Social Responsibility


Village Farms Fresh Receives Giga Guru Status by Walmart’s Project Gigaton


Village Farms Fresh is pleased to announce the company has been recognized as a ‘Giga Guru’ by its valued customer Walmart and their sustainability initiative ‘Project Gigaton’.  There are currently over 6000 Walmart suppliers participating in Project Gigaton and Village Farms Fresh is in the top 18% of suppliers who have earned the status of Giga Guru.  This milestone collectively with other suppliers’ actions reported is expected to reduce, avoid, or sequester over one gigaton of CO2 emissions which helped Walmart to reach their intended goal 6 years early. To make a comparison, according to Walmart this is equivalent to taking 238 million cars off the road for one year.

According to Walmart’s website Project Gigatons focus seeks to “reduce, avoid, or sequester 1 billion metric tons of CO2 emissions in their global value chain and, together with the Walmart Foundation, to protect, restore or more sustainably manage 50 million acres of land and 1 million square miles of ocean by 2030”.

Village Farms Fresh has been participating in Walmart’s Project Gigaton since the initiative began in 2017. Project Gigaton was enacted by Walmart to engage suppliers in climate action since the retailer believes most emissions exist in the product supply chains rather than their stores and distribution centers.  The Giga Guru supplier recognition status is given to companies who set SMART goals in at least 3 pillars of action or science based targets, report progress in each, complete a carbon footprint scope and then share this information with Walmart.  

According to Brandon Jamison, Director of Quality Assurance for the company who is the project lead for the company’s teams responsible for tracking and reporting for the Walmart initiative, “Village Farms Fresh has always been an environmentally conscious company and Project Gigaton helps us to ensure we are staying on track, and at the same time, remaining open to new ideas on how to better improve our processes for reducing emissions.”   Jamison also foresees future opportunities for implementing a companywide tracking system to continually monitor data and archive results collected pertaining to the areas of focus, especially as Project Gigaton expands.

Village Farms Fresh looks forward to hitting new milestones and targets for Project Gigaton.  The company is motivated to get other companies involved with the Walmart initiative as well.  Jamison goes on to say, “the more companies that join in, the greater the results will be for everyone”.   

Project Gigaton aligns well with Village Farms Fresh’s, Good for the Earth initiative. Back 2022, Helen L. Aquino, Director of Brand Marketing & Communication for Village Farms Fresh was given the opportunity to speak with Walmart’s Project Gigaton, sustainability performance survey measuring tool, THESIS Index created by The Sustainability Consortium, on the company’s process.  Aquino mentioned, “We started small as a basis for this project by recognizing our strengths and then building on these over the years, it has been a great learning tool for the company in the evolution of our sustainability goals”.

To learn more about Village Farms Fresh and their efforts pertaining to Walmart’s Project Gigaton click here .  To see the full listing of all of Walmart’s Project Gigaton Supplier Recognitions click here. And to learn more about Village Farms Fresh and their Good for the Earth initiative we welcome you to visit

About Village Farms Fresh

Village Farms Fresh, a wholly owned subsidiary of Village Farms International, Inc. (Nasdaq: VFF), is one of the largest growers, marketers, and distributors of premium-quality, greenhouse-grown fruits, and vegetables in North America. The food the company’s farmers grow is all harvested by hand from environmentally friendly, soil-less, glass greenhouses daily while utilizing the highest level of food safety standards available. The Village Farms Greenhouse Grown® brand of fruits and vegetables are marketed and distributed primarily to local retail grocers and dedicated fresh food distributors throughout the United States and Canada. Since its inception, Village Farms Fresh has been guided by sustainability principles that enable the company to grow food 365 days a year that not only feeds the growing population but is healthier for people and the planet. Village Farms Fresh is Good for the Earth® and good for you. Good for the Earth® and Garden Fresh Flavor® are not only taglines for the company but the value proposition Village Farms Fresh lives by.  And this is why it Takes a Village® to deliver on this promise.



Social Responsibility


Village Farms Fresh Gives back to Local Texas Veteran through Partnership with Military Makeover


Village Farms Fresh recently partnered with the special home improvement series, Military Makeover hosted by Montel Williams.  The company is featured in episode 2 of season 36 that airs on Lifetime TV beginning Friday, November 17 at 7:30am ET and PT.  Decorated U.S. Army veteran Carlos Colón-Ruiz who resides in Arlington, Texas, along with his family, receives an awesome complete home remodel during the series. 

Pictured left to right: Infantry Sergeant Carlos Colón-Ruiz, the Colón-Ruiz family, Carlos Colón-Ruiz & President George W. Bush

“Village Farms Fresh is honored to partner with Military Makeover on this series in support of the Infantry Sergeant Colón-Ruiz, an outstanding veteran and exemplary human being. Our company has deep roots in Texas, with a team that was profoundly inspired to help with this veteran’s surprise home renovation,” said Michael DeGiglio, President & CEO of Village Farms International. Mr. DeGiglio is a veteran himself who served in the U.S. Navy as an officer and jet aviator, as well as in the Naval Air Reserves, and retired at the rank of Captain. 

During Colón-Ruiz’s military career he was deployed to Afghanistan where he suffered serious injuries in the line duty. He was awarded the prestigious purple heart by then President George W. Bush and received an Infantry Badge and Army Commendations medal.

“It was an absolute pleasure working with Michael and his entire team at Village Farms Fresh. Their support of our show helps us provide these life changing makeovers for our deserving Veterans and we’re grateful to have had them on Military Makeover,” said Scott Moss, President & EVP of Programming for Military Makeover and BrandStar Entertainment.

A group of Village Farms Fresh employees who reside in the Dallas Fort Worth area, where the company has a Distribution Center, volunteered their weekend to help in the renovation of the veteran’s home. The company has a history of giving back to communities in Texas and feels a strong affinity to helping veterans, not to mention has several veterans in the company, including one who volunteered that day to help with the renovation. 

Village Farms Fresh volunteer team with Village Farms International Inc., President and CEO, Mike DeGiglio

Brandon Jamison, Director of Quality Assurance for the company and Army veteran who served in Iraq, had this to say, “The military taught me a work ethic and a need for a sense of mission completion. Village Farms Fresh giving back to those that are deserving and have made sacrifices for our country is something I am proud to be a part of.”

Village Farms Fresh’s heritage as a long-standing continuously-owned tomato greenhouse grower as well as the largest tomato producer in the Great State of Texas was discussed by DeGigilio with show co-host Art Edmonds during this episode.

pictured left to right: Michael DeGiglio, U.S Navy, Brandon Jamison, U.S Army deployed in Iraq

The afternoon of volunteer work would not have been complete without a Texas style bar-b-que in the backyard of the veteran’s home cooked up by a local chef while the teams finished up their efforts. The Village Farms Fresh volunteers and Military Makeover crew devoured the food served featuring local produce grown at the company’s environmentally friendly Texas greenhouses. Juicy Beefsteak® tomatoes were the main course of a scrumptious BLT sandwich.  While a mouth-watering Caprese salad was served featuring Sinfully Sweet Campari® tomatoes. Yummy Heavenly Villagio Marzano® tomatoes were grill-roasted then slathered in chimichurri sauce.  All made for a tasty and productive afternoon of Village Farms Fresh’s giving back. 

pictured left to right: Village Farms Fresh volunteers, Derin Gemmel and Taylor DeLeon with Military Makeover designer, Jennifer Bertrand,
Mike DeGiglio behind the camera, Sinfully Sweet Campari Caprese salad

The heartfelt mission of the day on this volunteer weekend left a feel-good impression for all who attended.  The company gifted the family handpicked items for their new kitchen including a huge basket of Village Farms produce along with culinary accompaniments for the family to prepare their favorite healthy dishes. Taylor DeLeon, Quality Control and Sales Administrator for the company, who was a volunteer that day and helped with the staging of these items in the veteran’s new kitchen had this to say, “It was a joyful afternoon full of grit and fun.  I am proud the company championed this valuable effort to help a well deserving veteran who gave to his country so selflessly”.

Socially responsible initiatives such as this partnership with Military Makeover showcasing Village Farms Fresh’s giving back to the communities it serves, and especially veterans, have always been important to the company in their Great Home State of Texas. To view our 2 min segment in the episode please click here.

About Military Makeover with Montel®

A BrandStar Original, is America’s leading branded reality TV show that offers hope and a helping hand here on the home front to members of our military and their loved ones. A veteran of both the Marine Corps and the Navy, talk show legend and military advocate Montel Williams, who creatively co-produces the show along with a colorful cast that seeks to transform the homes and lives of military families across the country. The cast includes co-hosts Art Edmonds and designer Jennifer Bertrand. This special series enlists caring companies of all sizes as well as non-profits and the local community. Military Makeover airs on Lifetime® and on the American Forces Network which serves American servicemen and women, Department of Defense and other U.S. government civilians and their families stationed at bases overseas, as well as U.S. Navy ships at sea. Help starts at home for veterans on Military Makeover. Join us as our makeover team engages to change the living situation – and the lives – of these deserving families.

About BrandStar  

We’re matchmakers; connecting People to Brands to Do Life Better. BrandStar has unparalleled experience in creating customized educational content for brands with laser targeted extensive distribution through their multi-channel network ecosystem and methodology. From Original television programming on Lifetime,, social media, digital marketing, to media management and PR; BrandStar helps brands connect with the right consumer, at the right time, with the right message, through all the right channels.

About Village Farms Fresh

Village Farms Fresh, a wholly owned subsidiary of Village Farms International, Inc. (Nasdaq: VFF), is one of the largest growers, marketers, and distributors of premium-quality, greenhouse-grown fruits, and vegetables in North America. The food the company’s farmers grow is all harvested by hand from environmentally friendly, soil-less, glass greenhouses daily while utilizing the highest level of food safety standards available. The Village Farms Greenhouse Grown® brand of fruits and vegetables are marketed and distributed primarily to local retail grocers and dedicated fresh food distributors throughout the United States and Canada. Since its inception, Village Farms Fresh has been guided by sustainability principles that enable the company to grow food 365 days a year that not only feeds the growing population but is healthier for people and the planet. Village Farms Fresh is Good for the Earth® and good for you. Good for the Earth® and Garden Fresh Flavor® are not only taglines for the company but the value proposition Village Farms Fresh lives by.  And this is why it Takes a Village® to deliver on this promise.


Village Farms Fresh touts ‘Keep on Growing’ theme as legacy growers


Village Farms Fresh has been serving retail, wholesale and foodservice markets the in United States and Canada since 1989.  And although the company’s legacy may be brief in comparison to other farming heritages established years earlier, 34 years is noteworthy. Especially when factoring in the greenhouse sector, and in particular Controlled Environment Agriculture (CEA) type of farming, where Village Farms Fresh is a leader.  The company is the longest operating, solely owned, greenhouse grower and operator in North America. 

This year’s Global Produce & Floral Show brings this fact to life in the company’s trade exhibit.  Village Farms Fresh will have a full team on hand from across their value chain including Sales, Marketing, Growing, and Grower Relation divisions to showcase the company’s vertically integrated approach.  “We are growers first”, says Michael DeGiglio, CEO & President, and founder of Village Farms.  “We have literally weathered many of the ups and downs of the business over the years and are thankful for all who have supported us.”

Village Farm is known for its vine ripened, picked at the peak of flavor, specialty tomato, pepper and cucumber varieties.  The company has farms in the United States, Canada, and Mexico enabling them to offer 365-day availability on most items.  

Village Farms is looking forward to meeting with you at booth #681 to share more about their story and what compels the company to, “Keep on Growing” while servicing their customers to the best of their abilities.  

We are pleased to have Shirley Chapman signing her show posters again in the booth this year.  Come by to say hi to Shirley and the team to receive your free poster. 

Shirley tells us this year’s poster is her 21st painting, starting out with PMA Fresh Summit and now the IFPA Global Produce and Floral show.  Shirley researches, both visual and written historical information to create her painting concepts.

This year’s poster is her 6th Anaheim poster.  And she tells us as a California resident, experiencing an incredibly wet winter resulting in the most breathtaking emerald green hills covered with orange poppies that this was her inspiration for this year’s poster. The artist told us, “ I felt that I had explored other aspects of Anaheim in past posters but wanted this one to feature California’s agriculture and vistas in combination with California’s state bird, vegetable, and flowers.”

Village Farms is pleased to bring you their Garden Fresh Flavor® at GP&FS.  Come by to have a taste of our signature varieties such as Heavenly Villagio Marzano®, Sinfully Sweet Campari®, Maverick Mix®, Cabernet Estate Reserve®, Exquisite Heirlooms®, and Juicy Beefsteaks® just to name a few.

First Seen on The Produce News



Village Farms Fresh® Invites you to Bite into Fresh during The New York Produce Show


As seen on The Produce News

Village Farms Fresh is getting ready for the annual New York Produce Show & Conference to be held at the Jacob Javits Convention Center in New Your City, on November 30 through December 2nd.  Village Farms Fresh will be exhibiting in booth 326 on Thursday, December 1st, 2022 where we invite you to Bite into Fresh with us.

Krysten De Giglio, Regional Sales Manager Village Farms Fresh

There is so much to be thankful for with the holiday season upon us and Village Farms Fresh enjoys being in NY this time of year, according to Krysten DeGiglio, Regional Sales Manager for the company. “The annual NYPS brings with it a certain warmth to the city as it reminds us of the quickly approaching holiday season! I always enjoy seeing our customers at this show and having the opportunity to thank them in person for their support over the past year. The show size allows for =intimate face-to-face discussions regarding preparations for the year to come and our continued partnerships. We are excited to showcase our favorite Village Farms Fresh varieties again this year. I look forward to seeing everyone in New York!”

Stackable Snackables®, a winner of the prestigious Joe Nucci award for Product Innovation at the NY Produce Show in years past is alive and well and more vibrant than ever for the company.  Pint-sized specialty snacking tomatoes in a plethora of shapes, and sizes, and full of flavor varietals to intrigue every taste. Packaged in stackable trays top-sealed with fun and colorful graphics that create an impactful and captivating tomato display. Village Farms Fresh pint-sized specialty tomato program was dubbed its name “Stackable Snackables®” because units can be stacked up to 5 high.

“Stack’em High and Watch’em Fly”, an old adage that still holds true, and is infused with new meaning allowing more units to be stacked in the same-sized shelf space compared to clamshells. “The benefit of more units within the same shelf space means potential for increased dollar sales, reducing out of stock which equates to less lost sales, and improved labor efficiency without the constant cost of restocking labor. All a win for Village Farms Fresh retailer partners, making Stackable Snackables® an impactful proactive solution to the specialty tomato category and retail merchandizing”, Bret Wiley, SVP of Sales mentioned.

Village Farms’ exclusive unique specialty tomato varieties are the real winner. Unlike any other available on the market today they all offer real flavor and versatility cultivated by the sustainable greenhouse growing methods that ensure a consistent quality and safe product, grown with the highest food safety standards. Sensational Sara®, Heavenly Villagio Marzano®, Sinfully Sweet Campari®, Cabernet Estate Reserve®, Cherry no.9®, Maverick Mix®, Lip Smack’n Grape®, Savory Roma®, Delectable TOV®, and Juicy Beefsteak® tomatoes, Luscious Seedless Long English® and Scrumptious Mini® cucumbers, Sweet Bells® sweet bell peppers are all Village Farms’ unique varieties.

Versatile snacking tomatoes, great for cooking, roasting, and grilling.

The company has traveled the world over exploring the secret gardens of niche artisan farms for distinctive varietals that deliver not only on flavor but other important factors such as shelf life and versatility. Village Farms Fresh delivers on this value proposition consistently day-in-day-out, year after year. “One of the greatest testaments to this is when the end users, such as our loyal to the brand consumers and chefs share with us the love of our products”, Helen L. Aquino, Director of Brand Marketing & Communication told us.

Good for the Earth® and Garden Fresh Flavor® are not only taglines for the company but the value proposition Village Farms Fresh lives by.  And this is why it takes a Village®  to deliver on this promise.

See you in New York, please visit us at booth 326. 





Village Farms Fresh is excited to be an exhibitor at the 1st annual Global Produce & Floral Show in Orlando, Florida on October 27th thru 29th, hosted by the International Fresh Produce Association.

The entire Fresh team will be on hand ready to discuss the sustainably grown, good for the earth®, greenhouse products the company offers, which also happens to be one of the largest producers, marketers, and distributors of premium-quality, greenhouse-grown fruits, and vegetables in North America.

Village Farms Fresh and Shirley Chapman happily celebrate the artist’s 20th year by commemorating the event with a unique Orlando poster. Shirley will be signing her limited-edition poster at the Village Farms Fresh booth 3643.

Shirley Chapman is a fine artist, illustrator, and designer who most people know for her artistic talents in the produce industry creating bright and vivid posters throughout the years for the annual PMA Fresh Summit events. Today these limited-edition posters hang in homes and offices around the world. Shirley tells us, “I am beyond elated to be at this show again this year with my dear friends at Village Farms Fresh and to see so many old friends, and I am looking forward to meeting new ones”

We asked Shirley what her favorite tomato is and she had this to say, “Sinfully Sweet Campari® is by far my go-to-tomato, it is just so versatile, great for salads, or sandwiches, and also cooks up into a savory sauce. I love its juicy sweet real Campari flavor that only Village Farms Fresh tomatoes have”.

In addition, Sinfully Sweet Campari® Village Farms Fresh will be showcasing its signature portfolio of flavor-forward greenhouse-grown varieties of tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers. And among these, highlight their snack-size tomatoes that remain a category favorite for consumers. Village Farms Fresh’s award-winning “Stackable Snackables” collection will be tempting show-goers to ‘Bite into Fresh’, according to Helen L. Aquino, Director of Brand Marketing & Communications for Village Farms Fresh.

Village Farms Fresh’s unique collection of snacking tomatoes packed in their signature vibrant packaging is available in a plethora of pack sizes. “In a full range of flavors to suit any mood”, Helen goes on to say, “Highlights include Heavenly Villagio Marzano® the mini San Marzano tomato that has grown category sales since its launch over 10 years ago. Much like its mother variety, the mini is one of the best cooking tomatoes on the market today, makes an excellent low-calorie healthy snack option, and has an amazing shelf life. For something distinctively different our super popular Maverick Mix® is full of sweet and intense flavors. And Lip Smackn’ Grape tomatoes are a bite-sized sweet flavor treat that kids love, great for school lunch boxes. We also offer Cabernet Estate Reserve®, Lorabella Blossom® and Cherry no. 9® as part of the Stackable Snackable’s versatile product line and flavor-forward varieties with great shelf presence that has caused consumers to Fall in Love Again® with tomatoes while offering retailers unique display opportunities with their colorful designs”

Village Farms Fresh will also be showing their Delectable TOVS®, Juicy Beefsteaks®, and Savory Roma® tomatoes in an assortment of bulk and value pack sizes. Sweet Bell® peppers in Red, Yellow, and Orange assorted colorways and pack sizes. And Luscious Seedless® Long English and Scrumptious® Mini Cucumbers.

Helen went on to say, “We are proud to offer our selection of flavor-forward varietals and unique pack ways including many sustainable options. We are so thrilled to be together once again with everyone in Orlando, for new beginnings with our inaugural trade association. We welcome you to come to our booth, talk with the team, and meet Shirley.” See you in Orlando!

We are delighted to have Shirley as part of the Village Farms Fresh team at this year’s GP&FS event in Orlando at booth 3643.




Masters of Merchandising with Village Farms® Greenhouse Grown


As Seen on The Produce Business

Power the Spontaneous

Compared to one year ago, we are more polished shoppers, making less trips to the grocery store, and spending more per trip. One thing is certain, we are shopping from a list while trying to get in and out of the store as fast as we can! This leaves little room for impulse buys or discovering new products. Activate the power of the spontaneous purchase with strong emotive imagery using POS signage.

Healthy snacking, immune boosting, mood lifting, all are themes for strong Point of Sale messaging that will motivate shoppers. Innovative and intriguing imagery will get the eating occasion ideas owing. Village Farms is here to help with this endeavor, with our full library of content for POS, as well as all your digital promotional needs.

Keep an Eye on the Trends

2021 is the year for fresh as consumers continue to set their sights on healthy and easy to prepare food choices. Trending is ‘celebrating food as an occasion’, especially with fresh produce.

And though consumers are moving more quickly through the store, they continue to crave inspiration as they shop.

Plant Based for the Win!

Fruits and vegetables are trending in 2021 as the focus on a ‘Plant Based Diet’ continues to evolve. Consumers are determined to purchase flavorful immune boosting tomatoes, peppers, and cucumbers that are the primary staples for their plant-based food choices and the foundations of their meal planning. Focus Point of Sale on inclusivity of more plant-based content that will connect a more diverse community of consumers, while celebrating food heritage through nostalgic recipes and real-life stories.

Sensational Sara

The recently launched and new to the category lovely Sensational Sara® tomato is an exciting new addition to the tomato-on-the-vine varietal segment. Her deep red inside and study green vine make her really stand out. She is simply amazing, great as a slicer, handy for sandwiches or salads, and the best part is that she is a phenomenal cooking tomato.

Sensation Sara®is packaged in an innovative 1lb environmentally friendly box that is biodegradable and 100% recyclable. Ask us more about her availability!





A Simple New Year’s Celebration


Recipes and photography by Susan Spungen

Celebrations look a little different this year, so we may not be attending or hosting any big New Year’s Eve bashes (what a relief, right?), but that’s no reason not to be festive with your immediate others, or hey, even if it’s just you and Zoom! Maybe New Year’s Eve can just be drinks and nibbles, and just skip the dinner part. Haven’t we all been eating too much lately anyway? Here are two recipes that I created in partnership with Village Farms to help you celebrate what can only be a better New Year. Both of these recipes are fresh and festive, with a slightly tropical air. Though you may not be jumping on a plane to hit your favorite beach resort, these two recipes will transport you, full of the fresh flavors of cucumbers and tomatoes, with a special guest appearance by the gorgeous dragon fruit (also known as pitaya) in the form of its bright fuchsia-colored powder, which tastes as good as it looks.

Cucumber Dragon Fruit Margarita

The first recipe is for a Cucumber Dragon Fruit Margarita, which is simple to mix up, but dazzling! This is a fruity drink that is not too sweet, but you can add more simple syrup to taste if you want. To make simple syrup, just combine equal parts sugar and water and boil until the sugar dissolves. Let cool before using. You can keep it in a glass jar in the fridge for a long time so you can always be ready to conjure up a refreshing drink. Luscious Seedless Long English® cucumber is used both in a puree that is shaken up in the cocktail, and as an edible garnish (and stirrer!). Using the cucumber puree in the drink lightens it up a little so it isn’t quite as strong as a normal margarita, and gives it a fresh, vegetal flavor too.

Cabernet Stuffed with Avocado Crema

The second recipe is a perfect little bite for any time of year, since Cabernet Estate Reserve® tomatoes are responsibly greenhouse grown. They are juicy and flavorful all year round, so enjoy some summery freshness for a change of pace, and as a tasty companion for your Dragon Fruit Margarita. I love their brown-ish color and sweet ripe flavor. A very tasty and as-spicy-as-you-want-it-to-be avocado crema is piped inside for a fresh but creamy bite. A little mini tortilla chip tucked into the filling provides a tasty crunch. Serve the rest of the chips on the side!

Recipes and blog were created exclusively for Village Farms by  Susan Spungen



Women in Produce Spotlight Lyra Vance



The Southern Roots Committee is honored to announce Village Farms very own Lyra Vance as the Southern Roots Member Spotlight for August 2020. Let’s take a moment and get to know Lyra!

1. Who has been the most influential person in your life?

My mother – she’s shown me how to love, how to be generous, how to be grateful for all the opportunities that have come my way in life and to truly cherish the journey not just the outcome.

2. Favorite Quote and Why?

I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.  ​- ​​​Maya Angelou

​Over my 30 year career I’ve had many great mentors who encouraged and made me feel valuable. I’m working with several right now at Village Farms. Positive people have tremendous power to affect, inspire and motivate others.

3. What’s the most important thing you’ve learned in your career?

Relationships matter and I’ve had the good fortune to make a lot of friends in this industry. Take time to nurture your friendships.

4. What is on your Bucket List you would most like to do?

Visit Madagascar to see rare animals and the humpback whale migration. Would also like to return to Botswana for a night safari. Being 12 feet away from a pride of lions in the moonlight is one of the most amazing experiences of my life.

5. Favorite Thing to Eat/Drink

IPA style beer, Jai Alai from Cigar City Brewing in Tampa.

6. What Advice would you give someone going into Leadership role for the first time?

Chances are you’ll be working more hours so make time for yourself to recharge each week.

7. If you could learn to do anything what would it be?

Hang gliding – once the initial fear of crashing subsides, I imagine hours of peaceful bliss. Closest I’ve come to this thrill is bungee jumping in New Zealand and Zambia.

8. When you have 30 min of free time what do you do?

Enjoy a bike ride outside in the fresh air or do some yard work

9. What’s your guilty pleasure?

Pizza with red sauce, extra cheese and veggies.

10. What are you passionate about?

Poker. I was a competitive athlete and poker provides an outlet for this energy. To be profitable one must be patient, disciplined and not allow emotions to guide your decisions. Poker is all about comfort with uncertainty…kind of like the produce business. 





Village Farms to Highlight Organics & Innovations at CPMA


As seen on Fresh Plaza

Village Farms is poised to pack a punch in Montreal at the upcoming Canadian Produce Marketing Association trade show & conference held on April 3rd and 4th, 2019. 

The company will be adding the original & authentic Heavenly Villagio Marzano® and Maverick Mix® varieties to their certified organic offerings. These new items will be offered in 10 oz. and 1lb top seal packaged containers with attractive earthy designs.


“With the continued success of our Stackable Snackables line of top seal packaged tomatoes the natural next step for us is to offer top seal packaging for our new Organic items that will provide all the same proven benefits to retailers and consumers,” said Helen L. Aquino, Director of Corporate Brand Marketing & Communication. “Village Farms Heavenly Villagio Marzano® is the one, the only, and the original, authentic mini San Marzano tomato available on the market today in North America, and we are pleased to now offer these as certified organic as well to our customers.”


Village Farms will also be showing its award-winning Stackable Snackables line of top seal packaged tomatoes filled with their garden fresh exclusive varieties such as Lorabella Blossom®, Heavenly Villagio Marzano®, Cabernet Estate Reserve®, Cherry no. 9 Fall in Love Again®, Maverick Mix®, and Lip Smackn’ Grape®.


(Andrew Sable, Sales Manager; and Avery LeFils, Marketing Coordinator)

They’ve also been working on some exciting new seasonal items to really “mix things up” including their new Chameleon Collection™.  Please come by booth 1405 and say hello to fellow villagers Aman Chatha, Northwest District Sales Manager; Andrew Sable, Sales Manager; and Avery LeFils, Marketing Coordinator at booth #1405 to get a sneak peek! 



Two Winners Crowned for Village Farms 2018 PMA Taste Challenge!


As seen on AndNowUKnow

For those who attended 2018 PMA Fresh Summit, you know there was an abundance of excitement to spare. One such company leading the action was Village Farms, who asked showgoers to vote for their favorite tomato in their “Are you Sweet or Smooth?” tomato taste test challenge. Participants casted their vote by stating their preference for either Village Farms signature and exclusive “Sweet” red Heavenly Villagio Marzano tomato or, the newest variety to their offerings, the “Smooth” orange Lorabella Blossom tomato. Each tomato offers a unique flavor profile, but the results were not as divisive as one might expect. Those in the sweet camp were practically equal to those in the smooth camp.


“It is wonderful to compliment the Nielsen consumption data we use with this rich qualitative taste challenge data that shows consumers are becoming more adventurous in their taste preferences and delighting in our little orange snacking tomato Lorabella Blossom just as much as they have been with our Heavenly Villagio Marzano tomato,” said Helen L. Aquino, Director of Brand Marketing & Communication.

Village Farms noted in its press release that after the success of its Heavenly Villagio Marzano—a variety that launched at PMA seven years ago—the company was sure the market was ready for the smooth taste of Lorabella Blossom. Aquino stated that while the orange tomato is unconventional in color, this promotion has shown consumers are ready for new flavor opportunities in the tomato category.

Village Farms is ramping up production on both the Heavenly Villagio Marzano and Lorabella Blossom tomatoes and is ready for a strong winter season with these varieties, as well as all of its other flavorsome tomatoes, bell peppers, and cucumber varieties.


Social Responsibility

Village Farms Runs for the Cure


Village Farms Raises over $10,000 and Wins Pepsi Corporate Spirit Award at Canadian Cancer Society CIBC Run for the Cure

Delta, BC – October 1, 2018 – The Village Farms family came together to raise awareness for the Run for the Cure while exceeding their goal by raising more than $10,000 last week for the Canadian Cancer Society. In addition, Village Farms took home the Pepsi Corporate Spirit Award as the top fundraising corporate team at the CIBC Run for the Cure event on September 28, 2018 in Surrey, BC.

The Canadian Cancer Society CIBC Run for the Cure is a 5k or 1k walk or run that raises funds for Canadian Cancer Society (CCS). It is the largest single-day, volunteer-led event in Canada in support of the breast cancer cause.  A team from Village Farms participated in the run lead by VP & Regional Facility Manager of Village Farms Delta, Dirk de Jong.

According to Lindsay Baldrey, Village Farms Foreign Worker Coordinator and team captain who spearheaded the fund raising efforts for the company, “It was really inspiring to see everyone come together, the response and support for this cause was overwhelming. Everyone was ecstatic that we received the Corporate Spirit Award and we’re really looking forward to seeing how we can grow even more next year!”


The Canadian Cancer Society invests the funds raised into breast cancer research, support services, health education and advocacy programs. Their mission is to reduce the number of people diagnosed with breast cancer, reduce mortality for those who develop the disease, and improve the quality of life for those affected.

Baldrey continued, “A huge thank you goes out to all the staff in our USA & Canada offices, as well as the Packhouse and Greenhouse workers, and our foreign workers who generously donated toward this important cause that we hope one day will find a cure”.



Village Farms Wins Produce Business Innovation Award


Village Farms Lorabella Blossom™ tomato received the first annual Produce Business Innovation Award at the New York Produce Show last week. This blissfully bright™ orange tomato caught the eye of the judges and is catching the eye of consumers as something the tomato category hasn’t seen yet.

Everyone at Village Farms has had a major part in bringing this innovative variety to market. Thanks to the expertise of our growers, operations, finance, sales, transportation and marketing Lorabella Blossom™ is exceeding expectations and bringing consumers a flavor profile unlike any other. The unique citrus floral essence makes it an exceptional snacking tomato that is extremely versatile, making it great for grilling, roasting and sautéing as well.


According to Michael DeGiglio, President and CEO of Village Farms, “The Village Farms team has always been known for going above and beyond to deliver the absolute best flavor in the industry.  This award just goes to show that we’ve done it again with Lorabella Blossom™. We are honored to receive this award as it truly takes a village to consistently bring innovative products like this one to life.  This variety and its name hold a special place in my heart”

In early October, Produce Business evaluated more than 45 new innovative products, following a 10-point-scale criteria grid with a concentration on three P’s for innovation: Product (intrinsic properties of the fruit or vegetable itself), Packaging (unique attributes that not only improve shelf-life but add to the marketability of the item) and Processing (added value by making the product more convenient or augmenting with more components to complete a flavor profile or meal). Based on that criteria Village Farms was chosen as one of ten honorees to be recognized as a winner of the inaugural Innovation Award from Produce Business Magazine at the New York Produce Show.

Download the press release here


Entertaining Made Easy


by Diana Pittet

The winter holidays are the season of festive abundance. When else in the year are there so many parties and gatherings? And so much food? At some point it will be your turn to host. That is not the time to unwrap a few nondescript cheeses and plonk them down on a plate with a bunch of tired grapes. That is the time to impress.

A colorful, abundant cheeseboard does the trick nicely. The star of your culinary show is the visually appetizing spread of pert and tasty Village Farms tomatoes, paired with cheeses and an assortment of complementary nibbles. For both drama and ease, everything can be artfully arranged on a single platter. Not only does this look stunning but it makes after-party clean-up that much easier.

Bite-size tomatoes are perfect for creating a memorable cheeseboard. Coming in cheery hues, like miniature Christmas tree ornaments, Village Farms’ selections embody the merriment of the season. The tomatoes are also practical, playing double duty in a way that grapes can’t: being both sweet and savory. Cheeses favor these contrasting flavor profiles, and so will your guests, who will happily gather around your personalized cheeseboard. Pro tip: make sure everything is out of the fridge at least an hour before guests arrive, as the full flavors come through at room temperature.


Here are some tips for creating such a platter:

As the host, you are charged with the task of having a little something for everyone. As such, put out a variety of Village Farms tomatoes for maximum visual appeal and sensory delight. Sure winners include golden-hued Lorabella Blossom™; pop-them-in-your-mouth Lip Smackn’ Grapes®; and the very distinguished Cabernet Estate Reserve®. Whichever varieties you select, make sure they can be eaten in one bite. You may have to halve or quarter the bigger ones, such as the Sinfully Sweet Campari®. If the tomatoes are rolling off your platter, you can put them into small bowls, separated or together.

Just as you have an assortment of tomatoes, do the same for your cheeses, but offer no more than three or four types–perhaps a soft, hard, and a blue cheese. There is the risk of too many options. To facilitate ease for your guests and to prevent your carefully assembled cheese platter from looking like a crime scene at the end of the night, pre-cut your cheeses into individual servings of thin triangles or batons. Soft cheeses can be kept whole since they cut with ease. A sumptuous triple cream would be delightful with the citrusy Lorabella Blossom™ and a glass of bubbly. The sweet Lip Smackn’ Grapes®, or the Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again®, can be balanced by the saline pop of a blue cheese, washed down with a malty beer.  Savory meets savory in the pairing of the Cabernet Estate Reserve® and a firm sheep’s milk cheese such as Manchego, sipped with a spicy red wine. The Heavenly Villagio Marzano® tomatoes would be delicious in this combination as well.

Fan out crackers on your platter, next to the cheeses. Simple ones are preferable, so that they don’t compete with the other flavors, but flatbreads with dried fruits and nuts look special and can work nicely.  Slices of baguettes do too. For those who prefer not to eat carbohydrates, make “crackers” with sliced rounds of Luscious Seedless Long English® cucumbers–a perfect vehicle for transporting a hunk of cheese to mouth.



Fill in the empty spaces of your cheeseboard with a variety of nibbles and condiments. Here are some suggestions.

Rich marcona almonds or festively green pistachios crunch pleasurably with the zippy tomatoes.

A medley of green and black olives are in keeping with the assortment of tomatoes. Or be a little different and put out a jar of tapenade which can serve as a savory dip for the tomatoes and cucumbers or a spread for the crackers.

Pickled Vegetables
As a counterpoint to all the richness, include some pickled vegetables–cornichons, malt vinegar onions, okra, whatever you fancy. They help refresh the palate and keep guests coming back for more.

Spice Blend or Salt
Dukkah is a dry spice blend from Egypt that can be poured into a small bowl on the platter, along with one of olive oil. Show your guests how to quickly dip a tomato into the oil and then into the dukkah for a memborale bite. To keep it simple, you can have a bowl of flakey sea salt instead.

Whatever you put out and however you creatively arrange it on your platter, it will be a holiday knockout.

Diana Pittet is an adjunct professor at New York University in the Department of Food Studies and Nutrition. She also works as a cheesemonger at the Cheese Cave in Red Bank, N.J., and owns Night Owl Hospitality, a cocktail-catering company in Asbury Park, N.J.


Vote for Lorabella Blossom™


Village Farms’ Lorabella Blossom™ tomato has been selected as a finalist for the Inaugural Produce Business Innovation Award. This brand new award is based in part on an item’s ability to disrupt the marketplace and Village Farms’ newest exclusive variety is expected to do just that. This sunny orange tomato boasts a blissfully bright™ citrus essence, something the tomato category hasn’t seen yet. This unique tomato and its name have a special significance for our founder and CEO Michael DeGiglio, “I hold this variety close to my heart and I know you’ll find it just as sunny and delightful as I do.”


Discovered tucked away along the sundrenched beaches amidst the sparkling seas of Italy’s Amalfi Coast this tomato has an untraditional tomato flavor reminiscent of old world sensibilities. It is in an exceptional snacking tomato that is extremely versatile, making it great for grilling, roasting and sautéing and is part of Village Farms’ San Marzano family of products . It’s also packed with a special type of lycopene which is a powerful antioxidant that helps build strong bones and encourages a healthy heart. These tomatoes are also a good source of potassium and vitamins A and C.


Selected as one of 10 finalists by the judges at Produce Business the winner of the first ever Produce Business Innovation Award will be determined by a public voting contest which is happening now. The winner of the popular vote will be announced at the New York Produce Show being held December 11-14 where Village Farms will be attending (booth #244).

Voting is open until 5 p.m. PST on November 27, so please go vote for Lorabella Blossom™!



Social Responsibility

Village Farms Director Roberta Cook named One of Produce Grower’s 10 People Who Are Influencing the Produce Industry


As seen in the October 2017 issue of Produce Grower
by Neil Moran

Dr. Roberta Cook
Director, Village Farms
A longtime academic economist now advises an industry-leading grower

roberta_cook-sizedAfter 31 years working at University of California, Davis, Dr. Roberta Cook remains as passionate about the produce industry as when she was still a graduate student at Michigan State University.

“In my career at UC Davis, I was tasked with looking at all the key supply and demand trends affecting markets for fresh produce in California,” says Cook, who held the position of extension economist in the Department of Agriculture and Resource Economics. She is now on the board of directors at Village Farms and Ocean Mist Farms.

Her research and consultations have allowed her to gain key insights into the trends affecting the product industry – information that should be valuable to both growers and retailers. Cook says consumers became very value-conscious during the recession and haven’t reverted to earlier buying practices, making competitive pricing even more important for retailers, which puts pressure on suppliers.

One of the biggest trends she sees affecting the industry, which will most likely continue for years to come is “channel blurring,” or the advent of more and more types of competing retail outlets for fresh produce, beyond the conventional supermarket of old.

“From Walmart Supercenters to club stores, dollar stores, convenience stores, drug stores, online sales and limited assortment stores, such as Aldi and Trader Joe’s, the proliferation of store formats is still expanding.” Cooks says.



Dive into health with Cucumbers


Let cucumbers fuel you this summer 

The cucumber may just be one of the most underappreciated vegetables in the produce department. Lying in the shadow of kale and avocado lately the unassuming cucumber actually has a lot to offer when it comes to health and hydration.

At Village farms we think it’s time to start giving credit where credit is due. Our Luscious Seedless Long English® and Scrumptious Mini® Cucumbers are loaded with essential nutrients and we’re here to help you make a splash with inspiration on how to feature cucumbers on your summer menu.

Crisp Cucumber Melon Salad 


Did you know that cucumbers contain multiple B vitamins, including vitamin B1, vitamin B5, and vitamin B7 (biotin)? B vitamins are known to help ease feelings of anxiety and buffer some of the damaging effects of stress. Seriously, who couldn’t use a little help with that?

Cucumbers are rich in two of the most basic elements needed for healthy digestion: water and fiber. In fact cucumbers are 95% water, making them are a great way to stay hydrated as well. Adding cucumbers to your smoothies or salads can help you meet the ideal of amount of fiber your body needs.

Refreshing Cucumber Smoothie


Vitamins K and C are also found in cucumbers, these help to promote a healthy heart and skin. These attributes and more are why you should make cucumbers part of your daily routine this summer (and always).

Not sure how to incorporate more cucumbers? Check out this fantastic line-up of cucumber recipes:

Cucumber Margarita
Cucumber Mint Popsicle
Tuna-stuffed Mini Cucumber Canoes
Cucumber Crudite with Roasted Campari Tomato Hummus
Cucumber, Mint, & Apple Smoothie






Spring has Sprung: Reawaken Your Taste Buds


by Diana Pittet

Spring is the season of hope and promises, when the earth, held for too long in the fallow grip of winter, finally reawakens. In the glow of pleasantly warm sunshine, green shoots come forth from the ground and trees, and farms are alive with the birth of animals. It’s also the season when heavy comfort foods lose their appeal and meals become lighter and fresher, just like springtime days themselves.

What’s to come in this blog are two recipes that combine eggs and tomatoes. At the start, it should be said that the tomato probably isn’t the first vegetable that comes to mind when one thinks of spring. Leeks, asparagus, ramps, new potatoes, and baby artichokes are more like it. Two things about that: 1) tomatoes are always delightfully in season thanks to Village Farms and their innovative growing techniques and 2) spring is also the time for fresh thinking, so rethink tomatoes! They’re delicious at this hopeful time of year, adding brightness, both in color and taste, to your meals.

Maverick Mix® Tomato and Egg Bake


The first recipe, colorful Maverick Mix® Tomato and Egg Bake, couldn’t be simpler, requiring just one dish for preparation and cooking. This might be just what you need if you’ve exhausted yourself after hosting and feeding family and friends for the holiday, or you’ve spent hours in the garden getting it ready for summer. For this dish, I chose Maverick Mix® because the assortment reminds me of the brilliant colors of dyed eggs in an Easter basket. Baking the tomatoes at high heat preserves their various colors and shapes, and tossing in fresh herbs balances their sweetness and pumps up the vibrancy. So easy to make, this could become your go-to dish for any day of the week, any season.

Recipe: Sinfully Sweet Campari® Tomato, Asparagus, and Leek Strata


The other recipe, Sinfully Sweet Campari® Tomato, Asparagus, and Leek Strata, is a bit more involved, but it too offers convenience. Since it can be assembled hours in advance–preferably so–you can make it the day or night before and then serve it at brunch. This means there’s no need to wake up extra early to prepare it. Just pop it in the oven. To highlight the springtime nature of the strata–basically a savory bread pudding–I’ve included asparagus and leeks along with the Sinfully Sweet Campari® tomatoes whose sweet-tartness help cut through the richness of eggs, milk and cheese. Come summer you can still make a strata; keep the tomatoes and swap out the other veggies for zucchini. In the fall, try roasted butternut squash; and in the depths of winter, kale.

Happy Spring!

Special thanks to Diana Pittet who serves as Vice Chair, NYWCA Renewing Members, Co-Founder of the Night Owl Hospitality & AP Whisky Club, and a Writer, Consultant & Tour Guide for Food & Drink



Village Farms Named to 2017 OTCQX Best 50


 Vancouver, B.C., February 2, 2017 – Village Farms International Inc. (Village Farms) (VFF.TSX) (OTCQX:VFFIF),  is pleased to announce it has been named to the 2017 OTCQX® Best 50, a ranking of top performing companies traded on the OTCQX Best Market last year.


otcqx-logoThe OTCQX Best 50 is an annual ranking of the top 50 U.S. and international companies traded on the OTCQX market.  The ranking is calculated based on an equal weighting of one-year total return and average daily dollar volume growth in the previous calendar year.  Companies in the 2017 OTCQX Best 50 were ranked based on their performance in 2016.

Michael A. DeGiglio, President & CEO of Village Farms had this to say upon receiving the award, “It is uncommon enough for a high tech agriculturally driven consumer products company to be publicly traded while at the same time excelling to rank as one of the top performing companies traded on OTCQX. Village Farms wishes to acknowledge with great appreciation the support of the OTCQX market for this award.  We are motivated to continue to drive greater profitability and growth in revenue fueled by the re-energized business climate of 2017 as we continue to diversify our product line applications across broader international consumer markets.”

For the complete 2017 OTCQX Best 50 ranking, visit

The OTCQX Best Market offers transparent and efficient trading of established, investor-focused U.S. and global companies. To qualify for the OTCQX market, companies must meet high financial standards, follow best practice corporate governance, demonstrate compliance with U.S. securities laws and have a professional third-party sponsor introduction. The companies found on OTCQX are distinguished by the integrity of their operations and diligence with which they convey their qualifications.

See press release here.



Cucumbers are Your Resolution Solution


Let these cucumber smoothies gratify those post-holiday sweet and savory cravings

img_0740With all those sugary stocking stuffers and salty leftovers hanging around you may be finding it difficult to kick start those health-related New Year’s resolutions but Village Farms has the answer. You don’t have to give up that sweet and savory balance you love – just channel it in a different direction. Our Sweet Apple and Mint and Savory Breakfast Smoothie are two variations of craveable cucumber smoothies that can start your day right and keep you on track when snack time rolls around.

2015-05-20-15-40-16Talk about convenience, these recipes only dirty up one dish and are something the whole family can enjoy, you can even get the kids involved when you’re combining ingredients – because, let’s face it, if they help you make it they’re more likely to eat it!

The cucumber, apple and mint recipe swaps processed sugars for whole fruits like apples, pears, Mini Cucumbersor bananas. They sneak in some nutrient rich spinach and kale too. Looking more to skip the salt but keep the flavor? The cucumber and bell pepper recipe uses fresh ginger to provide a kick and parsley and lime juice to provide that rich, savory flavor.

Village Farms’ Luscious Seedless Long English® and Scrumptious produce-luscious-seedless-long-englishMini® Cucumbers are loaded with essential nutrients like vitamins K and C and promote a healthy heart and skin. At 95% water they are a great way to stay hydrated as well. These attributes and more make cucumbers a great vegetable to help you start the New Year on the right



Happy Christmas, Texas-Style


Heavenly Villagio Marzano® Tomato Galette

by Chef Impersonator

So I realize you don’t know me, but I’m really not a baker. Really. I’m a huge cook, but I really don’t bake. Not pies. Not cakes. Not cookies. Not tarts. Not breads. Nothing.

But this is one recipe that even us non-bakers can make. And it’s so darn delicious and so darn simple that you’re going to make it all the time. My Heavenly Village Marzano® Tomato Galette uses, and I say this with no shame whatsoever, a store-bought Pillsbury Pie Crust, some caramelized onions, shredded white cheddar and my very favorite little tomato, the Heavenly Villagio Marzano®. (If you happen to be a baker, and more props to you if you are, go ahead and make your own crust you big showoff!)


I don’t know how they do it at Village Farms, but I promise you these mini san marzano tomatoes are the best little tomatoes you’ll ever eat. I use them for everything. And when it’s arranged on the top of this open rustic galette (or tart), it’s not only beautiful, it’s like heaven in your mouth. (does that even make sense?) You get what I mean. These tomatoes are amazing!

Galette: a fancy French word for tart – use it and impress your friends. wink. wink.

Once you’ve caramelized your onions, the rest is fast and easy. Bring the dough to room temperature, drain the onions, and place onions, shredded white cheddar and those lovely sliced mini san marzano tomatoes inside the crust in that order. Fold up the edges and bake. It’s pretty small, about the size of a personal pan pizza, so you won’t feed an army on this. But it’s perfect to share with the one you love with a nice salad on the side on Christmas Eve.

Merry Christmas!


Recipe – Heavenly Villagio Marzano® Tomato Galette

Recipe and photography by Nancy Farrar


Cheese and Tomato Pairings for the Perfect Party


Do something different this holiday: Follow this guide for the perfect cheese and tomato pairings

by Diana Pittet

Nothing signals a special holiday gathering like a cheese platter. Put one on the table and watch the crowd, drink in hand, gather around for a generous slice from a wedge of cheese.

This festive season, instead of garnishing your cheese board with a typical bunch of grapes, surprise, delight, and nourish your guests with some pop-them-in-your-mouth tomatoes.

Swapping grapes for any variety of Village Farms tomatoes may seem unconventional, but it’s not as strange as you may think. Remember: tomatoes are fruits, after all, and they are wonderful companions to cheese, their sweet acidity playing off the richness of the dairy. In a season of regretful overindulging, tomatoes will be a welcome relief for your guests. And it’s super easy for you as the host – no cooking or prepping needed.

Here are some tips for creating your own winning tomato and cheese platters during the winter holidays or scroll down for some pre-set pairings:

Cheese Platter Principles

Variety is key. Just as Maverick Mix® is an appealing assortment of colors, flavors, shapes and sizes, so too should your cheese platter. Mix it up with different milk types (cow, sheep, goat, water buffalo); textures (soft; creamy; firm; hard); and styles (fresh–chevre or mozzarella; bloomy rind–think brie; stinky, Cheddar; alpine–Gruyere is an example; blue; etc.). Simply arrange them on a plate and place a bowl of Maverick Mix® in the center.

White Cheeses with Red Tomatoes

Pairing Principles

The pairings can be more deliberate than just putting out a mix of cheeses and tomatoes. Select the perfect cheese for a specific Village Farms tomato, just as people pour a particular wine to complement a singular cheese. Rarely are there wrong combinations for a pairing, but there are certainly more successful ones.

Here are three guidelines to steer you in the right direction:

1. Pair like with like. For example, a sweet tomato with a cheese with sweet notes, such as an aged Gouda
2. Pair contrasting flavors, like a salty cheese with a sweet tomato, (think pretzels with chocolate)
3. Pair geographical partners, like a tomato of southern Italian origins with a cheese from that region

Specific Pairings

I used a combination of the three principles for the following tomato pairings.

Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again® & Goat Cheese

When I think of Provence, the southern region of France from where this petite round tomato hails, I think of goat’s milk cheese. For this reason I suggest a fresh goat’s milk cheese–called chevre–or a semi-aged one, such as French bucheron, a goat’s milk brie, or Bannon, for these visually cheerful fruits. This coupling makes gustatory sense, too, as the lemony brightness of the cheese is nicely complemented by the intense sweetness of the cherry tomatoes. For something special, select a goat’s milk cheese mixed or rubbed with Provencal herbs, such as lavender, rosemary, or thyme.

Heavenly Villagio Marzano® & Italian Cheese

What makes more sense that pairing an Italian tomato with Italian cheese? There are so many directions that you can go in to make bella figura: A bowl of fresh ricotta drizzled with olive oil and fresh herbs; a hunk of Parmigiano Reggiano to chip at; a luscious burrata with a sprinkle of olive oil and black pepper; a wedge of Gorgonzola–any or all served with an accompanying bowl of these heavenly mini san marzano tomatoes. With a little prep, you could skewer the mini tomatoes with cherry-sized balls of mozzarella, for your guests’ ease and delight.

Cabernet Estate Reserve™ & Sheep’s Milk Cheese

There is no single type of cheese that dominates the middle of the Mediterranean region where the distinctively dark Cabernet Estate Reserve™ was born, but there are indeed quite a variety of sheep’s milk cheeses, each style of which will pair beautifully with the deep flavor of the tomatoes. There are flocks of options: Manchego or Idiazabal from Spain, P’tit Basque or Abbaye de Belloc from France, Pecorino Toscano or Moliterno from Italy; Feta or Halloumi from Greece; Paksi Sir from Croatia–just to name a few. To be especially luxurious at the holidays, be extravagant and offer a sheep’s milk cheese studded with truffles, such as Cacio di Bosco al Tartufo.

Special thanks to Diana Pittet who is a Cheesemonger at The Cheese Cave, Little Silver, N.J. Diana also serves as Vice Chair, NYWCA Renewing Members, Co-Founder of the Night Owl Hospitality & AP Whisky Club, and a Writer, Consultant & Tour Guide for Food & Drink


An old-fashioned Texas Christmas


Thumbprint Cookies with Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again® Pepper Jelly Jam

by Chef Impersonator

This Texas Christmas recipe combines not one, but two of my favorite food traditions – my grandmother’s Christmas thumbprint cookie recipe, and a filling made with Village Farms Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again® tomatoes, mixed with Texas red pepper jelly.

Texans love their hot, spicy jams and jellies! Red pepper jelly isn’t quite as hot as a jalapeño jelly, and blends perfectly with the red, juicy cherry tomatoes. It’s also a break from the traditional super-sweet raspberry jam filling you typically see in thumbprint cookies. The cherry tomatoes are perfect because of their bright red color and their smooth, sweet flavor. The filling is savory, spicy and sweet all at the same time. All you do is combine the cherry tomatoes with red pepper jelly and a bit of sugar and you’re done!

Cherry No. 9 Thumbprint Cookies

Cherry No. 9 Thumbprint Cookies

The cookie dough recipe is so simple even I can make it. I’m not a baker, but this dough takes about 5 minutes, which makes it perfect at this busy holiday time. Be sure to freeze the formed cookies for 15 minutes BEFORE baking. It keeps them from losing their shape in the oven. You fill them with the luscious cherry no. 9 pepper jelly jam when they come out of the oven.

Cherry No. 9 Thumbprint Cookies

Recipe – Thumbprint Cookies with Cherry No. 9 Fall in Love Again® Pepper Jelly Jam

Recipe and photography by Nancy Farrar


A very Texas Christmas


A Village Farms Texas Christmas: Hot Damn, Tamales! with Cabernet Estate Reserve Tomato™ Chili Sauce

by Chef Impersonator

I moved to Texas right out of college, and it’s been home now for over 30 years. And as they say:

“I’m not from Texas, but I got here as fast as I could.” 

That old adage is totally true. It’s just a place you want to be. The people, the places, the pride and the food are all what make this state the place I’m proud to call home.

There are lots and lots of food traditions in this great state, but none is stronger and more deeply rooted than making and eating tamales at Christmas. The word tamale actually means “wrapped food” and is found in recorded Mayan history as far back as 5000 BC. The process of making tamales is an all day affair, and that would be the reason why I don’t actually make them.

Now I love to cook and I’ll cook all day long, but why do all that work when there are so many places all over Texas that put every ounce of love they have into making their own tamales? So I buy mine from my friends at Hot Damn, Tamales! in Fort Worth, Texas and I make these little packets of deliciousness my own with the sauces I create to go with them. Hot Damn, Tamales! will ship anywhere in the U.S., so you have no excuse not to get some.

Cabernet Estate Reserve Tamales

This first recipe is a tomato chili sauce I created that combines Village Farms Cabernet Estate Reserve™ tomatoes with mild, fragrant, dried Pasilla chiles. When rehydrated and popped in the Ninja Blender or food processor with some onion, beef stock and spices, you get a tomatoey, smoky sauce that’s just perfect with most any kind of tamale you can buy. I chose the Angus Beef Tamales from Hot Damn, Tamales!, but any flavor would be perfect with this delicious tomato sauce. I chose the Cabernet Estate Reserve™ tomatoes for their beautiful deep cabernet color and rich flavor. When combined with the chiles, they’re just amazing.

Cabernet Estate Reserve Tamales

If you’ve never used Pasilla chiles, never fear. Just slice them open, remove the stems and seeds and soak in beef or chicken stock for 30 minutes. Pop them into the Ninja Blender with the other ingredients, and voila — the perfect sauce to go with your holiday tamales.

Recipe – Hot Damn, Tamales! with Cabernet Estate Reserve™ Tomato Chili Sauce

Recipe and photography by Nancy Farrar


Sauce Up Mealtime


Sauces. Maybe one of the hardest things to master in the kitchen, and probably one of my favorite things to make. Making sauces with these tomatoes is fantastically easy, because one of the key things to making a great sauce is to use the best possible ingredients to begin with, and another is to do as little with it as possible. I’m a huge fan of keeping it light and simple whenever possible.

Cherry No. 9 Tomatoes

Tomato sauce at home, or in a restaurant, is the perfect outlet for all the tomatoes ripening around your kitchen when you’ve been a little too ambitious about how many you’re going to go through this week, lol. You can let them safely get as ripe as possible, and when you feel like they’re as soft and juicy and fragrant as they’re going to get, into the pot they go. I like to either sweat them clean in a pot with some onion, olive oil, thyme, oregano and chili flakes, or roast them to dry them out a bit and deepen the darker tones of the sauce. If I have a party coming up and they’re small tomatoes, I’ll throw them in a slow oven and dry them right out for oven dried tomatoes for antipasti.

San Marzano Tomatoes

What I particularly love about the mini san marzano tomatoes when it comes to making sauce is how robust and meaty they are. I like to emphasize this as much as possible by adding the chopped mini san marzanos to the cooking process in stages so you still end up with some big meaty pieces, and the ones you add near the end don’t get cooked all the way out so you get rich, chunky texture.

Recipe – Chunky Heavenly San Marzano Sauce

Eggplant Melanzana

Eggplant Melanzana becomes a hearty vegetarian dish when we’ve used the chunky mini san marzano sauce as the base — this makes a great appetizer on its own, or for that matter I’ll often use this as the base for a dinner and top it with grilled chicken or sea bass. I went from not being a fan of eggplant to becoming a full-on convert and huge supporter of the eggplant after traveling in Sicily for a while. I was amazed by how such a dark, imposing vegetable could end up being such a light, refreshing hot weather treat.

One of the keys to dealing with eggplant is to salt and press it ahead of time, even if its only 30–45 minutes, it helps to extract some of the bitterness of the eggplant.

Eggplant Slice

One of the other big things, in particular when you’re making Eggplant Melanzana, is to be sure the eggplant is well cooked & tender prior to the breading stage —

Grilled Eggplant Slices

this will ensure that once it’s cooked again, even for the short time it takes to brown up the crust, it will come out soft and creamy in the middle — an undercooked eggplant is a huge, unappetizing miss, lol.

Eggplant Melanzana

Recipe – Eggplant Melanzana with Chunky Heavenly San Marzano Sauce

The other end of the spectrum is roasting and reducing and hyper-concentrating all those great sugars into an awesome roasted mini san marzano tomato paste.

Roasted San Marzano Tomatoes

San Marzano Puree

San Marzano Puree

Recipe – Heavenly San Marzano Tomato Paste

I’ve talked about it before, but I typically freeze them in ice cube trays, then I’ve always got a little block of intense tomato goodness around in the freezer to add to whatever needs it in the moment…

Zucchini Spaghettini

In this gluten free “faux spaghetti” made from spun zucchini, I use the roasted mini san marzano tomato paste to flavour ricotta for a rich roast tomato finish, and a tart garlicky Cherry No. 9 tomato coulis to dress the noodles. The noodle itself is just raw zucchini done on a spiral cutter,Zucchini Spaghetti

so I either just cook it super lightly in the tomato sauce before serving, or else I’ve been more often than not serving it cold “thai beef salad” style — I whisk a bit of olive oil into the chilled tomato sauce and dress the “zucchini noodles” with it like a vinaigrette, leave it in the fridge overnight to marinate, and serve it as a chilled salad with some fresh lime and toasted pumpkin seeds — super light & fresh.

Zucchini Spaghetti with Sauce

Zucchini Spaghettini

Recipe – Cherry Tomato Crudo Sauce

Recipe – Zucchini “Spaghettini” with Cherry Tomato Crudo Sauce

When I’m dealing with a lighter dish, thinner noodles, seafood, etc., and I’d like a more delicate sauce, I like to make a smooth velvety coulis with lightly roasted Cabernet Estate Reserve™ tomatoes. Great sweetness and a very complex but soft complimentary acidity in the background means this sauce will be subtle but still hold its own with robust flavours.

Cabernet Estate Reserve Tomatoes

The natural sweetness in these seared sea scallops play nicely with the sweetness of the Cabernet tomato coulis, but the sauce also has enough body and acidity in it to balance out the salty pancetta crisps.

Recipe – Cabernet Estate Reserve™ Tomato Coulis

Cabernet Tomato Coulis

Cabernet Tomato Coulis

Recipe – Diver Scallops with Cabernet Estate Reserve™ Tomato Coulis

It’s a nice light sauce for pretty much any fish, great for grilled chicken, and lately I’ve been using it as a sauce to finished sautéed green beans, kale, mustard greens, radicchio, etc. — great complimentary sauce for green vegetables or specifically braised or raw bitter greens.

At the end of the day, I just make it a habit to keep a ready stock of a few different tomato sauces on hand in the freezer, all for different reasons & applications, and you get to see which tomatoes behave the best for you for each different method. Tons of fun, you know exactly what’s in your sauce, and it makes on the fly dinners a touch easier too…


Grilling up a Tasty Summer!


Grilling season is here and we have delicious meal ideas for you with our wonderful exclusive tomato varieties that change outdoor dining and entertaining from blah burgers to healthy foodie fun. Try all of our great varieties such as Sinfully Sweet Campari®, Cabernet Estate Reserve™, Cherry no. 9 Fall in Love Again®, and Heavenly Villagio Marzano®. At Village Farms, we want you to know tomatoes are for much more than a salad
or sandwich.


Try these tasty recipe ideas created for us by our corporate Chef Darren Brown. Let us know how you like them!

Stuffed Campari

grilled ratatouille stuffed mini campari tomatoes

Roasted Cherry and Cabernet Tomatoes with Burrata

roasted cherry and cabernet tomatoes with burrata and basil

Heavenly San Marzano Paste

heavenly san marzano tomato paste

Grilled Tri-color Peppers

grilled tri-color peppers


Saluting our Heritage with Paisano recipes


2015-05-19_11.41.08In celebration of Village Farms journey over the last 25 years, we salute the company’s heritage that began in Italy just as our exclusive and authentic Heavenly Villagio Marzano® tomatoes. The founder’s father, Fred DeGiglio who was born and raised on the same soil that cultivated the famous San Marzano variety, is commemorated with an exclusive recipe he created along with our corporate chef Darren Brown. Please enjoy these special ‘Paisano’ recipes Fred has passed on to us to savory with our loved ones. These simple countrymen recipes were created to share with friends and family and made all the better complimented by a great Italian red. Mangia!

The journey of Village Farms is depicted in the above painting of a classical village landscape in Italy. This special painting was created especially for Village Farms by the renowned artist Shirley Chapman

Freddy’s Pomodori al Forno


Freddy’s “Paesano” Potatoes


Freddy’s Mini San Marzano “Crudaiola”


Freddy’s Spaghetti with Broccoli Rabe




Social Responsibility

Village Farms Celebrates 2nd Annual BC Veggie Day With Locally Greenhouse Grown Veggies.


DELTA, B.C. – The springtime harvest of greenhouse veggies has begun! It’s time to celebrate their arrival.

This year, Village Farms is participating in the 2nd annual BC Veggie Day, sponsored by the B.C. Greenhouse Growers Association with support from the BC Government’s Buy Local Program.

Village Farms is supporting the event with on-package stickers throughout the entire month of May, and on Saturday, May 23, consumers will have the opportunity to meet the company’s farmers at several key retailer locations in the greater Vancouver area.

Farmers will be on hand all day to speak with consumers and hand out samples of greenhouse grown products. Meet some of Village Farms’ growers in the video above!

2015-05-19_11.41.08Village Farms’ Chef Darren Brown stopped by Vancouver’s CTV News to talk more about the company’s work for BC Veggie Day, and share his recipe for a Rebel Tomato Tart, with greek yogurt, feta, cucumber, and dill.

“It’s a perfect time, all the greenhouses in town are up to full speed and they’re full and lush, so it’s a great time for vegetables,” Brown says.


You can find this recipe, and more on the Village Farms recipe page here.


Village Farms says it is pleased to be a part of BC Veggie Day, as it is a great opportunity to promote locally greenhouse grown vegetables in British Columbia and bring awareness to sustainable farming.

by Jessica Donnel / andnowuknow



Village Farms Participates in 3rd Annual Indoor Agriculture Conference


Village Farms International, located in Heathrow, Florida will participate in 3rd Annual Indoor Agriculture Conference on March 31 and April 1, 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Village Farms has participated in this conference since its inception three years ago. Village Farms President & CEO, Michael A. DeGiglio will be the first speaker on the first day of the conference in an “Ask me Anything” format. Mr. DeGiglio was keynote speaker last year at the conference. Paul Selina, Vice President of Applied Research for Village Farms, will be speaking during the first panel on the second day of the conference entitled, “What should you consider in selecting a growing environment?”. Mr. Selina was keynote speaker the first year of the conference. Village Farms Corporate Chef Darren Brown will speak on a panel of Chefs the first day of the conference entitled, “What do chefs want to see from the indoor agriculture industry?”. Chef Brown will also provide an introduction at the conference luncheon on the first day to greenhouse produce; how to select and what to look for. Village Farms has donated all the tomatoes, cucumbers and eggplants to be prepared for the guests of the conference luncheons this year. Other Village Farms employees in attendance at the conference will be Helen L. Aquino, Director Brand Marketing & Communication and Andrew Sable, Sales Manager. For more information about the conference please visit and for Village Farms please visit .

About Village Farms
Village Farms is one of the largest producers, marketers, and distributors of premium-quality, greenhouse-grown fruits and vegetables in North America. The food our farmers grow, along with other greenhouse farmers under exclusive arrangements are all grown in environmentally friendly, soil-less, glass greenhouses. The Village Farms® brand of fruits and vegetables is marketed and distributed primarily to local retail grocers and dedicated fresh food distributors throughout the United States and Canada. Since its inception, Village Farms has been guided by sustainability principles that enable us to grow food 365 days a year that not only feeds the growing population but is healthier for people and the planet. Village Farms is Good for the Earth® and good for you.


The Garden Fresh Flavor™ Challenge


HEATHROW, FL – The votes are in, and Village Farms says its Heavenly Villagio Marzano® variety has been voted the “Best Flavored Tomato” in the company’s Garden Fresh Flavor™ Challenge at this year’s PMA Fresh Summit.

Going up against Village Farms’ Lip Smackin’ Grapes® tomato and Sinfully Sweet Campari® varieties, visitors to Village Farms’ booth favored the San Marzano tomato’s flavor during the blind taste test. The other two varieties were very close seconds, however, showing the strength of Village Farms’ entire menu of offerings, according to a press release.

What did visitors have to say about the Heavenly Villagio Marzano®? “A little tomato with full flavor,” “a great mouthfeel and bite,” “sensational,” “sweet,” and “outstanding” were just a few of the descriptions offered during this great showing.

Doug Kling, Senior Vice President & Chief Marketing Officer for Village Farms shared, “It is no surprise this great tasting snacking tomato won the award for best-flavored tomato at PMA. But did you know that Heavenly Villagio Marzano® is also an excellent cooking tomato?”

If the popularity of the Heavenly Villagio Marzano® tomato at Fresh Summit is any indication, many more people will be learning about the great flavor profile and versatility of the variety over the coming months.

When Village Farms’ new website launches in late 2014, the grower shares that it will be supporting the variety with an exciting set of cooking instructions and recipes. With the support of these materials, consumers will be able to test Doug’s claim for themselves. If you ask me, I’m confident that they won’t be disappointed.

by Jordan Okumura / andnowuknow