WALLINGFORD — Local and state officials attended the grand opening of the Edible Arrangements flagship store at their Barnes Road corporate headquarters. The event showcased the company’s new Edible to Go product line featuring smoothies, dipped fruit and frozen yogurt.
“Now that we’ve relaunched the brand it’s a whole new audience, not just gifting,” said CEO and founder Tariq Farid.
The product line expands the business from a gift-oriented market to a retail setting, according to Vice President of Marketing Susan Butera. The flagship store represents a prototype other stores will emulate.
About 30 percent of stores already incorporate the Edible to Go product line and Butera said they hope to have all stores carrying the products by 2017.
“This is getting into the retail space,” Butera said. “It’s everyday personal consumption.”
The ribbon cutting ceremony included free samples of the new products and was attended by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy, who was happy to sample a kale, pineapple smoothie on an exceptionally hot day. He praised Farid on the success of his business and his generosity in the community.
“Your story is an American story. You came to America for opportunity,” Malloy said. “We built a great country where a guy can have an idea in a flower shop, sell fruit and in corporate terms overnight have 1,300 operations around the county... You never forgot where you came from and where you came to.”
Farid credited the community for his company’s success.
“Starting out in East Haven in 1999 in a small 600-square-foot store to where it is now has just been an amazing ride,” Farid said. “We are where we are because of the community support and acceptance of our product in New Haven county. Without their support we wouldn’t be where we are today.”
Wallingford Mayor William W. Dickinson Jr. said to have the company’s headquarters in town is “a point of pride.”
“I think the town can be proud of a business that established itself from an idea to an economic and practical reality,” Dickinson said. “It’s quite a remarkable story.”