By Cherri Gregg
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia is the gateway for tons of fresh fruits and other imported produce from Chile.
On Tuesday, Governor Tom Corbett traveled to the city to meet with officials in an effort to increase Chilean trade into the region.
“Chile is Pennsylvania’s largest out-of-country provider of fruit and wine, and all of that comes right here into the Port of Philadelphia,” he said.
Gov. Corbett met with Chilean minister of agriculture, Luis Mayol Bouchon.
Every year, Chile pumps about $600 million of imported kiwis, lemons and other produce into Pennsylvania– a fairly large percentage of the total imported into the U.S.
“This port puts the goods of any importer within a day’s drive of almost half the population of our nation,” Corbett explained.
And as part of the visit, Chilean importers donated 10,000 pounds of fruit to local food bank Philabundance.
“It’s getting tougher and tougher for us to access produce,” said Lisa Hodai, who works for the nonprofit and feels the donation is a huge help.
The Governor’s meeting with Chilean officials is a follow up to the administration’s trip to South America last month for the purpose of increasing trade between the regions.