The city is actively courting the Hunts Point wholesale produce market, offering incentives to move its warehousing facilities into the Port: New Jersey lures Hunts Point market. If successful, Newark could see upwards of 8,000 jobs moved into the city limits — though it’s unclear how any of those might be available for Newarkers. New York gets 70% of its fruit and produce through the $2 billion a year operation.
Moving might make it harder to serve Long Island customers, market officials say, but would lead to much lower construction and operation costs – even before Newark sweetens the pot with incentives.
“They want us so badly, whatever we want, they’ll give us,” said Myra Gordon, executive director for administration at the market. “My sense is that because of the money available through [Newark’s government], we could probably give them a wish list and get it approved.”
New York is trying to counter Newark’s effort, though Economic Development Corp. President Seth Pinsky would not provide details. “I think we can reach an agreement,” Pinsky predicted. “We’ve got a great location, and I think that in a distribution business, location is key.”
The market handles up to 70% of the fruits and vegetables New Yorkers eat, and is responsible for 8,000 jobs and $2 billion in annual business.