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Chilean Navels fill the gap for short and light season in California

by | May 19, 2009
OVIEDO, FL -- As the California Navel orange season draws to a close early this year with lighter-than-expected volumes, Duda Farm Fresh Foods will offer Chilean Navel oranges to customers from coast to coast beginning June 15.

This is the first year that the U.S. Department of Agriculture has approved Chilean Navel oranges for export to the United States. Chilean Navels offer a win-win scenario for Duda Farm Fresh Foods and its customers. Chilean Navels are grown with flavor in mind, left to naturally ripen on the tree. Because of the high sugar-to-acid ratio, Chilean Navels provide a sweeter, better tasting fruit that consumers enjoy. The transit time is quicker from Chile compared to other available growing areas currently in season, and the fruit is not cold treated, giving the oranges increased shelf life, according to Duda.

"We are excited to introduce Chilean Navel oranges as a viable and sustainable product to our repertoire of imported citrus products," Alberto Cuellar, director of global business development for Duda Farm Fresh Foods, said in a May 22 press release. "To provide consistent quality of our products while improving flavor is our goal at Duda Farm Fresh Foods. With the opportunity to provide Chilean Navel oranges to fill gaps in our domestic and international Navel production, we are thrilled to offer a premium product that we know consumers will enjoy because of the fruit's enhanced freshness and flavor."

The first harvest of Chilean Navels will begin May 25 and will be available to customers on the U.S. West Coast beginning June 15, according to the release, and East Coast customers will begin receiving deliveries beginning June 22.

The Chilean Navels will be packed under the "Dandy" brand standard of quality. To ensure that these standards are being met, Duda Farm Fresh Foods has company representatives in Chile overseeing operations.