Karst chat with Jaime Chamberlain: focus on opportunities - The Packer

Karst chat with Jaime Chamberlain: focus on opportunities

02/27/2012 09:40:00 AM
Tom Karst

I would like to see some balance. I don’t disagree with what Border Patrol is doing; I do disagree in the way that it is being done. and the imbalance of border patrol agents to CBP agents.  It is hindering our way of being efficient in our way of trading with a foreign country.  Immigration needs to be fixed, but I don’t want for the state of Arizona or Santa Cruz County or Nogales to be known as the immigration hotbed. I want the county, the state and my city to be known as the gateway to the U.S for Mexico.

It behooves the U.S. to have a good relationship with Mexico.

3:11 p.m. Karst: How are things different today in Nogales compared with 10 years ago and what would you like to see changed in the next few years

3:12 p.m. Chamberlain: I’m extremely excited about this brand new port of entry at Mariposa here. I think the state of Arizona is very,  very excited abut having the most modern facility on our southern border. I believe there are many more opportunities to do business with Mexico. I hope when we go online, we open up the port, I hope we have the amount of staff we need to staff it correctly. Our facilities was made in the early 1970s and it was made for 300 to 400 trucks a day. We have been at 1,500  or 1,600 or 1,700 trucks a day for the last 15 or 20 years. We have outgrown our facilities. Now we are going to be ready for anywhere from 3,000 to 4,00 trucks a day. We are going to become more efficient and a bigger force in the produce industry. I’m looking at things in a very positive way.

3:13 p.m. Karst: Will there always be tension or rivalry between U.S. winter vegetable growers and Mexican growers?

3:14 p.m. Chamberlain: I have been here for 25 years, and all I can say is that there is always competition between both areas and mostly like there will continue to be competition between both  areas. I think we all have the same goal, and that is for the U.S. consumers to buy fruits and vegetables and be healthy. I don’t see where it behooves anyone to argue about one area or the other. We have been here for over 100 years feeding American families out of Mexico. We will try to continue to feed American families.  I think we need to stay focused on the big picture.

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