Growth of Dartford facility will double ripening capacity and establish mango operations, with work to be completed next year

Mission Produce has announced expansion plans for its forward distribution centre (FDC) in Dartford, England, to double ripening capacity and establish mango operations ”in response to the branch’s growing success”.

Mission Produce Forward Distribution Centre Dartford UK

The expansion plans include the addition of 50 per cent more Mission Control ripening rooms, a mango-specific operations area, as well as additional cold storage and warehouse space.

The expansion is expected to be completed in spring 2024, the group confirmed.

“We’ve been growing our business in the UK by delivering on our commitment to be the go-to supplier of high-quality, ripe avocados – so with our facility expansion, we’re getting ready to grow even more and unlock the potential for mangoes in the market,” said Paul Frowde, managing director, Mission Produce Europe and UK.

“We’re leveraging the capabilities of our global network and vertical integration to bring our customers the convenience of partnering with one supplier to expertly ripen both commodities, driven by our operational excellence.”

Mission said it was continuing its partnership with Cross Group, a global leader in advanced temperature controls, to advance the facility with a state-of-the-art, specialised mango sorting and packing line, additional warehouse and cold storage capacity, and more ripe rooms featuring Mission Control.

Mission Control is the company’s exclusive atmosphere-control ripening process, an innovation that was developed in partnership with Cross Group and ”is proven to accelerate avocado ripening and improve product uniformity”.

“Consistent quality is key to promoting a positive consumer experience with mangoes, so we’re leaning on our mastery in the art of ripening and industry-leading technology to create that reliability,” said Michael O’Sullivan, senior commercial manager at Mission Produce UK.

“In the UK market, there is plenty of opportunity to drive demand for mangoes,” he added. ”I believe that we’re well-positioned with a world-class supply chain to become the highest-quality product on the shelf.”