Local produce offers a strong draw in Southwest - The Packer

Local produce offers a strong draw in Southwest

01/04/2013 10:58:00 AM
Jim Offner

Legend hadn’t finalized its estimate on volume of local product for the upcoming season, Zwillinger said.

He did say the program would include squash, zucchini and other vegetables to start.


Increasing market

Other suppliers are answering the call for local product.

“I think more and more restaurants are putting the local on their menus, and we’re now in the height of our growing season here in Arizona,” said Willie Itule, owner of Willie Itule Produce Inc., Phoenix.

The limitations of the season do present certain problems, said Stacy Wilson, sales and marketing director for Just the Best Ltd. Co., a Santa Fe, N.M.-based wholesaler.

“The locally grown market in New Mexico is definitely increasing, but there’s not enough production for me to participate,” she said.

Utah is in a similar situation, said Murray Harris, sales manager at Condies Foods, Salt Lake City.

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