Everything’s Bigger – and Crunchier in Texas

They say everything’s bigger in Texas. Now things are getting crunchier, too.

Prime Planet’s new and improved crunchy Tostones have made their debut in the snack aisle of one of the Lone Star State’s most favored specialty supermarkets, Central Market.

“This is really big news for us,” says Business Development Manager Marie Gonzalez of Prime Fresh Products, as the new and improved snack chip continues its journey into mainstream American stores outside the South Florida market.

“Our Tostones are part of a category that has been growing over the past two years as the U.S. market is adopting an appetite for better-for-you snack options,” says Gonzalez. “The current trend is for low sodium, low sugar, and high-quality ingredients – exactly what Prime Planet delivers.”

Tostones are made from hand-picked plantains manually processed and cooked in Ecuador under the highest standards, and then packaged there under the Prime Planet name, a division of Prime Fresh Products (PFP). “Along with being simply irresistible, it’s also important to consumers that these chips are non-GMO, gluten free, and kosher,” she added.

Gonzalez says this move is rooted in a new strategy for Doral-based PFP to expand its existing partnership with KeHE Distributors in order to introduce Prime Planet elsewhere across the U.S. Illinois-based KeHE distributes natural, fresh, specialty, and organic food products to more 30,000 vendor partners and retail grocers across the country.

“We have been working with KeHE since they helped us introduce our product into about 1,000 Publix stores across the Southeast over the past year,” she said, “and so now we’re on mission to grow our distribution – which includes this exciting expansion into Texas.”

With about 25 total stores, Central Market is well recognized in Texas as a specialty market, like Trader Joe’s. Product placement here will allow PFP to focus on delivering a much better product for Central Market customers, while establishing key brand awareness in the Texas community. Central Market is part of H-E-B, a growing family of stores with more than 3,000 points of sale in 150 communities around Texas.

According to Gonzales, “In the snack world, Central Market is known to be very exclusive and not easy to break into. They have high standards for product selection. That’s why everyone wants to distribute their products there – because mainstream American people go there to look for unique new quality products.”

Since PFP launched its a new-and-improved Tostones in April 2019, these delicious green plantain chips not only taste better and come in a better package, they’re easier to find on the grocer’s shelf.

Tostones have long been a staple on Caribbean and South American tables. “But that’s all changing now,” she says.

The stand out quality of Prime Planet Tostones is that they are prepared with palm oil that is certified RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil). The difference between regular banana chips or plantain chips is the taste, texture, and health benefits. The company focuses on ensuring its all-natural plantains have no added sugars or preservatives, since 47 percent of U.S. consumers indicate natural and non-added sugar is what they want when purchasing a snack.

Gonzales noted that Prime Planet has also recently made its way into the New York metropolitan market, with a chain called Christmas Tree Shops, a bargain department store like Burlington Stores that now sells food and beverage items in the front-end cashier area. Here shoppers are treated to such fine foods items as gourmet cookies from Switzerland, coconut water from Thailand – and now crunchy delicious Prime Planet chips from Ecuador.

About the Company
Founded in 2016, PFP finds the finest food products from around the world and then import, distributes, and transports them to the shelf in the U.S. Prime Planet is a brand of PFP that that focuses on the production of ready-to-eat tropical snacks for the retail and wholesale industry.

PFP is a division of Prime Group Holdings, located at 1301 NW 84th Ave. Suite 127, Miami, FL 33126. For information, visit www.primefreshproducts.com or contact Marie Gonzalez at 305-592-2044 or via email at opscoordinator@primefreshproducts.com.

Trade Shows are Excellent Forums for Learning, Networking, and Promoting

Being part of the never-ending trade show circuit comes with flying around the globe multiple times a year, racking up millions of miles, jet lag.

Moscow, Berlin, Singapore … It might sound glamorous, but it’s a lot of hard work. Yet important work, because we understand the value of networking at these shows and conferences. They are a powerful and necessary part of doing business in international logistics.

Face-to-face exposure is essential to ensuring that the key decision makers in our industry continue to have a firm grasp of our products, services, and expertise in “carrying the weight of the world,” if you will.

And sometimes we mean that quite literally, as in our recent success in shipping bodybuilding weights all the way to a Pakistani gym. Now there’s an interesting story to share.

But it goes well beyond just show-and-tell. There’s relationship building, brand exposure, and great leads to be had at these events. So allow me to share with you the nine boxes we like to check in claiming success at an industry trade show or conference:

First and foremost, trade shows provide you with an organized stage to advertise your brand to thousands of vendors, prospective customers, and industry leaders.

Keep an eye on your competitors. Prospering in this increasingly competitive environment requires you to know your competitors’ business practices and sales tactics so that you can stay one step ahead of them.

Display your latest products and services. By showcasing your best selling items, such as our new and improved Tostones, you can grow your base of purchasers and give prospective customers the chance to touch and feel your best sellers.

Meet new and existing clients face to face. Trade shows and conferences provide a welcome forum for you to put faces with the names of the customers who you normally only deal with over the phone or via email.

Generate high quality leads. Because many attendees participate in trade shows for the sole purpose of purchasing products or services, you can enjoy a robust collection of high-quality leads.

Evaluate new products. Trade shows are full of companies exhibiting their latest and most innovative products. So, don’t be afraid to take it all in – and learn from what you see and experience from your competitors on the trade show floor.

Close sales. Key decision makers comprise a sizable portion of trade show attendees. With nearly half of these decision makers placing orders during a trade show, you should come prepared to close sales and process payments.

Discover the latest industry trends. Trade shows provide the perfect forum for mingling with industry leaders, pioneers, and business big and small that are experimenting with new ways to make logistics products and services better.

Learn about changes in industry regulations. Many trade shows and conferences include seminars and training opportunities that are designed to educate participants about key changes in related laws and regulations.

Clearly, trade shows, and conferences are excellent forums for learning, networking, and promoting the Prime Group companies – and perhaps yours, too. Ramping up your trade show participation is one of the most effective means of expanding your business.

I’m glad we had this opportunity to connect!

Prime Air is fit to take on the UFC

With nearly 20 years of training, expertise, and determination, Prime Air & Ocean Cargo has mastered the art of shipping around the world. So it came as no surprise that PAOC was invited to jump into the ring to do some heavy lifting for UFC Gym by shipping fitness equipment to Lahore, Pakistan – more than 8,000 miles away.

Actually, to use the correct vernacular, fights in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) don’t take place inside a ring – they take place within an Octagon, an eight-sided mat and cage. And it gets pretty harrowing in there.

But as UFC has become a worldwide phenomenon, they are also emerging as a big contender in the world of fitness centers. With more than 150 locations in 30 countries, UFC Gym is now bringing the same training programs and benefits that elite Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) athletes experience to the general public. And most recently, to the people of Pakistan.

Because UFC Gyms feature a full-range of fitness classes and specialized trainings, each facility around the world must provide its signature state-of-the-art equipment – along with installation of UFC’s world-famous Octagon. So whether its a UFC Gym in North Miami, United Kingdom, or Pakistan, much of this heavy equipment comes directly from a central shipping point in Virginia, USA.

“Up to this point, working with one our newest freight-forwarders, PAOC has been moving mostly medical equipment and supplies to Pakistan,” says Operations Supervisor Bryan Rivas.

“But this was our first really big shipment we handled for them – and definitely the most interesting.” Rivas is based at Prime Group headquarters, home of four divisions of the Miami-based logistics company, including PAOC.

This major shipment to UFC Gym Pakistan, carefully loaded into a both a 40-foot and 20-foot container, consisted of new exercise machines and related training equipment – and literally tons of body building weights.

“Through one of our designated sea carriers, we expertly coordinated every aspect of this 8,000-mile journey to ensure safe delivery,” said Rivas. With a starting point of Valencia, Va., the agent picked up the containers, coordinated the appointment with the shipper, and then said “bon voyage” at the Port of Virginia in Norfolk. With a transit time of 30 to 45 days, the final destination is Lahore, Pakistan.

Located about 160 miles from Islamabad, Lahore is Pakistan’s second-most populous city, and one of its most wealthy. It is also the country’s most socially liberal cities, and is a major center of education, so residents here are eager to explore UFC’s highly popularized fitness-center alternative.

With an arrival date sometime in mid-October, Rivas is presently tracking the progress of the containers and is following up with the client to convey that everything is ok.

Rivas takes great pride in what he does for his customers. An employee with PAOC since 2012, he says on any given day he guides his clients to do what is best for them – and delivers.

“Depending how urgent their cargo is, if it’s next day or needs two-day delivery, air is the best option,” he says, “On the other had, ocean transport delivers with a longer travel time, and it all depends on the origin location, which port the shipment is coming out of, and its destination. Or if they want to save money, they can consolidate their cargo into an outbound container that we can ship for them.”

He says land transport is also an option, especially in the U.S. or to Canada. “Whether it’s a small packages or a pallet, we arrange everything,” he added.

“It’s always busy, but I like to be busy. And sometimes our work goes into off hours, especially if there’s an unexpected issue with a shipment. But when it comes to helping our global clients, there are really no ‘off-hours’ – and I really don’t mind, because it’s the challenge that keeps me going.”

It is said that UFC champions are the best-trained athletes in the world. To succeed, they must be determined to work daily to master their skills and abilities with supreme stamina. If there is one thing these champs have in common with ops team at PAOC, this is it.

Because Prime Air also works every day to earn its title as one of the best logistics firms in the world. By mastering shipping solutions and clients services with supreme skill and determination, they are emerging as world champions in the highly competitive business of logistics.

ABOUT PAOC
Prime Air & Ocean Cargo has a unique ability to streamline, optimize, and expedite freight to and from the U.S. for a wide range of major industries. They work closely with air carriers and ocean carriers to secure competitive rates and ample space to destinations all around the world. For information, call 305-592-2044 or visit www.primeaircargo.com.