Red Sun Farms innovating toward success
Innovation is an important element in Red Sun Farms’ growth strategy, and takes all forms inside the Kingsville, ON-based company, be it with greenhouse technology, product innovation, packaging tech or in the way the company delivers and connects with its consumers.
For instance, the company has further invested in its light technology.
“We will begin planning for the second season of our winter pepper crop with its one-of-a-kind LED technology that will supply Ontario peppers year-round,” said Carlos Visconti, CEO USA and Canada Operations. “This unique technology recreates and modulates the full spectrum of the sun’s natural light, essentially enabling the farm to de-seasonalize productions.”
Red Sun Farms is also innovating with new varieties, with Sweetpops quickly redefining its snacking tomato standards.
“This variety is all about delivering an explosion of flavor, in a snack-size tomato,” Visconti said. “This sweeter-than-sweet snacking tomato has already established a dedicated consumer following that has connected with the brand and redefined the expectation of sweetness in tomatoes. The packaging on this new variety was designed with the millennial generation in mind. It creates a connection and makes the exploration of this tomato an experience.”
When it comes to sustainability, the company’s farms have been utilizing sustainable practices in water recycling, yield optimization, and minimizing food waste.
“Red Sun Farms is a proud industry leader in sustainable agriculture, closely working with packaging suppliers to develop new and sustainable options,” Visconti said. “Our farms have been utilizing sustainable practices in water recycling and yield optimization.
Over the last six-seven years, the team has also challenged its packaging suppliers to push sustainable technology resulting in the commercialization of recyclable flow wraps, increased recycle content in clamshells, fiber punnets, compostable PLUs, and labels with washable adhesives.
“The leadership team at Red Sun has built a vertically integrated business model that ensures quality, food safety, flavor and supply throughout the year,” Visconti said. “We are committed to delivering innovation, sustainability and technology that have been thoroughly tested throughout our system. We want to provide solutions that are not only innovative, but that will consistently deliver the standards, quality and flavor that our customers have come to expect.”
Red Sun Farms is a leader in sustainable agriculture, and has been working to communicate the benefits of high-tech greenhouse operations.
“Technology can take time, even years, to run varietal trials scaling them up into commercial production or validating new growing conditions,” Visconti said. “All trials must start in a pilot condition, and once the results are perfected in this environment, the team will then begin to scale up in to commercial applications. This approach is important to ensure that when we launch innovation under the Red Sun Farms brand, we are confident that the expected deliverables can be achieved in either product innovation, technological advancements, or sustainable initiatives.”
Red Sun Farms’ consumers and customers are seeking innovation in flavor and quality as their standards continue to increase in the deliverables of fruits and vegetables year-round.
“Additionally, we are listening to our retail partners in understanding key learnings from their customers,” Visconti said. “We want to do our part in supporting their customer demands.”
An example of this collaboration is its recent brand refresh. “Retailers shared that their consumers were seeking packaging that showcased the produce through packaging clarity and transparency,” Visconti said. “The new graphics are fresh, bright and designed to connect with consumers.”