Capespan North America can trace its origins to the Canadian Montreal Fruit Terminal and Bonsecour Market, when, in 1912, brothers David and Louis Fisher started a small fruit and vegetable company, Fisher Brothers Sales Inc.
The firm provided fresh produce to wholesalers and delivered to stores in the city and surrounding areas that didn’t have their own buying arm.
The company showed modest growth between the two World Wars and in 1949, David’s son, Art Fisher, joined the family business and soon became the driving force. From 1951-1959, Fisher Brothers grew from a small regional wholesaler to a national supplier of fresh produce by adding an import arm to the business. During this period, the company started importing fruit and vegetables from Florida and California, laying the foundation for the global business the company is today.
In 1959, Fisher Brothers was approached by the South African Citrus Exchange to start importing ‘Outspan’-branded oranges into Canada. Based on this success, Fisher Brothers also was given the mandate to import and distribute South Africa’s deciduous fruit in North America under the ‘Cape’ brand.
The retail trade in both Canada and the USA started recognising the excellent product quality from South Africa and the level of service Fisher Brothers offered its client base. Soon the company’s reputation attracted interest from other supply sources and thus products from France, Israel, Morocco, Chile, Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay were added to the portfolio.
After an association of 40 years, South Africa’s Capespan, the international leader in delivering fresh, world-class product and service solutions to global fruit trading partners, entered into a partnership with Fisher Brothers. In January 2000, the company started trading as Fisher Capespan and in 2004, when Art Fisher retired, Capespan took a majority share. In 2012, the company changed its name to Capespan North America.
Our head office remains in Montreal and our US offices are in Philadelphia PA and Bakersfield CA. Today Capespan North America is one of the leading importers of deciduous and citrus fruit from all over the world into North America. In addition to imports, the company also has a strategic partnership with Anthony Vineyards, a leading domestic producer of table grapes in California, and supply arrangements with domestic producers. This enables us to supply our customers all year round.