SAN DIEGO — Andrew & Williamson Fresh Produce, which launched its west Mexico tomato program in 2003 with some romas out of Culiacan, Sinaloa, has since expanded its product line and enhanced its winter deal, enabling tomato buyers to do one-stop shopping, said Mark Munger, vice president of marketing.
Besides romas, the company now offers grape and round vine-ripe tomatoes out of west Mexico, and it is expanding its organic roma and organic grape tomato programs to offer year-round availability, Munger said.
To handle the additional volume, the firm has added a vine-ripe packing line, enabling workers to pack romas and vine-ripes at the same time rather than switching back and forth, he said.
A&W’s tomato program has grown significantly, but it’s all based on customers’ business plans, he said.
The company also has invested significantly in its packing capabilities.
A few years ago in Culiacan, the company offered only two packs. Now it offers 20 different package types for romas alone, Munger said.
The company avoids the hassle of repacking by packing tomatoes to meet customer specifications at ranch level.