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Nature Fresh is packaging up 20 years of success

Nature Fresh is bringing a fresh look with them to the Southeast Produce Council show this year. The brand is transitioning its entire line into new, cleaner-looking packaging that speaks to the quality of the brands’ produce — and Southern Exposure attendees will get to check it out.

“We wanted something brighter, fresher, and cleaner that will appeal to consumers and better represent our product,” explained Kara Badder, marketing manager for the Leamington, ON-based greenhouse grower.

“It will also create consistency, so if a consumer is looking at bell peppers and sees a mini sweet pepper in the same packaging, they will know where it comes from based on that clean consistent look.”

NFF-VideoShooting-07-June-2018-17 In an effort to better highlight the quality of the brand, the new design keeps the focus on the beauty of the produce by creating more visibility into the package. This speaks to the company’s values: transparency, authenticity, and flavor.

Flavor in particular is at the core of the business. The family-run company makes flavor its priority, staying true to the belief that shoppers should have the same quality of produce all year long, regardless of the season, said Badder. “We are very focused on connecting people to real food by operating sustainably grown products at prices that as many people as possible can afford.”

It was these principles that Pete Quiring founded the company on in 1999. Throughout the last 20 years, the company transformed the greenhouse industry by staying true to their principles to become one of the largest independent greenhouse produce growers in Canada. They currently grow tomatoes, bell peppers, and cucumbers out of two facilities in Delta, OH, and its headquarters in Leamington, ON.

One aspiration for their expansion throughout the years was to be able to provide a year-round supply of tomatoes.

This year the team will realize that goal with an additional 32 acres at the Leamington division that will produce tomatoes during the winter months. This will allow the company to meet the needs of consumers seeking local, North American-grown tomatoes 12 months of the year, and more importantly, provide insurance.

For the greenhouse industry, a year-round growing season protects supply against the ever-changing weather patterns that North America has been experiencing, explained Ray Wowryk, director of business development. “There has been extreme weather causing crop delays, especially in California, so it becomes about food security and knowing there will be food available down the road.

Wowryk highlights the benefits of greenhouse farming: it allows for greater control over environmental conditions by eliminating much of the risk from weather and pests, as well as maximizing use of land. This is the type of information that Nature Fresh shares at events and across its digital outreach to better connect with customers and consumers alike.

Social media is a specifically popular outlet for the brand. The team uses its social media channels to talk about where the produce comes from, introduce the people working behind the scenes, and answer questions, explained Badder. “Consumers are quick to tap into social media, so we make things as accessible as possible, including some amazing recipes and unique ideas for implementing our produce into any diet.”

Although digital is the popular angle at the moment, Nature Fresh also makes it a point to get out into the community to visit stores, attend events, camps, schools, and more. “Consumers really want to know where their produce comes from so being able to have these conversations is extremely vital to us,” Badder added.

Fans of Nature Fresh should pay attention. The team has exciting growth plans for the coming years including expanding their reach into Mexico and growing their supply from global partners in Spain, Israel, and Holland. But before that, they will take some time in 2019 to celebrate their 20th anniversary. “It’s a really big milestone for us,” Badder shared.