Chip Wiechec shook his head in exasperation as he sat at his desk at the
Philadelphia Regional Produce Market. The owner of Hunter Bros. Inc.
observed that he was paying a California Romaine shipper $6 per box, f.o.b.
The trucker was charging $8.25 per box to deliver the Romaine to the Hunter
"It costs me $14.25 delivered. God forbid, then, that it's out of grade. It
sounds expensive at $16-$17, but the margins are nothing and the grower’s
not making money," Mr. Wiechec noted, as he cited other similar examples in
Mark Scintella, a buyer and salesman for Nardella Inc. on the Philadelphia
market, said he was paying $6,500 to $7,000 for trucks out of Nogales, AZ,
and $7,000 to $8,000 for trucks from California. On June 18 he noted, “Last
week was even higher.”