PSFN Introduces Heirloom Squash Producer to Whole Foods Market Buyers. Sugar Hubbard Squash Nominated To Slow Food’s Ark Of Taste

PSFN’s Seattle WholeSale Market Introduces Sherman’s Pioneer Farm Produce and their Sugar Hubbard Squash to Whole Foods Market

Dale Sherman Inspects Sugar Hubbard Vines

On September 15, Puget Sound Food Network launched a 3-week test pilot of the Seattle WholeSale Market to provide a place where local producers could make new direct market connections with a variety of institutional buyers, from restaurants to school districts and hospitals.  On the first day, PSFN member Dale Sherman of Sherman’s Pioneer Farm Produce was introduced to Whole Foods Market buyers. “Had the Sherman’s not shown up that day, we might have missed the opportunity to carry the sugar hubbard in our stores.” said Denise Breyley, WFM Pacific Northwest Local Forager.  “We’re so thankful they came.” The connection quickly led to Whole Foods Market asking for sugar hubbard supplies for all Seattle stores.  The peeled,  heirloom Sugar Hubbard cubes (sold in 16 oz. containers) can now be found at all Whole Foods Market locations across Oregon and Washington throughout the season. Retailers looking for information on carrying the Sugar Hubbard should login to Puget Sound Food Network or send an email to  You may also contact Dale Sherman at Sherman’s Pioneer Farm Produce, 46 South Ebey Road, Coupeville, WA, 360.678.4675.

PSFN is grateful for the opportunity to develop direct marketing solutions to help PSFN member producers like  Sherman’s Pioneer Farm Produce connect with buyer members like Whole Foods Market.  This is truly a win, win, win!  Congratulations all!

Sugar Hubbard Nominated To Slow Food’s Ark Of Taste


Whole Foods Market Display of 16 oz pack of cubed Sugar Hubbard

Slow Food’s Ark of Taste aims to rediscover, describe and publicize forgotten flavors around the world.  Through the Ark of Taste program, Slow Food USA has a catalog of over 200 delicious foods in danger of extinction. Since 1996, more than 800 products from over 50 countries have been added to the international Ark of Taste. By promoting and eating Ark products we help ensure that they remain in production and on our plates. The mission of the Slow Food Ark of Taste is to preserve traditional tastes and to celebrate them, by introducing them to the Slow Food membership and then to the world. All of the foods on the Ark of Taste are heritage products that have real economic viability and commercial potential for the communities that grow, produce or harvest them.

Since it’s inception, Slow Food Seattle has successfully boarded four regional food products onto the Slow Food Ark of Taste including Olympia OysterMarbled Chinook SalmonGeoduck, and Makah Ozette Potato (our only Presidium product). Slow Food Seattle’s latest Ark of Taste nomination is the Sugar Hubbard, a sweet heirloom winter squash with a unique Puget Sound heritage.

Puget Sound Food Network Project Manager (and Former Slow Food Seattle Co-Chair), Lucy Norris, wrote about this important heirloom in the winter 2010 issue of Edible Seattle.

PSFN members Sherman’s Pioneer Farm Produce in central Whidbey Island grows the only commercial crop of Sugar Hubbard in the country.  It is the result of combining traditional blue Hubbard and Sweetmeat squash, inheriting the best flavor and texture characteristics of both.  The Sugar Hubbard is a nutrient dense, starchy squash (with a high glycemic index), but also very high in vitamin A, exceeding USDA requirements for Beta Carotene.  Most winter squash varieties are interchangeable in recipes, and the Sugar Hubbard is nutty-sweet and the colored deep orange like a marigold.  Try it in a favorite recipe that calls for winter squash, and you’ll be impressed.

The Sugar Hubbard has an excellent flavor, and it’s uniquely local to Puget Sound, with a strong family heritage.  It has every asset required for boarding onto Slow Food’s Ark of Taste.  Slow Food Seattle’s interest in boarding this product on the Ark of Taste will send a signal to conscientious consumers and help boost market demand in our area.  Voting with your fork helps food producers like the Sherman’s remain profitable in the business of farming in our region. Only the best tasting endangered foods make it onto the Ark, and Slow Food believes the Sugar Hubbard is a great fit.

Excerpted with permission from Edible Seattle.

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