

Dole Fresh Fruit and Dole Fresh Vegetables, subsidiaries of Dole Food Company, Inc., announced further enhancements to their marketing operations.

Ms. Yvonne Rentmeester has been promoted to the position of Marketing Services Manager for Dole Fresh Fruit.

In this position, Ms. Rentmeester will expand her role currently managing the Technical Services department to encompass banana ripening and product handling from warehouse all the way through the retail store. She will assume direct responsibility for Dole Fresh Fruit’s Marketing Representatives and the merchandising program.

“This move integrates the activities of the Technical Service and Merchandising departments,” says Mr. David Bright, Marketing Director for Dole Fresh Fruit. “Yvonne’s experience, management style, and attention to detail will greatly leverage the resources of two departments into a strong program that troubleshoots potential problems, identifies opportunities and communicates Dole Fresh messages down to the retail store level.”

Ms. Rentmeester began her career with Dole Fresh Fruit as a Technical Service Representative in November 1997 and has managed the department since January 2000. She holds a BS in Agricultural Business Management from Cal Poly Pomona with an emphasis in citrus and avocado production.

Also joining the Fresh Fruit marketing team is Odalis Hawit-Rivera, in the position of Brand Manager.

Ms. Hawit-Rivera will leverage market research and lead Dole’s marketing efforts to deliver value for customers and drive long-term sales through message positioning, new product development.

Prior to joining Dole Ms. Hawit-Rivera held various positions of escalating responsibility at Pharmavite, LLC, most recently as Associate Brand Manager, where she successfully led her cross-functional team in launching a five-sku line of products in record time and which exceeded sales expectations.

“Odalis brings extensive experience in trade and consumer marketing to Dole. She has the strong background in the development and commercialization of new products that we have been seeking,” says Bright

In the Dole Fresh Vegetables group, Mr. Keith Kelley has been hired as Marketing Manager, New Products and will be responsible for leading the group’s efforts in new product development planning, specifically focusing the company’s cross-functional resources against top priority new product segments and co-managing the innovation process to drive long-term sales and profit growth for Dole Fresh Value-Added Business.

Mr. Kelley possesses extensive packaged consumer goods experience in the areas of brand outreach, product development, strategic planning, sales support and forecasting analysis, for products including Columbia Crest Winery and Eight O’Clock Coffee.

“Keith brings direct, hands-on experience in areas relevant to Dole Fresh Vegetable’s business — market segmentation, merchandising and sales modeling,” states Ms. Michelle Gonsalves, Marketing Director for Dole Fresh Vegetables. “He has a successful track record in building brands and delivering results across multiple consumer categories.”

Mr. Kelley received his MBA in both Marketing and Organizational Development form Indiana University.

Dole is unique in the industry in that between fruit, vegetables and packaged goods, it has a product in every supermarket every day. That opens up the possibility for promotions and tie-ins that would be difficult for others to execute. Done well, those programs can really drive fresh produce consumption.

Best of luck to the new Dole marketing team in making that happen.

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