A family feeding families
Family owned and operated for over 40 years, IMG Citrus was founded by Michel and Veronique Sallin. Born and raised on a French apple farm, Michel has a genuine love for sustainable agriculture and an entrepreneurial spirit that fuels our passion for using the most innovative processes and technologies. Veronique’s heart and passion for people inspires our quest to make meaningful connections that foster winning partnerships.
Today, Michel and Veronique’s three children, Timothee, Melanie and Chloe lead the company as Co-CEOs. The 2nd generation, raised alongside the business, are equipped with a fearless drive to think outside the box while never losing sight of the family values that are the foundation of IMG Citrus.
From adversity comes opportunity
Our company story recounts an outstanding group of people that bring visionary leadership and a relentless ability to create opportunity out of adversity. Each challenge is embraced as an opportunity to grow and improve. Each success is met with humble gratitude. With determination and an unwavering commitment to the industry, we never lose sight of our blessing and are excited about the future. We invite you to be part of the journey with us.
1979IMG Citrus begins marketing Florida grapefruitMichel and Veronique, natives of France, build a brokerage business to sell Florida grapefruit in Western Europe. They begin by marketing a modest 10,000 cartons in their first year; within 7 years, they will become the largest export broker of Florida grapefruit with 1.4 million cartons marketed. In 1981, the entrepreneurs invest in a 260 acre grove in Lake County, Florida, a first step toward vertical integration.
1983Devastating FreezesThe young company suffers a devastating setback when the freezes of 1983 and 1985 destroy all of its groves. The founders look to rebuild and diversify, and explore the production of a variety of agricultural crops including pecans, peaches, blueberries, apples, kiwis and grapes. In the end, they choose to venture into containerized tree farming on the Groveland property, while relocating the citrus operation to warmer Indian River County.
1999Packinghouse purchaseWith the acquisition of a Packinghouse in Vero Beach, Florida, IMG Citrus officially became a fully integrated citrus company that grows, packs, and markets fresh Florida citrus around the world. In 2000, IMG Citrus began marketing oranges and tangerines, in addition to grapefruit. IMG Citrus also began marketing for the first time on the domestic market.
2004Four major hurricanesThe summer of 2004 brought four land-falling hurricanes, Charlie, Frances, Jean, and Ivan, to the state of Florida, making history for the state, as well as for the company. IMG Citrus and the entire Florida citrus industry experience major setbacks with the spread of greening throughout the state via the hurricane winds, ultimately causing a dip in fruit yields in the grove. Adversity is nothing new for the company, having already weathered hailstorms, tornados, and freezes.
2013Investment into year-round citrus distributionIMG Citrus is ranked as one of the largest Packinghouses in Florida and continues to invest in state-of-the-art facilities. The Port of Miami/Everglade lifts restrictions on importing citrus, giving the IMG Citrus team a unique opportunity to service the SouthEast United States with fresh citrus year round. IMG Citrus welcomes the opportunity and expands its refrigerated storage capacity with the addition of a 13,000 square foot facility and develops partnership with the best South American citrus growers.
2019 - 2021Happy Food & Imagine grove purchasesIMG Citrus purchases a 4,000 acre grove, which more than doubles Florida citrus production and solidifies its position as the largest grapefruit grower in Florida. Two years later IMG Citrus purchases the Imagine Grove, adding an additional 2,500-acres and bringing the total citrus acreage to 11,387 acres.
2021Founders retire and the next generation steps inCo-founders Michel and Veronique retire, and their three children - Melanie Ressler, Timothee Sallin, and Chloe Gentry - transition from their operational roles within the company into the roles of Co-CEOs. Together the 2nd generation leads collaboratively through their family values, their passion for the success of the company and a vision for continued sustainable growth of our operations and teams.
2023New Cold Storage Facility AcquisitionIMG Citrus acquires a new 185,000 sq ft cold storage and packaging facility, along with 1,000 acres of farmland in Indian River County. The facility has over 3,000 pallet positions, state-of-the-art refrigeration technology, 20 dock doors and space for future expansion. This strategic acquisition strengthens the company's supply chain integration and commitment to provide the Southeast market with the most efficient cost structure and the shortest transit time to market.
Shh, grapefruit might just be our favorite
Our company began as a broker of Florida grapefruit to the European and Asian markets, and our first investments in groves were with Florida’s prized Ruby Red Grapefruit variety. Today we have grown into a vertically integrated company with a growing portfolio that also includes tangerines and juice oranges. Yet, our love to grow and market the exceptional taste of Florida’s grapefruit is ever present. Our most recent passion project is re-introducing Florida’s heirloom white grapefruit to the US market through the Hellos label, Learn More
Women-owned and operated
We have a role to encourage and emulate more women to join, thrive and contribute to an incredibly purposeful and vital industry for the world: Agriculture. Inspired and mentored by the generous heart and keen business mind of our co-founder Veronique Sallin, today we have a second generation of powerful women who are helping lead the future of our company and industry.