What's happening in the blueberry FoodTech World

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Followup, Followup, Followup

Business cards from China Bakery Exposition 2018

The "trifecta" of food industry expositions in Asia is complete for May 2018!  Now the work begins.

Our objective to stimulate acceptance and sales of highbush blueberries in the global food industry.  To do this we go into the markets and conduct activities to:

It is not a quick process like a consumer choice at the supermarket.  For a food manufacturer to invest in a new product or new ingredient.  Most of our activities are designed to raise awareness for US highbush blueberries.  In export markets where there is strong competition, we work to differentiate our product.  This often means presenting ingredient solutions such as dried,,liquid and other formats.  For frozen, we promote the functionality of US blueberries which work well in so many applications such as fruit preparations, jams and jellies.

USHBC FoodTech in Korea, Sunyong Lee has 50+ years of experience in the Asian food industry.

At the exposition our skilled Blueberry Food Tech representatives make things interesting.  They know their stuff and the food industry appreciates this.  Most commodity organizations utilize "rent-a-staff" who merely pass out brochures.  We are there to add value to the proposition!  

We meet hundreds of visitors.  Some are already buyers, some looking for specific items and some just looking for advice.   We sit down, talk and follow-up with the answers.

Now, to the magic word: "leads."  At each exposition, seminar or meeting -- we inevitably meet up with companies who are ready to source.  We make very sure we are not interfering with someone else's current business.  We check out the company, look at web site, analyze the request.  You can tell a lot from a business card, and a lot from the type of request given.  We try not to waste the time of our packers back home!

Expositions: We are on a mission!

We categorize the leads by product needed.   Then we create a report with the business cards in English and foreign language with background information.  Nowadays in China fewer and fewer companies are leaving cards and have transitioned to We Chat social media.   We take care of these too.   

The report is posted on a drop box, where all companies who are on the USHBC suppliers list by choice are given access.   An initial invite is made to connect.  If the company connects then regular updates are made notifying of new files or lead reports added.  In addition if companies are not able to access, they can request the details e mailed.   

US packers appreciate the leads.  They followup and make sales.    Once the lead is pursued it is the customer's lead and we protect the confidentiality of the packer and new prospect.   We do appreciate hearing from industry that are making sales in regions of the world with the initial contacts coming from our vanguard efforts.   USHBC FoodTech and our packer community make a great team!

Monday, May 21, 2018

International Dairy, Deli, Bakery Association Exposition (IDDBA)

The acronym is awkward, but the exposition excellent!   USHBC will exhibit at the upcoming IDDBE exposition in New Orleans, June 10-12, 2018 in New Orleans.

IDDBA Schedule

10,000 attendees
800 exhibitors  

This is a big event, and attendees include a wide spectrum of professionals in the dairy, baking manufactured food business from throughout the USA and abroad.  Several USDA-FAS foreign buyer trade missions will also attend and blueberries are on the agenda.

This is a great place to meet the medium sized and regional food companies.  We will see producers of yogurts, ice cream flavors, bakeries confectionery and snacks.   We will sample fresh localk blueberries and the emphasis: Real Blueberries™ Seal.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Fresh Blueberry Marketing in China

A few decades ago, blueberries were unknown in China.   Now, fresh blueberries are sold nationwide and 365 days a year.   Here is an example of how a major producer, packer and marketer named Joy Wing Mau does it!

Note the We Chat QR code.  This is the main social network of China.   You can order, pay and see where the blueberries came from.

USHBC will receive a visiting delegation of Chinese food retailers on June 9, 2018 in Oregon and they will get a chance to see US fresh blueberries which hopefully will be available in China in the near future.


Friday, May 18, 2018

Diced Dried Blueberries

Here is an interesting new twist with dried blueberries.   Manufacturers look for specific size and shapes.   Here is an example of diced blueberries which are smaller than the smallest whole and can be diced to various shapes.  This product is being used in a number of commercial cookies and biscuits which are too thin for conventional dried blueberries.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Hana Presents at Beverage Theatre

Our Blueberry FoodTech Hana took to the stage today to present highbush blueberries to attendees at the Food Ingredients Vietnam Beverage Theatre.  Hana presented an overview of blueberries and concepts for usage in the beverage sector.  Well done Hanna!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Food Ingredients Vietnam - Day One

Food  Ingredients Vietnam:
This is the first year for Food Ingredients Vietnam Exposition.   This is a tribute to the fast growing food industry in this rapidly growing country!  This is just the beginning.  Our team is engaging the visitors, scheduling appointments and preaching the blueberry message: USA Blueberry Ingredient Solutions!

The Perfect Blueberry Bar

Blueberry Ice Cream Cake! It took a trip to Vietnam to discover the ultimate blueberry ice cream bar from Binggrae in South Korea.  (This is the same company where our Sunyong Lee Blueberry FoodTech Ambassador developed the first blueberry ice cream bar.  Now he is still an influencer and makes regular visits to his former teammates.  And, this is the result!  Think of this: Outer layer of sponge cake made with blueberry puree.   Interior cream with a blueberry ice cream produced with a blueberry puree concentrate and chunks of real dried blueberries.  Bravo!

Great job Sunyong!  

Now if you are asking why it is logical for a Korean company to launch an ice cream bar in steamy Vietnam -- it all makes sense.   With all of the political and economic turmoil in the "land of the morning calm" -- countries like Vietnam, Laos, Ho Chi Minh City, Da Nang in the middle and Ha Noi in the north to set up factories.   This bar is a great example!

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Visit to a Vietnamese Store

Happy family gores shopping at Giant!

Is it ever hot here in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam!  Between setting up for the Food Ingredients show and taking six showers, I made a visit to my favorite Giant Supermarket in District 7!  Fewer and fewer import products and more and more Vietnam made.  Waiting for the fresh blueberries to arrive from the USA!

Monday, May 14, 2018

Taiwan Matters!

Sometimes we tend to take the more important things for granted.   Take a look at highbush blueberry exports to Taiwan (Republic of China).  This little island currently imports around 800,000 kg of US highbush blueberries.   (1.7 million lbs.)  Thank you Taiwan!

In 2000, USHBC began market development activities in Taiwan.  Our emphasis was on fresh blueberries.   Blueberries were a hit as we conducted sampling efforts all over the island.  Our research showed that Taiwanese associated blueberries with health and beauty.

Our continued efforts through 2005 included foodservice promotions and blueberries were adapted into restaurant hotel meals and especially smoothies.  Dry blueberries were utilized in the baking and snack categories.

This was a logical transition to the food industry.  Some of the leading companies of Taiwan such as Unipresident and I-mei began developing new products with frozen blueberries.

In the last few years there have been ups and downs.  We have addressed the downs with valid information and promotions and support.  We seek out the ups and see so many positive developments in new products.  A real benefit to our Taiwan activities -- Taiwan food companies such as Unipresident and others operate all over "Greater China."  Taiwanese companies are great supporters and marketing partners all over the region.

Thank you Taiwan!  And a special thank you to the
 USDA-Foreign Agriculture Service (FAS) staff at the American Institute in Taiwan for the continual service, support and alliance to build the market for highbush blueberries!


Blueberry Containing Food Products - Taiwan

Taiwan was an early adapter of blueberries for Asian markets.  First, it was fresh, then dried and now frozen for food processing.

Check out some interesting developments in the last year 2017-2018

Taiwanese love to snack, and almonds and dried blueberry are a natural combination.

This is a blueberry blend with a lot of blueberry!

Taiwanese are health conscious and organic and LOHAS are big.

This locally made jam rivals the imports from Europe

This product utilizes freeze dried blueberries to form a natural chip

Taiwanese follow Korean trends and this product should be a hit.

Next two products are functional foods, both contain lutein for eyesight.

Another great natural snack.   

Taiwanese love to snack and nuts and dried fruits are a natural anytime

This ice bar contains chewy dried blueberries.  I-Mei is one of the leading food companies in Taiwan

Interesting New Blueberry Chip -- Taiwan

Now: here is a really innovative snack from Taiwan!

I Mei Real Purity Blueberry Fruit Crisps are made using freeze-dried real whole blueberries and said to be natural, healthy, crunchy and tasty. This non-fried vegan snack is a source of dietary fibre and free from added sugar, preservatives, artificial flavours or colours, and retails in a 15g pack.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Blueberry FoodTech Trifecta in Asia

May 14 is a big week for USHBC FoodTech.

China- We just completed the huge Bakery China Exposition in Shanghai, and this week we have the SIAL China.  It is an all out press to show China we are still engaged and want their business!  \

Japan - We are exhibiting at the International Food Ingredients & Additives exposition in in Tokyo.  this is the Japanese version of the Institute of Food Technologists.  Emphasis is on ingredient solutions.

Vietnam -  Food Ingredients (FI) Vietnam runs this week and is a focal point for the booming Vietnamese food industry.  Frozen, dried and purees for dairy are the interest.

All of our exhibitions are planned and staffed by experienced Blueberry FoodTech staff who know the markets and know their stuff!

Watch the blog this week to follow the developments in the field!  A lot of action, a lot of enthusiasm and dedication to bring USA blueberries to worldwide food industries!

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Blueberry Bakery Fillings - China

Something is happening here in China.  Ten years ago I attended the China Bakery exposition, which is one of the largest in the world!  A few blueberry items here and there.
Leap ahead to China Bakery 2018!

Blueberry bakery fillings and fruit preps are everywhere!  I  talked to dozens of filling manufacturers.  All report strong demand, especially in the outer regions of the country where blueberries are ultra-unique.  The soft skinned, high brix blueberries from North America are appreciated buy most as they exude juice and color to make wonderful fillings.

Fillings and fruit preps are the key to baking, dairy confectionery and other uses!

Friday, May 11, 2018

Nǐ hǎo from China Bakery Exposition, Shanghai!

USDA-FAS ATO Shanghai visit

你好 from Shanghai at the Bakery China show.  It is very difficult to connect to foreign web sites, especially for bloggers.

The show is gigantic!  The bakery attendees include large national bakeries and even more interesting -- small and medium sized bakeries from the second and third tier cities.  Blueberries are new and exciting and our booth is mobbed from start to finish!

Show action non-stop

What do they want: dried blueberries and blueberries for fillings and preparations!

Good morning Shanghai!

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Wei to Wow 'Em in Taiwan!

Taiwan is one of our leading markets for fresh and now frozen and dried USA blueberries.   The first fresh blueberry shipments are on the way and shoppers will see a friendly face in the product section: Wei Yang, blueberry specialist at Oregon State University appears in social media linked videos with QR codes in the produce section.  So far sixty stores island wide will participate.  Wei talks about the importance of food safety and our USA commitment to bring the best fresh blueberries to Taiwan!

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Edible Mascots Sighting in Korea

You ask me what is the strangest thing encountered in Korea this year?   That is a tough one as always some really interesting developments.

Incoming Edible Mascot!   Time to bring back Blue-Me!

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Seoul Food & Hotel Action

Another big exhibition in Korea at the Seoul Food and Hotel.
A new spirit.  Lots of enthusiasm for USA blueberries!

Our Blueberry FoodTech Ambassador and one of his fellow Seoul University graduates.

Industry visitors stop by the USHBC booth,  

Monday, May 7, 2018

Mossy the Squirrel

We are always talking about the popularity of blueberries in animal and pet feeds.  The key -- the animals like the taste of blueberries.  Meet Mossy the Squirrel from Boise Idaho enjoying fresh blueberries.   Like they say on the internet -- it's trending and Mossy is a celebrity squirrel and big fan of blueberries!

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Ultra-Awesome New Korean Products

Here are some really interesting new products we found in the supermarkets in Korea during the Seoul Food and Hotel Exposition 2018.  My favorite (above) is Fresh Blueberry Chip.  On the pack -- "honest project is a project that offers healthy food processed from trustable ingredient.

Breakfast Cereals:  Korean consume hot cereals which are normally a blend of puffed rice, pine nuts and other local ingredients.  Cold cereals are becoming popular and here is a series of new concepts from Peacock, a local supplier.  Note this is an added ingredient concept based on color.  This is the blue concept and it is loaded with freeze dried blueberries--lots of them!

More Cereals!  Here is a product from Post Cereals.  Note the graphic on box that explains that with the dried blueberry you get more blueberry per spoonful!

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Race Day Secret!

We have been hearing for decades that blueberries are used in equine feed including race horses, cutting horses and others.   Check out this product and video from Southern Press and Packing Company in Georgia who are pioneering the use of blueberries in equine rations.  The company also makes an excellent blueberry juice under the Regenerate label!
Raceday Secret