Our History

Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market traces its roots directly back to Dock Street, the earliest produce marketplace in Philadelphia. From Colonial Times, local farmers sold or consigned their goods to Dock Street Merchants. This was a vibrant, bustling business venue for literally hundreds of years.

In 1959 Dock Street’s produce market faded as Philadelphia’s city fathers created the Food Distribution Center in South Philadelphia. Almost all perishable food distribution and wholesale activity was moved there to new facilities. This included the red brick Philadelphia Regional Produce Market (PRPM) which was the time’s state-of-the-art “terminal market.”

PRPM offered a new concept in American produce marketing facilities. The design involved trailer-height loading docks, a key feature leading national produce districts far beyond horse-drawn wagons. Warehouses behind PRPM’s loading docks and sales areas were refrigerated. This refrigeration saw upgrades over the ensuing decades.

The innovative plan gathered dozens of competitive wholesale produce merchants in a central location, offering easy access for widely-ranging customers. Fifty years later, the market’s merchants required more advanced facilities.

In June 2011, Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market (PWPM) opened on Essington Avenue. Once again, Philadelphia established the highest global standards for distributing premium quality fresh produce.

All of the original Philadelphia Wholesale Produce Market merchants moved from the Philadelphia Regional Produce Terminal. These firms are family-operated produce wholesalers that have been in business for generations.

Customers benefit from our rich experience and longevity. Our stable, highly-reputable wholesalers use decades-old relationships with the world’s best growers to benefit market customers. Our history as a consistent premium-quality fresh produce source positioned the new facility for great success.