U.S.: Chiquita may exit Port Everglades lease
One of the world's leading fresh produce companies Chiquita Brands International plans to terminate its lease at Port Everglades in Florida, Bizjournals reported.
The story reported Chiquita planned to move out of the marine terminal and office lease which covers 13.1 acres.
In a statement given to Fresh Fruit Portal, Port Everglades business development director Jim Pyburn elaborated on the agreement, which will not affect Chiquita's headquarters at the Design Center of the Americas (DCOTA) on Dania Beach or its warehouse lease at the port for banana ripening.
"The lease termination is considered a win-win situation for both Chiquita and Port Everglades," Pyburn said.
"The termination agreement will allow Chiquita to base their shipments out of Mediterranean Shipping Company’s terminal at Port Everglades, which gives the Port additional opportunities to utilize Chiquita’s vacated land and buildings for other users."
"The lease issue in Florida is unrelated to any of our operations. It was simply a land and office lease that was terminated in order to sign a new deal with less land at the same location," Chiquita Fresh North America Chris Dugan told Fresh Fruit Portal.
The Broward County Commission is scheduled to vote tomorrow to terminate the lease for most of Chiquita Brands' facilities with Port Everglades. The termination would still allow Chiquita to keep 6.59 acres of land under a short-term lease, but not the buildings.
The group has been reshuffling its operations since it was purchased by Cutrale-Safra in 2015, with the most significant move being the shift in shipping operations from New Orleans, Louisiana to Gulfport, Mississippi.