Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Shippers predict strong demand for tropical fruit

Excerpts from The Packer article of 4/28/08

by Jim Offner

Summer is approaching, and that means the U.S. market will be flooded with tropical fruit.

"It's important to note, however, that the tropical fruit season transcends the warm-weather months," said Mary Ostlund, marketing director for Homestead, Fla.-based Brooks Tropicals.

"They're basically year-round," Ostlund said. "There are certain seasonal fluctuations, but generally, what we import from the Caribbean is almost year-round."

"Not that the springtime doesn't present certain marketing opportunities," Ostlund noted.

"Quite honestly,I think tropicals are the spring chick: The summer vegetables aren't here yet, but people want or need some refreshing products, and tropicals certainly fill the bill there," she said. "Historically, spring has been a great time for tropical sales."