Name: Naomi Takawa
Farm: Santa Barbara Sprouts
Location: P.O. Box 22314, Santa Barbara, CA 93121
What They Grow: Organically grown sprouts for juicing, including wheatgrass and barley grass. The farm also has sunflower sprouts available for purchase, which are great on sandwiches or salads.
Where to Buy: Farmers Markets, including Tuesday and Saturday in downtown Santa Barbara.
In Season Now: Sprouts are a year-round power food. Grown in an indoor greenhouse, window parcels allow enough outdoor circulation for the perfect growing environment.
Their Story: A longtime friend of owner Rick Lemke, Naomi Takawa has been a familiar market face for 15 years. A huge advocate of juicing and the power of sprouts, the company has been in business for over 25 years.
“Sprouts are an amazing power food for health, vitality, and nutrition,” said Takawa. “They are so great for you: one ounce of juice is equal to a pound and a half of fresh, leafy greens.”
When comparing the nutritional components of both wheatgrass and barley grass, both enhance energy, protect against disease, and aid in detoxifying the liver and organs. While barley grass has higher amounts of Vitamin A, protein, and most minerals, wheatgrass is higher in chlorophyll and B vitamins.
“I like the taste of barley. It’s a little bitter, but I really enjoy it,” said Takawa. “However, I think in general, more people prefer the sweeter wheatgrass flavor.”
In addition, the popular sunflower sprouts offer two to four times the calcium, magnesium, and potassium than that of spinach. Additionally, these tasty sprouts offer three times the protein of green leaf lettuce.
“Sprouted foods are an excellent choice for optimal health,” said Takawa. “While each juice has its own strength, both offer a great range of vitamins and minerals.”
Selling sprouted flats as well as individual juice shots, Santa Barbara Sprouts has enjoyed much success at both local and Southern California markets. And Naomi Takawa could not be more excited about her involvement with the company.
“I love the people at this market,” said Takawa. “Everyone is always in a great mood, and the food is of the highest quality.”