Bringing European Flavors to Southeast Asia: Weeds & More

In 2011, the shocking spike in the numbers of imported vegetables from Europe and Australia into Singapore brought together Leisa Tyler, a travel and food journalist and Ewout Kemner, a Dutch scientist specialising in neutron scattering, embarking on a mission to grow European vegetables in the cool highlands of Malaysia. Essentially, what sparked their desire to grow European vegetables in Malaysia was that vegetables were flown into the country with no one knowing how and who grew their fresh produce. Not only that, it also leaves a considerable carbon footprint, which harms the environment.

As such, they spent 18 months researching and experimenting with the local farmers and chefs to find the varieties of European vegetables which can sustain themselves and thrive in Malaysia’s soil and withstand the monsoon seasons. They started their experiment off on heirlooms and open-pollinated seeds, which are known for their great taste, nutrition, and resilience to unpredictable weather. Their work also contributed to preserving the biodiversity of the environment, and this has led them to be where they are currently in the agriculture scene.

As the project expanded, Tyler and Kemner named their farm Weeds & More. By ensuring a 24-hour harvest-to-kitchen system and using minimal packaging, Weeds & More delivers fresher and more affordable products with a smaller carbon footprint than imported produce. Three of Tyler and Kemner’s farms are all certified organic, while the fourth farm is obtaining certification.

At Weeds & More, you’ll discover an enticing array of produce, including cucamelons, watermelon radishes, heirloom carrots, and an even more comprehensive selection. Presently, the team has partnered up with four dedicated farms to cultivate an astonishing array of over 100 unique crop varieties.

Leisa Tyle and Ewout Kemner’s remarkable journey of discovering premium European produce in Southeast Asia has truly opened up a whole new world of possibilities for the F&B industry. You can now say goodbye to expensive imports and welcome the freshest ingredients, cultivated carefully and delivered to your kitchen within 24 hours with Weeds & More. Despite the prevalent belief that imported goods tend to enjoy a more favourable reputation than local products, Tyler brims with confidence in the exceptional quality of produce offered by Weeds & More.

Weeds & More doesn’t just offer European produce; they also provide a wide selection of fresh local products. Among their offerings are some fresh produce that can add an extraordinary burst of flavor to your recipes. Let’s explore some unique items in the Weeds & More inventory.

Heirloom Beetroot boasts a complex, earthy essence complemented by a gentle, sweet undertone, reminiscent of caramel. It offers a rich, multi-layered flavor profile that adds depth to culinary creations.

Cucamelons, often called “Mexican Sour Gherkins,” deliver a refreshing, tangy flavor resembling cucumbers with a hint of citrus-like zest. Their small size and crisp texture make them a unique, zesty snack or a delightful addition to dishes and cocktails.

Heirloom French Beans offer a fresh, crisp taste with a mild, garden-fresh sweetness. Their satisfying crunch and clean flavor make them a vibrant addition to dishes, infusing a lively, bright note.

Heirloom Baby Carrots are known for their intense, natural sweetness. Their small size offers a tender, crisp texture and a delightful burst of sweet carrot essence in every bite.

If you’re a restaurant owner in the Klang Valley, you can easily purchase Weeds & More’s produce from the Secai Marche platform. All you have to do is get in touch with Secai Marche on their social media accounts, and a representative will be with you right away to open an account on the platform. This convenient option allows you to take a peek at the freshest produce from various local farmers and have it delivered to your kitchen in no time at all.