Del Monte Fresh Produce has been testing a new platform designed to quickly deliver fresh produce to customers within a 40-square mile area. The pilot program, launched earlier this month in the Dallas area, delivers over 200 different types of fruits and vegetables on the same day – if the order is placed before 11 am.
“The overwhelming feedback has been nothing short of amazing in terms of the quality of the product and the fact that we deliver the same day in most cases,” said Mauro De Andrade, Senior Manager, E-Commerce, Fresh Del Monte. “I think we can really, really make a difference in terms of freshness.”
He said they have reduced the time from harvest on the farm to delivery to the customer by 50%, compared to most other food delivery services.
For now, the firm is using its own delivery trucks and drivers, but they are talking to a third party company to help with delivery once they expand their footprint in the Dallas area.
De Andre said people are already demonstrating a lot of interest in the services and they plan to expand north and south of their current core radius in Dallas before looking at other metro areas in Texas like Houston.
He declined to discuss any of the investments required to establish an e-commerce and delivery service focused only on fruits and vegetables, but said, “We really want to become a customer driven company so we're not saving any money. We’re trying to make it an unforgettable and seamless experience to our consumer.”
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One product that consumers can’t order online yet in the Dallas area is Del Monte’s long-awaited Pinkglow Pineapple. The bioengineered fruit looks like a normal pineapple on the outside, but the interior is pink. After some favorable publicity, including being showcased on the Jimmy Kimmel show recently, De Andre said distributors are sold out.
“Just when people feel like there isn't any more innovation possible in produce, we would prove them wrong,” he emphasized.
However, he offered that the Pinkglow pineapple will be coming “very, very soon” to the e-commerce platform. “People in Dallas should stay tuned because we're going to have it sooner than everybody expects.”
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