CHICAGO — Calavo Growers Inc.’s Salsa Lisa is now available for foodservice and retail.
The Santa Paula, Calif.-based company has been working on a label and a launch for its new Calavo Salsa Lisa fresh salsa line, a product of its February acquisition of 65% of Lisa’s Salsa Co., St. Paul, Minn.
With Calavo’s new foodservice and retail packs, the National Restaurant Association’s annual convention seemed like the perfect time.
The salsas come in six flavors — mild, medium, red hot, chipotle, tomatillo and pineapple ginger — and are available in one gallon jugs packed four to a case or in 31.5-ounce plastic jars packed six to a case, as well as a 15-ounce size for retail.
All six salsas are creations of Lisa Nicholson, the former owner of Lisa’s Salsa Co. and now director of salsa operations for the newly formed Calavo Salsa Lisa. They continue to be made in her company’s city of operations, St. Paul, Minn.
“We custom make them to order, using hand-chopped tomatoes, onions and garlic,” Nicholson said.
Each of Calavo Salsa Lisa's six flavors are available in 15-ounce, 31.5-ounce and 1-gallon containers.
When Calavo came into the picture, they tweaked the packaging but kept all the salsa flavors Nicholson had already developed, said Alan Ahmer, vice president of processed products sales and production.
“Lisa’s was packaged in smaller units and glass jars. We do a sleek, slim, modern looking plastic,” Ahmer said.
The plastic jars are also BPA-free and reusable, he said.
Nicholson started her salsa company with the three classic flavors and farmer’s markets as distribution. She had expanded to six flavors when Calavo came along.
For foodservice and retail, Calavo is hoping to pick up business where its guacamole is already being used because it can now supply fresh guacamole and fresh salsas. The salsas have a shelf life of 98 days, Ahmer said.
Calavo also showed a line of chips at the expo.
“We do have a few chains that have put chips in produce,” Ahmer said. “That’s the goal — the more you can bundle, it helps you as a company, and it also helps the chain.”