OUT TO LUNCH finds Baton Rouge Business Report Editor Stephanie Riegel combining her hard news journalist skills and food background: conducting business over lunch. Baton Rouge has long had a storied history of politics being conducted over meals, now the Capital Region has an equivalent culinary home for business: Mansur’s. Each week Stephanie holds court over lunch at Mansur’s and invites members of the Baton Rouge business community to join her. You can also hear the show on WRKF 89.3FM.
Our Cajun-Creole heritage in south Louisiana is famous all over the world. People come here for food, music, and historic architecture they can’t get anywhere else. And for those who can’t get here, or who want a taste of Louisiana once they get back home, we have some crafty entrepreneurs who have figured out how to capture our local culture, bottle it – or box it - and export it to folks outside Louisiana.
Troy Primeaux is the co-owner of Primo’s Peppers. It’s a company that grows several varieties of organic hot peppers which it then sells to specialty food manufacturers not only in south Louisiana but across the country for use in products like hot sauces, spice blends and, even, coffees. Primo’s also uses its peppers in its own line, Farmer's Daughter pepper jellies, made by Troy’s wife and business partner, Kara Farmer.
If you're part of the international cult of pepperheads, which is quite a sizeable group, you will recognize Troy or at least his name as the grower of The Primo, the world's hottest pepper. As Troy explains to Stephanie, a Jalapeno pepper is 5,000 Scovilles (Scovilles being the Farenheit of taste-heat). Troy's Primo is 1.5m Scovilles. No kidding.
Another entrepreneur who is turning up the Cajun heat and has figured out how to capitalize on Louisiana culture is Tara Guidry, owner of Cajun Crate. Cajun Crate is a monthly subscription that delivers specially curated boxes filled with Louisiana made products. Each box contains a different array of homegrown products like coffee, beignet mix, jambalaya, étouffée sauce and much more. Cajun Crate partners with chefs and tastemakers from Louisiana to find the best products from around the state that to deliver to subscribers. There are hyper local gems known only to inhabitants of small Louisiana towns who are getting a break into a national market thanks ot being included in Tara's Cajun Crate.