view current print edition





Ocean Mist offering new organic artichoke packs

While it will have a full complement of its close to three dozen commodities on display, three new organic artichoke packs will be front and center at the Ocean Mist Farms booth at the Produce Marketing Association Fresh Summit in Anaheim, CA, in October.

The Castroville, CA-based company has long been a diversified grower-shipper but its artichoke roots are still a very important element of its identity and these new packs also speak to the ever-increasing popularity of the organic sector.

OMF-ORGANIC-ARTICHOKE-2CT-BAG “Besides displaying these new packs at our booth, we will also feature them in the Fresh Ideas Showcase,” said Diana McClean, senior director of marketing for the firm, speaking of PMA’s new product lobby display.

Ocean Mist is a longtime player in the organic arena as it has been offering certified organic artichokes since 2002 in bulk. McClean said these new packs speak to the continued “rise in demand for organics” and the effort to offer more visibility to the category. The value-added efforts also mirror consumer research that shows that shoppers typically pick up more than one artichoke while in the store. Ocean Mist is offering a two-count handle bag, a three or four-count clamshell and a two-count offering packed in a recyclable container. The company is using the 100-percent recyclable Sambrailo Packaging ReadyCycle carton for this environmentally-friendly pack.

McClean said the recyclable container aligns very well with the organic consumer with its recyclability and the fact that it is biodegradable. However, she did note that the clamshells used for the organic pack, and other Ocean Mist Farms items, is made out of at least 90 percent post-consumer-use plastic.

Ocean Mist has long offered consumers a choice when they are reaching for artichokes at the retail level. She said the two-count handle bag is a microwavable bag that allows the time-restricted cook to have a perfect artichoke after it spends just seven minutes in the microwave. And, of course, the large count clamshell is designed for that shopper with a larger family or a person who just has more artichokes on their shopping list.

“Research shows that retailers that carry three unique ways to buy artichokes, do better… and if you carry four or more ways to buy artichokes, you even do better than that,” McClean said.

She also reminded retailers that research has revealed that artichokes are “one of those items that need to be promoted. Carry more than three options and run consistent promotions and you (retailers) will do very well.”

The new organic packs will be introduced at PMA and be available for purchase by the buyer community following the convention.

McClean said the Ocean Mist booth at the convention will have elements similar to an in-store produce department display “to let retailers do some window shopping” and envision how the products will look back in their stores. The booth will feature 32 different commodities, including its broad line of bulk items as well as its many value-added options and its foodservice packs. The firm offers its full lineup in both conventional and organic options.

McClean said the PMA show is a very important one for the company and it will have a major presence with its 30 by 30 foot booth. “That’s a significant amount of real estate and a significant investment,” she added.

The Ocean Mist executive said that with the proliferation of produce shows across the country, the company does have to carefully consider which shows to attend and plan out its strategy. “We need to make it worthwhile, be strategic with our time and of course, we want to be at the shows that our customers are attending.”

She said the PMA is the largest show of the year for Ocean Mist and with its California location this year, the company will have a larger contingent of team members, giving more employees the opportunity to interact with its customers.

Ocean Mist’s headquarters for Fresh Summit will be Booth No. 2085.