May 8, 2014
Board member Marcus Agresta is the General Manager for Piazza Produce, a wholesale delivery company based in Indianapolis. Piazza trucks pick up and deliver all the Indiana ingredients that are used by our chefs at the event, and provide support at the festival with refrigerated trucks on site. Other than this tremendous support, they participate in and sponsor community activities and are an advocate for increasing the supply of Indiana grown food.
• What is your role at Piazza and what would you like for people to know about the company?
Piazza Produce was founded in 1970 and has been buying and distributing product from local producers since day 1. We continue to seek out new producers in all areas of food production and take great pride in the relationships we have built across the Midwest over the years. Our role is to procure, market, and distribute the highest quality products available in the market place while doing it with a high level of service.
• Talk about the buy fresher program and why Piazza started it.
We realized we needed to tell our story. Just because we had been buying locally for many years we need to market this to our customers. Therefore, we decided to launch a campaign to spread the word. We developed a website www.buyfresher.com that people could go to read about the producers we buy from and get information regarding their operations.
• Why is it important for you to be a part of Dig IN?
We have trucks. At the end of the day when local products need to move from farm to fork we can execute. Deliveries we are making all across the Midwest on a daily basis allows us to stop into the producers and backhaul there goods and then distribute them back out to customers the next day. Dig IN creates an opportunity for us to become a visible solutions to connect the producers with chefs. Oh the board members are pretty cool too!
• We’ve recently talked about the seasonal availability of lettuces and greens. Can you give me a couple of the larger producers of these that you source from Indiana?
Good Life farms in Martinsville, IN does a great job on lettuces. We also get a lot of Kale from Peaper Brothers right here in Indianapolis.
• What are some of your favorite ways to eat greens?
Well, I am a sucker for Arugula with simple olive oil, balsamic, and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Also, I have been making baked kale chips too.