At parties and dinning, vegetable carvings is a must watch. Somehow, beautifully chopped and carved vegetables and fruits leave their identity of being silent lives and a new identity is taken up them. It seems the new silent lives will take up words and speak the next moment. Don't you find it magical ? How a long ugly guard is turned to peacock, Tearful onion to magnificent lotus, cluster of hot chillies making crown of another tweety carved out of melon. As long and as wide the imagination can go, the picture and the table can be made more lively and attractive.
It is the creativity exhibited by the Chef and party with the raw fruits and vegetables. Similar way for want of more space, some time back Japan has come out with the idea of square watermelon, so that one can stock one on one. The same was possible at the time of growth of the fruit. Heart shape, funny shapes with mould were also tried.
Japanese growers were producing square watermelons, which were unique, but not edible, and still selling for a very high price. Few years ago Tony Dighera of Cinagro Farms opined “I figured I could do the same thing and make them edible. It took three years and it worked,” he says. His next foray was into pumpkins in order to have an additional unique commodity to offer rather than just in the summer. “It’s also an expensive endeavor and labor intensive. You have to charge a fair amount of money for it and a watermelon isn’t too special. People might buy it because of (cool factor) but then it’s over,” says Dighera. “If you have something for an occasion that’s something people will spend money for.” The Pumpkinstein was born.
This year’s pumpkin crop unfortunately didn’t yield as much as Dighera had hoped. The goal was for 350,000 but he says yields were about half of that. Being an organic farm, they experienced some new issues this year: birds digging the seeds out of the ground. “This is the first year we’ve had an issue – never before,” he says.
Labor is constantly a worry for him, especially since the molds have to be put on at just the right time as to not do any damage. He explains that the pumpkins can’t be too small when the mold is put on but rather should be just snug where it won’t get scarred or move around as it grows. “If it’s too small and too loose when it grows it could twist and turn and break the stem off. That’s one of the big issues – having all that labor to get all the molds on right at the right time. It’s a big project.” Once the molds are on it’s a one-week timeframe to then take the molds off and harvest the pumpkins. This is the first year he’s offered the white skull Gruesomesteins. “We’re working on a couple of things now, hopefully for next season,” he says.
Next year he may be looking into sourcing other growers to produce the Pumpkinsteins and Gruesomesteines. “We’ve got some pretty big commitments from big customers Midwest and out east.” And with shipping costs that can be “insane” he’s also exploring growers in the Midwest to participate as well.
Dighera leaves the distribution to some third party companies who get the pumpkins distributed throughout the USA to states like Illinois, New York and parts of Canada including British Columbia and Ontario. At about $39US, he says if someone thinks it’s really cool and is amazed by it, they’ll pay for it. Truthfully he also points out that it’s not much of a price difference than what a customer would pay by buying a pumpkin direct from a farm’s pumpkin patch. “When you look at that it really isn’t that much more.”
We never know in India also, the much popular personalities may figure up on any fruit for marketing strategy. As from November 2017 the Wax museum with the celebrities from politics, films, cricket and other sports are featured in the Wax Museum, similarly the celebrities may appear on the vegetables and the fruits for marketing purposes.