SAN ANTONIO, TX – Viva Fresh Expo, once again you did not disappoint! The air was thick with excitement at this year’s event with more than 370 retail-foodservice individuals registered (record-breaking for Viva) and over 2,300 attendees overall converging in San Antonio, Texas. Just as the quality of the crowd was high, so was the quality of products and concepts that graced the trade show floor. Within the incredible array of innovations and programs, I chose a handful that stood out among the many that impressed and inspired.
Fox Packaging Stand-Up Combo Bag
As a consumer and a trade news writer, I am always looking for the item that piques my interest in both realms, and Fox Packaging’s Stand-Up Combo bag does just that. The company combined the vision behind its patented Combo Bag with the Stand-Up Pouch format, which brings breathability and function to the product. Fancy and functional. Suppliers now have the ability to choose a Stand-Up Pouch format where previous offerings may have limited the choices. After all, who has time for limits.
Mr. Lucky Garlic Blister Pack
The only thing that keeps me from incorporating more garlic into my dishes is the peeling and prepping. I can only imagine the number of consumers in the same boat and also the draw in the produce aisle for the retailer that can offer an easy solution. With Mr. Lucky’s Garlic Blister Pack, consumers get portioned, peeled garlic cloves, optimized for freshness while retailers can highlight a modern and fresh grab-and-go option. In all honesty, I could eat a whole clove raw, but for all your sakes I will refrain from doing so before hitting the show floor.
Little Bear HoneySweet® Organic Onion
As much as I love garlic, there are truly few things, for me, more versatile than an onion. And now with the mild flavor and subtlety of the HoneySweet® Organic Onion, they are even more promising elements to the plate—from sweet to savory. Consistently rated with a 1.5 or less in terms of the pyruvic acid testing, which measures pungency, this proprietary variety is one of the mildest, tearless, flavorful, and delicious organic onions I have had the chance to try. Consumers are sure to add this to their basket, and in result, to produce department sales.
Pure Flavor® Mini Munchies Tomato Snack Pack
I can always count on Pure Flavor to showcase a packaging design that catches the eye, engages the healthy snacking consumer, and convinces the taste buds that nutritious can be delicious. The compact four-chamber pack: two chambers of Juno Bites Red Grape Tomatoes, one chamber of Oriana Orange Grape Tomatoes, and one chamber of Bumbles Yellow Grape Tomatoes—brings the spice of tomato life directly to the produce aisle, tapping multiple senses and maybe sales as well.
Frontera Produce – Sostena ProducePlan.com & GroundSight technology in collaboration with Crescent Fruit & Veg
Every category can use a little boost, and Frontera, Sostena, and Crescent are helping to bring that to the cantaloupe category with Sostena’s Golden Crush—a new type of cantaloupe melon that has a harvest indicator, allowing pickers to choose the ripest melons for customers every time. Couple with ProducePlan.com, a cloud-based produce supply chain tool and monitored with GroundSight, a remote irrigation technology, the collaboration helps growers achieve high yields and a better more consistent eating experience. The name of the game these days is flavor and I am excited to see this variety and collaboration generate a revival in the category for retailers. I am sure they are, too.
Thank you again to Viva Fresh for having us to the amazing show in San Antonio, Texas! Next year’s cannot come fast enough!