Trade Winds Citrus gets nod from JEA
Local manufacturer Trade Winds Citrus (Tru-Juice) is basking in the recent nod of approval that it received from the Jamaica Exporters' Association (JEA).
With gross export sales reaching US$3.4 million last year and a significant portion of the domestic market, Tru-Juice has been one of the strongest local brands.
Launched 21 years ago as the first 100 per cent freshly squeezed orange juice on the Jamaican market, Tru-Juice boasts a line of some 20 fruit juices and juice blends, including five no-sugar added products.
According to president of the JEA Vitus Evans, the endorsement is "in recognition of a Jamaican-owned company committed to building 'Brand Jamaica' and the economy, by providing employment to Jamaicans, and at the same time earning much-needed foreign exchange".
Lauding the efforts of the company over the years to innovate, retool and expand its operations, Evans said, "We believe that the over 20 premium quality fruit juices and juice blends that Trade Winds Citrus produces, has established the company as one of the premier producers of 100 per cent tropical fruit juices in the Caribbean region."
Vertically integrated to control the entire process of creating and delivering quality juices, Trade Winds Citrus, located in Bog Walk, St Catherine, has invested million of dollars in plant and machinery, including a plant nursery and a 3,000-acre citrus estate.
The company also owns a juice plant and packing house to complete the production process.
Head of marketing at Tru-Juice, Kim Lee said the company is also high on environmental protection.
According to Lee, the citrus peel, and spent juices that are unsuitable for bottling are fed to animals by the surrounding livestock farmers, while effluent from the operations is treated by natural anaerobic-aerobic fermentation ponds and then filtered to reduce nitrates.
She said the resulting discharge is suitable for irrigation or diverting into the environment.
Lee said Trade Winds Citrus has eliminated all ozone-depleting substances from its operations and has invested in new refrigeration and cooling systems that are environmentally friendly and consume less energy, thereby reducing the consumption of fossil fuels.