Acquisition of a fleet of Starcool reefer containers, new port calls and competitive transit times; over the past three years Marfret has redoubled its efforts to serve Latin American fruit exporters. Apart from the intrinsic quality of the fruits themselves, it’s the transport conditions on Marfret’s MedCar (Mediterranean-Caribbean) line that is such a key factor for exporters and buyers alike. And all parties were present in Madrid in October, 2017, for the latest edition of Fruit Attraction.
A mere 12 days’ transit time between the Colombian port of Turbo and Algeciras! The port of Algeciras has become the main European gateway for counter-season fruits, with services also to Altamira, Mexico (22 days transit time) and Callao, Peru (25 days).
Since Marfret acquired a fleet of 300 Starcool containers, avocados have been travelling first class. These containers ensure the fruit is shipped under a controlled atmosphere (5% O2, 5% CO2), which helps prolong its shelf life. “This breakthrough technology has helped to simplify the fruit trade across the world, which up until now has been the preserve of specialist reefer ship operators,” points out Marfret’s MedCar line manager Guillaume Vidil.
For South American fruit growers and exporters, and for the European importers, these criteria are decisive when it comes to renegotiating the contracts at year’s end.
The Fruit Attraction event in Madrid at the end of October is an opportunity for Marfret to meet the many buyers and to organize the annual conference with its representatives from all over the world (Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico, Honduras, Peru, Italy, and Spain) present in numbers at this international exhibition.
Long-established on the Atlantic seaboard, Marfret’s MedCar service extended its reach in 2015 by taking in the Pacific coast. Using a multimodal solution, via Manzanillo, the company gradually managed to conquer a share of the market on the other side of the Panama Canal, starting with a weekly port call at Guayaquil in Ecuador.
The year 2017 without doubt will have been a pivotal year, with the addition to the service of further port calls. The ports of Callao (Peru) and Altamira (Mexico) now complete the service offer alongside the line’s main reefer ports such as Turbo and Moin. Having several origins for a same fruit ensures a regular and varied supply for importers.