The bag is the result of input from restaurateurs who were constantly asking the Basciani team members for a product that could check several boxes, including extending shelf life, taking up less room in the typically cramped restaurant cooler and delivering a fresher product.
“This bag is designed with versatility in mind for all chefs in various kitchen sizes,” Basciani said, noting that it was designed to replace the five-pound bucket of sliced mushrooms that is commonplace in the industry. “We have converted almost all of our customers to this new bag and they love it,” he said, revealing that shelf life has been doubled to about two weeks.
As an added bonus, the new packaging is more consumer friendly than the bucket as it uses reduced the plastic waste by over 1,000 percent. It is also provided in a smaller footprint than the five-pound bucket and is tamper-proof, which increases food safety, security and eliminates the possibility of foreign materials entering the product.
The extended shelf life has the added advantage of helping Basciani Foods expand its foodservice reach. “We service the Eastern Seaboard, Midwest and south central regions daily,” he said.
Aside from its headquarters in Pennsylvania, Basciani Foods has facilities in Orlando, Chicago and Minnesota. “Right now, we have customers in about two-thirds of the country.”
Basciani is clearly very proud of the family farming heritage as well as the many individual family members that are still an integral part of the operation. His great grandfather started the company in 1925 with the next two generations each taking the organization to a higher level while they were in charge. Today there are 17 members of the third-, fourth- and fifth-generations employed by Basciani Foods and its sister companies. Basciani was the first member of the family tree to graduate from business school, but he will not be the last.
He quipped that when he was a young man contemplating his career in the family business there were many other members of his generation already working there: “There was no room for me yet, so I went to the University of Georgia to study finance and real estate.”