With basil being one of the most, if not the most, popular fresh herb that consumers want to cook with, one indoor grower is introducing a new basil product just in time for spring.
Square Roots is launching a new seasonal fresh herb, Lemon Basil, which is available from May 15 to August 15. “We’re always looking for exciting products to offer customers a fresh flavor experience,” says Raji Margolin, EVP of sales & marketing, noting the grower did quantitative consumer research with fresh produce buyers testing multiple seasonal basil varieties. It found that Lemon Basil was ranked #1 overall, with 90 percent of buyers agreeing that the herb is good for a variety of dishes and offers something different.
Grown indoors, which allows for predictable yields, Lemon Basil and the company’s Genovese Basil (the latter is available year-round) from its Wisconsin, Ohio, and Kentucky farms. “The basil market can fluctuate based on region and season, but our indoor farming techniques allow us to provide responsibly grown, fresh produce year-round with reliable quality and quantity,” says Margolin.
That’s how the company is counting on its Lemon Basil to stand out from fresh basils in the marketplace today. “All of our basil varieties are fresh for weeks, as opposed to days, thanks to our indoor farming techniques,” says Margolin. It also provides transparency via its Square Roots Transparency Timeline, which allows customers to trace their greens from seed to shelf and lets them see that they are consuming responsibly grown and sourced produce free of pesticides and GMOs, all key components of a product today’s consumers are interested in.
As for demand, it’s strong for both Lemon basil and traditional basil, and Square Roots continues to see growing interest from consumers in this key aspect of its product. “We anticipate continued demand for locally grown, sustainably produced herbs and vegetables, including Lemon Basil, in the coming weeks and beyond,” says Margolin. “As consumers continue prioritizing the importance of supporting local businesses and reducing their environmental impact, we see demand for our products continues to increase.”
That said, managing sustainability is not an easy task. “One of the biggest challenges in the farming industry is the inefficiency and waste in the current supply chain system,” says Margolin. “Our challenge is not to completely overhaul the system but to work within it by co-locating with existing distributors to bring close-to-home, fresh produce to consumers. By doing so, we can reduce waste and help create a more sustainable food system.”
As for pricing, Lemon Basil is set at $2.49 SRP for a 2/3 oz package, which is consistent with its traditional basil and herb offerings.
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