Kristin Fritz Kubiszak of Brookside Farms, a grower for MBG Marketing – The Blueberry People, was one of only 15 national honorees named as a Champion of Change this year by the White House and the United States Department of Agriculture. The award honors agriculture leaders from across the country who are taking innovative approaches to support American farming and ranching—both now and in the future, by showcasing their actions that ensure and advance the future of agriculture.
Kubiszak is the retail manager for Brookside Farms located in Paw Paw, Michigan; and is a fifth-generation member of her family to operate a farm that distributes fresh blueberries through MBG’s cooperative marketing network under the Naturipe® brand. After obtaining her bachelor’s degree in social work from Cornerstone University, Kubiszak returned home to her family farm, which focuses on growing and packing top quality blueberries. Kubiszak’s involvement in the agriculture industry doesn’t stop with just her family farm; she also sits on the board of directors for the Van Buren County Farm Bureau as Chair of the Promotion and Education Committee. With this position she has dedicated her time to educating the community with trips to local schools, the Ag Venture tent at the local Youth Fair and other youth and consumer education programs. “Kristin is another member of the Fritz family farming operation that makes us proud that they are part of our MBG and Naturipe families.” said Bob Hawk, President and CEO of MBG Marketing.
Kubiszak’s primary goal is to educate, not only about agriculture, but also how families impact agriculture and how important it is to continue family farms. Brookside Farms started as a dairy farm in 1876 and Kubiszak’s grandfather planted his first blueberry bush in 1956. That was the same year the family joined Michigan Blueberry Growers Association, a grower-owned cooperative, and the year Kubiszak’s father, Bill Fritz, was born. Like his farming predecessors, he has continued the family tradition of active agricultural leadership, by serving on the boards of both MBG Marketing and Naturipe Farms of which MBG is an owner/ partner. “We were absolutely delighted when we learned that Kristin was selected for this program” said Bill. “She is a wonderful representative of the next generation that has the desire and drive to continue our commitment to family farming and the broader agricultural community”.
Kubiszak and the other honorees were congratulated by Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack of the USDA and recognized at a ceremony in the White House by Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Krysta Harden and Assistant to the President and Director of the Domestic Policy Council, Cecilia Munoz. They were given a tour of the First Lady’s Garden at The White House by Sam Kass, who is President Barack Obama’s Senior Policy Advisor for Nutrition Policy and Let’s Move Executive Director. “It was a true privilege to represent the blueberry industry as a Champion of Change. Since we grow blueberries, which are known for their great flavor and incredible health attributes, I was especially pleased to learn first-hand about some of the efforts by the First Lady to encourage children to eat a healthy, brighter array of fresh fruits and vegetables” said Kubiszak. “It was great to share the story our family blueberry farm. It has always been a passion of mine to educate others about what we do, and this was another great opportunity”.
To learn more about Kubiszak and the other “Champions of Change” visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/champions.
Pereg Gourmet, a family-owned company offering a wide array of all-natural and exotic pantry staples, is introducing a lineup of premium ancient grains, rice and beans that are easy to prepare and ideal for rounding out a meal.
One hundred percent pure and naturally rich in health benefits, the new products include: white quinoa, red quinoa, farro, wheat berries, chickpeas, basmati rice, pearl couscous, traditional couscous, bulgur, soup mix, black beans, French lentils, Texas chili beans, orange lentils, green lentils, an autumn lentil blend, yellow split peas, green split peas, red kidney beans, and white beans. Of these 20 different varieties, each are completely free of preservatives and OU kosher certified. Most of the new items are also gluten-free certified and non-GMO verified.
Packaged in a stand-up, re-sealable pouch to maintain freshness, each bag measures in at one pound and features recipe ideas on the back. The new grain, rice and bean lineup is now rolling out at select retailers across the country and online. The suggested retail price is $2.99 to $3.99 for everything but the quinoa and $5.99 to $6.99 for the quinoa items. Visit www.pereg-gourmet.com for detail on the company.
Mooney Farms has launched a healthy and bold snack line that delivers. The BBQ variety offers a double-dose of sweet and spicy, or choose the Smokey flavor, slow roasted over an open flame just long enough to infuse a rich aroma and taste. This one-of-a-kind snack line combines premium California sun dried tomatoes and select spices to bring you a fat-free, lycopene-rich snack that is full of flavor.
“The new Bella Sun Luci snack bags unites the much-loved barbecue spice and smoky flavors with our premium sun dried tomatoes, and packs layers of great flavor in every bite,” said Mary Mooney. “We found that fans of one flavor are often fans of the other — so we made it easier to enjoy them together as the ultimate savory and sweet snack combination.”
The suggested retail price is $2.99 for a 3.5-ounce bag. The Bella Sun Luci snack bags are available at Safeway banner stores nationwide.
If you don’t already sing to tomatoes, you may soon find yourself rethinking your salsa. Known for its freshly flavorful dips and spreads, Sabra® Dipping Company has relaunched its eight refrigerated salsas to the sweet sound of farmer serenades. To underscore the loving process with which Sabra prepares its line of salsas, the brand is featuring in-field farmers singing to vine-ripening tomatoes in its first salsa advertising campaign. Salsa fans are invited to join the fun by sending sweet nothings by way of social media with the hashtag #SalsaLove
“The commercials are a fun take on nurturing growing tomatoes for a delicious product that is filled with love,” said Eric Greifenberger, Director of Marketing at Sabra. “From our ripe red tomatoes to our crisp onions and peppers, our farmers and chefs are meticulous in their care and selection of vegetables for a fresher-tasting salsa. Believe it or not, research has shown singing to plants makes them grow better. We certainly don’t see any harm in that.”
Sabra’s line of refrigerated salsas includes Homestyle Medium, Homestyle Mild, Mango Peach, Restaurant Style, Roasted Garlic, Pico de Gallo, Southwestern and Garden Style. The newly relaunched recipes feature more crisp vegetables for a fresher, chunkier salsa bursting with flavor. The company uses only vine-ripened tomatoes, handpicked by Sabra’s farmers. The nature of the process inspired Sabra’s campaign theme of “Made with Love” developed with creative agency strawberryfrog.
“Sabra goes over and above to create a better tasting salsa. We were inspired by the passion Sabra has for their salsa,” said Ant White, strawberryfrog’s creative director on Sabra. “Known as the brand behind America’s favorite hummus, we wanted to help Sabra share its salsa story in an engaging way. Getting farmers to sing REO Speedwagon’s I’m Gonna Keep on Loving You is just the beginning.”
Sabra Salsa’s integrated campaign kicked off on June 23. It will run in the Northeast and include ads on Hulu and other video-hosting sites as well as radio ads, banner ads, social media and in-store activities. Sabra will also have four trucks crisscrossing the Northeast to share the Salsa Love with free samples.
The entire campaign directs consumer to the microsite SabraSalsaLove.com. Consumers can share their own love by posting on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Vine pages with the hashtag #SalsaLove. The best fan submissions will be shared on the site and may even make it into the next Sabra Salsa ad.
SabraSalsaLove.com is also the host to a summer sweepstakes. One winner will receive a four-day beachside culinary getaway in Southern California, and ten winners each week will receive other great prizes. On Pinterest, fans pinning their favorite recipes featuring salsa will be entered to win additional prizes.
Veggie Patch, which makes vegetable-based foods, announced today the debut of two new unique creations: Roasted Red Pepper Falafel and Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes.
Veggie Patch’s new Roasted Red Pepper Falafel offers a tasty twist on one of the brand’s top sellers, its Classic Falafel. Combining the palate-pleasing tastes of red pepper and hearty chickpeas with the brand’s unique blend of falafel spices, the new Roasted Red Pepper Falafel’s outstanding flavor profile allows it to be served on its own or incorporated into another dish.
The new Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes are a delectable and healthy snack made from 70 percent vegetables. A blend of red lentils, carrots and zesty spices, the tasty cakes deliver a mouthful of flavor, while also providing an excellent source of protein (8 grams per serving).
Veggie Patch’s new Roasted Red Pepper Falafel and Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes have a suggested retail price of $4.49 and are rolling out this month in the produce section of grocery stores nationwide.
The two new vegetable products debut as attention increases on the benefits of vegetables. From the First Lady’s healthy school lunch initiative and revisions set forth by the U.S. Department of Agriculture stating that half of one’s plated meal should consist of vegetables, to recent obesity studies that have brought healthy eating to the forefront, increasing attention has been paid to adding more vegetables to American diets. Vegetable purchases have grown by 14 percent over the past five years and are expected to experience a double-digit increase over the next five years.
“These mouth-watering new products are as flavorful as they are exotic, and as healthy as they are convenient,” said Adam Carr, CEO of Veggie Patch. “We’re proud to lead the way in introducing unique and great tasting items that excite and appeal to our consumers.”
Prior to these new product launches, Veggie Patch most recently introduced its Mediterranean Patties this past December. The unique patties contain an exotic blend of Mediterranean spices combined with spinach and chickpeas.
In addition to its new products, Veggie Patch is also debuting a new look, including a modernized logo and updated package complete with mouth-watering photography and suggested preparations for the items. Each product now features a more descriptive name that better speaks to the item’s flavor profile, such as the full-bodied sweetness of the Roasted Red Pepper Falafel and the unique spices of the Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes.
“We know a lot of people eat with their eyes and for a product as distinctive and delicious as Veggie Patch, it starts with the product photography,” continued Carr. “We’re especially proud of our new look because it undoubtedly gets consumers excited about our products, both new and current.”
The complete Veggie Patch line consists of eleven products, including its well-known Savory Spinach Bites and Garden Broccoli Bites, which are two of the brand’s more kid-friendly products. All items are nutrient rich, non-GMO and contain 0 trans fat.
The Gracious Gourmet’s award-winning line of spreads, chutneys and pestos now includes a new fruit spread, Date Apricot Spread, and a new line of products called The Gracious Gourmet Essentials.
The Essentials line — which boasts quality and consistency for ingredients cooks often need in recipes — launches with two must-have products: Sautéed Mixed Mushrooms and Sweet Caramelized Onions. These essentials, which taste just prepared, save home cooks and chefs the time of shopping for ingredients, prepping them and cooking them to get rich flavors before adding to a final dish. Taste them at the Summer Fancy Food Show in NYC at booth #438.
Date Apricot Spread is packed with dates combined with apricots, spices and orange juice. It is great paired with cheeses like ricotta, fresh goat, brie and cheddar and is delicious served with chicken, duck or turkey and mixed into basmati rice. Also perfect for yogurt parfaits or as a topper for vanilla or caramel ice creams.
• Sautéed Mixed Mushrooms contains white, crimini and shiitake mushrooms cooked with onions in olive oil and finished with a dash of lemon juice. It provides “essential” rich mushroom flavor to a variety of dishes, including risottos, pasta dishes, soups, omelets and savory pancakes.
Sweet Caramelized Onions includes the equivalent of 1 pound of raw sweet onions in every 7-ounce container! The fresh onions are cooked in olive oil with a hint of brown sugar to boost the onions’ natural sweetness — the taste is so good you can eat them straight from the jar. Use them to top all kinds of meat and fish as well as in salad dressings, soups, pasta and rice dishes.
Frontier Soups™ is introducing Little Schoolhouse Alphabet Soup Mix to make mealtime fun and healthy for an upcoming generation of soup lovers. The new mix is being introduced at the 2014 Summer Fancy Food Show, and samples of the prepared soup will be available at booth #4120.
The Alphabet Soup Mix is in Frontier Soups’ Homemade-In-Minutes™ line of quicker-cooking soups and contains multi-colored, organic letter- and number-shaped pasta, said Trisha Anderson, company Founder. The soup is filled with kid-pleasing vegetables—peas, corn and carrots—and is lightly seasoned to appeal to young palates, although its comforting childhood flavors satisfy adult appetites as well, Anderson said. Home cooks add fresh or prepared chicken to the soup, which is ready in 30 minutes on the stovetop.
The new mix also has shelf appeal in clear cellophane packaging that allow consumers to see the multi-colored organic pasta layered with the vibrant green, yellow and orange of the freeze-dried peas, corn and carrots, she said. The soup will be available for order as part of Frontier Soups’ Summer Fancy Food Show specials.
“We’ve been wanting to create an alphabet soup for some time now and fell in love with the colorful letter and number pasta, which has even greater appeal since more and more parents want to choose organic ingredients for their kids,” Anderson said. “With today’s busy family lifestyles, our goal also was to create a soup that would satisfy adults craving comfort food flavors because who wants to cook a separate meal for the kids?”
Little Schoolhouse Alphabet Soup Mix is available in 4-ounce packages with a suggested retail price of $5.95-$6.49. Frontier Soups 35 varieties are all natural with no added salt, preservatives or MSG. More information is available at www.FrontierSoups.com or by calling 1-800-300-7687.
Looking for a little drama at this summer’s Fancy Food Show? It seems you’re likely to find plenty at the Goddess Gourmet booth in the “New Brands On The Shelf Pavilion” on level 1, behind the 3400 aisle, where the company is showing off Flavor Bombs, described as, “an arsenal of ingredients making preparation times shorter, cooking more enjoyable, flavorful and affordable.”
Flavor Bombs are a line of all natural, fresh frozen, gluten free, low sodium cooking bases that ignite a G-force of flavors when preparing memorable meals for family or friends. Flavor Bombs come in five explosive flavors that include Basil, Sage, Rosemary, Mirepoix and Soffritto that turn everyday dishes into gourmet meals. Flavor Bombs are the creation of Giovannina Bellino, a long-time ‘foodie” entrepreneur, mother of three and the owner of Goddess Gourmet, a natural foods manufacturing company located on Long Island, New York.
Flavor Bombs provide consumers with an arsenal of ingredients making preparation times shorter, cooking more enjoyable, flavorful and affordable. Flavor Bombs are concentrated blends of caramelized aromatics and fresh herbs in an extra virgin olive oil base that offers consumers an “EXPLOSION” of flavors and aromas that won’t retreat when preparing their favorite recipes. Flavor Bombs are pre-cooked, so consumers have the flexibility of using them to start or finish a dish.
“We are very excited to be exhibiting Flavor Bombs at the summer Fancy Food Show. We want consumers everywhere to learn how to “drop a bomb” into their pots or pans and be bombarded with the explosive taste of Flavor Bombs,” said Gio Bellino, owner of Flavor Bombs.
The fresh frozen, 2-ounce “Bombs” will create a recipe for up to four people and come in the following five delicious cooking blends:
Basil Flavor Bomb – Recipe ready and no chopping necessary. This Flavor Bomb is the perfect complement to an array of dishes from sauces and soups to meatballs and meatloaf.
Sage Flavor Bomb – Recipe ready and no chopping necessary. This Flavor Bomb is perfect for those fall and winter months stews, soups and stuffing’s. Excellent with poultry, pork, veal and a true enhancer for roasted potatoes and vegetables.
Rosemary Flavor Bomb – Recipe ready and no chopping necessary. This Flavor Bomb packs a powerful punch of pungent flavor and aroma that takes fish, chicken or lamb into the next stratosphere. Try it on roasted potatoes or vegetables.
Mirepoix Flavor Bomb – Recipe ready and no chopping necessary. This Flavor Bomb is a kaleidoscope of flavors and aroma that is a perfect mix for rice, orzo pasta, quinoa or any kind of grain in making a memorable side dish. Try it in tuna, chicken or egg salad and on vegetables. We guarantee your side dishes will never taste the same.
Soffritto Flavor Bomb – Recipe ready and no chopping necessary. This Flavor Bomb is so versatile and delicious it can be used in sauces and soups, in quiche, omelets, frittatas or stir fry. You can even use it as a Panini spread or a topping for bruschetta and it’s the authentic base for Marinara sauce.
“Flavor Bombs really hit their target at last year’s Natural Products Expo East Show in Baltimore,” said Gio Bellino, “That’s why we are taking direct aim at this summer’s Fancy Food Show to further introduce a larger audience of food industry professionals to the unique potential of Flavor Bombs.
Stoneridge Orchards, dried fruit experts and the consumer brand of Royal Ridge Fruits,offers a wide variety of new products, ranging from dried fruits lightly dipped in rich, premium dark chocolate or smooth and creamy Greek yogurt, to the company’s signature Montmorency tart cherries exclusively flavored with all-natural Tajin®, the number one seasoning blend sold in the U.S. and Mexico. The company also is making available its new sliced peaches, as well as a new snack size of its dried Montmorency tart cherries, the company’s most popular dried fruit product.
“We’ve been growing cherries, berries and tree-fruit on our family farms for three generations and have perfected our fruit selection, harvesting and drying process to create wholesome and nutritious all-natural dried fruit products that are great on their own or as an ingredient in many fantastic recipes,” said Bryce Dorsing, Senior Vice President of Royal Ridge Fruits. “Our newest products further demonstrate our commitment to bringing excitement to the dried fruit category by developing and introducing innovative new consumer-focused products that are unlike any other available.”
The Dorsing family has operated their family farms growing cherries, raspberries, blueberries and other fruits in Washington State since 1962, when the family patriarch was awarded a small plot of farmland in a modern homesteading act. The farm has grown to become the largest producer of Montmorency tart cherries on the West Coast. The Dorsing family began freezing when Royal Ridge was formed in 2000 and added drying capabilities in 2006, with a substantial expansion in plant and installation of new state-of-the-art equipment in 2014. The family’s company, Royal Ridge Fruits, launched the Stoneridge Orchards brand in 2010.
“We are excited to launch our new six-SKU Stoneridge Orchards line of all-natural whole dried Montmorency tart cherries, blueberries and cranberries lightly dipped in either decadent premium dark chocolate or smooth and creamy Greek yogurt. These items are the perfect snack, a sweet finish to a satisfying meal, or delicious party treat,” adds Dorsing.
All of the Stoneridge Orchards dipped products are made with whole, all-natural fruits – not a mixture of fruit juice and pectin – and they contain no artificial colors, flavors, hydrogenated oils or sulfites. They also are Kosher-Dairy certified. Each of the six varieties comes in a five-ounce re-sealable bag with a suggested retail price of $3.99.
In addition, the following all-natural dried fruit products are now available:
All of the new Stoneridge Orchards all-natural dried fruit products are available now to retailers nationwide. Each comes in a case of six or in eye-catching 48-count display shippers, with the exception of the Montmorency Cherry Snack Packs. Those are available in five-count multi-packs, attractive 24-count countertop dispensers and 80-count bulk packs.
To inquire about carrying the products, you may contact the sales team at (855) 300-3199 or firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on Stoneridge Orchards, please visit www.stoneridgeorchards.com/stoneridge-orchards.
Woot Froot is a line of fresh cut peaches and nectarines packed in snack-size bags as well as larger packages that company President Kim Gaarde says has the flavor and texture to provide consumers with a great eating experience. The brand belongs to Fresh Fruit Cuts of Fresno, Calif.
Gaarde’s confidence in the new product is backed up by recognition from the United Fresh produce trade association, which has named Woot Froot as a finalist for its 2014 Best New Fruit Product Award as well as by several years of research and development that involved the evaluation of more than 500 fruit varieties and development of Fresh Fruit Cuts’ proprietary process for packing the fruit to keep its fresh appearance and texture.
With consumers responding positively to convenience driven items including fresh cut fruits and vegetables, and snack items like carrots and apples continuing to grow in popularity, Woot Froot sliced peaches and nectarines have been a positive addition to the fresh-cut snacking category, Gaarde said. “It has been a whirlwind of activity and opportunity here; we are very excited to see these products become successful in market.”
After the success of last year’s production, the company was able to make recent equipment upgrades within their facilities, allowing them to add additional SKUs and pack sizes. Woot Froot will now be offered in 3-ounce bags, five-count multipack clamshells, 14-ounce bags, and 10-ounce, 20-ounce and 2-pound trays, and is scheduled to hit retail stores starting May 15. For more information on fresh cut peaches and nectarines, visit www.wootfroot.com or contact Fresh Fruit Cuts at email@example.com. United Fresh will name the award winners in June.