San Miguel Produce’s Marketing Manager and Corporate Chef, Garrett Nishimori, Talks National Kale Day and Local Produce Trends
OXNARD, CA - From a little-known green to the food that can pack a punch, kale’s popularity has skyrocketed in recent years as a leading trend in the market.
Now one of the first California kale producers, San Miguel Produce, is celebrating this growth with the rest of the greens industry. Tomorrow is National Kale Day, and as we previously reported, the company is raining kale down upon commuters across Ventura and Los Angeles Counties.
While Garrett Nishimori, San Miguel Produce’s Marketing Manager and Corporate Chef, tells me that this is generally the time that kale production slows a bit before kicking back up during the holidays, demand for the superfood remains strong, especially for organic.
“Generally the slowest time is right before the holidays, then picks up in time for the big season,” Garrett tells me, though in the last three or four years he said January has become one of the busiest times for kale.
Why then, you might ask, is tomorrow the day to celebrate this hearty veggie?
Garrett shared that the day was selected at random by the founders Dr. Drew Ramsey and The Skinny Chef Jennifer Iserloh, Co-Authors of the 50 Shades of Kale. The reminder, however, should be a strong one with what the company has planned.
According to the latest release, San Miguel has eight locations slated to receive its goal of 12,000 bunches of free kale, given away to passers by at these stops between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m. local time:
- Ventura County
- Los Angeles County including Malibu, Downtown L.A, and Burbank.
- Ventura-Victoria Avenue, between Moon Street and Ralston Street
- Oxnard- Five Points
- Oxnard- Rose Avenue and Gonzales Road
- Camarillo- Santa Rosa Road and Verdugo Way
- Westlake- Westlake Boulevard and Thousand Oaks Boulevard
- Malibu- Pacific Coast Highway and Topanga Canyon Road
- Downtown Los Angeles- S Figueroa Street and W 7th Street
- Burbank- Warner Boulevard and S Avon Street
“We are excited to grow this grassroots effort, raising awareness around one of the vegetable heroes leading us to a healthier America- kale,” Brian Cook, San Miguel Produce Director of Sales and Marketing, said in the release. “We are very thankful for our wonderful retail partners, Food 4 Less, Fresh & Easy and Safeway, who are helping expand our reach and have been very supportive of our family farm’s products for many years.”
On the topic of grassroots, San Miguel has been doing a part in trying to bring the Los Angeles area into the locally-grown trend that appears to be on the rise. Most recently, the company’s COO, Jan Berk, took up a place on the panel for the Ventura County Ag Summit, which included a Taste of Local expo.
“There continues to be a growing trend for locally grown produce, which we are happy to see is growing a bit more in our area,” Garrett tells me. “There has always been strong competition with product imported from Mexico in the Los Angeles market. Consumers want to know who is growing their food, how they are growing their food and where their food is coming from. They can see and trust this when their produce is grown near their own communities.”
The company was also proud to announce that the same goes for helping to make a healthier education, with not only retailers participating in the National Kale Day festivities, but local schools as well.
For a complete up-to-date list of retailers and schools participating, see the lists below.
- Food 4 Less (7 a.m. until supplies last)
- 1688 N Perris Boulevard, Perris, CA 92571
- 2750 E 1st Street, Los Angeles, CA 90033
- 4250 Van Buren Boulevard, Riverside, CA 92503
- 5420 W Sunset Boulevard, Hollywood, CA 90027
- 1600 E Willow Street, Signal Hill, CA 90755
- Fresh & Easy (7 a.m. until supplies last)
- Safeway (10 a.m. to 2 p.m.)
- 4211 Eagle Rock Boulevard, Los Angeles, CA 90065
- 10930 Rosecrans Avenue, Norwalk, CA 90650
- 1700 Rosecrans Avenue, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266
- 1207 S Euclid Avenue, Fullerton, CA 92833
- 3231 East University Avenue, San Diego, CA 92104
- 15 Marina Boulevard, San Francisco, CA 94123
- 1335 Webster Street, San Francisco, CA 94115
- 298 King Street, San Francisco, CA 94107
- 2020 Market Street, San Francisco, CA 94114
- 5290 Diamond Heights Boulevard, San Francisco, CA 94131
- Ventura Unified School District
- Conejo Unified School District
- Hueneme School District
- Oxnard School District
- Montalvo Elementary School- After school (noon for jog-a-thon)
- Lang Ranch Elementary School- Before school (walk to school day)
- Richard Bard Elementary School- After school (noon dismissal
- Harrington Elementary School- After school (2:35 p.m. dismissal)
As for how to help spread health in the nation, give ‘em kale!
To help spread the word, and to follow the events of the day, use #NationalKaleDay and #KaleDay2015 on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest, and don’t forget to tag @cutncleangreens and @sanmiguelproduce.