Mann Packing

When Art Meets "Craft"

From on-trend, value-added arrangements to prepared foods that are ready for the plate, the produce industry is truly helping to pioneer the way that consumers eat today.

Taylor Farms® is recognizing these rising trends, and the call they have created in-store to bring more of that artistry closer to home. With the debut of the Taylor Farms® Chef Crafted Salad Blends, the company is providing retailers with a unique salad experience to bring to consumers that combines incredible ingredients like fruit, herbs, and vegetables, in one beautiful, convenient, and delicious package.

Already known for vegetable innovations and value-added produce offerings across retail and foodservice, the company is taking things one step further with the new salad blends which bring that chef-inspired culinary touch you might see on a restaurant plate to the prepared salad section of your store.

Six distinctive salad blends offer a diversity of flavor within the produce department while also enticing the eye with a visual aesthetic not always seen in the category. Until now.

Mark Campion, Retail President, Taylor Farms

“Like our successful Chopped Salad Kits, the new Chef Crafted line combines product innovation with packaging innovation and is grounded in consumer research,” Retail President Mark Campion says, adding that these blends are a first in the industry and deliver on the company’s mission to be America’s favorite maker of salads and healthy fresh foods.

“The benefit is you will get optimum clarity; there will be no hiding the vegetable, everything will be right at the top for consumers to see.” - Jerrett Stoffel

It is an offering that not only meets the desire for those straight-from-the-chef creations that is growing in the U.S., but also looks to cater to consumers’ taste preferences, their need to prepare fresh and healthy meals, and to do so quickly, according to Director of Product Development Kacie Vieth Ragsdale.

Kacie Vieth Ragsdale, Director of Product Development“In meeting with consumers, we heard clearly that this collection of salads offers the visual and taste experience typically found in premium, restaurant-style salads,” Kacie explains of the reception Taylor Farms has received for the product line.

The product itself is not the only innovative aspect, how it is presented has also taken important technical steps.

Each offering is wrapped in the company’s proprietary TaylorClear™ packaging, offering a key advantage to the line: clarity.

Jerrett Stoffel, Vice President of Operations“The benefit is you will get optimum clarity; there will be no hiding the vegetable, everything will be right at the top for consumers to see,” Vice President of Operations Jerrett Stoffel says, an aspect that has become increasingly important for produce sales as packages move more and more towards showcasing what is inside.

It strikes me how many members of the Taylor Farms team intimately know the process of what it takes to make the Chef Crafted Salads happen, and what goes into bringing such an offering to market.

Kacie Vieth Ragsdale (left) and Christina Barnard (right)

So what has it taken to get this far? And to take the art and expertise found in top restaurants and package them up for the produce aisle? About five years of work in trial and technology. With overwhelming responses, such as 95 percent of participating panelists reporting that they would purchase Chef Crafted Salads, Taylor Farms looks at the products as a great growth opportunity for retailers.

The Chef Crafted Salads are already available at West Coast grocery stores, and rolling out nationwide by late summer 2016.