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Mission EDC Celebrates the Success of the 9th Annual Viva Fresh Expo in Houston

Strengthening Agricultural Ties

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Courtesy photo
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By Roberto Hugo González

Last week, Mission Economic Development Corporation (EDC) was decisive in supporting the 9th annual Viva Fresh Expo in Houston at the Marriott Marquis in Houston, Texas. The event, organized by the Texas International Produce Association (TIPA), took place from April 11th to 13th and drew nearly 3,000 participants from various agricultural industry sectors.

This year’s expo brought together a diverse group of professionals, including farmers, wholesalers, retailers, packers, and shippers. The central discussions focused on pressing industry issues such as water shortages, national security, and the ongoing disputes over tomato trade. These conversations are crucial as they address the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for the agricultural sector.

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Teclo Garcia, the president and CEO of Mission EDC, attended the event and proudly announced Mission Texas’ support for the association. He highlighted the importance of such gatherings in fostering strong industry partnerships and addressing mutual challenges.

Teclo Garcia, Mission EDC, and Dante Galeazzi, CEO/President, Texas International Produce Association, are Pictured above. Courtesy photo

Mission’s Wonderful Citrus’s participation, along with other notable companies from the Rio Grande Valley, underscored the significance of binational trade. The United States, Mexico’s largest agricultural trading partner, purchases about 80% of Mexican agricultural exports. This relationship highlights the critical role of forums like the Viva Fresh Expo in fostering effective cross-border trade partnerships.

The Texas International Produce Association, originally founded in 1942, has been a cornerstone in the growth and advocacy of the Texas produce industry. By uniting leaders with a shared vision, TIPA has successfully represented Texas-grown fruits and vegetables’ business, economic, and political interests. Furthermore, in 2012, TIPA expanded its mission to include importing and marketing foreign-grown produce through Texas ports, responding to the evolving needs of its members.

The #YourMissionStartsHere hashtag, associated with the City of Mission and the Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce, encapsulates the spirit of these efforts. As we look forward to future expos, the continuous collaboration and dialogue facilitated by events like Viva Fresh are essential for advancing the interests of the agricultural sector in Texas and beyond.

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