Organic black garlic purveyors set up shop in Blacksburg.
Let’s say you’re a garlic lover and a fellow aficionado mentions he has recently discovered organic black garlic. He tells you it has twice the antioxidant and antibiotic properties of traditional white garlic. Would that pique your interest? And suppose he told you it doesn’t cause garlic breath. That would seal the deal, right?
Virginia Tech grads Lisa and Pat Lloyd are betting on it.
In 2011, they left careers in the pharmaceutical business and teaching, respectively, to found Obis One. They spent the next four years developing sustainable growing methods and a proprietary aging process utilizing heat, humidity and vacuum forces that transform white garlic into its simultaneously sweet and savory ebony counterpart in seven weeks.
Last year, the couple and their two sons moved operations from a 17th century New Jersey farm where they began to new headquarters in Blacksburg. The majority of their crop is now grown in Montgomery and Floyd counties.
Obis One’s line of products features 24 black garlic products, including traditional bulbs, assorted seasonings and rubs for grilling. Black Crack—a pepper grinder that dispenses shards of cracked black garlic—is particularly popular. Business is good: Sales have continued to double on an annual basis, and the Lloyds are busy developing other artisanal products.
“We’ve had offers to get bigger,” says Pat, “but I like to control the growth.” ObisOne.com