Side Delights® Offers Insights From Its Network of Family-Owned Farms
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - As more retailers begin to roll out new strategies to boost supplier diversity and support local products, locally grown food has taken on a significant level of importance for consumers. To shine a light on this increasing demand, Side Delights® and its network of family-owned farms has weighed in on the growing excitement surrounding local farmers and the products they bring to market.
“Side Delights potatoes are ideal for shoppers looking for locally grown, family-farmed products,” noted Kathleen Triou, President and CEO of Fresh Solutions Network. “Side Delights potatoes are grown by our Fresh Solutions Network of farmers—independent, family-owned farms that produce some of the highest quality, best-tasting potatoes available on the market.”
According to a national consumer survey provided by Side Delights, demand for locally grown food continues to rise as shoppers—specifically millennials—aim to support local farmers. The desire for more local products has also been driven by the pandemic, leaving more consumers wanting to spend money within their communities.
Michael Family Farms’ Kathy Sponheim also provided valuable insights surrounding the demand for local offerings.
“Every season is different, so continuous change and learning are needed to adapt and adjust to growing a better crop,” Sponheim said. “Between Mother Nature and the fresh potato market, a lot is uncertain when we put the seed in the ground. The reward is harvesting potatoes that feed our family, our neighbors, and our customers.”
Chandler Mack of Mack Farms in Florida also spoke out about the hard work put in by family-owned farms and the lessons it brings.
“The most difficult part of farming has to deal with the challenges that weather can present. An important lesson I have learned through farming is that hard work can pay off, and giving up is not an option,” Mack explained.
Hard work is one of the many values found within Side Delights’ network of family-owned, local farmers, as explained by Molly Connors of the Basin Gold Cooperative in Washington.
“Being a farmer has taught me strong work ethic, persistence, and respect. Farming is a group effort, and you need all of these to run a thriving agricultural business—just as you do in your everyday life,” said Connors.
While the work may be challenging and the outcome sometimes unexpected, it is the end result that drives the passion and dedication of the company’s network of suppliers.
“The hardest part of the job is pouring your heart and soul into growing a world-class crop, and then some Mother Nature event ruins everything,” said Jeff Klinger, Director of Potato Farming Operations, Sterman Masser Farms. “The biggest reward is when everything does go right, and it’s a grand slam.”
As local products and family-owned farms continue to make their way into the spotlight, keep reading ANUK to stay up to date on everything in the fresh produce industry.