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US-based fruits and veg giant Fresh Del Monte Produce has opened a new fresh cut plant in Yokohama, Japan.

The San Francisco, California-headquartered business, which produces, markets and distributes fresh and fresh-cut fruit and vegetables, described the Japanese plant opening as a “milestone event”.

The US$19m facility, opened under the auspices of its local subsidiary Fresh Del Monte Japan, will have an annual production capacity of 10,000 tons of fruits and vegetables.

It will also will serve as a manufacturing base for ready-to-eat fruit, salad and vegetable products across Japan. 

Youssef Zakharia, president and chief operating officer of Fresh Del Monte Produce, said: “We identified a significant growth in demand for fresh and high-quality produce across Japan. Today, more than ever, our consumers are looking for fresh ready-to-eat options. Our plant in Yokohama will maximise our wide range of products, driving growth and innovation in our fresh-cut segment.”

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By GlobalData

The plant will focus heavily on the Tokyo metropolitan area, which boasts a population of more than 37 million.

Fresh Del Monte said the opening is part of its “aggressive growth strategy”. In 2019, 10% of Fresh Del Monte’s net sales were generated in Asia. The group booked US$4.49bn in net sales last year.

The company markets its products worldwide under the Del Monte brand, under license from Del Monte Foods.