TITLE: Boston Business
PUBLICATION: Blueprints, the Blue Book’s trade publication for fresh produce professionals
DESCRIPTIONS: Spotlight article on Boston’s produce trade
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Not far from the Mystic River are Boston’s two terminal markets, moving a mountain of fresh produce every day to customers throughout the city, up and down the East Coast, into Canada, and beyond. At both the New England Produce Center (NEPC) and the Boston Market Terminal (BMT) we talked with merchants about current trends, retail expansion, and opportunities to improve service and expand their businesses.
A Powerful Pair
While many outsiders assume the New England Produce Market in Chelsea and the Boston Market Terminal in Everett are fierce competitors, the two markets actually collaborate to keep fresh produce flowing to supermarkets, restaurants, institutions, and customers far and near—ultimately feeding more than 8 million people in just the U.S. Northeast and Canada alone.
Consequently, over the past year, the NEPC has made a few upgrades and improvements. “We’re making little improvements all the time in the infrastructure here, including new fences, paving, new lighting and so forth,” remarks Anthony Sharrino, president of Eaton & Eustis Company, a receiver and importer on the market. “The facility is getting old, and we’ve got to keep maintaining it.”
Sharrino adds that the NEPC benefits from an ideal location. “Geographically, it’s very well placed,” he explains. “We’re near all the major highways, and we have easy access to route 95, route 90. Although the roads surrounding the produce center in the city of Chelsea could stand some improvement, we’re very well situated to do business all over New England. It all adds up to a very good market.”
The NEPC’s prime location is one reason New York-based distributor Baldor Specialty Foods opened Baldor Boston right up the road from the market in 2006. “We’ve been in Boston for about eight or nine years now, and we moved into a new building two years ago,” says Glenn Messinger, general manager and a buyer with Baldor Boston. Although Messinger says they are in a great location, he adds that they are quickly outgrowing their current space. “It looks like we’re going to need a bigger facility within the next two years or so, so we’re starting to look into some opportunities to get a new facility.”