Grower John Bonner & Tim Ryan

'A lettuce that can't be beaten on shelf life'

John Bonner and Tim Ryan co-owners of Great Lakes Growers. They produce, sell and market top-quality lettuces and herbs in the North East of the USA and are characterized by an astute marketing strategy and pioneering approach. For Rijk Zwaan’s Salanova® they developed a living lettuce display.

Greenhouse setting

“We wanted a presentation format that recreated the greenhouse setting as closely as possible. In collaboration with retailers, we developed a living lettuce display that allows shoppers to freshly pick their own head of Salanova® lettuce – without leaving the store. They keep the Salanova lettuces neat and tidy while they wait to be purchased by shoppers – who, just like the retailers, are wildly enthusiastic.”


“We only supply to order. Retailers are assured that the lettuces they receive from us have been picked that very same morning. They go straight into the living display, rootball and all. Ultra-fresh in the store and ultra-fresh into consumers’ homes. Providing the Salanova is refrigerated immediately, it stays fresh for two weeks. A living lettuce like this really can’t be beaten on shelf life.”

Countless tiny leaves

“We combine this system with the attractive structure and vibrant colour of Rijk Zwaan’s Salanova varieties. The convenience aspect of the Salanova lettuce makes our product even more appealing: with just one cut, the lettuce separates into countless tiny leaves, ready for use!

It’s a win-win situation, retailers enjoy a huge boost to lettuce sales while consumers can buy fresh, locally grown lettuce all year round. Moreover, the living lettuce displays also reduce the need for packaging, which is good for the environment.”