Bako Sweet - Make it Sweet With Our Organic & Conventional Seedless Watermelons - June/July 2020Flavor Worth a Thousand Words

American football—this is a season of its own, in truth. A season of Fantasy Football, social gatherings, healthy competition, a little superstition, and a whole lot of fresh produce opportunities. We love taking the temperature of some of our friends during this time of year, especially in the lead-up to the Big Game in February. But, in all honesty, we can take any occasion to offer a little fresh produce persuasion. Check out the tips and tricks of some of our industry friends...

 

DARREN MICELLE
COO, Lipman Family Farms

“Football season means that tomato season is back! Lipman’s Crimson™ proprietary round tomato offers juicy, homegrown taste with a center as red as its skin. These field-grown tomatoes are known for their slightly thicker outer shell, making them perfect to slice for burgers, sliders, and dips. One of my favorite Super Bowl snacks is Caprese tomato sliders, with fresh mozzarella, basil, a drizzle of balsamic, and juicy Crimson tomato slices all sandwiched between warm Hawaiian buns. Not sure if my Saints will be playing this year, but count on us to be serving Crimson tomatoes on Super Bowl Sunday.”

MIKE O'Brien
Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Monterey Mushrooms

“To have a successful Super Bowl party, there are five key elements that I call the 5Fs. First and foremost is football, but that goes without saying. The next two are friends and family—key ingredients. Number four is fungi. Stuffed mushrooms are a staple at Super Bowl parties. Adding whole mushrooms to accompany buffalo wings in buffalo sauce or adding sliced mushrooms to potato skins can be a tasty umami treat that will be a big hit at your event. Add all four of the above Fs together and you get the fifth F, which is fun.”

BRIANNA SHALES
Senior Marketing Manager, Stemilt Growers

“Planning Super Bowl snacks is as big of a deal as the game in our house, and while we try to mix it up year after year, there are some staples that never change. Fresh guacamole is a given, and we always make bacon-wrapped jalapeños. If there’s extra bacon, I will wrap dates to balance out the spicy flavors with sweetness. We always make a big green salad, too, keeping it simple with mixed greens, diced Piñata® apples, blue cheese, pecans, and a homemade citrus vinaigrette. Gosh, I’m getting hungry just thinking about what’s to come!”

DAN'L MACKEY ALMY
President and CEO, DMA Solutions

“With plant-based diets on the docket to continue their strength as a trend in 2020, suppliers should take note of how the Super Bowl spread as we know it is prime for a fresh produce takeover. While having an urge to indulge isn’t going to fade, we need to explore ways to showcase our fresh products as healthy—and more importantly—tasty, ingredients. The Super Bowl is one of those occasions where media and foodies are looking for unique ways to integrate fresh produce and think outside the tired chips and hot dog routine. Aside from the fresh celery found next to buffalo wings, we’re seeing media tell their readers how to implement fresh veggies into dips, like artichokes and cauliflower. Not to mention making veggies the star of the night, like meaty mushrooms as a substitute for traditional hamburger patties. The sky is the limit!”

TONY INCAVIGLIA
Vice President of Sales and Marketing, GR Fresh

“When it comes to Super Bowl Sunday snacks—simple, crisp, and fresh is what I strive for on the Big Game Day. Nothing else screams crisp and fresh more than the flavor of GR Fresh-grown mini sweet peppers with an added Italian touch. Slice peppers in half lengthwise, cook crumbled Italian sausage—hot or mild based on your preference—olive oil, soft cream cheese, garlic powder, parsley, touch of salt and pepper, and, of course, Parmesan and Romano cheese. Then stuff to your heart’s content. Most people like them baked, but I love the natural cool, crisp, crunch with every bite. Trust me, they go fast, so don’t be shy about preparing a couple 16-oz bags...and go 49ers!”

GARY CLEVENGER
Managing Principal, Freska Produce International

“I look forward to Super Bowl Sunday for all the great food and great friends. It is also an ideal time as retailers transition from Thanksgiving and Christmas produce items and start focusing on great categories like mangos and avocados.

This time of the year, everybody starts to eat healthy again (except for on Game Day) and these two staples for the game make great dishes from Avocado Mango Salsa to Mango Habanero Wings.”

ANTHONY INNOCENTI
Co-Founder, LIV Organic Produce

“A passion of mine is entertaining and cooking with friends and family during the football season, and definitely for Super Bowl. A couple of staples on the menu for the Big Game are Prosciutto-stuffed mushrooms and Ahi Poke on top of smashed avocados with taro chips. It is always fun to take it up a notch and build a unique menu with non-traditional dishes. Retailers can really take advantage of this time of year to cross-merchandise items for the Big Game like potatoes with avocados and squash for a new take on nachos, potato salad, or a roasted vegetable dish as a palate cleanser.”

MICHELE MCNEECE
National Director of Business Development, Ippolito

“Super Bowl is one of my favorite gatherings of the year, with the exception of Thanksgiving. I love being surrounded by friends, family, food, and drinks. Growing up in California’s Imperial Valley surrounded by agriculture and great Mexican food, these were our two staples at the party, and we still carry on this tradition. Recognizing that veggies play a big role in my life, I may go a little overboard with the veggie trays—say with broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, cucumbers, radishes, celery, and bell peppers. The way I look at it, it offsets the guacamole and artichoke dip!”