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October 5th, 2013

by Total Food Service

David Sasuga


David Sasuga, founder of Fresh Origins Farm produces MicroGreens, PetiteGreens, TinyVeggies™, Herb Crystals™ and Edible Flowers near San Diego, California. The ideal growing climate allows them to produce a micro green that is robust, healthy and highly flavored.


Fresh Origins has become the largest grower of MicroGreens and Edible Flowers in the country. The farm was founded by David Sasuga, after growing flowering plants for 20 years. David always wanted to grow fresh produce and the opportunity came unexpectedly. Back in 1995, a local chef came to their greenhouse and got excited when he saw some basil seedlings growing there. He wanted to try using them to accent his plate presentations and although it did not make a lot of sense at the time, it was then that David began producing these and other varieties of tiny, fresh-cut seedlings destined for restaurants.  Fresh Origins has come a long way since then, and David and his family produce a wide variety of MicroGreens, PetiteGreens, Edible Flowers, and related items for chefs throughout North America.

At Fresh Origins, innovation is a way of life. They are continually working to imagine and develop the latest ideas in microgreens and edible flowers. As a result, we have created several original, unique items such as FireStixTM, MicroFlowersTM, Petite Amaranth Carnival MixTM, Micro Mustard DijonTM, Micro Mirepoix MixTM, Micro Celery Gold SplashTM, Micro Carrot Fernleaf, Begonia Angel Wing, Micro Fines Herbes MixTM, Micro Cucumber, Petite Pumpkin Green, Micro Tangerine LaceTM, Gold Haricot ShootsTM, Nature StrawsTM, Micro Celery Feather Leaf, Micro Absinthe MixTM, and more. With an extensive product list with over 400 items, most are available all year.

Where did the idea for Fresh Origins come from? 

18 years ago, a chef who saw our Basil seedlings encouraged us to harvest them at the seedling stage for culinary use. From those humble beginnings, we have become America’s leading grower of Microgreens! Our products are on top of the finest cuisine in the world. 

Locally sourced is the buzz today. How does Fresh Origins fill that need? 

Local produce is goodbut often it is of lower quality, and limited in variety and selection, due to a less than ideal climate or growing conditions.  Rather than arbitrary designations of local (100 miles?, 200 miles?, 300 miles?), we think the most important factor should be flavor and quality.

To sacrifice flavor, quality, selection, even food safety and price in exchange for locally grown doesn’t get our vote.  We should celebrate the choices we have available to us from all over the world. The best tasting food comes from where it grows best and most efficiently with the lowest energy use and a lot of times that’s not within 100 miles.

Food safety is also a huge consideration and it may not be worth taking the risk buying from a farm that does not have a third party audited food safety program with a superior rating.  Fresh Origins has the widest year- round selection and highest quality Microgreens, Edible Flowers and related products available in North America.  Our farm is regularly inspected and has the highest ratings for its food safety program.

What's the impact on the growing environment you've created on the product?

Growing crops in the ideal climate such as Fresh Origins does in San Diego results in the lowest possible impact on the environment.  The energy usage for transportation of produce from California is a tiny fraction of the overall usage in growing it.  Trying to produce these products in harsher climates uses a tremendous amount of fuel for heating, cooling and ventilation in amounts of fuel usage that dwarfs the amount of energy used for transportation of produce from where it grows best. 

Think of how much it would cost to grow pineapples or bananas in the Mid-West and it’s easy to understand that produce grows best both in terms of high quality and the lowest environmental impact when it is grown where the climate is right.  Fresh Origins grows its products in the ideal climate, which not only results in a minimal environmental impact, it makes a huge difference in the quality, color, flavor intensity and shelf life of our products.

How are these products beneficial to people with high blood pressure or diabetes? 

Of course, fresh vegetables are an important part of staying healthy.

Describe the flavor profiles that the product features: natural taste or highly seasoned taste? 

Fresh Origins produces Microgreens and related products that have a vast array of flavors.  That is why top chefs find them to be an ideal ingredient, bringing freshness and flavor to their dishes. 

How much of price per serving premium can the chef/restaurateur expect to pay for Fresh Origins? 

The cost per serving will vary depending on the amount of product used, but the cost is minimal due to the intense flavors which means a little goes a long way. 

Why should a distributor stock Fresh Origins? 

Fresh Origins products are of the highest quality available. The selection is second to none and due to the benefits of our climate, we can offer a great availability all year and we have a superior-rated food safety program.

What's the next step for a Metro NYC area chef to buy Fresh Origins? 

Contact their favorite produce distributor and ask for Fresh Origins products!

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