A Houston wholesaler is moving into a larger distribution facility.

Houston wholesaler relocating to bigger buildingLatin Specialties LLC is in the process of moving operations into a 60,000-square-foot operation at 4132 Airline Dr., four times larger than its former headquarters, less than half a mile away.

Jorge Vazquez, Latin Specialties’ president, said the facility allows for more services including ripening and cross-docking. Fresh-cut produce and other value-added services, including specialty packaging, are also new capabilities.

The ripening rooms, from Daytona Beach, Fla.-based Dade Service Corp.’s design-build service, allows for tarpless, pressurized ripening.

Food safety remains another concern.

“We are trying to focus on food safety and improve our logistics, providing faster and better services to our customers,” Vazquez said. “With all the new regulations coming in regarding food safety, we decided to invest in a state of the art facility to help provide those assurances as much as we can. This should be one of the nicest produce facilities in the Houston area.”

Latin Specialties plans to formally open the operation by May, Vazquez said.

Founded in 2000 by brothers Jorge Vazquez and Sergio Vazquez, the company distributes primarily in the Houston area but also sends trucks to wholesale customers in the Midwest including Chicago and Kansas City, and farther, to Miami.

The brothers took over operations from their father, Sergio Vazquez Sr., a Houston produce industry veteran who died in 1999. Their father exported Mexican mangoes and okra.