Del Monte to bring first shipment of fruit to Portsmouth port

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The man from Del Monte will see the first fruits of a deal with Portsmouth port when the firm's first ship arrives this Saturday.

The port successfully poached the 1m contract from Dover last year.

The deal will see around 1,500 tonnes of Caribbean pineapples, bananas and melons brought through the port every week.

Portsmouth's council-owned port has catered to Fyffes for years, but has never won a deal with Del Monte.

Port manager Martin Putman said the deal paved the way for more business in the future. 'It's significant and it's a welcome addition to our business,' he said.

'It comes on the back of the service we offer and the investments we've made.'

The dredging of the harbour began earlier this week, allowing larger ships to come into port by deepening the shipping channel from 25ft to 30ft.

A new crane is also set to arrive this weekend.

Together, the two investments are worth around 5m.

The Del Monte ship arrives on Saturday morning.