(Dec. 3) NOGALES, Ariz. — To aid in its direct import business, Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart Stores Inc. has leased a warehouse in Nogales.

The facility does not supplant the relationships Wal-Mart has with existing suppliers in Nogales, but augments overall imports, said Ron McCormick, Wal-Mart’s vice president and divisional merchandise manager for produce and floral.

However, Wal-Mart is committed to the idea of direct import, which is a long process, McCormick said.

“We don’t like to do 100% of anything in one way,” he said. “While we will grow our direct business, we will maintain business with top-class operators at the border, while weaning us off the companies that are not top in class.”