Pete's Living Greens
While winter might not feel as long and dark here in Los Angeles as it does elsewhere, there’s still something about spring that has us craving bright, fresh, crisp vegetables like the Live Butter Lettuce from Pete’s Living Greens.
Pete’s Living Greens (though freshly rebranded) is a longstanding family affair - Pete Overgaag’s family has been in the farming business for three generations, and his parents, Art and Magda Overgaag, founded the company in Carpinteria, CA in 1970. Today the company is employee-owned and operated, meaning everyone has “a leaf in the game.” At their Carpinteria greenhouse, the butter lettuce, cress, and other living greens thrive in the Southern California sunlight - and they’re not just saying that: a computer system monitors the weather and can manage the level of light each plant receives, including occasionally supplementing sunlight with artificial light.
Pete’s believes that selling living greens with the roots attached is a great choice for shoppers, stockers, and the earth: because the living greens last 7+ days longer than cut greens, there is less food waste along the way to shoppers (or “shrinkage”), and when you’re ready to eat you can pick what you need (remember to rinse!) and enjoy, ensuring the other leaves stay fresh until the next time you make a salad or lettuce wrap. Because the greens are grown hydroponically in greenhouses, Pete’s uses uses 85% less water and 70% less land than conventional growing, and can exercise greater control over the amount of water and mineral nutrients each plant receives. The root ball that you see in Pete’s 100% recyclable packaging (shaped like a mini greenhouse!) is certified organic peat moss; nutrient dense, sustainable, and manure-free.
While Pete’s Living Greens began as a family operation, great ideas have a way of catching on, and Pete himself is now Executive Vice President of Strategy and Innovation, while Corrie Hutchens (Senior Director of Marketing), John Cochran (CEO), Brain Cook (Vice President of Sales) have joined the owner-employee family and plan to expand the business.
Co+opportunity is proud to stock Pete’s Carpinteria-grown, delicious, living greens - pick some up on your next trip to your coop for store-bought ease and farm-fresh flavor!
Photos © Pete's Living Greens