Posts Tagged “Chiquita Brands”

Chiquita Cancels Port Everglades Lease; Parker to Ship Vidalia Onions

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PortEvergladesHere’s an update on Chiquita’s involvement with Port Everglades.  On another front, Parker Farms will be a new shipper of Vidalia onions.

The Broward County Commission voted recently to terminate the lease for most of Chiquita Brands International’s facilities at Port Everglades.  It was leasing 13.1 acres with 14,097 square feet of offices and 28,352 square feet of warehouses to support its banana shipments.  Under the termination, the Chiquita would keep 6.59 acres of land under a short-term lease, but not the buildings.

The move does not impact Chiquita’s headquarters at the Design Center of the Americas in Dania Beach, where it moved in 2015.  The company also has a separate warehouse lease at the port for a banana ripening facility that would remain in place.

Chiquita first leased space at Port Everglades in 2013 and later that year extended its lease to Sept. 30, 2018.

In 2014, Chiquita signed a deal with Mediterranean Shipping Co. (MSC) to provide cargo service for its bananas, so Chiquita started using MSC’s facilities at Port Everglades for its shipments. Then in 2015, Chiquita was sold to Cutrale-Safra.

Port Everglades officials contacted Chiquita about its plans and the company said it wanted to divest its terminal and base all of its shipments out of MSC’s terminal.

Under the proposed termination of the deal to be executed by March 1st.

“The early termination of the Chiquita lease agreement will benefit the port by creating opportunities for the currently dormant Chiquita land and the warehouse and office space to be made available for other Port users to expand their businesses and generate new revenue through both ship calls and cargo throughput,” the county memo stated. “The port will also continue to receive grid revenue from Chiquita for the 6.59 acre parcel they will continue to use.”

Parker Farms

Parker Farms, based in Oak Grove, VA,  is adding Vidalia sweet onions to its program this year.

The sweet onions, which will be sourced from B.G. Williams Farms in Uvalda, GA., will be sold under the company’s new Diamond Sweet label.  B.G. Williams grows about 400 acres of sweet onions annually.

Park Farms plans to eventually source sweet onions from more regions so it can offer the product the year around, as it does with the other commodities it supplies.  The company will also ship sweet potatoes and seedless watermelons under the Diamond Sweet label.

Parker Farms is a longtime shipper of sweet corn, broccoli, squash, bell peppers and cucumbers.


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Chiquita Still Moving Bananas Through Port of Gulfport

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HP0327Chiquita Brands International Inc. is still moving containers through the Port of Gulfport even after relocating its shipping operations to the Port of New Orleans.

The (Biloxi, Miss.) Sun Herald reports congestion in New Orleans is keeping the Charlotte, N.C.-based Chiquita operating in the Mississippi port.

After a 40-year absence, Chiquita in October returned to the Port of New Orleans.

Chiquita had planned to end its containerized goods handling at Gulfport by December 31, but Gulfport tenant Crowley Maritime Corp. Inc., Jacksonville, Fla., was still shipping northbound Chiquita produce containers into the port, according to the Sun Herald.

Gulfport director said the two ports are working to “alleviate congestion issues at the port of New Orleans,” according to the report.

Chiquita’s transition to New Orleans remains on schedule and Chiquita was expected to continue moving some cargo through Gulfport while the New Orleans port makes improvements, a New Orleans port official said in the report.

For Chiquita, the New Orleans port planned to invest $2.2 million in improvements in refrigerated-container electrical infrastructure and at a distribution and ripening facility leased to Chiquita.  Imported bananas provide huge volume from Chiquita throughout North America.


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TransFresh Announces Tectrol Storage Solution for Blueberries

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RichMacleod13By TransFresh Corporation

Salinas, CA — TransFresh Corporation, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Chiquita Brands, has announced that its flagship technology, Tectrol® Modified Atmosphere Packaging Systems, recognized worldwide for delivering an added level of protection to help ensure the quality and marketability of fresh strawberries, has now significantly modified the Tectrol System to help deliver more consistent supplies of fresh blueberries.

TransFresh has successfully completed a multi-year research and development initiative resulting in a unique Tectrol Storage Solution that utilizes Apio’s patented BreatheWay® Technology to deliver a sealed package system with adjustable oxygen transfer rates that react dynamically to changes in temperature and berry respiration for more reliable fresh blueberry storage. Apio is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Landec Corporation.

According to TransFresh, the breakthrough sealed pallet process delivers to customers a unique storage solution with stable oxygen and carbon dioxide. “What’s remarkable about the Tectrol Storage Solution for fresh blueberries is that the innovative zip-sealed pallet system combined with the patented breathable membrane allows just the right amount of oxygen transfer needed by the fruit, resulting in greater atmosphere control than previously possible and a virtually fool-proof packaging operation,” stated Rich Macleod, TransFresh Corporation vice president (in photograph). “Customers who may have struggled in the past to meet the specific atmosphere needs of fresh blueberries are now finding they have a new solution available with higher consistency and a more stable atmosphere for greater storage reliability,” he said. Macleod further commented that customers may now have much more confidence in their storage solutions by being able to more effectively match supplies with market demand. TransFresh expects that its new storage solution can be adapted to other commodities such as fresh cherries and grapes.

To develop the unique Tectrol Storage Solution for fresh blueberries, TransFresh looked more closely at storage needs versus shipping needs. According to Reilly Rhodes, TransFresh Tectrol business manager for fresh blueberries who spearheaded the multi-year development project, the “A-ha” moment came when the pallet sealing method used for fresh strawberries was “turned on its head.” “We redesigned our seal system for the fresh blueberry market and then married the redesigned seal and bag with the Apio BreatheWay® technology,” he explained. The new Tectrol Storage Solution for blueberries is not only high-performance operationally, but is also fully “adjustable” to blueberries and their storage conditions. “At that stage,” Rhodes said, “we were no longer simply adapting a successful program for fresh strawberries to fresh blueberries, we were actually creating a new and highly adaptable solution designed specifically for fresh blueberries.”

In completing the initiative, TransFresh drew upon the extensive expertise of Apio’s BreatheWay® Technology team and also worked alongside several of the key customers who participate in the fresh blueberry industry. BreatheWay® Technology is a trademark of Apio, Inc.

Domestic markets have sold 15 percent more blueberries this year than last and represent a fast growing berry segment. As these markets have grown, the demand for a more effective storage solution has accelerated. Because blueberries are grown in a variety of countries and districts, and varieties tend to have steep production peaks, the ability to hold blueberries in modified or controlled atmosphere conditions helps to smooth out the bumps in market supply and demand. A pallet-sized atmosphere package such as the Tectrol Storage Solution gives suppliers the flexibility to market a quality product through the peaks and valleys of the distribution system.

Customers who are interested in more information may contact Reilly Rhodes, TransFresh Corp., at (949) 279-5084.

About TransFresh®

TransFresh Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of Chiquita Brands, is a pioneering and established global company with nearly 50 years of experience in perishables transport. Tectrol® is the trademarked brand name for the TransFresh® family of proprietary modified and controlled atmosphere systems and processes developed and owned by TransFresh. The Tectrol Service Network™ services, markets and supports the Tectrol Pallet Systems operations and technologies. Since inception, TransFresh’s innovations in packaging, equipment and sealing processes have established Tectrol as the industry standard. For more information, please visit

About Chiquita Brands

Chiquita Brands International, Inc. (NYSE: CQB) is a leading international marketer and distributor of nutritious, high-quality fresh and value-added food products – from energy-rich bananas, blends of convenient green salads and other fruits to healthy snacking products. The company markets its healthy, fresh products under the Chiquita® and Fresh Express® premium brands and other related trademarks. With annual revenues of more than $3 billion, Chiquita employs approximately 20,000 people and has operations in approximately 70 countries worldwide. For more information, please visit

About Apio

Apio is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Landec Corporation (LNDC). Landec, through Apio, is a market leader in the commercialization of specialty packaged vegetable products using Apio’s BreatheWay® patented technology. Landec also develops and commercializes injectable medical materials for ophthalmology and orthopedic applications. Landec’s Apio food subsidiary sells its products nationwide under the Eat Smart® and GreenLine® Brands. For more information visit

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Chiquita Leaving Gulf Port for New Orleans

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DSCN3782Chiquita Brands International Inc., is returning to the Port of New Orleans after a 40-year absence.

Based in Charlotte, N.C., Chiquita plans to relocate operations from Gulfport, Miss., to The Crescent City in early 2015. During the mid-1970s, Chiquita, which then did business as United Brands, transferred shipping operations from New Orleans to the Port of Gulfport after importing bananas and other fruit for more than 70 years in New Orleans.

Chiquita is forecast to ship 60,000-78,000 20-foot-equivalent units (TEUs) a year at the New Orleans port. The volume represents a 15% increase in the port’s current container volume. Chiquita plans to handle 30,000-39,000 TEUs of bananas and other fresh fruit at the port as well as export those same volumes of other outbound cargos.

Louisiana was in talks with Chiquita for a decade and to help reduce the port’s increased shipping and handling costs.  The state of Louisiana plans to provide the banana giant $1.11 million-$1.45 million or $18.55 per TEU in yearly performance-based incentives.

The port is planning to invest $2.2 million in improvements at a port-owned distribution and ripening facility to be leased to Chiquita  As part of the deal, the port also intends to fund $2 million in refrigerated-container electrical infrastructure improvements and rehabilitate a container freight warehouse, according to the release.

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