Tops-Little Leaf Farms partnership a win for consumers and both companies
Tops said its partnership with Little Leaf Farms affords the company peace of mind since the grower's lettuces are rooted in sustainability.
Little Leaf's greenhouses are also centrally located throughout the Northeast, allowing the retailer to cut down on its fuel emissions during transportation from the greenhouse to the Tops warehouse.
“When it comes to best in class, Little Leaf sets the bar pretty high,” said Brandon Bentley, Tops category business manager for vegetables. “Not only do we pride ourselves in the relationship with the farm, but the entire organization believes in the same future we do. One with your food closer to home, one where you know your food is not only good for you, but good for our future through proper practices and pushing the envelope of innovation in sustainability.”
"When you take great care in choosing your business partners, you find people who share the same goals," the company said. "At Tops, we certainly found this to be true when partnering with Little Leaf Farms."
Tops said Little Leaf Farms is transforming the way food is grown to bring salad lovers deliciously fresh and crisp, sustainably grown leafy greens. Its state-of-the-art, hydroponic greenhouses use sunlight and captured rainwater to grow the freshest lettuce, which is harvested and delivered to stores within 24 hours, significantly improving shelf life.
“We get lots of calls and emails from Little Leaf Farms fans who are surprised and delighted by the quality and shelf life of our lettuce,” said Carina Young, associate brand manager for Little Leaf Farms. “Most lettuce travels 3,000 miles across the country, sacrificing fuel and freshness along the way. By growing closer to stores like Tops, we’re able to significantly reduce food mileage and food waste while offering our consumers fresher, better tasting greens.”
They even take their sustainable efforts one step further by collecting 100 percent of the water that falls onto their roof, sanitizing it and then using it to water their greens, only drawing on groundwater in times of severe drought. Any excess water that the lettuce does not use is recycled through the company's water filtration system and put back in the greenhouse. Growing this way uses 90 percent less water than field grown greens.