Posts Tagged “Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge”
By Index Fresh
Riverside, C.A. — Since its opening on January 9, 2018, the Index Fresh facility in Pharr, TX, has seen steady progress and is rounding out support for the company’s operations across the United States. The leading avocado marketer broke ground on this 60,000 sq. ft. ripening, packing and distribution center just over a year ago in June.
“The bagging and repacking in the facility has increased in the last few months,” said Manrique Palacios, Distribution Center Manager of Index Fresh in Pharr.
With its proximity to the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge, the facility has been a great point of contact for Index Fresh expanding its Mexican program this year, said Santiago Pacheco, VP of Operations at Index Fresh.
“Mexico is a year-round source and we bring all of our Mexican products through Pharr. It’s an integral part of our operation. We use it for staging, for shipping loads into the Midwest, Northeast, and the West.,” said Dana Thomas, President and CEO of Index Fresh.
Index Fresh is the first occupant in the Pharr Produce Park, a big step for Pharr’s economic development as construction of other facilities continue at the Produce Park.
The Index Fresh facility is equipped with 2600 pallet positions, 10 ripening rooms, and three bagging machines. “We are expecting our second Mexican season and complete our first year of operations. We are performing an analysis to enhance our bagging capacity for the next season and working on business development to expand our ripening volume in Texas and the Midwest,” said Palacios. “We are also open to offering 3PL services that include storage, ripening, bagging, and distribution to potential customers.”
ABOUT INDEX FRESH
Index Fresh is a worldwide marketer of avocados, sourcing from all major growing regions around the globe, including California, Mexico, Peru, and Chile. Headquartered in California, the company has facilities spread across Texas, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Ohio, Colorado, and Illinois. Early this year, Index Fresh also started operations at its new packing, bagging, and ripening facility in Pharr, TX.
More container volume is being handled at the Port of Los Angeles, and a California company is expanding its presence in South Texas.
Container volumes increased over 16 percent from over the previous year at the Port of Los Angeles, which had its busiest July ever. This took place as U.S. ports continue to post record traffic numbers, including the major West Coast entry point for many Central and South American fruits and vegetables.
L.A. had almost 797,000 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs) came through the port, the most in any July since it opened 110 years ago, according to a news release.
The port also set a 12-month shipping record for a Western Hemisphere port during the most recent fiscal years.
Port officials expect the calendar year to break records as well. Container volumes are 9.5 percent over 2016 volume to date, a year that also saw records fall.
The International Longshore and Warehouse Union recently extended their contracts with the terminal operators at the port until 2022.
NEW TEXAS DISTRIBUTION CENTER
Index Fresh of Bloomington, CA broke ground earlier this year on a new distribution center in South Texas that should be ready to receive fruit sometime in November. The company is anticipating continued growth with the U.S. consumption of avocados.
Index Fresh has used a commercial warehouse facility in the Rio Grande Valley for several years at Crosspoint Cold Storage, but decided it was time to expand and build its own facility.
Located in Pharr, The Index Fresh distribution center is being built a stone’s throw from the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge, which is a major entry point for Mexican avocados and other fruits and vegetables originating south of the border. The facility will be used to pre-cool and condition the fruit.
It will have the capacity to handle 2,600 pallets of avocados, with 10 separate ripening rooms. Mexico exports more avocados to the U.S. than any country, with South Texas being the most popular port of entry.
Being the only full service commercial bridge in the region, means more and better services, infrastructure and technology to get produce loads processed at point of entry, before being unloaded at one of dozens of warehouses in the area.
The Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge is one of the most important U.S.-Mexican border ports of entry and is experiencing phoenominal growth in traffic. No end to growth is in sight.
The City of Pharr has a project that is still in the design phase known as the Border Safety Inspection Facility Connector (BSIF). This project will allow certified companies, vetted by the federal government, along with empty trucks, to bypass the importation process. The goal is to be more efficient by reducing wait times and speed up the inspection process. The project is expected to be completed late this year.
Mondays and Fridays are the busiest, and most congested days, at the Pharr Bridge.
The Pharr Bridge ranks number one in volume for truck loads of avocados and number two in tomatoes for Mexican produce to be distributed mostly throughout the eastern half of the U.S. and Canada.
Due to the new Mazatlan-Matamoros super highway, also dubbed Supervía, travel for trucks hauling produce and entering the Pharr port of entry can save as much as 600 to 700 miles of travel when delivering to Midwest and eastern U.S. and Canadian markets. Connecting Mazatlán and Sinaloa, Mexico to Pharr, Texas, this new route for produce transportation provides a more direct route to receivers. It also saves $1000 to $3000 in fuel costs, depending on the price of diesel, and nearly 16 hours in travel time round-trip.
The state of Sinaloa is what some call the breadbasket of Mexico with about 70 to 80 percent of Mexican fruits and vegetables originating from this state. Pharr, Tx has seen a significant rise in the number of importers and brokers who are based in Arizona, but are opening satellite facilities in Texas.
Lower Rio Grande Valley citrus and Mexican produce crossing the border – grossing about $2400 to Atlanta.