SA grower stays ahead of consumer trends with ‘baby’ veg
Murray Bridge vegetable grower Don Ruggiero of Swanport Harvest has paid heed to industry research showing preference for smaller vegetable portions with the release of his new range of ‘petite cauliflowers’.
The cauliflowers, which have taken years of selective breeding and trial and error to master, are half the size of run of the mill cauliflowers available, allowing consumers to buy a smaller cauliflower and limit wastage.
“I noticed that the industry was only offering a standard sized whole or half cauliflower and saw an opportunity in the market for a smaller cauliflower to meet the needs of singles who may be intimidated buying a cauliflower due to the size and potential wastage,” said Mr Ruggiero.
“Since the recent launch of the new ‘petite’ cauliflower we have seen a strong response from South Australian consumers and I feel that soon we will be able to distribute Australia-wide or even export the product.”
AUSVEG SA is the leading body representing the interests of potato and vegetable producers in the state and provides growers with a united voice and strong representation with all levels of government.
Consumer research funded by the National Vegetable Levy in 2014 showed that Australians had preference for smaller sizes when selecting cauliflowers and indicated preference for smaller portions more suited to single people.
The study titled Optimal Vegetable Portion Size to Meet Consumer Needs conducted by BDRC Jones Donald Pty Ltd, researched consumer preferences for portion sizes for key vegetable categories such as cauliflowers and carrots and found that consumers had a strong aversion towards wastage and indicated preference for a larger variety of portion sizes for vegetables such as cauliflowers to allow consumers such as singles to buy less at a time.
“It is great from an industry perspective to see one of our local growers adapting their product to changing consumer tastes,” said AUSVEG SA State Manager Mr Jordan Brooke-Barnett.
“With the growth in single person households it is important that the vegetable industry is able to respond and provide portions which are suited to single people and minimise wastage.”
According to the most recent data, Australian households throw out over $1 billion of fresh produce each year.
“Recently we have seen substantial growth in innovation from growers such as Don Ruggiero who are re-thinking how our industry packages and presents vegetables for consumption and aiming to reduce the amount of fresh produce which is thrown out in Australia each year.”
MEDIA CONTACT: Jordan Brooke-Barnett, State Manager – South Australia, AUSVEG SA
Phone: (08) 8221 5220 Mobile: 0404 772 308 E-mail: email@example.com