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Posted by:Garielle Delisle, Saturday, January 11, 2014

Food In Canada, Canada’s Food & Beverage Processing Magazine – Hélèna Katz – January 11, 2011.

Helena Katz questions Sylvain Racette, Vice President, Sales and Marketing for Veg Pro International. The company’s history, its products, its innovative approach and strong relationship with consumers are discussed in this article that traces the path of the successful business.

Sometimes buying swampland really does pay off. Dutch immigrants Peter and John Van Winden were studying agriculture in Sherbrooke, in Quebec’s Eastern Townships in 1952 when they bought eight acres of land in Sherrington. After discovering that it was a good place to grow vegetables, Veg Pro International was born.

Peter’s son Gerry Van Winden now runs the company, which specializes in processing and packaging baby lettuce and spinach. About 10 years ago, Van Winden saw an opportunity to break into a market where baby lettuce was trucked in mostly from California. Today, Veg Pro is one of the few companies to grow mesclun in Quebec, and its “Fresh Attitude Fraîche” brand is sold in major grocery chains in Québec, Ontario and the Atlantic regions, as well as the East Coast of the United States.

The company has received considerable attention in recent years. In August 2007, Veg Pro International signed a deal with Florida-based Publix Super Markets Inc. to sell its salads in the chain’s grocery stores. And this April Veg Pro International won the 2010 Canadian Export Business Award at the SIAL Canada trade show in Montreal. Then in May it won the award for the Best New Product at the Canadian Produce Marketing Association’s annual convention and trade show for its new, Fresh Attitude brand ready-to-eat salads.

Link to full article