(July 7) The Newark, Del.-based Produce Marketing Association conducted two Fresh Produce Academy sessions in June to educate Mexican retailers and wholesalers on industry and consumer trends in the U.S. and Mexico.

The first session, June 4-5, focused on helping wholesalers develop long-term strategies. Held in conjunction with the Confederación Nacional de Comerciantes de Centrales de Abasto, the Mexico City-based association for wholesalers, the event featured leading wholesalers from the U.S. discussing how they had adapted to a changing marketplace. The seminar also examined retail trends in both countries.

The academy culminated with the wholesalers’ association outlining a mission statement and prioritizing 10 strategic areas. The event took place in Manzanillo, Mexico.

The second session, June 10-11, was in Mexico City, hometown of the sponsors, the Asociación Nacional de Tiendas de Autoservicio y Departamentales AC, the Mexican association for supermarkets and department stores. With the help of a classroom produce display, sponsors educated retailers on customer expectations, employee training, customer service, supermarket trends and other topics.

Nancy Tucker, PMA’s vice president of global business development, said the academies were designed to improve strategies and management in Mexico at two important levels in the supply chain: wholesale and retail.