800.8836/790: Telegram

The Chargé in Cuba ( Briggs ) to the Secretary of State

312. Pineapple shipping situation described in Embassy’s airmail despatch no. 3982 of May 943 has become increasingly serious as car ferries are still immobilized and as agent has been notified that Navy proposes to take over the two vessels immediately.

As car ferries are only remaining means of shipping perishables their loss would make it impossible to ship balance of Cuban pineapple crop, the approaching avocado and the grapefruit crops, the next winter vegetable crop not to mention chilled beef and other perishables. This would spell ruin to many hundred of small Cuban growers who are dependent upon the American market, and the adverse effect on Cuba’s economic structure and morale would be difficult to overestimate.

In addition to perishables car ferry has been handling large and increasing percentage of north and south bound general cargo as well as mail and express shipments.

  1. Not printed.