For 50 years, specialty produce wholesaler Frieda’s Inc. has been famously innovating unusual and exotic fruits and vegetables in supermarket produce departments. If you like Kiwifruit, Elephant Garlic, Pine Nuts, Sunchokes®, Purple Potatoes or Habanero chiles, you can thank Frieda’s Inc. for its role in introducing them to the supermarket shelves. Frieda Rapoport Caplan, 88, is the founder of Frieda’s Specialty Produce. She began the small company in 1962 on the Los Angeles Wholesale Produce Market (the first woman business owner there), where she quickly gained a reputation for being open to buy and sell unusual fruits and veggies. Frieda is most known for introducing Kiwifruit to U.S. produce departments, but she and her company introduced many other produce specialties, from Spaghetti Squash to Asian Pears.Frieda’s two daughters, Karen Caplan and Jackie Caplan Wiggins, now own and operate the business, and the third generation, Karen’s eldest daughter, Alex Jackson, recently joined the family business. These women are continuing the Frieda’s legacy of changing the way America eats fruits and vegetables. Learn more about the women of Frieda’s here.
The Frieda’s family includes 75-plus employees and is based in Orange County, California. Frieda’s markets and distributes more than 600 different varieties of fruits, vegetables and gourmet items to supermarkets, foodservice and wholesalers across North America.
Learn more about Frieda’s story and CEO, Karen Caplan, on her blog.
Click to watch a quick video about Frieda’s!