“We have a variety of in-store demos scheduled with major retailers throughout North America during the holiday season,” said Chris Veillon, director of marketing for Mastronardi Produce, headquartered in Leamington, ON. “The on-site demos are a huge hit in providing new options to customers who have not tasted our products before.”
Mr. Veillon added that retailers tend to “dress up” their produce departments with holiday decorations to add a festive touch to the product demos. The demos typically include coupons for the company’s “Sunset” brand products.
Mastronardi Produce works with a variety of food banks and not-for-profit organizations throughout North America each year, and it donates tens of thousands of pounds of gourmet greenhouse vegetables to these organizations.
“Most recently, we were part of a mission that sent produce to the mid-Atlantic region that was struck by Hurricane Sandy,” said Mr. Veillon.
On Nov. 9, detroit.cbslocal.com published an article that stated, “A big shipment of food is leaving Detroit Friday and heading east — courtesy of Forgotten Harvest. A 50-foot semi was loaded with 28,000 lbs. of fresh produce Friday morning and is now on its way to victims of Superstorm Sandy.
Included in that semi was fresh produce donated by Mastronardi Produce, and the article was supported by a photo of a box of Mastronardi’s “Campari” tomatoes with its Pink Ribbon creative.
The company also helps consumers, and likely a lot of chefs, by creating and providing what Mr. Veillon referred to as “dozens and dozens of recipes that are perfect for entertaining anytime, including the holiday season.”
“Our ‘Sunset’ ‘Campari’ Shrimp Ceviche, ‘Sunset’ Caesar Bruschetta with Grilled Bread Spinach, Artichoke and Parmesan and our ‘Sunset’ Stuffed Roasted ‘Campari’ Tomatoes all make wonderful holiday dishes,” he said.
“And for those looking for a refreshing drink for the 5-7 p.m. cocktail hour, the ‘Sunset’ Cucumber Mojito is outstanding,” he added.
All of Mastronardi Produce’s recipes can be found at www.sunsetgrown.com.
Mr. Veillon said that while most grower-marketers are finished growing tomatoes in the northern states and Canada for the year, Mastronardi will be growing and shipping tomatoes-on-the-vine and grape tomatoes from its new Coldwater, MI facility, adding, “The Coldwater facility is the first of its kind in the Midwest.”
Mastronardi has also begun shipping all conventional and specialty items out of Mexico to provide a consistent supply of gourmet greenhouse vegetables during the winter months.
In the spirit of nature and the earth, which it celebrates all year, Mastronardi’s Product Conservation program stresses that its produce is grown in an earth-friendly medium using fewer chemicals. It uses recycled fertilizer that comes from recycled leech and reusable organic cocoa peat, rather than a product that would normally create waste.
Its greenhouses are state-of-the-art. They produce lower greenhouse gases which increases environmental sustainability. Wastewater is treated and recycled.
The company’s greenhouses use up to 50 percent less water than field grown produce. It also uses recycled ingredients such as wood shavings and other waste products that normally would have gone to the trash.
Its warehouses use energy efficient florescent light bulbs, and the buildings use natural light from skylights instead of bulbs in the summer months.
The company’s full line of greenhouse grown vegetables includes a full line of tomato varieties, cucumbers, including mini cucumbers and colored peppers.
It also offers a specialty line and a certified organic line of greenhouse products.