Florida Fall Produce business updates - The Packer

Florida Fall Produce business updates

11/02/2012 04:07:00 PM
Doug Ohlemeier

“It’s not necessarily that we’ve increased our amounts, but that we have solidified our supply,” he said. “Some items we haven’t had before, so it makes our whole mix or manifest of mixer items. We’re looking to have them as steady as we do our bell pepper.”

L&M plans to harvest from 6,500 total Florida acres, which include north Florida cabbage and potatoes.

Pioneer Growers expands packing area

Pioneer Growers Co-op, Belle Glade, Fla., has completed construction of an unloading area and hydrocooling operations.

Loxahatchee, Fla.-based Hundley Farms Inc., Pioneer’s biggest grower, constructed a 22,000-square-foot packing area with a canopy to receive product.

The new facility should help Pioneer pack higher-quality corn and a more consistent pack, said Gene Duff, Pioneer’s executive vice president and general manager.

The large area will also allow Pioneer to run crates and reusable plastic containers, he said.

Growers harvest much of their corn on mule trains.

“With having this facility like we have, we will be giving our customers a better quality pack,” Duff said. “It will be a more consistent pack day in and day out. We will have better quality control over it.”

The new unloading and hydrocooling facilities, which include new stainless steel tunnel and ammonia cooling machinery, occupy 45,000 square feet, Duff said.

Pioneer members also grow and ship beans, celery, radishes and cabbage.

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