Jamaican mangoes for New York market

MANGO lovers in New York’s Brooklyn, Bronx, and Queens boroughs will on Saturday be able to purchase St Julian (Julie) and East Indian mangoes which were shipped from Jamaica earlier this week.

A release from the Embassy of Jamaica in Washington, DC, said the more than 4,500 pounds of mangoes, targeted for the New York, United States, market was exported after Washington DC-based Jamaica Direct Distributing Company, Miami-based US importer Season Farm Fresh Inc, and their Jamaican export partners joined forces.

According to the release, managing director of Jamaica Direct Distributing Company, Byron Wills, said the decision to import the mangoes was made to help Jamaican farmers experiencing a drastic downturn in sales due to the novel coronavirus pandemic, and to satisfy a need for Jamaican mangoes in the US.

He also said that the mangoes were earlier scheduled to be shipped to the US at the beginning of the mango season in April, however, due to measures to curtail the spread of the novel coronavirus, the shipment was delayed.

Wills said, too, that since commercial airlines were not yet back in flight, Season Fresh Farm made the decision to charter a cargo plane to transport the mangoes to the US earlier this week.

He pointed out that in 2019, American importer Nicholas Bernal, who owns Season Farm Fresh Inc, was instrumental in working with the Jamaican Government and farming community to ship mangoes to the north-eastern United States, primarily the New York City and Metropolitan Washington, DC, markets. The partnership enabled the importation of more than 20,000 pounds of the Julie and East Indian varieties of mangoes in 2019, that were sold to a select group of Caribbean-affiliated stores in the two areas, as well as in the South Florida territory.

Wills is hoping that the delivery of the latest shipment of mangoes will “bring some delight and a sense of home” to the Jamaican communities in the New York City region.

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