HUNTS POINT MARKET Optimizes Actions

Taking Care Of Shippers

Hunts Point also provides crucial support, market intelligence and outlets for shippers. “We’re right in the middle of the supply chain, so it’s good for the shipper, and it’s good for our customers,” says Ira Nathel, president and co-owner of Nathel & Nathel.

Margiotta’s Jimmy Margiotta emphasizes the value the market provides to the farm because of its wide reach. “We can take so many different products that other buying destinations would have a limited audience for,” he says. “This gives our shippers a greater potential outlet for all of their products.”

Market wholesalers link important supply-side information at shipping point with the needs of the marketplace. “We serve as a bridge to connect partners on both sides,” says Nick Pacia of A.J. Trucco. “We are in constant communication with both shippers and buyers. And we offer new product when we see both sides could benefit.”

A&J’s Thomas Tramutola Jr. looks at the business as a balancing act of doing the best for shippers and the best for customers, all while keeping product rotating. “When stuff is abundant, we want to make sure product is moving and being sold,” he says. “When stuff is scarce, we want to be sure we can still get it.”

The confident relationships developed by market wholesalers with their shippers reap benefit in all situations. “We strive to have long-lasting relationships with our shippers,” says Michael Armata of E. Armata. “During a crisis such as COVID, these relationships shine through, as everyone works together to not only keep movement alive, but to feed families all over the tri-state area and further.”

Charlie DiMaggio of FresCo reports having seen an even more open line of communication with suppliers during the crisis. “The various sales pitches often heard over and over went by the way side,” he says. “The usual banter was taken over by a more serious tone and one that united the supplier and us in a way I have never seen before. Our mission is to feed the public and work together so no one supplier or buyer is hurt dramatically.”

Market companies pride themselves on taking care of their shippers. “Our shippers can count on us as part of their growing strategy,” says Cary Rubin, vice president at Rubin Bros. Produce Corp. “We’re consistent week in and week out. When they have supply surplus, we’re clearly an outlet for them. We can move product quickly and keep the supply chain moving. For example, the news had stories about farmers dumping their product during the COVID crisis; none of my shippers had to dump their product—we found a home for it.”

Joel Fierman of Fierman Produce Exchange emphasizes the importance of standing by his shippers. “We haven’t run away from our obligations—my shippers got paid,” he says. “We’re happy to have provided the service we did and do what we do best. I hope the shippers, and the rest of the country, appreciate what we do here. While everyone else was shutting down, we were still here.”