Startengine Campaign Source References – The BEST, FASTEST and MOST RELIABLE distribution company in Puerto Rico. – José Santiago Inc. is the oldest, largest, and most advanced full-line foodservice distributor in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. – Ballester Hermanos Inc. distributes a wide range of trusted grocery brands to all channels across the Island. – Through our network of distribution centers and Dawn Distributor Advantage partners, we are able to distribute our products to virtually every major metropolitan area within 24 hours. – Quirch Foods Puerto Rico was officially incorporated in 2000 and today operates one of the largest refrigerated distribution centers in the Caribbean. From this distribution center in San Juan, we service all of the major supermarkets on the island –most of them independent grocers. – Plaza Food Systems is Puerto Rico’s premier One Stop Shopping Solution for your business. – Puerto Rico Supplies is a family-owned business with a story that began in 1945, when Nathaniel Pasarell and his son Charles M. Pasarell shared a dream and Puerto Rico Supplies was born with the same passion that drives us today. We have grown continuously into a top distribution business in Puerto Rico. – El Viandon is a fresh produce distributor located in Mayaguez who buys and distributes fresh grocery products throughout Puerto Rico.

We are currently looking to source our basil and mint from local growers, but unfortunately our current supply comes from the United States as we do not have reliable local sources for these herbs.  We would love to buy from a local farm, so let us know and we’ll buy whatever you are able to produce.”  Julio Barceló, owner of El Viandon. – Agroponicos, Cosecha de Puerto Rico, Inc. is a fresh produce distributor located in San Juan, Puerto Rico who buys and distributes fresh grocery products throughout Puerto Rico.

“Basil and mint plants are currently booming,” states Jorge Casas, founder of the fresh food market and Puerto Rico distribution business Agroponicos, “The demand for these specialized products is at the moment very high. Not only ordinary customers but also restaurants and hotels choose for the combination of these products more often. I will basically buy every ounce of basil or mint you can produce!”

Jorge has also set up an expanding distribution network, to serve themselves and dozens of other farmers around the island and to help drive the food revolution.

“Everything is local,” said Jorge Casas, “The point of everything is to grow the agriculture on the island and that’s the way we’re going to help the economy of the island.”

“The farmers usually don’t like to go out and sell, so we’re creating this community of ‘You grow, I sell’. You grow what you’re expert in, we grow what we are expert in, and let’s join it all together and sell it.

~    Jorge Casas, farmer

“We’re working with more than 80 farms in food service, and hotels and restaurants are the main goal. Almost everything we have is sold with these clients, we’re not even in the supermarkets.” – The basil leaves market is expected to remain under the influence of growing demand for fresh herbs in a myriad of applications ranging from food to pharmaceuticals. Proliferating consumer base inclined towards natural ingredients and increasing appreciation for novel culinary experiences are prime fillips driving the demand for basil leaves in the basil leaves market. Increasing demand for non-GMO basil seeds is expected to bode well for the basil farming, thereby propelling the basil leaves market. The global basil leaves market is segmented into 7 key regions including North America, Latin America, Eastern Europe, Western Europe, Middle East and Africa (MEA), Asia Pacific Excluding Japan (APEJ) and Japan.

[i] Puerto Rico had 3.7 million tourist visitors in 2018 has 4,000 restaurants, 16 casinos, 140+ hotels, and untold numbers of local bars. – Cultivated as a culinary herb, condiment or spice; source of essential oil for use in foods, flavors, and fragrances; garden ornamental. The green aromatic leaves are used fresh and dried as flavorings or spices in sauces, stews, salad dressings, vegetables, poultry, vinegar, confectionery products, and the liqueur chartreuse. Basil extract has been reported to have antioxidant activity. Cultivars with purple foliage, such as ‘Dark Opal’ and var. auranascens, are grown as ornamentals, but can also be used as flavorings. The essential oils and oleoresin are used extensively, reducing the need for dried leaves in the food industry; used in perfumes, soaps, and shampoos.  Basil is cultivated for the freshmarket as a culinary herb, as a condiment or spice in the dried/frozen leaf form, and as a source of aromatic essential oil for use in foods, flavors, and fragrances and as a potted herb and bedding plant. As a fresh or dried market herb, the main type traded includes the large leaf highly aromatic French or Italian basil, though several other types which differ in leaf shape and aroma are of commercial importance in the fresh market industry (i.e. basils with lemon, licorice or cinnamon aroma).  While basil has long been prized for its aroma, delicacy as a spice, and its beauty and fragrance as an ornamental, the plant also contains essential oils that are used by the perfume, pharmacy, and food industries. Few realize the multitude of natural chemicals contained in the essential oil that can be extracted and used in perfumery and flavoring. – In some areas of the country high end retailers sell basil for $3-$4 per ounce