ATLANTA, Ga - “You can imagine what our days have been like leading up to this announcement. Everything you hear about that happened to us, has not stopped,” said CEO and Co-Founder of Verdant Kitchen Ross Harding.
Verdant Kitchen’s Ginger Infused Honey and Ginger Syrup has long been one of Georgia’s favorite things, and now it has caught the eye and taste buds of one of the most influential women in the world. A gift set of the two popular items have been included on Oprah Winfrey’s “Favorite Things” for 2015.
Growing up in Brisbane, Australia, Harding guessed that Savannah would be of similar climate where conditions for growing ginger crops would be successful. “It started March 2012 where me and my friend were talking about agritourism. We planted our first crop of ginger, galangal and turmeric at our farm in Lebanon Plantation. We set up in a small shed kitchen and grew from there out to the local farmers markets.”
It was from these humble beginnings, a simple conversation, and a humble gesture that have planted them in the national spotlight.
A couple of months ago a friend of a friends’ daughter was in New York City at an event with the Oprah Magazine team. The conversation turned to how much they liked ginger, but there were not any locally grown. That’s when Harding’s company, Verdant, was brought into the mix. The night ended with a pledge to get them some of their products. Harding never would have guessed it would end up being one of Oprah’s Favorite Things. “We originally sent them our product not for the ‘O’ list, but then we found out we were considered.”
Oprah seems to have fallen for the ginger syrup and ginger infused honey. The two quickly were put on the list. Harding said her team reached out to him to ask if he was okay with his product making the list and with an emphatic response, he could only say “Yes!” When describing ginger gift set, the magazine said; “This is amazing: Get the healthful benefits of ginger in the form of a luscious honey (to stir into tea) or a zingy organic syrup (the cocktail possibilities are endless) both made in Georgia.”
His excitement is well founded. Harding said it was not an easy task to get on the list. Oprah personally checks all of the products and her personal opinions matters the most. “The most amazing thing to be a part of, and they care about what they are doing and they are excited by it.”
It’s an excitement that is equally met by Harding and his team. They built their business from scratch. Harding said they do their own production and everything is organic from start to finish. “The basis for our kitchen is to make delicious, healthy products. We want our customers to experience the benefits of ancient spices. It’s all about gourmet and wellness,” said Harding.
All it is that love for his product that has been keeping his busy recently. “We have a lot of people to thank. The Georgia Department of Agriculture and the excellent Georgia Grown program. We owe a lot to their team, led by Commissioner Gary Black who have helped us with knowledge, connections and guidance.”
Verdant Kitchen is a gourmet and wellness company, focused on the ginger and turmeric family of spices. Their USDA Organic certified farm is located in Savannah with a production facility in Atlanta. Verdant Kitchen has been a Georgia Grown member since their founding in 2012. This is the second Georgia Grown member to be recognized by Oprah.
Verdant Kitchen produces a wide range of premium products that can be found online at http://www.verdantkitchen.com/.
The Ginger Syrup and Ginger Infused Honey Gift Set can also be found at www.amazon.com/oprah.