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Longo’s beefs up local meat selection

Retailer partners with VG Farms to provide farm-to-fork beef in stores

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The Longo’s family has taken in a new member.

The retailer has partnered with VG Farms to provide local beef to all Longo’s and Market stores.

This will complete Longo’s offering of Ontario-raised meat, which up until this point included chicken, turkey, pork, lamb and veal. Rosanne Longo, brand ambassador for Longo’s, said the Toronto-area grocery chain searched long and hard to find the right beef farm to work with.

VG Farms is owned by the Van Groningen family. Up until now, VG Farms’ beef was only available at two family stores in Stoney Creek and Simcoe, Ont., in addition to small stores. This will be the first time the farm’s beef will be widely available.

“We’ve expanded our business because we identified that in the Ontario market there was nobody offering a true or authentic farm-to-fork program,” said Cory Van Groningen, owner and the eldest of the four brothers running the farm. “The program we’ve initiated with Longo’s is based on a lot of the best practices we’ve developed over the years.”

VG Farms uses a scientific method to measure the physical tenderness level of the beef, and each package features a QR code to allow shoppers to trace the Ontario farm where the cattle originated, its age and diet.

To familiarize themselves with the product, Van Groningen said 45 meat experts along with senior executives from Longo’s came out to VG Farms to take a tour and try the product for themselves.

“One of the things that’s important to our partnerships and relationships is that we keep our staff educated” explains Longo. “Not only our senior team, but the staff who are on the floor and working with customers – the ones that will be answering shoppers questions.

See the Longo’s team at VG Farms in the video below:

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