The too-complicated tale of the kale sprout - The Packer

The too-complicated tale of the kale sprout

08/08/2014 12:09:00 PM
Greg Johnson

Greg Johnson, EditorGreg Johnson, EditorTwo of the trendiest vegetables right now are kale and brussels sprouts.

Think how hot a product could be if it merged the two.

Well, someone has, but it’s a story more confusing than it ought to be.

England-based Tozer Seeds has been working on a non-GMO cross of the two for more than 15 years, much longer than kale and brussels sprouts have enamored foodies.

“We had no crystal ball 15 years ago,” said Kraig Kuykendall, sales manager for Tozer Seeds America. He said the company is fortunate both vegetables have gotten popular.

Tozer won a third place innovation award for it at the 2013 Fruit Logistica in Berlin.

Are you starting to wonder what this product is called?

Flower sprout is what won in Berlin. It’s also called kale sprout, Kalette, brusselkale, Lollipop, kale multicolor and a few others.

That’s a problem.

Tozer works with Golden Sun Marketing in the U.S., and it just submitted a Price-Look Up application in July under the name kale sprouts.

Don Goodwin, owner of Minnetrista, Minn.-based Golden Sun, said he expects to hear back on the application sometime in October, and he said the new PLU number could be in the market sometime next year.

Golden Sun also has developed a brand name of Kalettes, to be used by certain Tozer kale sprout seed customers.

The list of growers is not public yet, but Mann Packing Co. promoted the item at the recent PMA Foodservice Expo in Monterey, Calif.

One company who will not promote kale sprouts as Kalettes is Salad Savoy, who markets the product under its own brand, Lollipop.

Salad Savoy president John Moore said his company first started growing kale sprouts in the spring of 2012, and the first harvest was October that year.

He said companies that are marketing kale sprouts this year as a new product aren’t being truthful since his company has marketed it for two years.

We at The Packer know the definition of “new” is fairly flexible when it comes to new products, so one can have a reasonable argument that something can be new within a year or two.

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