Blog Archives

Oregon Worker Dies After Falling Into Meat Grinder

An Oregon man contracted to clean a meat processing plant died last week when he fell into a machine at the facility.

Hugo Avalos-Chanon, age 41, of Southeast Portland died late Friday night after becoming entangled in a blender at the Interstate Meat Disrtibutors, Inc. plant in Clackamas, OR, reported the Oregonian.

Interstate Meat Distributors was cited in October of 2012 for multiple violations of worker safety standards, among them that a table saw did not have a hood to protect against arm injuries, nor was a rotating blade “guarded to prevent inadvertent contact.”

However, these violations were corrected at the time of inspection, noted the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division (OSHA) of the Department of Consumer and Business Services, which conducted the investigation.

And a spokesperson for Oregon OSHA told the Oregonian that it’s “way too early to say” whether the cause of Avalos-Chanon’s death was linked to the violations cited in that report.

Avalos-Chanon worked for a cleaning company that had been contracted to clean the Clackamas facility. At around 11:45 pm Friday, emergency workers responded to a call from the plant, and arrived on the scene to find him entangled in a blender used to regulate fat content in ground beef, according to the Oregonian. 

His body was extricated from the machine the following morning and the plant continued normal operation that day.

According to deputy medical examiner for the state, Dr. Cliff Young, Avalos-Chanon died of “blunt force injuries and chopping wounds,” reported the Oregonian.

Mesaros said OSHA’s investigation into the incident could take up to six months.

This incident is not the first negative one to be linked to Interstate Meat. In 2007, ground beef from the company was named as the source of an E. coli outbreak that sickened 8 people in Oregon, Washington and Idaho.

The company recalled approximately 41,000 pounds of ground beef for potential E. coli contamination that year.

 

Food Safety News

Lawmakers Looking Into Shuanghui Acquisition of Smithfield

The Senate Committee Agriculture Committee plans to hold a hearing next month to look into the proposed sale of Smithfield Foods to Shuanghui International, committee chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) announced on Thursday.

The hearing, scheduled for July 10, will focus on the pending purchase of Smithfield — the world’s largest pork producer and processor — and what it might mean for future acquisitions.

According to the committee, the hearing will also “more broadly examine how the government review process of foreign acquisitions of U.S. companies addresses American food safety, protection of American technologies and intellectual property, and the effects of increased foreign ownership of the U.S. food supply.”

Last week a bipartisan group of senators serving on the agriculture committee urged Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew to include both the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration in the government review of the proposed purchase of Smithfield Foods. The Senators pressed for USDA and FDA involvement so that the oversight process includes experts on the American food supply and food safety.  The letter also raised questions about potential future foreign acquisitions of American food companies such as those that will be considered in the hearing announced today.

The committee said Smithfield Foods CEO Larry Pope will be among the witnesses testifying. Additional witnesses to be announced. A live webcast of the hearing can be viewed online at http://ag.senate.gov.

This week, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), a longtime consumer advocate turned lawmaker, and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT) also wrote a letter to Obama administration officials, including Mr. Lew, Attorney General Eric Holder, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman urging careful review of the proposed deal.

“While initially the deal may increase U.S. exports to China, over time the United States could in fact begin to import pork products from China,” read the letter.  “Such a development would raise a host of food safety concerns as China’s food safety system remains wholly inadequate leading to unsafe exported food products.”

“Since joining the World Trade Organization in 2001, China’s food exports to the United States tripled to 4.1 billion pounds of food in 2012,” the letter continued. “Yet, oversight of China’s food producers has not kept up with the sharp increase in imports.  The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) inspects less than 2 percent of imported produce, processed food and seafood.  Even with a Memorandum of Understanding between the FDA and China’s Certification and Accreditation Administration signed in 2010, the FDA only conducted 10 inspections of food facilities in China in fiscal year 2012.”

Food Safety News

Tracing evolution of chicken flu virus yields insight into origins of deadly H7N9 strain

An international research team has shown how changes in a flu virus that has plagued Chinese poultry farms for decades helped create the novel avian H7N9 influenza A virus that has sickened more than 375 people since 2013. The research appears in the current online early edition of the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The results underscore the need for continued surveillance of flu viruses circulating on poultry farms and identified changes in the H9N2 virus that could serve as an early warning sign of emerging flu viruses with the potential to trigger a pandemic and global health emergency. The work focused on the H9N2 chicken virus, which causes egg production to drop and leaves chickens vulnerable to deadly co-infections. Scientists at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the China Agricultural University, Beijing, led the study.

Researchers used whole genome sequencing to track the evolution of the H9N2 chicken virus between 1994 and 2013. The analysis involved thousands of viral sequences and showed that the genetic diversity of H9N2 viruses fell sharply in 2009. From 2010 through 2013 an H9N2 virus emerged as the predominant subtype thanks to its genetic makeup that allowed it to flourish despite widespread vaccination of chickens against H9N2 viruses.

Evidence in this study suggests the eruptions set the stage for the emergence of the H7N9 avian virus that has caused two outbreaks in humans since 2013, with 115 confirmed deaths. The H9N2 infected chickens likely served as the mixing vessel where H9N2 and other avian flu viruses from migratory birds and domestic ducks swapped genes, researchers noted. The resulting H7N9 virus included six genes from the H9N2.

“Sequencing the viral genome allowed us to track how H9N2 evolved across time and geography to contribute to the H7N9 virus that emerged as a threat to human health in 2013,” said Robert Webster, Ph.D., a member of the St. Jude Department of Infectious Diseases. He and Jinhua Liu, Ph.D., of the College of Veterinary Medicine at the China Agricultural University, are co-corresponding authors.

“The insights gained from this collaboration suggest that tracking genetic diversity of H9N2 on poultry farms could provide an early warning of emerging viruses with the potential to spark a pandemic,” Webster said.

The analysis also provided insight into the creation of the H9N2 virus that emerged as the predominant subtype in 2010. Factors included widespread use of poultry vaccines and the natural tendency of flu to mutate, mix and swap genes.

Beginning in 1998, vaccinating poultry against H9N2 prevented flu outbreak for more than a decade. Vaccines work by recognizing and attaching to the spike-shaped hemagglutinin (HA) protein on the surface of the flu virus. That blocks the virus from infecting healthy cells. Changes in the HA gene that change the shape of the HA protein can reduce vaccine effectiveness and result in disease outbreaks. HA mutations occur naturally over time. Vaccines increase pressure for HA mutations that help the virus escape vaccine detection and cause infection.

Researchers at the China Agricultural University checked H9N2 vaccine effectiveness against the predominant H9N2 virus from 2010-11. Working in vaccinated and unvaccinated chickens, investigators found the vaccine neither protected vaccinated chickens from infection nor prevented spread of the virus in vaccinated chickens. Those failures suggest that due to HA mutations vaccines were less able to recognize the virus.

The tendency of flu viruses to swap genes also contributed to the enhanced ability of the predominant H9N2 subtype to spread. Researchers found that prior to the virus’ emergence as the predominant H9N2 the virus had swapped genes with quail and duck influenza viruses.

The combination fueled the recent outbreaks of H9N2 on chicken farms by helping the virus escape vaccine detection and spread rapidly in vaccinated and unvaccinated poultry, said co-first author Juan Pu, Ph.D., a St. Jude visiting scientist from the China Agricultural University. The other first authors are Shuoguo Wang, Ph.D., of the St. Jude Department of Computational Biology, and Yanbo Yin, Ph.D., of Qingdao Agricultural University, Qingdao, China.

“The emergence of this dominant H9N2 virus was the first step in the genesis of the H7N9 viruses because it greatly increased the likelihood of reassortment between H9N2 and other flu subtypes,” Liu said. Reassortment refers to the tendency of flu viruses to swap genes.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Agriculture and Food News — ScienceDaily

Tracing evolution of chicken flu virus yields insight into origins of deadly H7N9 strain

An international research team has shown how changes in a flu virus that has plagued Chinese poultry farms for decades helped create the novel avian H7N9 influenza A virus that has sickened more than 375 people since 2013. The research appears in the current online early edition of the scientific journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The results underscore the need for continued surveillance of flu viruses circulating on poultry farms and identified changes in the H9N2 virus that could serve as an early warning sign of emerging flu viruses with the potential to trigger a pandemic and global health emergency. The work focused on the H9N2 chicken virus, which causes egg production to drop and leaves chickens vulnerable to deadly co-infections. Scientists at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the China Agricultural University, Beijing, led the study.

Researchers used whole genome sequencing to track the evolution of the H9N2 chicken virus between 1994 and 2013. The analysis involved thousands of viral sequences and showed that the genetic diversity of H9N2 viruses fell sharply in 2009. From 2010 through 2013 an H9N2 virus emerged as the predominant subtype thanks to its genetic makeup that allowed it to flourish despite widespread vaccination of chickens against H9N2 viruses.

Evidence in this study suggests the eruptions set the stage for the emergence of the H7N9 avian virus that has caused two outbreaks in humans since 2013, with 115 confirmed deaths. The H9N2 infected chickens likely served as the mixing vessel where H9N2 and other avian flu viruses from migratory birds and domestic ducks swapped genes, researchers noted. The resulting H7N9 virus included six genes from the H9N2.

“Sequencing the viral genome allowed us to track how H9N2 evolved across time and geography to contribute to the H7N9 virus that emerged as a threat to human health in 2013,” said Robert Webster, Ph.D., a member of the St. Jude Department of Infectious Diseases. He and Jinhua Liu, Ph.D., of the College of Veterinary Medicine at the China Agricultural University, are co-corresponding authors.

“The insights gained from this collaboration suggest that tracking genetic diversity of H9N2 on poultry farms could provide an early warning of emerging viruses with the potential to spark a pandemic,” Webster said.

The analysis also provided insight into the creation of the H9N2 virus that emerged as the predominant subtype in 2010. Factors included widespread use of poultry vaccines and the natural tendency of flu to mutate, mix and swap genes.

Beginning in 1998, vaccinating poultry against H9N2 prevented flu outbreak for more than a decade. Vaccines work by recognizing and attaching to the spike-shaped hemagglutinin (HA) protein on the surface of the flu virus. That blocks the virus from infecting healthy cells. Changes in the HA gene that change the shape of the HA protein can reduce vaccine effectiveness and result in disease outbreaks. HA mutations occur naturally over time. Vaccines increase pressure for HA mutations that help the virus escape vaccine detection and cause infection.

Researchers at the China Agricultural University checked H9N2 vaccine effectiveness against the predominant H9N2 virus from 2010-11. Working in vaccinated and unvaccinated chickens, investigators found the vaccine neither protected vaccinated chickens from infection nor prevented spread of the virus in vaccinated chickens. Those failures suggest that due to HA mutations vaccines were less able to recognize the virus.

The tendency of flu viruses to swap genes also contributed to the enhanced ability of the predominant H9N2 subtype to spread. Researchers found that prior to the virus’ emergence as the predominant H9N2 the virus had swapped genes with quail and duck influenza viruses.

The combination fueled the recent outbreaks of H9N2 on chicken farms by helping the virus escape vaccine detection and spread rapidly in vaccinated and unvaccinated poultry, said co-first author Juan Pu, Ph.D., a St. Jude visiting scientist from the China Agricultural University. The other first authors are Shuoguo Wang, Ph.D., of the St. Jude Department of Computational Biology, and Yanbo Yin, Ph.D., of Qingdao Agricultural University, Qingdao, China.

“The emergence of this dominant H9N2 virus was the first step in the genesis of the H7N9 viruses because it greatly increased the likelihood of reassortment between H9N2 and other flu subtypes,” Liu said. Reassortment refers to the tendency of flu viruses to swap genes.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Agriculture and Food News — ScienceDaily

You’ve got to get into an Aldi store!

Aldi has become much more promotional lately. This surprised me, since their value is clearly evident in their everyday shelf prices, which typically run a third less than comparable items in non-discount stores.

So far, I’ve been watching them:

• Run their own version of a weekly circular, complete with temporary price reductions and every-Wednesday meat deals.

• Drop two coupons for $ 5 off a $ 30 purchase via direct mail and newspaper inserts in Minnesota — one before Thanksgiving and the other mid-December.

• Offer seasonal items that deliver the delight of discovery much like Costco or even Trader Joe’s.

• Issue a photo-filled holiday catalog featuring recipes from a variety of chefs in the Aldi Test Kitchens.

• Conduct a test for accepting all major credit cards at stores in Minnesota and the Sycracuse, N.Y., area. Aldi started accepting credit cards in the UK in October 2014.

So what’s happening here that would be of interest to other food retailers? It looks like promoted prices are now part of Aldi’s effort to expand their assortment by offering a number of products that are “ins and outs.” In the circular, there’s a qualification that says ad prices apply for that week and “while supplies last.” Also, they have a number of the new items are explicitly labeled seasonal; for example, the holiday circular introduced more than a dozen “winter seasonal products,” and there were many more winter seasonal items in the store.

These merchandising tactics continue to increase Aldi’s appeal and no doubt its average ticket size. My guess is that the $ 5 coupon earns its keep by getting new and existing shoppers try more of their products.

Retailers need to start getting into Aldi stores and regularly check their website, promotions and mobile app too. It’ll become even more important to understand and appreciate all of the ways Aldi is delivering against their tagline “Simply Smarter Shopping.”

Supermarket News

Researchers’ recipe: Cook farm waste into energy

It takes some cooking, but turning farm waste into biofuels is now possible and makes economic sense, according to preliminary research from the University of Guelph.

Guelph researchers are studying how to make biofuels from farm waste, especially “wet” waste that is typically difficult to use. They have developed a fairly simple procedure to transport waste and produce energy from it.

Scientists have struggled to find uses for wet and green waste, including corn husks, tomato vines and manure. Dry farm waste, such as wood chips or sawdust, is easier to use for generating power. Often, wet farm waste materials break down before reaching their destination.

Researchers led by engineering professor Animesh Dutta, director of the Bio-Renewable Innovation Lab (BRIL) at U of G, have found a solution: pressure cooking.

Cooking farm waste yields compact, easily transportable material that will not degrade and can be used in energy-producing plants.

Dutta said the research, which is published this week in the journal Applied Energy, shows that in a lab setting, biofuels can produce the same amount of energy as coal.

“What this means is that we have a resource in farm waste that is readily available, can produce energy at a similar level to burning coal, and does not require any significant start-up costs,” said Dutta.

“We are taking what is now a net-negative resource in farm waste, which farmers have to pay to remove, and providing an opportunity for them to make money and help the environment. It’s a closed-loop cycle, meaning we don’t have to worry about external costs.”

Using excess food, green and wet waste to reduce the carbon footprint is drawing a lot of interest in Europe, he said, but so far it has proven unfeasible in North America.

Coal is more readily available in North America. Biomass is highly rich in alkali and alkaline earth metals such as silicon, potassium, sodium and calcium. The presence of these metals in farm waste damages pipes at power plants during combustion.

The new biofuel product made by the BRIL researchers produces a product that has less alkali and alkaline earth metals, allowing them to be used at power plants.

“We’re able to produce small amounts of energy in our lab from these biofuels,” said Dutta.

“The next step is to take this outside of the lab. We have a number of industry partners and government ministries interested in this technology. Essentially, the agri-food sector could power the automotive industry.”

Dutta said large pressure cookers located near farms could accept and cook waste for transport to energy plants.

“We’re looking at a timeline of five to seven years, depending on the funding,” he said.

“Once we have a commercial system set up, we’ll be self-sufficient. It can reduce our energy costs and provide an environmental benefit. It’s going to change the paradigm of energy production in North America.”

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Guelph. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Agriculture and Food News — ScienceDaily

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Fresh produce flowing freely into Southeastern U.S. ports

In 2013 fresh produce was permitted to arrive into Florida ports for the first time in several decades under a pilot program agreed to by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It was a great success and today fresh fruits and vegetables are flowing freely from offshore countries.

The program was the result of collaborative efforts by the Florida Perishables Trade Coalition, which was formed in 2012, and the USDA.GPAGardenCitTerminal2cContainer ships load and unload at the container berths at the Georgia Ports Authority’s Garden City Terminal. (Photo courtesy of Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton)

According to preliminary unaudited fiscal year 2014 statistics, more than 1 million 20-foot equivalent units — the standard measurement for cargo containers — moved through Port Everglades, nearly evenly split between imports and exports. A continually increasing portion of the import units were filled with fresh produce, primarily from Central America and South America.

“This is a huge accomplishment for our seaport and a credit to our customers who continued to build their businesses through the global recession with an eye toward the future,” Steven Cernak, chief executive and port director, said in a Nov. 3 press release.

PortMiami is also riding the produce import wave. It reports that The Port Tunnel makes PortMiami the only U.S. port with direct, non-stop access to the U.S. interstate highway system. Its rail and highway connections from the port ensure that perishable goods reach 70 percent of the U.S. population in four days or less. It boasts same-day delivery of perishable goods to markets in central Florida, with next-day service to markets in Atlanta and the Southeastern U.S.

PortMiami offers extended USDA hours of operation, and it has 228 million square feet of warehouse space with more than 13 new bulk warehouses under construction. It also lays claim to being the U.S. port closest to Latin America and the Caribbean, resulting in shorter shipping times and extended shelf life for perishables. It has more USDA staff than any other port of entry in the U.S., resulting in real-time, prioritized service, processing and faster release of perishables. It also has more than 1,000 reefer plugs and USDA authorization for on/off port fumigation.

In July 2014, the Port of Savannah, GA, announced that it would import South American citrus, grapes and blueberries that “will arrive sooner and last longer for consumers in the Southeastern U.S. thanks to the Georgia Ports Authority’s participation in the USDA pilot program.”

“South American fresh fruit destined to the Southeast market has traditionally been shipped to Northern U.S. ports,” said GPA Executive Director Curtis Foltz. “Delivery to Savannah means fruits won’t have to be trucked as far to reach Southeastern markets, allowing fresher offerings for stores and longer shelf life for consumers.”

Starting Sept. 1, the Port of Savannah began handling fruit from South America that has undergone cold treatment, a process that prevents the transmission of agricultural pests.

Through the pilot program, citrus fruits, grapes and blueberries will be chilled for at least 17 days prior to entry into the U.S. to protect against fruit flies. The process will be done in producing countries — including Peru, Chile and Brazil — or at transshipment points such as Panama.

The fruit will move in refrigerated containers held just over freezing during transit aboard cargo vessels, effectively cutting the time the fruit must remain stationary for treatment.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.