bananas photo

Port Tampa Bay cold storage facility receives first shipment of perishables

Florida’s Port Tampa Bay has a new 135,000-square-foot refrigerated warehouse cold storage facility. Port Logistics Refrigerated Services, which operates this state-of-the-art cold storage facility, recently received its first shipment of perishable products. Slightly less than 4,000 pallets of bananas were unloaded adjacent to the refrigerated warehouse.

Paul Anderson, Port Tampa Bay chief executive officer, said this shipment indicates the ability of the port and Port Logistics Refrigerated Services to offer “a new cold supply chain solution to customers in Florida, the Southeast and beyond. It enables us to provide significant savings in their truck delivery costs.”

In a statement to Port Tampa Bay, Manrique Bermudez, logistics director for Chiquita Brands International, said, “Chiquita is very pleased with this first shipment of bananas through Port Tampa Bay as a new entry port for the distribution of our fresh fruit into the continental US market.”

He said he was pleased with the cooperation provided by several US government agencies, the port and the private warehouse operator “to make this first shipment a success.”

The cold storage facility, completed in autumn 2017, provides onsite services that include cutting-edge fumigation to USDA inspection areas to a laboratory and a gravity rack system that transports products for weighing and measuring.

According to Raul Alfonso, Port Tampa Bay’s chief commercial officer, these developments “could be a great first step. We’re hoping that that can bring us future shipments.”

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