The first shipment of the year for Chilean winter fruit arrived in the U.S. on Monday December 17 on board Pacific Seaways' Polarstream.
This first load was received by the Ambassador of Chile in the United States, Felipe Bulnes, the Governor of the State of Delaware, Jack Markell, and the President of the Association of Chilean Fruit Exporters (ASOEX), Ronald Bown. As well as Executive Director of Pacific Seaways, Francisco Labarca and port officials.
In this regard, the Chilean Ambassador Felipe Bulnes said, "we have gathered here today to commemorate the strong commercial fruit alliance between Chile and the State of Delaware, which is reflected in the arrival of the first load of the 2012/2013 season bringing Chilean fresh fruit to the Port of Wilmington, one of the main gateways on the East Coast of the United States for Chilean fresh fruit exports. In recent decades, this industry has been one of the most dynamic and innovative sectors of the Chilean economy and the U.S. (main destination market for agricultural products). We hope to further strengthen the relationship between Chile and the State of Delaware."
For his part, the President of the Fruit Exporters Association of Chile AG, Ronald Bown said that the first arrival of Chilean fresh fruit marks the start of exports to the U.S., an important market for the domestic sector and where Chilean fruit has a good presence and preference among consumers because of its quality and food safety.
The Governor of the State of Delaware, Jack Markell said, "we are delighted and honored that the seaport of Delaware is the door through which the first Chilean fruit enters American homes this holiday season."
The Port of Wilmington is one of the leading ports for imports of perishable goods and a major port of entry and distribution center of Chilean fruit. Its facilities handled 15.9 million boxes of Chilean fruit estimated at USD 600 million during the 2011-2012 season.
Meanwhile, the harvest in Chile, between late November and April, fits very well with the demand of American consumers. The m/v Polarstream is expected to download nearly 6,600 pallets of table grapes, blueberries, cherries, peaches,
nectarines, apricots and plums in the Port of Wilmington.
"Our sturdy bilateral trade and strong and longstanding friendship between Chile and Delaware creates many jobs and stimulates economies on both sides of Ecuador, so we are working to continue growing in the future, "said Bulnes.