“Because of the stringent food safety procedures we put in place during the last 10 years, we have to take that into consideration when buying local because some works and some doesn’t,” he said. “Whenever possible and when all the criteria are met, we do source local. It’s like in any of the parts of the food chain from the growers up. If they’re going to be in this industry over the next 10-25 years, they have to make a conscious commitment to keep raising that bar on safety.”
Cefalu purchases from many local growers and said the availability of local product also helps support the region’s economies.
While local isn’t a big part of the catalog of the Jessup-based Tony Vitrano Co., demand is increasing, said Tony Vitrano, president.
“We are doing more than we have done in the past,” he said. “It seems like it’s growing. Our customers prefer it. As the quality and quantity is improving, we are doing more of it.”