Cool video, showing what is involved in getting produce from Field to Supermarket. As a cherry grower and packer, I face similar challenges with the majority of our cherries being picked, packed, shipped and received overseas within 48 hours. This is not an endorsement of Zon Fruit & Vegetables

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Grades: No USDA Standards
Cartons: 4.54kg/10# | 11.36kg/25# | 18kg/40#
Packs: Bulk
Colors: Green | Yellow | White | Purple
Store: Refrigerated | Optimum Temperature +10C/50F

Remarks: Most people today have dined on Thai food at least once or twice; Thai curried dishes have become very popular to North American palates. For those brave enough to tackle the art of preparing and cooking this Asian cuisine, Thai eggplant is an essential ingredient in curry dishes.

Displaying: You cannot simply put this variety out on display without explanation. Shrink will be horrendous if you do not have time to market it properly and there will be many questions... Customers will want to chat you up, you have peaked their curiosity, now they will be asking... "what is it?"... "how do I prepare it?"... "how do I store it?"... and so on... Shoppers love to see new fresh additions to the Produce Department. If possible, try to place recipe cards beside the display.

Eggplant have thorny tops, handle delicately to avoid injury. The first signs of decay often appear under their leaves. Displays should be kept small on a table or wet counter. Keep in mind eggplant chill easily, ensure cold air is not blowing directly on product and try to rotate every 2-3 hours. Pull displays at close and refrigerate. Cull, bag up and discount, soft, wrinkled and marked up product.

Receiving: Open boxes and inspect leaves for brown and black discoloration; this is a common problem that is often overlooked when receiving eggplant. Leaves should look bright, green and vibrant. Product should be firm, free of pock marks and other visual defects. If eggplant feels slightly soft, inspect the interior white flesh for brown discoloration (a sign of chilling injury). Weigh boxes, due to long transit times from country of origin, it is acceptable for the boxes to be slightly underweight. Ensure your retail price has taken this into account. Remove plastic pallet wrap to prevent sweating. Reject shipments in general with an accumulation of more than 10% defects.


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