About Us

How it all started… by JB

I was attending the 2016 Forbes Ag Tech conference in Salinas when I first thought of the idea of a Salinas based quality testing lab. We had just undergone some changes in the Global Fresh Group that caused a small lab we had Davis CA to close. As I sat there listening to the leaders of the produce industry speak about innovation, quality and safety, I realized this is the ideal location for an independent quality testing lab.

The only remaining piece was to find a top notch Lab director; one who could run and grow the Lab. Will Daniels suggested Eric and I immediately knew that the team was complete and the Lab would become a reality. The rest, as they say, is history…

Meet the QfreshLAB team:

Eric Vandercook,
freshLAB Director

Eric has B.Sc. degrees in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, as well as Food and Nutritional Science from Michigan State University. He has worked for over a decade in various food industries including fresh cut produce, organic produce market, fresh pressed juices and dietary supplements.

Eric is PCQI certified, is an active member of IFT, and active in the post-harvest community; partnering with Universities to help solve and advise on post-harvest challenges. He has a hands-on approach to problem solving and can help to quickly solve difficult problems through experimentation.

Eric also has experience with biochemistry procedures, including; PCR, Western Blot, cell culturing, gel filtration, HPLC, FPLC, SDS-PAGE, UV-VIS and aseptic protocol.

Jeff Brandenburg,
Founding Partner of QfreshLAB

Jeff is also the President of The JSB Group, LLC has over 37 years of experience in packaging and packaging design. Jeff has a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Iowa State University, with a minor Biomedical Engineering, and a M.S. in Food Safety from Michigan State University. He serves on the technology boards and councils of a number of trade and industry organizations; is the primary author and reviewer of numerous trade articles as well as association guidance documents. Jeff was the lead author for the Modified Atmosphere Packaging (MAP) chapter for CRC’s latest publication on Modified and Controlled Atmospheres.

Jeff is an adjunct Professor of Microbiology at a local college and has been certified by The National Good Agricultural Practice Program at Cornell University as a GAPs (Good agricultural Practices) Online Produce Safety Course Instructor for the State of Massachusetts GAP training program. He is also an authorized consultant for the State of Massachusetts Farm Viability Program and numerous greenhouse operations.