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Openness and diversity

A picture of a woman, Natasha Solano, holding various fruits in her arms.

Fresh fruit puts you in a good mood: supply chain expert Natasha Solano at the photo shoot. © Yves Salmon

They juggle strawberries or take an enthusiastic bite out of an apple: the large-format photographs by the British photographer Yves Salmon on display at FRUIT LOGISTICA 2024 in Hall 27 are proof that these people enjoy their work.

The idea for the unusual photo project entitled Faces of Fresh Produce took shape at FRUIT LOGISTICA 2020 and ASIA FRUIT LOGISTICA 2020. At the international fruit and vegetable trade fairs, Yves Salmon and the project’s initiator Chris White, managing director of Fruitnetmedia International and chair of the international committee of FRUIT LOGISTICA, set up an improvised photo studio in one of the meeting rooms for a few hours at a time. Then they asked the CEOs or proprietors of well-known companies to go before the camera, each with an item characterising their position.

Among those photographed were Piet Karsten from South Africa. He established the Karsten Group, the biggest grape producer in the southern hemisphere. He proudly displays the fruit he exports to half the world. Supply chain specialist Natasha Solano holds the contents of an entire fruit basket on her arm, while Winstone Chee, head of fresh produce for Walmart China, juggles an apple and an orange.

A picture of a man, Piet Karsten, holding a large glass of grapes.

An enthusiastic fruit producer for 55 years: Piet Karsten, founder of the Karsten Group. ©Yves Salmon

What is striking is the lack of stress in their faces. They emanate calm instead. “Some of them have been loyal to this business for decades. They represent an international and diverse sector to which many remain closely tied for their entire working lives – myself included“, says Chris White, a journalist for the fruit and vegetable trade for 35 years. “With this project, we wanted to show who is behind its products and services.“

After the photo shoot in 2020 the intention was initially to exhibit the pictures at future trade fairs and publish a catalogue. However, that was delayed by four years due to the pandemic. “The exhibition re-unites us with these photographs beyond a computer screen“, says a delighted Chris White. All the Faces of Fresh Produce still work in the business, even if they have changed their jobs. Thus, many will come face-to-face at FRUIT LOGISTICA 2024 with an image four years younger than the present day.

Messe Berlin providing generous space for a display of 70 photographs from this series is one thing. Another is the fact that visitors to the fair get a chance to photograph themselves. A photo cubicle lets them take selfies in front of a FRUIT LOGISTICA-themed background – as a souvenir and for distribution on social media.

The exhibition entitled Faces of Fresh Produce is open throughout FRUIT LOGISTICA in Hall 27 on Stand A61.