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DOLE Specialists Get Schooled in Nutrition at NC Research Campus

August 11, 2014


Media Contactsncrc-new-logo

Phyllis Beaver

Marketing Director

NC Research CampusDole-logo


William Goldfield

Dole Food Company

(818) 874-4647


KANNAPOLIS, N.C. (Aug 11, 2014) — It’s not enough that Dole sales and marketing specialists serve as the public face for one of the world’s largest providers of fresh fruit and vegetables. They also need to keep current with the volumes of produce-based research and education, and the increasing ways that fruit and vegetable consumption can help improve America’s nutritional health – a goal that is at the very heart of the Westlake Village, Calif.-based company.

With that in mind, the entire Dole Fresh Fruit sales and marketing staff is visiting the Dole Nutrition Research Laboratory and other facilities on North Carolina Research Campus (NCRC) in Kannapolis, N.C., for two days of nutritional education and to preview the latest in fruit and vegetable research being conducted at Dole’s state-of-the-art analytical chemistry laboratory.

The Dole Fresh Vegetables sales and marketing team from Monterey, Calif., will be making a similar trip to NCRC later this year.

Leading the Aug. 11-12 visit by Dole Fresh Fruit is Nicholas Gillitt, Ph.D, Dole Foods vice president of nutrition research and director of the Dole Nutrition Institute. Gillitt, who is based at NCRC, will not only be educating visitors on the science behind fruit and vegetable research but helping them present these findings to stimulate greater overall produce appreciation, recipe use and in-home preparation.

“Understanding the health benefits of fresh fruit and vegetables, and being able to pass that information on to customers, is a valuable tool in each Dole representative’s tool box,” said Gillitt.

For Dole, the opportunity to educate its sales and marketing team serves a larger purpose in promoting the value of increased consumption of fruits and vegetables to retailers, chefs, registered dietitians, bloggers, influencers and the general public.

“Dole has a unique resource in our relationship with the Campus,” said Bil Goldfield, Dole’s director of corporate communications. “In our experience, educating our sales team with the latest research so they can better communicate that information to our retailers and consumers is extremely effective in promoting long-term healthier eating habits.”

“Dole bringing such a large contingent of sales people here to meet with Nick and so many of our other scientists is a testament to how successfully our research is advancing the understanding of how and why fruits are so beneficial to human health,” said Lynne Scott Safrit, NCRC president.

The Dole sales staff will spend the day hearing presentations from NCRC scientists:

  • Mary Ann Lila, PhD, Director of the NC State Plants for Human Health Institute;
  • David Nieman, DrPH, FACSM,  Director of the ASU Human Performance Laboratory;
  • TinChung Leung, PhD, Assistant Professor, Julius L. Chambers Biomedical/Biotechnology Research Institute, NC Central University Nutrition Research Program;
  • Leonard Williams, PhD, NC A&T Center for Excellence in Post-Harvest Technologies;
  • Karen Corbin, PhD, RD, Research Assistant Professor, UNC Chapel Hill Nutrition Research Institute;
  • Ashley Dunham, PhD, MURDOCK Study project leader

For most of the sales staff, this will be their first exposure to the research expertise and capabilities available to Gillitt and his academic collaborators at the NCRC.

Dole Food Company is one of the world’s largest producers and marketers of high-quality fresh fruit and fresh vegetables and is an industry leader in many of the products it sells, as well as in nutrition education and research. Dole has a long-standing commitment to research and nutrition education as a company, which reflects the passion for health and wellness of Dole’s Chairman and CEO David H. Murdock.


About the NC Research Campus

The NC Research Campus is home to corporate, academic and healthcare partners focused on advancing science at the intersection of human health, agriculture and nutrition.  The NCRC is located on a 350-acre campus in Kannapolis, NC, just north of Charlotte, and has over a million square feet of lab and office space under management that includes the research centers of nine world-renowned universities and colleges and companies like General Mills, Sensory Spectrum, Monsanto, LabCorp and Dole Foods, Inc. For more information, visit


About the Dole Nutrition Research Laboratory

As part of its mission of leading the industry in produce-based nutrition research and education, Dole partnered with the NC Research Campus to found the Dole Nutrition Research Laboratory. The 10,000-square-foot analytical chemistry laboratory in the NCRC’s Plants for Human Health Building, an extension of the Dole Nutrition Institute (DNI), provides a state-of-the-art academic environment for the study of the myriad of phytochemicals found in the company’s fruits and vegetables. Among other things, the Dole lab examines ways to enhance the nutrition benefits of Dole fresh products through partnerships with the agronomists and other specialists in its fruit and vegetable divisions.


About Dole Food Company, Inc.

Dole Food Company, Inc., is one of the world’s largest producers and marketers of high-quality fresh fruit and fresh vegetables. Dole is an industry leader in many of the products it sells, as well as in nutrition education and research. For more information, please visit

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