A subsidiary of the world's largest orange grower and processor will build a "tank farm" at Tampa's port to store and ship fresh Florida juice overseas.
Cutrale Citrus Juices USA, part of Brazil-based Sucocitrico Cutrale Ltda., will spend $25 million to $30 million to construct eight million-gallon tanks on 2.7 acres at Hooker's Point, said president Hugh Thompson. The facility should be complete in two years and employ half a dozen workers, he said.
The company ships imported juice concentrate though the port from Brazil and Costa Rica, but shipments will ramp up significantly with the new tank farm.
Cutrale's 25-year lease with the Tampa Port Authority, approved Tuesday morning, calls for the company to ship at least 29 million gallons of juice annually by the second year of operations. But the company expects to move at least three times that much, Thompson said.
Juice will be stored in the refrigerated tanks. Cutrale tankers will call on the port 10 times a year to carry the juice to markets in Europe and Asia, Thompson said.
Cutrale bought the former Minute Maid processing plants in Auburndale and Leesburg in 1996.