Jane and David Kamrat met in Brooklyn NY in 1968. Like others at that time, they were attracted to the “back to the land movement”. In the early 70’s along with a group of close friends, they purchased 210 acres in upstate New York and taught themselves how to grow food and live an alternative life style. David owned and operated a construction company from 1972 till 1985. In 1986-1990, he started Natural Brands, which was a local natural food distribution business in Albany NY. From 1992 through 1996 David moved to Miami and worked with victims of hurricane Andrew settling claims and helping to rebuild.
In 1996, David and his son owned and operated Qualmax telecommunications company. The company moved to Eugene OR, in 2003, and focused on internet communications. As CEO of Qualmax communications, David began traveling throughout the third world building telecom systems that permitted US immigrants to call their families for a fraction of the price offered by AT&T and other telecom giants. In 2001 after the events of 9/11, David and Jane founded JAM a diverse group located in South Florida, and formed a not for profit peace organization https://jamandallinterfaith.net/ and they still remain on the Board Of Directors. In 2005 as a Board member of Next Step Recycling in Eugene OR, David and others travelled to rural Guatemala providing computers to the indigenous Mayan community. In 2010, continuing his idealistic pursuits, David wanted to give organic food distribution a second try and formed Planet Verde.
Established in 2010, Planet Verde is a mission based Sustainable, Local, Organic and Whole Foods Distributor (SLOW). Our slogan “Buy it forward”, simply implies that through our collective buying choices we can help change our community. Our primary goal in business is to support local farmers and local food producers while influencing them to change toward organic, sustainable practices. Our stated goal is to increase local food consumption in Oregon 10 fold from the current estimated 5% to 50%. A tenfold increase which will result in thousands of local jobs and help our community live a healthy lifestyle. Currently we distribute for over 30 locally owned brands and growing.
Operating out of two warehouses, Planet Verde directs its fleet of refrigerated small vans directly to small farms and producers that range in annual revenues between $100,000 and $1,00,000. We pick up food products, bring them back to our warehouses, sort them, and deliver the products to health food stores, grocery stores, supermarkets, restaurants, and institutions. This service eliminates the need for small farmers and producers to self-distribute, allowing them to focus on their core strengths and let us do the work of delivery. When we deliver these products to locations, we offer full DSD (Direct Service Delivery) to those customers who require it. Doing so allows our suppliers to know exactly what each location has in inventory and saves both the producer and retailer valuable time.
OUR VISION- A NEW ECONOMIC MODEL
As we succeed, Planet Verde will become a company owned by all the stakeholders in the supply chain. We are in the process of creating a path towards that end which will accrue ownership stakes to any entity that wants to be committed to Planet Verde. Ownership stakes are offered to the entire supply chain including employees, selected farmers, product producers, restaurant owners and retailers. We are hoping that expanding our ownership base will increase the energy and creativity we need to make a difference. Our goal is to have this new ownership model in place by year end 2022. We invite you to do business with Planet Verde and join our success.
We have assembled a great team of devoted individuals. These include our general manager Wendy Strong (25 years in organic produce distribution), Becky Hilderbrand our operations manager (30 years in Organic produce distribution), CFO Fazil Parappurath, (MBA from U of O, five years with our company), accounting manager Jane Kamrat, and lead salesperson Miles Alberts (working alongside David since 2015). We also want to acknowledge our drivers and production staff Chris, Reid, Abel, Jessica, and Jim.
We understand that our customers and vendors through necessity need to purchase items from large companies who offer them a broad line of products, sales incentives, and promotions. The challenge of competing with distribution giants such as Amazon, UNFI, KeHE, US Foods and SYSCO who are dominating the market is daunting. These conglomerates achieve massive growth through access to unlimited capital and consolidation. Our only ask is for local food managers to consider Planet Verde when making their buying choices and “Buy it forward”.