Jacobs Farm del Cabo's Dani Loustalot Dishes on Organic Herb Opportunities and Demand
SANTA CRUZ, CA - From New Year’s resolutions to savory dishes to combat cold season, there are so many ways to utilize this time of year and elevate fresh produce purchases. With herbs playing a major role in signaling fresh, unique, and innovative in the produce department, January provides that critical opportunity for retailers and foodservice partners to build out their programs and increase sales.
“Soup season and ‘mindful eating’ season collide at the start of the New Year—the perfect time for herb sales—and you are going to want to provide the highest quality organic herbs to capture and sustain those sales past the winter season,” Dani Loustalot, Marketing Manager for Jacobs Farm del Cabo (JFDC), shares with me. “We have been in business for over 40 years and are one of the leading organic herb suppliers in the country. We have experience in growing the best herbs and getting them to you in 'mint' condition.”
JFDC’s program operates in all four seasons with a robust 20-plus variety organic herb portfolio to meet customers’ needs. Both foodservice and retail partners are welcome to all of JFDC’s organic herb offerings and range of packaging options.
“Many herbs, like rosemary, bay leaves, mint, and dill, are perennials, meaning they can survive in both cold and hot weather for multiple years. For varieties that are annuals, like cilantro and basil, we harness the power of cooperative growing,” Dani says. “Our teams in Mexico have climates that allow them to grow all throughout the year alongside our seasonal growing in Northern California.”
The stars of this soup season for the company are JFDC’s herb mixes—a prepackaged combination of herbs specifically designed for certain types of cuisine. The company offers its Seafood Mix, Poultry Mix, Pasta Mix, Holiday Mix, and others. Currently, the herb mixes come in ¾ oz plastic clamshells and bunches.
As we look to the dynamic fluctuations in market conditions at the beginning of the year, Dani tells me that herb demand is only increasing. In fact, organic herbs have seen positive category growth throughout the entirety of the pandemic with no end in sight.
“According to The Wall Street Journal and various other produce reports, household purchases of fresh herbs have risen from 1 percent of all produce consumption to 3 percent,” she reveals. “The pandemic brought out the curious home cook and/or the health nut in all of us. What started as a pandemic trend has stretched into a lifestyle change, which means consistently higher market volumes and prices.”
Overall, both quality and volume are improving for herbs, though they experience fluctuations due to climate change and the supply chain. And for JFDC, quality remains the team’s highest priority, always.
With the surge in produce demand as 2022 kicks off, keep checking back with AndNowUKnow as we bring you the latest from category trailblazers.