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Sweetpops creating buzz for Red Sun Farms

Red Sun Farms, based in Kingsville, ON, is one of the larger fully vertically integrated, high-tech greenhouse growers in North America with nearly 600 acres of production area.

“What sets us apart from our competitors is our seed to plate approach, which closes the gap between grower, retailer and consumer, allowing us to develop an exceptional product and an exemplary level of customer service, from all our locations in Mexico, Canada and the United States,” said Carlos Visconti, chief executive officer of the company’s United States and Canada operations. “As an organization, we provide a full gamut of offerings from our complete line of tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers.”

sweetpopssingleorange This includes a wide variety of specialties as well as organics, surpassing sales records of cases sold every year. 

“To be a success, we need to be delivering consistent quality and product throughout the year, while instilling transparency and trust with our customers,” Visconti said. “Additionally, as a true partner, we must be at the forefront of innovation, establishing ourselves as an industry leader. For Red Sun Farms, it’s about providing an offering that exceeds our consumers’ expectations.”

Year after year, the company sees an increase in the demand for its specialty product lines thanks to rising consumer interest, who are growing more conscious about eating healthier flavorful fresh food.

“Consumers are looking for new and improved eating experiences with different in varieties, flavors, colors and even sizes,” Visconti said. “In late 2018, we changed the game with the launch of our Sweetpops, a tomato variety with an explosion of sweet flavor, in the perfect snack size, that is complimented with fun innovative packaging. We have deemed it the ‘ultimate snacking tomato’ and based on the response we have received from our consumers and retail partners, we’re right.”

Thanks to the Sweetpops, plus new innovations and offerings, Visconti expected 2019 to be a great year.

“The benefit of high-tech greenhouse produce, is that you have greater consistency in flavor, color, shape, and of course the highest level of quality. This is due to our product being grown in a controlled environment where temperature, water, nutrients are all being monitored, 365 days a year,” he said. “This winter has been difficult for many in the industry due to lower light levels. However, crops have recovered nicely and will be ready for our first picks in a few weeks.”

All of Red Sun Farms’ facilities are high-tech greenhouses, and the company incorporates the latest technology with a goal of innovating and improving in areas of automation, sustainable farming, as well as reducing its environmental footprint.

“With our current winter, many of our facilities have had to deal with wild light and temperature swings, and this usually becomes a huge issue in temperature regulation at your greenhouse,” Visconti said. “However, as our facilities have advanced climate control system, these swings have a lesser impact vs. a mid-tech or low-tech operation. This not only makes for more efficient greenhouses, but more productive ones as well.”

While 2018 was by far one of the most successful years at the company, Visconti noted the challenge in 2019 will be to maintain the distinction as a supplier of choice who drives disruption on the supply side through innovative products, supplier relationships and superior produce. 

“What makes us the partner of choice is how we deal with challenges,” he said. “Our retailers need us to create solutions with problems they are facing. When there are transportation issues we have implemented new systems to make our distribution more efficient. If we encounter labor shortages, we have implemented better automation systems to combat this issue. We face and solve these problems head on so as to have little to no impact on our retail partners.”