Los Alamitos, CA (February 2021) — The lull between the Super Bowl and Easter often leaves grocery stores and shoppers looking for a bit of retail excitement—making it the perfect time to leverage that treasure hunt mentality and introduce new tropical favorites like dragon fruit.

Dragon fruit is no longer just for summer, in fact, 42% of shoppers said they would like to buy dragon fruit year-round1. With this in mind, Frieda’s has created attention-getting, limited-edition ElastiTags® that showcase the different varieties of dragon fruit, including Honey Dragon™ and Snow Dragon™. These tags make it easier for shoppers to know what the fruit will look and taste like on the inside and they give consumers a reason to try both varieties.

“Promoting multiple varieties through inviting, bountiful displays is key right now, as shoppers are visiting stores less but stocking up when they do shop,” says Cindy Sherman, director of marketing innovation & insights at Frieda’s. In fact, a recent survey from Deloitte Consulting found that 54% of shoppers said they are visiting stores less frequently than before, with most only going to the store once every two weeks2.

Merchandise the two varieties together, alongside citrus favorites like sumo mandarins and pixie tangerines, to increase dollar ring. Or, add some excitement to your tropicals table with an eye-catching display of dragon fruit, jackfruit and pineapples for a vibrant and fun display.

Frieda’s has strong supply of these two dragon fruit varieties from Ecuador and they will be available until the end of April.

Contact your Frieda’s account representative today for merchandising suggestions, including our colorful 3-tier shipper, that maximize your sales per square foot.


1 C&R 1,000 person study, February 2020
2  Deloitte Fresh Food Consumer Survey, 2020

“Connecting & communicating in the time of COVID-19.” This was the title of a flyer I received from my Temple a few weeks ago. Like most people, I have not been in person to a church, a temple or any kind of religious service for a year due to COVID restrictions. Our temple has done what most religious organizations have done and that is rely on Zoom to hold services, events, etc. I’ve even attended a funeral via Zoom.

When I received this webinar flyer, I felt a special connection: the speaker, Dr. Lois Abrams, is a lifelong friend—a psychotherapist who helped me through some of my darkest divorce moments and actually encouraged my youngest daughter Sophia to pursue HER dream to become a marriage and family therapist (Sophia will graduate in 10 weeks with a master’s degree).

So, last Thursday evening, I attended the virtual program with Lois speaking. The content was particularly relevant, so I wanted to share some of the insights with you. And, thankfully, Lois interspersed a bit of humor into the evening, which made it a lighter conversation.

As you can probably guess, Lois uses dogs as part of her therapy practice. I believe she was one of the first therapists to use animals to help treat patients and she has spoken across the country and personally trained many therapists on how therapy dogs can assist in identification, treatment and recovery.

So, now to the topic of the evening: COVID. First Lois acknowledged the cultural, gender and age differences in reactions to the pandemic. It may come as a surprise to learn that everyone does not react the same to the situation. There are proven racial differences, gender differences and, as far as age goes, some of the youngest children do the best with mask wearing. In contrast, high school and college students may feel cheated out of their educational experiences of the rites of passage and, as we’ve seen, may not believe that fraternity and sorority parties are not really the best idea (as these events can become “super spreaders” for COVID).

Lois called COVID-19 the “emotional pandemic.” Most of us when we watch the news are aware of the physical effects (illness, hospitalization, recovery and sometimes death), but have we acknowledged the emotional effects of isolation and feelings of abandonment? One of the most significant effects of the pandemic has been the large numbers of people who are experiencing significant depression. I have several friends who have mentioned to me their own friends and family who are suffering from COVID-induced depression. The effects are real.

Have you ever thought about the similarities between the pandemic and PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder)? Is the reaction we are seeing from many people during COVID similar to symptoms of PTSD?


*Feeling overwhelmed



*Sleep issues


*Overeating and not eating

*Drinking in excess

*Intrusive thoughts and images

*Blaming others


*Heightened or lowered alertness




Lois said that these are all normal reactions to an abnormal situation when we feel anxious, depressed or frustrated.

So then, Lois turned to what YOU can do during COVID—for yourself. Like with any circumstance, you can let things happen, or you can take control and make things happen! Here are a few of her suggestions about simple actions you can take to help you, or your loved one, deal with the reactions to the isolation and loneliness felt from COVID.

*Journal writing—you can write both about frustrations and gratitude. I hear a lot about expressing gratitude … but how about being “real” and also acknowledging the frustrations? I have found that once you talk about them out loud, they actually seem to subside.

*What about writing letters to family and friends? I certainly have started doing this, and I believe a handwritten and addressed note, in my own handwriting, shows I am sending “love and caring” to someone. How about writing one handwritten card a week? That’s a good start.

*Talk on the phone with family or friends. Pre-COVID, we never had enough time in the day to call friends … well, now we do! Try it! I know that I have started to do this more often, and I have found it to be quite enjoyable.

*It’s okay to send text messages as a way to check in with friends, clients or family. If you don’t feel like writing a letter or calling them, a quick text lets them know you are thinking about them.

*Facetime is a great tool. (My two daughters and I used Facetime so we could be together all eight nights of Hanukkah in December … it was amazing!)

*Self talk—sometimes it’s helpful to talk to yourself out loud, perhaps when you are in the car, or in the bathroom by yourself.

*Spiritual Prayer—prayer or meditation is very personal and can be quite grounding. Perhaps using some quiet time to reduce stress may be helpful.

*Playing music—try listening to or playing calming music or your favorites. My mom Frieda always had classical music blaring inside her house. When I was younger, I was annoyed by that. Now I find that hearing music while I am inside my house grounds me and makes me feel less lonely, even when I am alone.

On a more physical note, Lois also talked about the importance of getting physical … exercising and gardening (being outdoors). Doing physical exercise stimulates endorphins in your system which makes you feel better! It’s not just the burning of calories we’re talking about here—it’s creating positivity with movement.

And of course, she emphasized that the simple act of petting a dog or cat is proven to lower your blood pressure (and stress). No wonder that adopt-a-pet and rescue organizations have seen increased interest in their services! Believe it or not, some places in the U.S. have no pets to adopt—they ran out!

So, until we are all vaccinated and are free to visit our closest friends and family members, I hope my friend Dr. Lois Abrams’ advice resonates with you in some way. I can say that I am 100% positive that my own increase in exercise level during COVID has helped me greatly in feeling positive and not so isolated. And hand writing notes (108 written so far this year) to family, friends and business colleagues has become a new habit that I actually love!

Remember that old saying: Don’t worry—be happy!


So, in case you haven’t heard, having the name “Karen” is not necessarily a good thing these days. I’m sure my parents had no idea that choosing “Karen” as my first name would be an issue in future years. Apparently (according to Urban Dictionary) the definition of a “Karen”:

This new pop culture label actually got a write up on Newsweek.com last May What Is a ‘Karen’? If Somebody’s Called You One Chances Are You Spoke to Their Manager. The article refers to another website “Know Your Meme” and says the term can be used to describe someone “characterized as an irritating, entitled woman, sometimes an ex-wife who took custody of “the kids.” Basically, calling someone a “Karen” is a gentle way of reminding them that they are a b**ch!

And, if that wasn’t enough, if you watched the Super Bowl two weeks ago and viewed the M&M’S Super Bowl Commercial “Come together” . . . you saw that my name was featured in their 30-second spot:

When I first heard the term, I laughed it off. In fact, I never even researched what “being a Karen” meant until after the Super Bowl ad, when a friend thought it might be a good blogpost. These “funny” not so funny Karen memes and references have absolutely blown up on social media and are making life problematic for some people actually named Karen. None of this pop culture phenom really bothers me. I’m confident in who I am and what I do, but it is setting a bad example and Name Calling is never ok.

According to a September 9, 2020, article in the Huffington Post:

Nameberry co-founder and CEO Pamela Redmond told People in July that she felt “sure” that “Karen is going to become one of those names that no parent wants to give their child.” Names associated with controversial figures and events often fall in popularity, which is why there aren’t many young Adolfs or Katrinas in preschool classes these days.

But this isn’t always the case, according to Bellevue University psychology professor and former president of the American Name Society Cleveland K. Evans. He told the Associated Press in 2007 that publicity around a particular name, whether positive or negative, usually boosts its popularity.

So will we actually see a rise in the number of newborn Karens in 2020? We’ll have to wait until the SSA releases the data next year.”

The popularity of my first name has been dropping since it peaked in popularity in 1965 when it was the third most popular name for baby girls. As you can see, in 2019 it dropped to number 660 as a popular name:


I guess we will have to wait and see what happens in the naming game…

Do yourself and your favorite Karen a favor: remember that not every Karen is “a Karen” and take a moment to send your favorite Karen a virtual hug today. Meanwhile, you can call me Karen!


If you recall, my list of goals for 2020 included reading 40 books for the year. It was amazing to me that I sailed right through that goal and achieved 52 books! That’s an average of one a week. It really helps that I can listen to most books while I walk by having the Audible app loaded on my mobile phone. And, now that I have long drives to and from work, I listen to books in the car. (Hint: With Audible, you can increase the speed of the book. On some books, I can listen to them at 2X speed, meaning a 10-hour book only takes five hours to listen to. Sometimes, I can only listen at 1.6X speed—it really depends on who is narrating the book and how understandable their diction is at such a fast speed.)

My first month of this year, I was a bit of an overachiever. I completed 10 books! Now that you know my secret of listening to books at 2X speed, you realize how I am able to get through so many books. It’s not a contest for me, but rather I find it really enriches my life. My favorite books are either autobiographies, biographies, or history books. Some of my favorites from January include “Mrs. Kennedy and Me” (authored by Clint Hill, the secret service agent assigned to Jacqueline Kennedy when her husband became President) and “Leadership in Turbulent Times” by Doris Kearns Goodwin, which highlights the leadership lessons and connections of Presidents Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Lyndon Baines Johnson. I highly recommend both books, and if you are in a book club, they would make for fabulous discussion.

This month, as you know, is Black History Month, and at first it seemed like a coincidence that the first book I chose to listen to in February was “Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents” by Isabel Wilkerson.

I had downloaded it last month, along with the two books I mentioned above, as a dear friend recommended all three books to me. The 14-hour length was a bit intimidating, but as soon as I started the book, I realized why it has been named the No. 1 Nonfiction Book of the Year by Time Magazine, was one of Oprah’s Book Club picks, and was longlisted for the national book award. It is personal, it is serious, and it is a historical recounting of the powerful caste system that influences peoples’ lives and behavior and the nation’s fate. It was eye-opening, as Ms. Wilkerson linked the caste systems of America, India, and Nazi Germany. Because of my Jewish heritage, it felt more personal to read about how the Nazi’s studied the racial systems in America to plan their out-casting of the Jews.

If you want to have a better understanding of the roots of the Black Lives Matter movement, why tensions are so high about voter rights, and various other political and emotional issues, I highly recommend this deeply researched book.

My second book was “It Worked for Me” by retired General Colin Powell. My favorite books are those which are read by the author, and General Powell read the book. I did NOT read it at 2X the speed, as I wanted to enjoy his voice and to hear him tell his stories. He recounted his 13 Rules of Life and the story behind them. The best part was the epilogue of the book, during which General Powell told the story of reading a story to his grandson while being recorded for a television show. He wrote the book to feel like a personal story and it was very authentic.

Now I am on to my third book of the month. By now I have set a goal to read about Black history or books authored by Black writers in February, and after much research I chose “My Life, My Love, My Legacy” by Coretta Scott King, the widow of the late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It has been wonderful to read about how they met, how Dr. King fell instantly in love with Coretta, how they were truly soulmates, and the birth of their four children. I was a young girl when Dr. King was gunned down and murdered in Memphis, TN, at the age of 39. I learned that at the age of 35 he was the youngest man to have received the Nobel Peace Prize for his work as a leader of the American Civil Rights movement, but, more notably, that he took his ideals not only from Christianity, but also from the operational techniques of Gandhi (the recognized, non-elected leader of India). I have not yet finished the book, but it is incredible to learn about the strength and conviction of Mrs. King, even after the death of her husband left her with four young children. She died of ovarian cancer in 2006 at the age of 78 after successfully establishing The King Center for Nonviolent Social Change in Atlanta, GA. Visiting The King Center is now on my bucket list.

How about you? What are you reading these days? Why not use the rest of this month to learn more about Black History? Next month is Women’s History Month … I’m already making my list!


Even I, the most non-sports-oriented person on the planet, know that this weekend is SUPER BOWL LV. And that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are facing the Kansas City Chiefs. And that an even bigger story is the tale of the two quarterbacks. Tom Brady, age 43, of Tampa Bay will face Patrick Mahomes, age 25, of Kansas City. That’s an amazing and kind of crazy match up in itself, if you think about it.

But I want to share the back story on how I know the guy who authored, “12 Lessons in Business Leadership; Insights from the Championship Career of Tom Brady.” Yes, if you are wondering how Tom Brady led his team to multiple wins and the 10th SUPER BOWL of his career, this book probably has the answers for you.

The guy who wrote the book is Kevin Daum. You may recognize his name, as he has penned more than 1,000 articles for Inc. Magazine. He is an Adjunct Professor at Fordham University in New York at the Gabelli School of Business. Because he is not an over achiever, he also does podcasts (10 Minute Tips from the TOP) and serves as a coach for people needing marketing and business advice. This is his sixth book. I asked Kevin what’s his “superpower”—the secret to his success as a writer and teacher. He told me that he is good at taking complex subjects and making them simple.

That’s probably why the publisher Skyhorse Publishing called him a few years ago and said, “Hey Kevin, we think there is a story here on leadership lessons and Tom Brady. Would you write a book about that?” (Frankly, that was not the answer I expected when I called Kevin earlier this week to find out the back story on his book featuring Tom Brady.)

I’ve always heard that most sports teams are run better than most companies, notes the foreword of his book. Because they have a Playbook, they Practice and they have a Professional Coach.* So, Kevin (and co-author and collaborator Anne Mary Ciminelli) set out to uncover what the secret lessons were from Tom Brady’s unquestioned success. But the most interesting thing about this book is that Kevin and Anne Mary did NOT speak to Tom Brady! They actually chose to review all the public information on Brady and his style, and then they validated their conclusions by consulting some well-respected business coaches and owners.

Because they are using public information and are writing “about” Tom Brady, they did not have to talk to Brady, nor did they have to get his permission before writing the book. Which, IMHO, makes the book more authentic; there is no autobiographical spin.

What are Tom Brady’s 12 Lessons in Business Leadership?

  1. Creating A Winning Playbook
  2. Make Time Your Ally
  3. Lead Through Each And Every Moment
  4. Meetings Are A Championship Tool
  5. Empower The Team And Hold Them Accountable
  6. Always Prepare For Crisis
  7. Trust Is the Twelfth Man
  8. Elevate Everyone
  9. Talk To People Where They Are
  10. Executing Team Success
  11. Attitude Is Everything
  12. Live The Image

I asked Kevin what he thought Tom Brady’s superpower was. He thought deeply, and said there are two:  Attitude and he talks to people where they are.

So, if this book sounds of interest to you and you want to order it, I would ask that you wait until Friday, February 5 at 12:00 p.m. PT/ 3 p.m. ET to order it on Amazon—because I want to support my friend Kevin in making his book an Amazon #1 bestseller! How do you do that? By reaching out into your network and all your friends’ networks and asking them all to make their purchase at the very same time. This causes a spike in demand, pushing the book to the top of the list!

The publisher of the book, along with all of Kevin’s clients, followers and friends are all asking that we make that purchase at the same time:  Friday, February 5 at 12:00 p.m. PT/ 3:00 p.m. ET. Here is the link again:  12 Lessons in Business Leadership; Insights from the Championship Career of Tom Brady


So on Sunday, while I am watching the Super Bowl, cozying up with some delicious fresh jackfruit chili, I will be thinking about the difference a great leader makes in the success of his/her team. I will be thinking about having a playbook, talking to people where they are and empowering the team and holding them accountable.

And I will be thinking about my friend Kevin and his co-author Anne Mary, and wondering if they will be studying Tom Brady’s moves on the field and in the locker room.


P.S. I promised to share how I know Kevin. Well, Kevin is business colleague of my partner Jack, and our first date in 2019 was to take a hike up a huge mountain in San Diego County with Kevin and his wife Van. We spent the weekend with them, and that’s when I got to witness what a smart guy Kevin is.

*The quotes above are taken from the foreword of the book, which was written by Jack.

Jack, Karen, Kevin and Van ready to start their hike up Potato Chip Rock.


Los Alamitos, CA (January 2021) – Lunar New Year, which begins on February 12, 2021, is the perfect time to help shoppers discover new food favorites, and Frieda’s customized Asian vegetable program makes it easy. 2021 is the Year of the Ox, symbolizing hard work and honesty; we think it’s quite fitting, wouldn’t you say?

Increased family time and at-home eating might be one of the pandemic’s most positive outcomes. However, shoppers are increasingly facing food fatigue. Celebrating Lunar New Year is a great way to keep shoppers inspired with new Asian vegetable favorites. A recent study shows that 50% of shoppers are interested in cooking Asian food at home1 and 58% want to try new Asian vegetables when cooking Asian food2.

“2021’s focus is on adventure and wellness, and our Asian vegetable assortment reflects that. Bestselling and in-demand items like bok choy, gai lan and Chinese eggplant bring much needed excitement to everyday eating while fresh ginger, turmeric and lemongrass, are perfect for promoting balance and wellness,” says Cindy Sherman, director of marketing and innovation at Frieda’s.

Frieda’s recommends creating displays that give shoppers fun and inspiring meal ideas like at-home noodle and spring roll bars. Display complementary items such as wonton and eggroll wrappers and kimchi, and tie them in with food items from other departments—like soy sauce, chopsticks and even red napkins—to be a one-stop destination for Lunar New Year cooking. Given the timing, these are perfect stay-in Valentine’s Day ideas, and nice alternatives to Italian food and pasta.

At Frieda’s, we take great pride in making your store the place for exciting seasonal shopping. Call your Frieda’s account manager today and make your produce department the ultimate Lunar New Year destination!


C+R 1000 Person Research, 2019