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New CEO, harvest for Bell-Carter's 100th
As Bell-Carter Foods celebrates its 100-year anniversary, the company is also celebrating the announcement of a new chief executive officer.
The company announced on Wednesday that Tim T. Carter, great-grandson to co-founder Arthur Bell, has been named chief executive officer, succeeding Ken Wienholz, who will continue to help develop the executive team and work with the company's board of directors as a special adviser.
Previous to his new position, Carter, 38 of San Francisco, was the company's chief operating officer.
"It is my greatest honor to take over the role of CEO," Carter said in a statement. "I have been a Bell-Carter employee since I was 15 years old, working my way through all aspects of the organization. I am so grateful to the entire Bell-Carter family, our loyal customers and dedicated employees and look forward to continuing our relationship as we build on our success."
Carter visits the company's production facility in Corning on a weekly basis, according to company spokeswoman Lindsey Martin. He works out of the company's headquarters in Lafayette.
Carter represents the fourth generation of the Bell-Carter family, as brothers Arthur and Henry Bell purchased their first olive orchard in Reedly in 1912. During the past 100 years, the company has evolved from an olive grower to an olive processor and importer.
In 1978, Bell-Carter bought the Maywood Packing Company in Corning, moving its entire operation from Berkeley, and reopening the processor and production facility in 1980.
The company employees 430 people at the Corning plant, more than half of its overall employee count of 760.
Bell-Carter Foods has also expanded regionally from Northern California to more than 50 countries worldwide and broadened the product line from ripe olives in cans to a full line of olives and related products in cans, jars, pouches and bowls.
In 2011, it bought olives from more than 700 growers, and processed 52,000 tons of the fruit at the Corning facilities.
The company's various departments have also grown over the years to include packaging services for other food companies.
To celebrate its 100th harvest season, Bell-Carter has been holding special events throughout the year, Martin said.
The company's California growers cultivate two main olive varieties — Manzanillo and Sevillano. Lindsay Olives produces black and green ripe olives and imports Kalamata olives, Spanish olives, cocktail onions, capers and pimientos from four continents.