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Greenhouse sweet peppers now grown in Quebec


February 15, 2013
By Dave Harrison

Feb. 15, 2013, Sainte-Clotilde-de-Châteauguay, Que. – Les Serres Lefort,
a major Quebec-based agri-business founded in 1984, with more than 10
hectares under market garden production, will produce and offer red,
orange and yellow sweet peppers as of March 15.

Feb. 15, 2013, Sainte-Clotilde-de-Châteauguay, Que. – Les Serres Lefort, a major Quebec-based agri-business founded in 1984, with more than 10 hectares under market garden production, will produce and offer red, orange and yellow sweet peppers as of March 15.

Consumers will be able to identify these peppers – according to the company, the first ones specifically grown in greenhouses in Quebec – by their new trademark, VÔG, soon to be certified by Aliments du Québec.

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This output, some 700 tonnes annually, will be adequate to supply a significant share of distributors wishing to set themselves apart by offering an until-now non-existent product: locally grown greenhouse sweet peppers, notes the company.

5280_vog_of_les_serres_lefort_logo_les_serres_lefortThis product category, which is not at all on the distributors’ radar, presents Les Serres Lefort with a significant challenge: positioning both the new category and the new trademark, VÔG.

The size and openness of this unique and extensive development – 2.4 hectares of sweet peppers under cultivation for Les Serres Lefort – have already engendered a model of synergy between multiple stakeholders in Quebec’s market garden and agri-food sector.

This initiative also falls perfectly in line with the Quebec government’s intention to implement, this spring, an agri-food policy centered primarily on responsible buying and environmental values.
 
Company president Sylvain Lefort believes that the strategic positioning developed over the past 20 years for marketing Quebec greenhouse tomatoes is solid evidence of the potential for a locally grown greenhouse sweet pepper crop.

“We want to take advantage of this window of opportunity, and are convinced that Quebec can, if it so wishes, become a jewel in the crown of greenhouse crop production across North America,” says Lefort.

ABOUT LES SERRES LEFORT

Founded in 1984, Les Serres Lefort produces 65 per cent of plant grafts in Quebec for producers of field crops.

The company has also been contracted to grow a large share of greenhouse lettuce sold under the Mirabel label.

As of March 15, 2013, it will also market sweet peppers under the VÔG brand, and will later add a line of organic products branded VÔG BIO and VÔG ORGANIC.

Over the past two years, the company invested more than $15-million in its development, primarily to convert its energy infrastructure to a biomass-fuelled one. This move was intended to make the business reflective of the values espoused by its senior management and the approximately one hundred employees who work for it full-time.

The company also hopes to convert 100 per cent of its crops to organic production in the next five years.
www.culturevog.com

Click here for our file story on the company’s conversion from propane to biomass.

The company was also a silver medallist in the 2010 l’Ordre national du mérite agricole program. Click here for more information.


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