North Bay Produce to Begin Importing Peruvian Figs and Pomegranates
- by Robert Schaulis
TRAVERSE CITY, MI – In a major move for a US company, North Bay Produce has begun importing two new offerings from Peru. This month, the USDA-APHIS has approved shipments of fresh pomegranates and figs from North Bay Produce shareholder Agricola Athos in Lima, Peru.
“Without the vision of Jorge Checa of Agricola Athos, the valuable cooperation of SENASA PERU, USDA-APHIS, Gateway America and Federal Strategies, we would not have been able to make this vision become reality,” said Mark Girardin, President of North Bay Produce, in a company release. “Their hard work and expertise has been invaluable throughout the process. North Bay is very proud to have worked in conjunction with these organizations to become the first importer of Peruvian figs and pomegranates.”
Agricola Athos has been growing figs for over twenty years, and the grower’s experience in the category has resulted in exceptional quality fresh figs imported to Canada, Europe, United Kingdom, Asia, the Middle East, and now, the United States.
The company’s fresh figs will be available in clamshells and bulk tray packs January through May.
Agricola Athos first began planting Wonderful variety pomegranates in 2000 in a joint venture on the North Bay, SA farm. The company currently harvests two early varieties of pomegranate in addition to the Wonderful. These varieties have been bred selectively for color, flavor, shelf-life, and size, and through the company’s efforts the company is now able to provide the U.S. market with 5-20 count, 3.8 kilo cartons of pomegranates from January through April, with storage fruit available into July.
Fresh figs and pomegranates will arrive in North America by air and sea, and will be trucked to Gateway America to be irradiated. After that, product will then be shipped to North Bay Produce’s Mid America facility in Mascoutah, Illinois, and directly to distribution warehouses.
Agricola Athos is one of the largest producers of figs and pomegranates in the Southern Hemisphere.
For more developments in the import market that expand the seasonal availability of produce, stay tuned to AndNowUKnow.