Mexican-US fruit trade could make waves

Mexican pineapples, bananas, and papayas will soon be transported to the United States by ship instead of truck, according to a Houston Chronicle newspaper report. An “ocean bridge” has been initiated by shippers between the Port of Houston TX and Dos Bocas in the Mexican state of Tabasco.

Effective in July, the Hamburg, Germany-based shipper C F Ahrenkiel and its general agent, American Shipping and Charting, will provide weekly service between the Houston port's Manchester Terminal and Dos Bocas.

Going north, the Lisbeth C vessel likely will carry refrigerated containers filled mostly with fruit, but also chili peppers and cheese from Tabasco. The vessel might haul oil and gas equipment and fertilizer on the southbound trip to Tabasco.

“The bottom line is that it has to be supported by the southbound oil-field supply,” said Jorge Canavati, a consultant who specializes in trade with Mexico.

In 2002, slightly more than $120,000 worth of fruit was transported between Houston and Mexico. Though the Port of Houston handled more than $388 million in fruit internationally in 2003, no fruit was transported between Houston and Mexico that year.

TAGS: Foodservice
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