At United Fresh 2017 in Chicago, Amco Produce showcased its Garden Pack. The Leamington, Ontario-based company developed the Garden Pack — which packages grape tomatoes, sweet peppers and cucumbers in one container — to simplify shopping for consumers. At United Fresh, it was nominated for Best New Vegetable Product. It is now available in various stores in the U.S. and Canada.
Kurvin Soobrayen, marketing coordinator for the Amco Group, answered a few of Produce Grower’s questions about the Garden Pack.
Produce Grower: Where did the idea for the Garden Pack come from, and how long did it take to develop?
Kurvin Soobrayen: It took about a year to put everything together. The idea originated somewhere between a year and a half and two years ago. The idea was developed by what type of produce and what type of produce combinations consumers buy at the grocery store. Usually, you see people buying peppers, cucumbers and grape tomatoes at the same time. So, we thought about coming up with a combo to fill a need.
PG: Did the box design change much during the development process?
KS: The actual box has been this way since the beginning of development. It allows for better packing, better display in stores and it’s convenient. Everything is closed and sealed properly, too. This design is about convenience, particularly for consumers who want to grab and go.
PG: When this was being designed, what was the desired purpose and how did you envision the consumer using it?
KS: Combining these vegetables is part of it. Freshness is a major part of it as well. And the box design allows for easy transportation. Let’s say you’re having a picnic — having a box like this is easy to carry around and is better than having three different boxes for your veggies. In that box, you have three different crates that come out separately instead of having to buy everything [in separate packages]. And the crates are vented, so the [produce] should last longer.
PG: What kind of feedback did you get at United Fresh?
KS: A lot of people liked how the box looked. The second thing was that it’s convenient — people said they liked having those three things together. [Wholesaler retailers] were all interested because this is a unique grab-and-go product in the market right now.