Last Friday, I invited a sales rep of a line of tomato products to do a tasting of his sauces in my school kitchen. I met him at a food show while looking at the ingredients listed on a can of tomato puree at his booth.
I invited everyone in the kitchen to participate in the tasting and listen to the sales pitch. A few people were skeptical. Why change what we currently have?
Their pasta sauce tasted great straight from the can, slightly chunky, perfumed with onion and garlic, and made with carrot puree for a touch of natural sweetness. One person who wanted to hold her nose while sampling the sauce (due to the mention of the carrot puree) said she liked it.
Not only am I happy with the quality, taste, and ingredients, this line is priced about the same as the current sauces we use made with corn syrup and a host of other undesirable ingredients!
I have a long list of things I would like to replace in the school kitchen. I know many of of these items won’t be as easy as substituting one canned good for another. But there are surely some decent products out there (like this line of tomato sauces) in the giant warehouses of the national food supplier my school uses. Finding those items is the challenge. It occurs to me that maybe I should make the salesperson representing this supplier work a little harder for his commission.