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Bob Larson Jetting Cherries to Asia Pt 1
by Bob Larson, click here for bio

Program: Fruit Grower Report
Date: July 06, 2018

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With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. Northwest cherry growers produce a high-quality, but perishable fruit. So, it pays to get their crop to market in the fastest, most cost-effective way possible.

That’s why this year, Northwest cherries are going first class to China aboard chartered 747’s taking off from the Grant County International Airport.

Port of Moses Lake director Jeff Bishop says they’re running a test this season to see if it makes more sense than flying out of Sea-Tac ...

BISHOP … “We’ve always know that we’re closer to the fruit and from a pure logistics standpoint, from the orchards to the Port of Moses Lake allows you to do multiple truck turns in a day. Whereas, traditionally, it’s been limited to one potentially two to Sea-Tac.”

But, Bishop says traffic volumes from the Eastern Washington to Seattle have changed …

BISHOP … “Yeah, there’s two factors. There’s the highway system between the orchards on the east side of the Cascades to Sea-Tac is getting to be more complicated. And then there’s the actual congestion that’s occurring at the air field in Sea-Tac.”

Bishop understands that many people might think the move might just make sense…

BISHOP … “Yes and no. You know, business models are always more complex than common sense would normally describe. What we’ve had to do is, and that’s reason behind the test that we’re doing, is to prove that the cold chain is good in Moses Lake and that’s the most critical component.”

Listen tomorrow for more on this test run of cherries from Moses Lake to Asia and what it could mean in the seasons ahead.

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