When Ben Kauffman, founder of Kauffman Growers, first came to us with his micro greens we were ecstatic about finding a local producer of foods that are so hard to come by. There are so many varieties of micro greens that Ben has introduced us to, and he continues to inspire new dishes with the products he grows for us.
Here is a little Q&A we had with Ben about his business:
1. How did Kauffman Growers come to be? "During college, I did a group project in one of my horticulture classes where we tested the productivity of micro greens. The idea stuck with me but didn't come to fruition until after I graduated from Washington State University (Go Cougs!). Originally, I wanted to breed peppers, but I knew the process can take many years to get a viable product through traditional breeding. So I wanted to do something that would be able to sustain the business in the first few years, instead it became the business."
2. What is your Mission for the future of the business? "My Mission for the future of my business is to be everywhere. Currently, micro greens are a tough sell because many people don't know what they are, the health benefits of micro greens, or are not sure how to use them. Part of my mission is educating people on those three things."
3. What is a micro-green? "A micro green is a young vegetable green that is smaller than baby greens and harvested later than sprouts. They are nutrient dense and pack a lot of flavor for their size. Typically, they have been used in fine dining, but with the health benefits being researched more, people are using them at home."
4. What's your favorite of all the plants you grow? "My favorite micro green to grow is either cilantro or the spicy mix. Both micro greens are very flavorful and they go with any dish. My favorite use for them is to put them in my breakfast burritos."
For more information about Kauffman Growers check out their facebook page. If you are a frequent diner at Kelly's Mercantile you will recognize Kauffman's micro greens on a lot of our signature dishes and specials. Thank you Ben for taking the time to share your story with us and for providing such amazing micro greens!