freshexpressGreat visit with Fresh Express this morning (starting with a 6:30 a.m. bus ride) as part of Santa Clara University's relationship with Purdue's Center for Food and Agribusiness and Syngenta. Jim Lugg gave us an early morning tour of some of Fresh Express' experimental fields and then told the story of packaged salads and greens. Short version: a subsidiary of Fresh Express took their deep knowledge about the "respiration" rate of leafy greens to polymer film manufacturers in an effort to figure out how to provide salads in a bag -- that's not just any plastic! This is a beautiful example of early open innovation in that Fresh Express approached an external firm rather than trying to do the R&D of polymers on their own. The benefit is that my refrigerator contains clean and ready to go lettuce, arugula, and spinach seven days a week. Wonderful trip. Thanks to all involved -- especially as, according to my notes, Fresh Express' research results in growers using using 30% of the water of standard leafy greens farming approaches.