Growth in Kansas City’s Hispanic population has led to new and interesting food choices showing up in supermarkets around the metro. First we got riper and cheaper avocados and mangos. Next, more exotic fruits and vegetables began hitting the produce section: fava and garbanzo beans still in their pods, horned melons and guavas.
Now grocers are responding to the tastes of Hispanic customers who want the convenience of ready-made products.
The deli section at the Roeland Park Price Chopper, already a mecca for Mexican Coca-Cola made with real sugar, Mexican cheeses and crema and chorizo, now offers five ready-made salsas in metal pans. At least seven other area Price Choppers carry the products.
Although the mole, chipotle, mango, tomatillo and Hatch chili salsas are manufactured by Haliburton International Foods in Ontario, Calif., they are made from fresh ingredients with no preservatives.
Shelf life is longer than for homemade salsas, thanks to a flash pasteurization process followed by rapid chilling to prevent the ingredients from turning soft like canned salsas.
“It’s a trendy thing even with non-Hispanic customers,” says Paul Brumback, deli specialist for Balls Food Stores, which owns Price Chopper. “More and more people are taking it home instead of eating it at their favorite restaurant.”