What's happening in the blueberry FoodTech World

Monday, December 29, 2014

Blueberry Sparkline Wine

It is Christmas time and I need to thank Jack and Charlie Tomasello of Tomasello Winery in Hammonton New Jersey for the recently received treat:   Blueberry Sparkling Wine and Moscato!  
I am not a big sweet wine drinker so the Moscatto will go to my Boss, but I am absolutely crazy about the Sparkling Wine or what some call Blueberry Champagne.    It is 100 percent blueberry and not easy to make with the acidity of the blueberry.   But, Tomasello has this one mastered.   It is remarkably dry with a beautiful blue color and big fizz!   Each year I take this wine to the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI) meeting on the West Coast where I host a tabletop exhibit to meet the industry.   Needless to say: the USHBC booth has a lot of action and regulars each time the cork is popped!   Here is a photo of the Moscato.

Looking for a Blueberry Festival?

I am not sure when the first blueberry festival began.   That would definitely cause a controversy.   But, today there are 29 festivals on the USHBC website:  (Surely, there are more...)
Blueberry Festivals begin in the spring in the South and end in the Pacific Northwest in the Fall.   Check out the website for exact times and the dates change year to year.
What goes on at blueberry festivals:
Blueberry tasting, pie contests, concerts and all sorts of action.

What is a "Rabbiteye" Blueberry?

If you ever picked blueberries in the Southern USA, you are familiar with Rabbiteye blueberries or Vaccinium Ashei.  This is what is sometimes called the Southern Blueberry.     It is native to the South and has a very distinctive "rabbit eye" look on the calyx or crown that some feel looks like a rabbit eye.   Rabbiteyes grow in warmer climates and are the first blueberries to be harvested in the spring.  They have a very distinctive texture and flavor and have a following all over the south.   For real blueberry connoisseurs -- give it a try!

Taiwan - Move over Pineapple Here Comes Blueberry Cake!

Everyone who has visited Taiwan knows that the return-home gift of choice is the delicious pineapple cake.   Imagine a rich buttery jacket with a pineapple filling.   Taiwanese talk endlessly about where and when to get the very best.    Now, here is a new trend in the "Formosa" Isle.    Frozen blueberries are the base of the sweet filling.    Stores throughout the region are promoting this as a new item and it has even been a hit in Japan and Hong Kong.
What is next -- yes we are working on blueberry Moon Cakes for China!

Blueberries in Healthcare Products

Remember when you went into the local Walgreens or CVS and looked for healthy supplements.   There used to be a neat little corner near the pharmacy window.   Now -- it is three aisles full of all sorts of natural substances from blueberries to flaxseed, golden seal to bee pollen and propolis.  
You will find more and blueberries in healthcare products in North America.   Check out the chart below.    In East Asia, health oriented consumers are familiar with all sorts of blueberry containing products at the pharmacy including blueberry powders, juices, concentrate and biscuits as well as supplements containing real blueberry.   Many are associated with antioxidants and eyesight improvement and have clever names like "Blue Eyes."

Blueberries in Healthcare

Blueberry guy almost lost control of his car when he saw this huge billboard on the on ramp to the SF Bay Bridge!   Blueberries are now a mainstream health and wellness product.  

How Much Blueberries Should be in a Blueberry Muffin?

Sounds like an easy enough question?   The answer from experienced bakers -- as much as possible.    Blueberries are a true value added ingredient in muffins, and  USHBC interviews with consumers indicated that consumers want to see the blueberries on the inside and out.    While some bakers are afraid of blue color from the blueberries spreading to the cake -- consumers had a different view altogether.   They want to see the color.  After all that is why they purchase the blueberry muffin.

This "maxxed out" muffin has more blueberry than four by weight!  

Blueberry Chocolates Go Big Time!

Chocolate Covered Blueberries!   Yes, they have been around a long time in specialty shops and retailers.   but, check out the new wave of chocolate covered (panned) blueberries on the marketplace. Companies like Ghiradelli, Dove Moonstruck and others are getting into the act.   Most interesting:  note the prominent identification on the package!  We recently visited the Moonstruck facility in Portland Oregon with Chinese food editors (food editors from China).   They were amazed at the place, and me too!   (photos in an upcoming blog post!)

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Institute of Food Technologists (IFT)

USHBC is planning a full slate of exhibitions in 2015, including Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) regional Supplier Nights and expositions.
Dates have not been set in most cases, but we are planning on the following cities.

  • New York/New Jersey (Somerset, New Jersey)
  • Dallas IFT, (Frisco Texas)
  • Chicago IFT, (Rosemont, Illinois)
  • Lake Erie, (Cleveland, Ohio)
  • Great Lakes, (Battle Creek, Michigan)
  • Others.
At these events we will exhibit new blueberry concepts in line with the companies in the area.   
Send the blueberry guy a note if you want to meet up at or before or after the IFT meeting.

International New Products

Here we go with new blueberry-containing product totals for the world!

New Products to Date

We are 2/3 the way into the year and the Supply + Demand = Opportunity concept appears to resonate with the food industry.    New product development is strong and more and more categories.
Here is how we stand at the end of October 2014.

Research & Development

For years, Blueberry Guy has preached to the blueberry industry on the importance of keeping processed blueberries in the "Research and Development" pipeline.  
The rationale:   about one half of all of the blueberries produced go to the food processing sector.  That is, fillings, bakery items, confections dairy and snacks.   A typical grocery store stocks 30,000 items.   And at the same time -- around 2,500 new items are introduced each month!  
These items are developed through a process of research and development or as we say in the business: R & D.
A typical company will have a structure with management on top and then marketing or brand management, production and processing & Quality Control and R&D.
The R&D staff work on the next product for a company.   Marketing and management express their direction and R&D will implement.   The R&D staff are normally food technologists which degrees and training in food science and sub-fields such as food engineering, microbiology and others.   The R & D job is to take general ideas and refine them into products.   First they develop prototypes or concepts.  These are tested internally and externally.   The product is refined, further tested and eventually test marketed.   It  takes a lot of time and money to bring a product to market.
Also, not very many new products are successful.   But, considering that most companies rely on new products for a large chunk of their profits -- it is worth the effort.
USHBC works with the Marketing and R & D of companies.  We engage and learn of the company needs and fill the information gaps with blueberry solutions.    Companies look to the USHBC as a partner in product development, and improvement.   Together we keep driving blueberries into more and more products that will keep filling the pipeline for years to come.

Korea Promotion a Big Hit!

For the second year, USHBC has supported fresh blueberry sales to Korea with a PR and sampling program.   According to the State of Oregon Department of Agriculture, more than 1.5 million lbs of fresh blueberries were sent to Korea for the 2014 season.   Below see the kick off promotion at Korean supermarkets which connected beauty to blueberries!

Chinese Editors Meet Portlandia

USHBC sponsored a visit of TV and magazine journalists to Portland Oregon this summer and  it has really helped bridge the information gap between our two countries.  
Editors visited farms, packing facilities, further processors and a major blueberry candy producing company called Moonstruck.   A highlight was a visit to Voodoo Donuts in Portland and the my favorite the Burning Boar Barbecue in St. Paul, Oregon.   The editors have returned to China and are now educating their readers on the good-natured blueberry producers in the Pacific Northwest!  This is good timing as the Chinese government evaluates market access for US blueberries.

Frozen Blueberry Samples to India

Back in the 1890s in New England, huge blocks of ice were cut from frozen lakes, were taken to ports and loaded on specially insulated sailing ships for months long voyages to the temperate zones of the Southern Hemisphere.   Most of the cargo would melt, but what was left was worth a fortune in steamy Calcutta India.   Imported ice was cut into cubes for gin and tonics, ice cream and as novelty for ice carvings in the colonial grandeur of India.
Today, USHBC has initiated a new ice trade -- shipping frozen samples of blueberries to the sub-continent for trials with food processors.   When we first visited India, lots of companies such as dairy, baking and confectionery -- needed blueberry fillings.   Filling companies needed blueberries and we had a chicken and egg situation.   Filling companies were unfamiliar with blueberries and asked for samples.   Shipping one case was almost impossible -- especially with post 9-11 restrictions on dry ice for air freight.   USHBC bridged the gap with a sampling program called Quality Samples Program or QSP.   The USDA-Foreign Agriculture Service provided a grant to USHBC where we could land supplies of frozen blueberries to India for non commercial testing and evaluation.   We also provided technical assistance and help with formulation and troubleshooting.    This program was just launched recently but already we have seen success with one major filing company developing a product for nationwide distribution.   Others are on deck!

We are confident that India will be a substantial market for frozen blueberries in the future.

Webtunes a big hit in Korea

What is a webtune you ask?  Simply a cartoon posted on a website.   USHBC recently conducted a successful webtune campaign in conjunction with fresh blueberry promotions.  This included eight different episodes of a Whimsy family who discovers fresh blueberries and relies on our Super Mascot Blue-Me who saves the day in various situations including finding blueberries int he store, overcoming a bad skin day and even helping junior get better eyesight and smarts for exams.  My favorite is the episode where dad becomes a blueberry maniac and the family quickly reacts to feed his insatiable appetite for blueberries thanks to help from the super mascot.

Market Access

The USA is the leading producer of blueberries in the world.   After all, this is the place where blueberry cultivation began almost 100 years ago.   We produce fresh blueberries from March and April in Florida -- all the way until late September in the Pacific Northwest.   The remaining months --we import fresh blueberries from countries to the south of us.   More than $300 million in value each year.   Did you realize that there are several producing countries in the world which do not allow entry of US fresh blueberries.    A country has the right to restrict imports for scientifically valid reasons.   For example if a country is concerned of a specific pest or market disruption by imports.    Typically, restrictions are not necessarily aimed to keep US products out -- but the import country will require documentation to assure them that product is safe and not a danger to local agriculture.  We do the same for products entering the USA.   The USHBC and North American Blueberry Council (NABC) is involved in market access work to gain entry to China and South Korea (other than Oregon which already has access).  We work with our partners at the US Department of Agriculture -- Animal Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) who negotiate on our behalf with their counterpart agency in the import country.    USHBC/NABC works to provide APHIS with the tools necessary to gain market access including voluminous information on our industry and a comprehensive list of pests.    This information is shared with the import country along with mitigating measures which are taken to ensure safety.     This is a long and arduous process and we will will keep up the fight till we get access!

Blueberries for the Carribbean

Blueberry Guy just returned from the Americas Food Show in Miami Beach Florida.   First impression -- did not hear English spoken from time the flight landed till return.   This is definitely the capital city of all of Latin America and the place where business is done.   We participated in a trade mission organized by the World Trade Center of Miami and the group sponsored buyers from all over the Caribbean  basin.   This included many of the island nations and colonies such as Bermuda, Bahamas, Jamaica, Barbados, Trinidad and Tobago and others.    What we learned:  these countries are small but they import much of their food stuffs.   With the huge hotel and resort trade, they are in the market for products such as blueberries.   They want fresh, frozen and dried as well as liquid.   With growing US production in the Southeast, this is a very logical and lucrative market for the future.

Non-food use of blueberries.

We blueberry guys were quite surprised a decade ago when we started noticing new product introductions in non-human food product areas such as pet foods and cosmetics.   Now -- we are noticing a new way-out-there category:  Non-Foods and household products.
Last year we started to see dozens of blueberry scented and identified household cleaners,
candles, cleaners and others.   Do they use real blueberries -- not sure.   Do they provide blueberry exposure at the market -- yes.   What does this all mean?   Blueberries have a "rock star" image and brand managers recognize this.   Not sure if we should take this all as an insult or compliment, but for now we will take exposure!

China - Dish-washing Liquid

United Kingdom - Laundry Conditioner

USA - Blueberry Candle

Turkey Blueberry Mania

Blueberry guy just returned from a visit to Turkey and was thrilled with the blueberry excitement.   In stores: fresh blueberries in produce departments, blueberry beverages, dairy and even frozen blueberries.   The star performer: dried blueberries.   Turkey has a huge dried fruit and Turkish delight confectionery tradition and blueberries fit right in!   USHBC will begin market development activities in the Turkey in the new year.


Sunday, September 28, 2014

Visiting Blueberry Farms

One request I always get -- how can I visit a blueberry farm?   My suggestion is check out the online u-pick directory.  http://www.nabcblues.org/upick.htm
Note the season starts in the Spring in Florida and the South and ends up in the Pacific Northwest in the Fall.   With all of the crazy weather we have had all over the country -- the typical schedules have changed a bit -- so I always advise to check out the websites of the different u pick farms and look for the actual schedules.  Most are posting dates and times.  
Even though the season is ended, you can still check out some of the farms which have farm sales and stores.  You can find blueberry preserves, pies and sometimes frozen blueberries.
Have a great time and remember to check ahead!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Welcome Sunyong Lee: Korean Blueberry Pioneer

Now that we are on the Korean topic, let's talk about the guy who helped make the blueberry fever happen.   He is on a vacation in California now and we connected for a chat and some soju last night to talk about old times in the Korean market.   Sunyong is a Food Scientist and Seoul University graduate and worked in the food industry for decades.   His hobby is mountain climbing and he maintains membership in the Seoul University Mountaineering Club.  
Back in his days in the food industry Sunyong was one of the first to appreciate blueberries.  He worked to develop some of the first blueberry-containing dairy items in the early 80s.   Some of them are still selling well.   Each time I came to Korea we visited companies and promoted blueberries.     He went so far to help companies source full container loads of blueberries.   These new products gave Korean consumers a taste of blueberries and by the end of the 90s -- blueberries were everywhere!
Back to his "retirement."
Besides mountain climbing on weekends all over Korea, Sunyong is also a blueberry grower and adviser to other growers.   We attended the first annual Korea blueberry festival and feasted on blueberry bulgogi, bi bim bap and of course blueberry soju!  (alcohol beverage).  He continued to help Korean companies locate prized blueberries.    He is always contacting his buddies at Korean companies to talk new product ideas with blueberries.
Now, USHBC has finally figured a way to harness his blueberry energy and Sunyong has agreed to serve as our "blueberry food industry ambassador."    He will be helping -- doing what he already does so well.    Promote blueberries and blueberry products!

Friday, September 26, 2014

South Korea Blueberry Mania Continues

I just checked the export statistics last night in anticipation of upcoming grower meetings.   Back in 2004 when USHBC began promotions -- 350,000 lbs. of frozen blueberries.
So far in 2014, more than 10 million lbs as of July 2014!
First of all -- 감사합니다
Say Gam Sa Mee Dah thank you!!!
South Korea is now the largest offshore (non-Canadian) market for frozen blueberries.
What is happening?
Health and beauty continue to drive demand. Where much of the blueberries in past years have been consumer polybag -- now the major food manufacturers are getting into the act!
That means long term usage.
Here are just a few items on the shelves in Korea this month.
Blueberry Milk sold at convenience stores.


Blueberry Mochi - This is a rice based confectionery from Japan!  

Blueberry Cake - Single Serving.  

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Pilgrimage to the Home of Highbush Blueberries

A century ago, farmer Elizabeth White and USDA Researcher Frederik Coville experimented with cultivation of wild highbush blueberries from the pine barrens of New Jersey.   If you want to see the beginnings, travel east from Philadelphia about one hour to Whitesbog.   Set your GPS to:

Whitesbog Preservation Trust

120 W Whites Bogs Rd #34
Browns Mills, NJ 08015
The short version:
Elizabeth White was a lady cranberry farmer at the turn of the century in the Pine forests of South New Jersey.   Her father was a cavalry officer at nearby Fort Dix.  It was incredibly rare to see a woman running a large scale farm operation in those days!    Each day she walked from her home (which is still there) down a shady road to her vast cranberry bogs.   She marveled at the abundance of wild blueberries in the forest and dreamed of the day that this could be cultivated into a commercial crop.   Wild highbush blueberries are not economically feasible for production and harvesting.   Elizabeth met up with a USDA researcher named Frederic Coville who also shared this dream.   The teamed up to perform the experiments which led to the development of highbush blueberry production.   They learned that blueberries required specific acidic soil types similar to the forests of New Jersey.   Elizabeth paid a bounty to local hunters to bring back big beautiful blueberry plants to her experimental farm.  (which is still there!)
The result: highbush blueberries flourished, and by 1916, her first commercial crop was market.   Yes, the Centennial is coming up!  And stay tuned as it will be a big celebration!    Elizabeth White's work has led to the development of a blueberry industry in 28 states and around the world!

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Blueberries and the Times of India

The Times of India is one of the largest circulation newspapers in the world with more than 3.2 millon circulation in this nation of more than a billion!    The Times of India is a big blueberry booster!     Check out the latest news articles that seem to pop up

How "Bout Dem Smoothies...

A friendly blueberry grower down in Mississippi, called me the other day and asked me what I thought about 'dem blueberry smoothies.  Everywhere you look -- there are blueberry smoothies, different combinations of blue this and that.   What I think about blueberry smoothies is that a smoothie that is called a blueberry smoothie should use a lot of blueberries!    I checked the content of many commercial smoothies and was shocked.   Some have minimal blueberry and maximum blueberry image on the package and signage at the local smoothie shop.   We are on a quest now to raise the use of real frozen blueberries in smoothies.   With the supply, reasonable pricing of blueberries, this isa great opportunity to enhance a  product.   The first thing we leaned is that commercial manufacturers and outlets are not necessarily experts on blueberries.    We informed one commercial smoothie company in the South that they are surrounded by locally produced blueberries available all year round.  Different techniques can be used to deepen the blue color and keep it that way.    We hired a super chef at a major resort in California, who is also a smoothie and gelato expert.   Chef John took  frozen blueberries to his kitchen and concocted allsorts of great recipes.    They all used optimal amounts of blueberry and taste great!    We samples this at the recent International Deli Dairy and Baking Epo  (IDDBE)  in Denver and it was a hit!     Now spread the word!    Get 'dem blueberries into your smoothies for health and happiness.

Preserved Blueberries

All of us in North America are lucky to have fresh and frozen blueberries available year round!  What do you do when you live in a country with high heat and humidity and a refrigerator fit for a dorm room?   Check out preserved blueberries!    Blueberry preserves have been around for a long time.   In fact they were canned for as a ration for the Union Army in the Civil War. Blueberries have always made a great jam and jelly and good ones are over 50 percent in fruit content.   Now a new generation of "jarred" blueberries are popular in Asia.   The concept: take fresh or frozen blueberries and suspend them in a syrup, water or honey.   This preserves the blueberry and the syrup is a delicious treat as well.   The shelf life is over a year.   Most important -- it helps us spread the great taste and nutrition of blueberries around the globe!  (note this photo from rural Japan where the jarred blueberries are sold right above the fresh blueberries!

Fresh Blueberries in Japan

When I first vvisited Japan long ago, I had to search all over town for fresh or frozen blueberries.   Normally would end up at the Kinokuniya grocery store near all of the embassies and expat commnnity.   Now-- they are everywhere!   Check out the blueberry promotions at Mami-Mart out in Saitama Prefecture, north of Tokyo.    Consumers love their local Seibu Lions and blueberries!  Japan is already the leading offshore market for fresh blueberries, and this exposure ouside of Tokyo and Osaka will only drive sales to new heights!  Go go go Lions!   Go go blueberries!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Good Grief -- Artificial Blueberries!

Each month, i get messages from consumers asking about "artificial blueberries."  As you can imagine, they are not happy that the product they just purchased with big-beautiful blueberry photos on the package -- do not contain blueberries in the product.
This is an old problem, and thankfully it becomes less and less of a problem each year.
In the beginning, there were fresh blueberries, then frozen -- and most blueberries went in these two directions.    With the development of processed foods,more and more products were developed as "Shelf stable" and with "intermediate moisture."  Ingredients for these products must match specific moisture and water activity requirements.    Quite simply, if the available blueberry ingredients did not match, some manufacturers would choose blueberry "analogs."    These included blue dyed dehydrated apples, blue colored grain bits and formed gum and fat bits.    These products must be labeled properly and will be described in the legal manner in  line with US Food and Drug Administration rules.
USHBC takes a positive  approach to the artificial blueberries.   First, we work to "gently" inform the manufacturers of the overwhelming consumer preference for real blueberries.   Also, we learned that consumers react very badly when they learn that a blueberry-identified product does not contain real blueberries.    Second, we explain the technical reasons why real blueberries do work in specific food product categories.  For example manufacturers can source blueberries in different moisture content.   Blueberries are sized and cut to specifications.    They work just about everywhere.   One big reason that companies have claimed to use artificial blueberries in the past is price.   In the past the further processed blueberries were on the pricey side, but with the dawn of the current supply and win-win sales proposition in the blueberry business -- most of the products are in the same price range as the artificial.    We think the real product is an advantage in itself!

Blueberry Fiber - A new Ingredient with Potential

With all of the buzz about fiber in foods, a new product has entered the food ingredient market:  Blueberry Fiber.    When blueberry puree is made, the skins are normally removed in the process.   These skins are air dried down to a moisture content of around 15%.   From there the product can be milled down to various sizes.   How is it used:   Blueberry fiber has a neutral flavor and not a lot of sweetness and has been used in extruded snacks and pet foods.    It is also used in breakfast cereals and breads.    The star performance category has been the pet food category which has been covered regularly in this blog.    "Add blueberry fiber in the formula and post big beautiful blueberry photos on the package that appeal to the per owner.   What is in the blueberry fiber:
Here it is!

Blueberries to Brazil

USHBC has been studying the Brazil market for several years, and it is beginning to look promising!
First of all, Brazilians love fruit and all sorts of exotic local and imports.    Second, Brazilians are extremely health conscious and have a "food as medicine" philosophy. USHBC initial efforts have been to support the fresh market.  Local production is centered in the south part of the country and the season is the exact opposite of the USA.     What really got me interested in Brazil was seeing the Brazilians visiting Miami and Orlando on holiday stocking up on fresh blueberries for the return home!   Brazil imports fresh blueberries from neighboring South American countries such as Argentina, Chile and Uruguay.    Currently fresh blueberries from the USA are air freighted to Sao Paulo, Brazil during the North American Summer.   Most are sold at very high-end grocery stores. Our first efforts in Brazil have been exhibitions such as the SIAL Brazil show.    Year one: we instructed visitors on "what is a blueberry."   Year  two: we met enthusiastic blueberry converts.  Year three: our booth was mobbed by visitors in search of blueberries.
This year,Brazil will continue imports of fresh blueberries.   Now, food processors are also looking for frozen and further processed blueberries.  The future looks bright.   Obrigado!
Below: blueberry promotion at grocery store in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Korean Visitors Tour Mississippi Blueberry Country

It is a long ways from Seoul Korea to Hattiesburg, Mississippi -- but 14 Korean food industry professionals made the trek! Led by Mrs. Young Sook Oh of the USDA-Foreign Agriculture Service (FAS) the group headed north from New Orleans to Hattiesburg, Mississippi which is the center of the local blueberry production region.   Ethan Goggans, a Mississippi State University student and blueberry farmer, led the tour which included stops at Sandy Run Farm where the Korean visitors picked fresh blueberries and even got a chance to ride a harvester.    Afterwards, the crew tasted Southern cuisine including catfish and crayfish and of course local hot sauces which were a hit or the Koreans!

Institute of Food Technologists Meeting - New Orelans

Each year, USHBC exhibits at the annual meeting of the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT).    The meetings are rotated from areas of food processing, such as Chicago and Minneapolis to destinations such as Las Vegas, Orlando.  This year the meeting was held in New Orleans, Lousiana.
Did you know that blueberries are grown in the South, not far from the Crescent City.    Drive north towards Poplarville, Mississippi and you will drive right through the growing region.   Most of the blueberries produced in the area are from a Southern native species called Vaccinium Ashei.  This member of the highbush blueberry family is native to the south and is found in East Texas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi and Louisiana and Alabama.   The blueberry is commonly called the "rabbiteye"  because the unique look of the calyx.   For the IFT meeting, we had the pleasure of working with the local growers and Mr. Ethan Goggans of Sandy Run Farm in Purvis, Mississippi helped out with the booth and did an excellent job.   He brought several blueberry plants from the farm which were on display and this was a big hit -- especially with foreign visitors.  http://www.sandyrunfarms.com/    Note: the Mississippi State University cowbell on display at the booth.

Friday, July 18, 2014

Fresh Blueberries for Foodservice in Japan!

Japan is the largest offshore marketfor highbush blueberries fromm the USA.   Fresh blueberries are available year round and are found in supermarkets, convenience stores and hypermarkets.    Now, here is a new development.   Family restaurant chain: Johnathans features fresh blueberries on the daily menu!    The item uses fresh Hokkaido creme and fresh blueberries!    Will be featured all over Japan this summer and hopefully beyond!