Company Press Release
WASHINGTON, June 1, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has imposed sanctions on two produce businesses for failure to pay reparation awards issued under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA).
The following businesses and individuals are currently restricted from operating in the produce industry:
–Agro Trading International LLC, operating out of Coral Springs, Fla., for failing to pay a $5,870 award in favor of an Idaho seller. As of the issuance date of the reparation order, Forestals SA Cultivos Y Aprovecsamientos, Muguel E. Guerra Sosa, and Juan Antonio Reyes were listed as members of the business.
–Luis Nunez Corona, doing business as Only Fresh Distributing, operating out of Los Angeles, Calif., for failing to pay a $2,712 award in favor of an Arizona seller. As of the issuance date of the reparation order, Luis Nunez Corona was listed as the sole proprietor of the business.
PACA provides an administrative forum to handle disputes involving produce transactions; this may result in a reparation order being issued that requires damages to be paid by those not meeting their contractual obligations in buying and selling fresh and frozen fruits and vegetables. USDA is required to suspend the license or impose sanctions on an unlicensed business that fails to pay PACA reparations awarded against it as well as impose restrictions against those principals determined to be responsibly connected to the business when the order is issued. Those individuals, including sole proprietors, partners, members, managers, officers, directors, or major stockholders may not be employed by or affiliated with any PACA licensee without USDA-approval.
The Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS), PACA Division, regulates fair trading practices of produce businesses operating subject to PACA, which includes buyers, sellers, commission merchants, dealers, and brokers within the fruit and vegetable industry. All oversight of actions related to PACA are conducted by AMS, an agency within USDA.
In the past three years, USDA resolved approximately 4,250 PACA claims involving more than $77 million. Our experts also assisted more than 7,000 callers with issues valued at approximately $110 million. These are just two examples of how USDA continues to support the fruit and vegetable industry.
For more information, contact John Koller, Chief, Dispute Resolution Branch at (202) 720-2890, by fax at (202) 690-2815, or by email at PACAdispute@ams.usda.gov regarding this matter.
Release No.: 082-15
Contact: Nadine Wilkins, (202) 720-8998, firstname.lastname@example.org