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Mission Produce to open UK distribution center with new ripening technology

Mission Produce is announcing the testing results of its Mission Control ripening technology and management process, confirming its ability to accelerate avocado ripening and improve product uniformity. Mission Control will be implemented for the first time in the company’s newest forward distribution center in Dartford, England, which is anticipated to open in March of 2023.

“As experts in the art of ripening, Mission Produce is entering the UK market by leading innovation in the avocado category,” said Steve Barnard, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, Mission Produce. “With many strategic advantages, including the reach of our advanced global network, vertical integration, year-round supply, and enhanced ripening capabilities with Mission Control, we are positioned to drive demand and market growth in the UK for ripe avocados and mangos.”

Mission Control, a Mission-exclusive atmosphere-control ripening process utilising state-of-the-art technology, was found to accelerate fruit ripening by as much as 20 percent when compared to a conventional ripening system, which can provide significant benefits when delivering ripe and ready fruit to customers. Additionally, fruit ripeness throughout the ripening chamber was found to be more consistent when using Mission Control. A study was designed in partnership with The New Zealand Institute for Plant and Food Research Limited, specifically Dr. Jem Burdon, a postharvest specialist and industry expert in fruit ripening. Trials were conducted at the University of Greenwich’s Produce Quality Centre, one of the UK’s top research facilities for storage, handling and packaging solutions for fresh produce.

“Mission Control was designed with a science-based approach to create the optimal environment for ripening,” said Adam Shaw, Technical Director, Mission Produce UK. “We’ve fine-tuned our controls in collaboration with our strategic partners, who hold a wealth of biological knowledge and technological understanding in our industry. Based on our impressive testing results, we are confident that the technology can promote a more consistent and reliable product and, in turn, enhance our customer relationships.”

Steve Barnard, Adam Shaw, and Paul Frowde.

The technology was built in partnership with the company’s manufacturing partner, Cross Refrigeration (“Cross”), a global leader in advanced temperature controls and fully automated fruit ripening solutions for global fruit importers.

“Mission Control can deliver a game-changing impact to the avocado ripening process,” said Andrew Nesbitt, Group Managing Director, Cross Group. “Tight controls have been a fundamental part of the Cross ripening system for over 30 years, delivering highly advanced fruit ripening rooms worldwide. We are delighted to have developed the Mission Control system in exclusivity with the Company, enabling us to deepen our relationship with Mission and contribute to the expansion of one the most advanced avocado networks in the world.”

“We continue to innovate to bring the highest quality fruit to our customers and solidify our position as a reliable source of the world’s finest avocados and mangos,” said Paul Frowde, Managing Director, Mission Produce UK. “The Mission Control ripening process is a unique method of fruit ripening that is designed to enhance the customer experience and promote product reliability in order to drive category growth for our customers. With a well-established team across supply chain, operations, ripening management, and quality assurance, we look forward to expanding the Company’s global network in the UK.”

Mission will be attending Fruit Logistica in Berlin from Feb. 8-10, 2023 (booth# 23/E03).

For more information: 
Jenna Aguilera
Mission Produce, Inc.

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