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Case Studies

Sunsweet Growers Relies on Pathlock for Fast & Accurate Reporting 

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SW Sunsweet
Sunsweet Growers Yuba City, California
Industry Food & Beverages
Pathlock Solution


Sunsweet Growers, the world’s largest handler of dried tree fruits and one of America’s best-known and best-loved brands sells nutritious and delicious products like Delectable dark chocolate-coated PlumSweet treats, Tasty Jumbo Red Raisins, and Bite Size Prunes. Each day, Sunsweet seals more than 40,000 cases for worldwide distribution, a feat that requires top-notch business processes and technology systems behind the scenes. While Sunsweet’s 400 grower members lovingly tend to their orchards to cultivate the best possible fruit, Sunsweet’s staff at its Yuba City, California headquarters works equally hard to make sure the business runs smoothly. It relies on SAP systems boosted by the Pathlock software to do this important job.


Sunsweet successfully deployed SAP back in 2001 to streamline its financial systems and other key business processes. “SAP helped us tremendously in consolidating and analyzing costs,” said Harold Upton, Vice President, Strategic Business Processes. But Upton also found that SAP had a hole. It lacked the security and segregation of duties functionality to allow Sunsweet to administer user access to systems. Sunsweet needed to control users’ ability to create sales orders or modify the general ledger, for instance. With SAP, such access had to be managed ad hoc, by generating multiple reports and hand-consolidating them onto spreadsheets. It was a time-consuming and sometimes inaccurate process. So Sunsweet worked with outside consultants to try to identify a fix. When Upton met with Pathlock executives at a trade show he knew he’d found the answer.

“We couldn’t find any product other than Pathlock that meets our specific needs. Pathlock fit the bill perfectly. Our security system used to be complex and labor-intensive. Now it’s fast and easy to manage.” 

Harold Upton, Vice President, Strategic Business Processes


Jump ahead to 2009. Pathlock has been in place in Sunsweet for two years and the company has seen significant benefits. For instance, Pathlock only allows those people who are supposed to work with the general ledger to be able to access it. That has helped Sunsweet reduce errors in the balance sheet and has sped up audits. It performs quarterly audits now. The company is also better able to track its delicious fruit products as they move through its 2 million square feet of warehouse space and out to customers. Only authorized people can make changes within the stock database. That means customer service representatives have accurate, timely product information to share with customers when they place orders. Earlier, their year-end inventory used to take two weeks and required a corporate shutdown. Now it takes just two days without business disruption.

The deployment of Pathlock’s solution didn’t disrupt Sunsweet business at all. Its growers and customers experienced the same great service as the company has always provided. Now, with Pathlock in place, its staff has more confidence that its business processes and financial compliance are as excellent as its fruit products.


Pathlock allowed Sunsweet to greatly increase reporting speed and efficiency. With automated documentation of user access, reports are ready whenever they are needed. Department compliance can be verified in minutes instead of days. Their internal business processes are in line with best business practices, including the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, which verifies financial transparency and accuracy. As Pathlock is invisible to users and provides excellent security and control without limiting worker productivity, Upton says:

“The old days when Sunsweet’s reporting processes required excessive elbow grease are over. Instead of creating multiple reports for each different job or role within the company and then compiling the data, each person’s access is accurately tracked all the time.”

Harold Upton, Vice President, Strategic Business Processes 

That’s true even when the person has multiple roles, which is often the case at small and midsize companies like Sunsweet. That functionality was not possible with SAP alone. SAP boosted by Pathlock has been a winning combination for Sunsweet. Just as its dedicated fruit growers and tasty products make a great pair, so do its world-class business processes and its state-of-the-art IT systems. 

Pathlock – Business Benefits

Real-Time Compliance

Pathlock enables compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley and other regulations via simplified and standardized audit control processes.

Low Cost

Pathlock requires no additional hardware and does not impact IT system performance

Fast Installation

Pathlock is easy to install and configure. Support is provided 24/7 and consultants are rarely needed

Ease of Use

Pathlock has intuitive user interfaces and easy navigation

Streamlined Reporting

Pathlock automates documentation for faster, lower-cost reporting.

Accurate Audit Trail

Pathlock protects security definitions and tracks changes to segregation of duties. It offers a precise and verifiable audit trail.