B&W Quality Growers' Mark DeLeo and Nikki Hartman Talk New Watercress Products
FELLSMERE, FL - For 150 years, B&W Quality Growers has been bringing the best of the best in leafy greens to market. To commemorate a century and a half’s worth of quality and exceptional varieties, the company is launching not one, but two new products. As I strove to learn more about this exciting news, Mark DeLeo, CEO, and Nikki Hartman, Marketing Manager, filled in the details.
“With next year being our 150 year anniversary, we thought it would be a perfect time to launch new and unique watercress products,” Mark explained to me. “In the first quarter of 2020, we will launch two new watercress products, which include micro watercress and a proprietary red and green chopped watercress blend.”
The micro watercress, he noted, will be available to foodservice members, while the chopped red and green watercress will be offered at both retail and foodservice.
“The chopped watercress stands up incredibly well on a plate, and the red and green leaves create a really beautiful presentation,” Nikki commented, touching on how foodservice operators and retailers can utilize the colors to their advantage. “The micro watercress is an exciting addition to our product line. These tiny leaves offer the same great nutritional benefits as more mature varieties in a much smaller serving, making them an easy addition to any smoothie, sandwich, or entrée.”
The chopped red and green watercress will be available in a ready-to-eat pack, and the unique flavor and health benefits allows both chefs and consumers to use this product in many ways. Working alongside B&W Advisor Chef Ming Tsai and other ambassador chefs, the grower has been able to create many exciting watercress recipes. (I’m already thinking of using watercress in my wraps and salads, but Mark noted that the product is a great addition to stir fries, juices, and more!) Both products will be available on a year-round basis.
Mark concluded our conversation by teasing that B&W is never satisfied when it comes to innovating, and we can expect to see two additional watercress products toward the end of 2020.
Talk about a strong end to 2019! Keep reading AndNowUKnow for the latest in what’s happening in the produce sector.