History of West Coast Products
Premium Olives and Olive Oil from California, since 1937…
In the mid 1930’s with war clouds forming, Al Krakov noticed it was becoming more difficult to import European olives and olive oil for his customers on the East Coast. As Italy, Greece, Spain, and Portugal fell under the grip of the fascists, Al looked to California and found a solution to the problem. He purchased West Coast Products, a specialty olive and olive oil company in 1937.
Long before the Mediterranean diet was fashionable, olives and olive oil were a good business in California for the Krakov families.
By the 1950’s WCP was thriving and needed more manpower. It was 1958 when NYU graduate Marino Garbis moved from New York with his wife to join the business. Marino Garbis and Everett Krakov, Al’s son, eventually became co-owners of the business. For over 40 years, Marino worked hard to maintain and build upon his father’s principles of integrity, high quality, and dependability.
In 1999, Sacramento resident and investment manager, David DeCamilla summoned the courage to propose purchasing some agricultural property, as a kind of weekend getaway. Dave turned to his two brothers, Mark and JB, who despite living on the east coast were equally likely to consider unconventional investment ideas. The brothers agreed that a California olive orchard just might fit into their existing partnership. Little did they realize the purchase of a 40 acre olive orchard in Corning, California with 2,600 Sevillano olive trees would begin the next generation of West Coast Products.
As a grower for four years before they purchased the plant, Dave delivered the harvested Corning olive crop to West Coast Products and watched as a spry 76-year-old man hopped onto the forklift. With speed and efficiency, he proceeded to unload 12 tons of olives. After unloading, weighing, and grading the olives, the man wrote a check and paid for the olives on the spot. Dave felt like saying, “Gee, who was that masked man?” The answer: Marino Garbis.
The DeCamilla brothers became the owners of West Coast Products as the result of an off-hand remark that Dave made to Marino. A month or two after delivering the harvest to WCP, Dave mentioned to Marino that if he ever thought about selling the plant that the DeCamilla brothers would be interested. In July of 2004 with the help of the Federal Home Loan Bank, NFC community and the owners themselves, the DeCamilla brothers purchased West Coast Products. Mark DeCamilla, a hardwood lumber broker along with family friend restauranteur Dan Vecere would start to learn the business of buying, processing and selling great California olives and olive oil.
Like Al Krakov and Marino Garbis before them, the DeCamillas are committed to continuing the tradition and upholding the reputation of West Coast Products.