Business updates: West Mexico Spring Produce - The Packer

Business updates: West Mexico Spring Produce

02/24/2014 10:41:00 AM
Mike Hornick

America Trades returns March 12-13

The America Trades Produce conference is set for March 12-13 at the Tubac Golf Resort and Spa in Tubac, Ariz.

Topics include food safety, with speakers such as Food and Drug Administration deputy commissioner Mike Taylor and Mexico counterparts. There will be a tour of the Mariposa Port, and The Packer is scheduled to present its Importer of the Year award.

Christopher Wilson, associate at the Woodrow Wilson Institute’s Mexico Institute, is the keynote speaker.

Registration is at

Crown Jewels boosts melons

Fresno, Calif.-based Crown Jewels Produce is planning substantial additions to its melon volumes out of Mexico.

“We’re probably going to be up 35% or 40% when you count honeydews and seedless watermelons,” said Atomic Torosian, managing partner.

“And we’ll have a small presence in the Mexican cantaloupe deal.”

Crown Jewels expected to start those items in early April.

Elsewhere in the lineup, the shipper planned to move Mexican grapes as early as the first week of May.

“Perlette grapes look better than last year at this time and are growing rapidly with the warm weather,” Torosian said.

Those will ship under the Crown Jewels label from a ranch in Pesqueria, Sonora, north of Hermosillo. Temperatures in Hermosillo already approached 100 degrees on some February days.

“Most early grapes for us are grown in and around Hermosillo,” he said.

“The late deal is coming out of Caborca a little farther north. There have been some new plantings down in Guaymas on some of the earliest varieties. This will be our first year grapes will go in the ground in Guaymas. In another two years we’ll be having grapes out of that district, which are a bit earlier.”

Del Campo plans mini pepper pack

Del Campo Supreme has planted a few hectares in mini bell peppers to develop a 1-pound mixed bag, says sales manager Jim Munguia.Courtesy Del Campo SupremeDel Campo Supreme has planted a few hectares in mini bell peppers to develop a 1-pound mixed bag, says sales manager Jim Munguia.Del Campo Supreme has a 1-pound bag of orange, yellow and red sweet mini peppers in the works.

“We started growing a few hectares of it,” Jim Munguia, sales manager for the Nogales, Ariz.-based shipper, said Feb. 4.

“We’re just in the process of introducing it to chains, but nothing is on the shelves yet. We’re showing it to the corporate end of retail, looking for feedback and getting our packaging ready to go.”

Del Campo Supreme lately has been promoting the packaging on another product, its T’mates cocktail tomatoes introduced at the Produce Marketing Association Fresh Summit in October.

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