Maurice A. Auerbach, located in Secaucus, NJ, is a veteran of the New York Produce Show & Conference. Bruce Klein, director of marketing for the company said that both the first and second year shows in New York City were great experiences, and the company is anticipating an even better event at the new Pier 94 location on 55th Street and the West Side Highway.
“We are very excited about this venue, and having the entire expo on one floor is a tremendous benefit,” said Mr. Klein. “The location is terrific for anyone driving in, especially from New Jersey, because it’s literally just over the bridge.”
The company will mostly be promoting its new state-of-the-art facility that it moved into last fall, just in time to offer a tour to visitors to the 2011 New York Produce Show.
“We had just moved into the building when last year’s show took place,” said Mr. Klein. “Timing was perfect for the facility to be added to the tour lineup. But since then we’ve really tweaked our operations, and we are functioning like clockwork.”
The 60,000-square-foot facility has 45,000 square feet of refrigeration and an unbroken cold chain. The construction also offers enhanced sustainability.
“We are benefiting tremendously from the increased efficiencies we now have,” said Mr. Klein. “The unbroken cold chain is a major benefit. Overall, it’s easier for us to do more business, and that was our goal.”
He added that the facility accommodates the company’s food-safety initiatives and leaves room for future programs related to food safety and traceability.
Maurice A. Auerbach is a third-generation family-owned business that started distributing garlic during World War II. In the 1970s, it expanded its product line to include a variety of produce sourced from around the world. It specializes in garlic, shallots and other specialty items, including tropical and Asian produce, and it handles organic garlic, shallots and tofu.
Mr. Klein said the new facility made it through Hurricane Sandy with hardly a scratch, but he was put to the test when he and his wife had to go into Manhattan to pick up their kids who lost both power and water in their homes.
“It was a really bizarre feeling to be driving on New York City streets at night when it’s pitch-black because there are no lights,” he said.
The timing of the New York Produce Show & Conference, said Mr. Klein, “is good because it’s usually a little quiet for a few days following Thanksgiving and before the real Christmas and Hanukah push begins.
“It’s also a beautiful time of the year to visit New York City,” he added. “The holiday lights are up, windows are decorated and the spirit of the holidays is everywhere. Hopefully it won’t be bitter cold, and being early December, it likely won’t be intolerable.”
He said that the approximate 400 exhibitors booked for the upcoming show is not a staggering number for people to get through in one day.
“The PMA reduced its show to two days because people weren’t showing up on the third day,” he noted. “And that’s some 3,000 booths. I don’t see the New York show being a problem in this regard.
“This show is also well-run,” Mr. Klein continued. “It will be interesting, and hopefully very successful, to see how the exhibition floor works out compared to being in a hotel.”