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published on October 12, 2017 - 2:35 PM
Written by David Castellon
The latest recipient of Baker Peterson Franklin, Certified Public Accountants’ annual Ag Business Award is Fowler-based Bee Sweet Citrus.
 
This is the 22nd year the award has been giving out by the Fresno CPA firm, that specializes in accounting for farms and other agriculture-related businesses.
 
Julie Maldonado, a spokeswoman for BPF, said the award is given to businesses based partly on their growth and success since they started, “but equally important is what that have done for their industry and general community.”
 
“Bee Sweet Citrus exemplifies a leading for-profit ag organization whose achievements and impact have significantly contributed to the ag industry and the Central Valley,” states BPF’s press release.
 
“Bee Sweet Citrus has a distinguished record of positive leadership, entrepreneurship, and service to the agriculture industry and our community,” the release continues.
 
It goes on to say that the Bee Sweet was founded in 1987 in a wood shed and has grown to the point of operating a 400,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art packing house on 36 acres.
 
The company also grows 20 citrus varieties on 10,000 acres and packs 10 million cartons of fruit annually.
 
BPF also noted Bee Sweet’s environmental sustainability efforts that include having a large solar panel system at its packing house, along with water conservation and recycling programs, using recyclable packaging and using electric forklifts rather than gas-powered models.
 
“The organization serves on numerous industry boards and supports a variety of organizations,” with contributions that include $1 million given to help pay for a new pediatric care center in Fowler being built by Valley Children’s Healthcare and Adventist Health, along with $600,000 to help pay for the construction of a citrus processing line at Fresno State University.
 
Bee Sweet will receive its award at a luncheon Nov. 1 at the Clovis Veterans Memorial District. Tickets are available by calling the Fresno Chamber of Commerce at 495-4811 or online at www.fresnochamber.com.


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