The Case for Ugly Produce
According to Mintel, 51 percent of Americans are willing to buy “ugly” produce—those imperfect-looking but perfectly flavorful fruits and vegetables.
B&I decision makers are also purchasing ugly produce to counteract global waste problems and fulfill their sustainability goals. Both Bon Appétit Management Company and CulinArt Group participate in owner Compass Group’s Imperfectly Delicious Produce program to encourage their clients to source ugly produce. From second-cut spinach to blemished cauliflower, the program has saved millions of pounds of produce that would have gone to waste.
“We’re going to chop it up and turn it into something else,” says Peter Klein, director of culinary development at CulinArt Group.
Using ugly produce also makes employees happy, as today’s workforce demands transparency not only for nutritional content, but also its origin and environmental impact.