Lipman has acquired Dallas-based Combs Produce, a tomato repacker and fresh produce distributor. The newly acquired company will join Lipman’s nationwide network of farming, packing, repacking and processing companies.
“The Southwest market is a key component of our growth plan,” says Kent Shoemaker, CEO of Lipman. “Combs Produce was our first choice and simply the perfect fit. They are highly respected in the fresh produce industry and share our core values. We are confident their customers will benefit from our farming company. We are pleased to welcome Brett Combs and his team to Lipman.”
Founded in 1958 by J.C. Combs, Combs Produce has grown to be the largest tomato repacker in the Southwest region. Over the last four decades, the company evolved into a full-line produce distributor.
“There is tremendous opportunity in our region,” says Brett Combs. “Our people have provided first-rate customer service that has allowed us to grow. By becoming a part of Lipman, we will have ‘access to the acre.’ Our customers want to deal directly with farmers, and now we are part of a farming company.”
Brett Combs, grandson of the founder, has been part of the company leadership since 1990. After the acquisition, he will serve as general manager of the Dallas facility.
Like Combs Produce, Lipman started as a small, family-owned business. Now, as North America’s largest field tomato grower, Lipman commands a significant percentage of the fresh tomato industry with 30 locations throughout North America.
As part of Lipman’s geographic diversity, the company has strategically located farming, packing and distribution facilities across the country that provide wholesale, retail and foodservice customers with fresh produce year-round. This acquisition is Lipman’s third in six months and expands the company’s reach in Texas, as well as Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, New Mexico and Arkansas.