Fresh Produce Association of The Americas
Fresh Produce Association of the Americas

February 04, 2016

FPAA Hosts Commerce for Tomato Suspension Agreement Workshop

NOGALES - For immediate release - Seeking to ensure compliance with the Tomato Suspension Agreement, shippers gathered Feb. 3 for a workshop by the Department of Commerce.

The workshop, which attracted an audience of nearly 50, was held by the Fresh Produce Association of the Americas, which hosts similar meetings on an annual basis. The main presenters were Julie Santoboni, Senior Policy Analyst in the Bilateral Agreements Unit of the Department of Commerce, and Brian Wright, Assistant Regional Director of PACA's Western Regional Office in Tucson.

While many members of the FPAA have been working under terms of the suspension agreement for up to 20 years, the influx of new salespeople and new distributors means that ongoing education is paramount to success, said Lance Jungmeyer, President of the FPAA.

"Tomatoes make up almost a quarter of all produce that moves through Nogales," Jungmeyer said. "The industry here takes the agreement very seriously."

Educating the selling industry about the ins-and-outs of the agreement is important for the well-being of Mexican growers, too.

"From the farms in Mexico, to distributors in Nogales, on through the supply chain, we are seeing better and better compliance with the suspension agreement. That is why we see the value in continuing these workshops," said Mario Robles, Director General of Sinaloa-based CIDH, the vegetable division of CAADES, who was on hand for the workshop.

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