Rūjiena gets saucy with pesto production

Rūjiena has apparently decided to earn the title of Latvia's little Italy along with Dobele, by producing delicious pesto sauce, Pesto.lv business owner Jānis Pirsko told Latvian Television August 24.

“I think almost any idea can be transformed into a successful, flourishing business,” said Jānis Pirsko, who, along with his relatives, has started a production business for pesto sauces. Everything started with his cousin - a cook sick and tired of not being able to find tasty pesto sauces in Latvia.

Pesto, which consists of basil, pine nuts, olive oil and Parmesan cheese, is an integral part of the Italian kitchen, also appreciated by the Latvian gourmet. Therefore, two years ago, Jānis Pirsko and his relatives began producing this sauce in Latvia.

“It's still happening in a small kitchen. We are currently in transition – we are moving from Rūjiena to Valmiera, where we are about to finish the production premises. This is the next step,” said Pirsko.

Compared to the period two years ago, the company has already managed to increase its turnover tenfold. 

“We're producing about a thousand jars a month,” said Pirsko.

Their pesto was first sold in different markets, but now their production is also available on the shelves of 30 shops. Pirsko believes Latvia is a good place to start business. The main thing is to start doing.

“There are certainly many things to do, we need determination and courage. Latvia is a great place to build a business. In our case, local competition is not vast. Pesto is a niche product, but it's not that we have to fight four, five Latvian pesto producers,” Jānis Pirsko said.

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