Fillmore Piru Citrus has added an avocado packing line to its citrus packing operation in Piru, Calif. On hand for the ribbon-cutting ceremony are Bob Lucy (from left), partner in Del Rey Avocado Co. Inc.; Brett Kirkpatrick, president and general manager of Fillmore Piru Citrus; Kelly Long, Ventura County supervisor; Matthew Freeman, chairman of the board for Fillmore Piru; and Andy Bruno, finance director for Westfalia Fruit Americas. ( Courtesy Fillmore Piru Citrus )

Fillmore-Piru Citrus Association has added an avocado packing line to its citrus packing facility in Piru, Calif.

At a May 30 ceremony celebrating the new equipment, Matthew Freeman, chairman of the association’s board said the avocado line is the culmination of a vision that started several years ago. The company originally planned to pack and market avocados.

“After conferring with experts regarding the California avocado industry, it was determined that marketing avocados would be better left to existing established marketers,” Freeman said, according to a news release.

Del Rey Avocado, Fallbrook, Calif., and Westfalia Fruit Americas, Ventura, Calif., needed extra packing capacity, Freeman said, and they plan to pack at the Fillmore-Piru line.

The avocado line addition is the first step in moving the Filmore-Piru Citrus Association’s lemon packing line and modernizing its citrus line, association president and general manager Brett Kirkpatrick said in the release.

“Fillmore-Piru Citrus Association can trace their roots in the community back more than 100 years,” Kirkpatrick said in the release. “I am honored to be fortunate enough to be part of the management team as we position the company for the next 100 years.”