What's happening in the blueberry FoodTech World

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Superfoods Summit in Tokyo

Blueberries bring the world together!   Check out the wonderful group of visitors from Benin in West Africa who are promoting the super-grain Fonio.  This tiny grain from the millet family is valued throughout the region.  It contains some very important amino acids for the body and the main excitement comes from the fact that it helps the body secrete insulin - which has great benefit for diabetics and prevention.   We discussed the combination of the two superfoods -- blueberries and fonio!

Monday, March 30, 2015

Berrylicious Ice Cream!

Check out this new blueberry ice cream launched in India!   Very Berry is a pioneer in bringing new blueberry products to market!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

News from the Far Field - India

The AAHAR exposition in Delhi is the largest food trade show in India.   This year, blueberries were exhibited by companies who have developed new products in the past year.  

  • VK Nuts - Pioneered imports of dried blueberries
  • Rajguru, Pune, Dried Blueberries
  • Orchard Brands - Locally produced blueberry fillings with US blueberries!   
  • Mala- Local Fillings.
Check out the booth for Delight Nuts.  Raj  Kapoor (USHBC-India)  on left and friendly dried blueberry seller on right!

Sunday, March 22, 2015

USA Blueberry Promotions in China

1.3 billion Chinese are discovering the goodness of blueberries.    Sales of dried blueberries are on the rise as well as frozen and juice.    Currently the Chinese government is evaluating the future of allowing US blueberries into China for the first time.  Our country negotiators at USDA-APHIS (Animal Plant Quarantine Service) are doing a tremendous job of representing the US blueberry market entry effort!  We are also getting support from the trade such as grocery stores and food-service operators.  Let's keep positive and -- think blueberries!

Blueberries in Emerging Markets

The USHBC strategic plan directs us to keep a steady effort in the major potential usage markets abroad, and this has led us to Asia where we promote in Japan, Korea, Taiwan and others.    At the same time we are also encouraged to explore new markets with longer term potential, such as India.   In November 2014, USHBC conducted its first trade mission to one of these markets of the future: Turkey.  We were pleasantly surprised to see great enthusiasm for fresh, frozen and dried blueberries everywhere,   Turks have a "food as medicine" philosophy.   Blueberries are considered a beneficial food for a whole range of health reasons.   Blueberries are especially popular with the young generation who read about "super fruits" in newspapers, magazines and internet blogs.   

Blueberry Cosmetics Continue to Rise

Blueberries are hot in the multi-billion dollar natural cosmetic field!
Asia leads the way and the trend is now rising in North America!   Keep an eye out for new blueberry skin care products!  Source: Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD)

Nivea Launches new Blueberry Lip Balm!

Available all over North America!

Consumers Say Yes! to Natural Cosmetics

Check out this popular new topical blue product for skincare!

New Blueberry Chocolates Include Dried Blueberries

More and more national and international candy companies are including dried blueberries in their offerings. Here are two great ones!

Dove!   Note the "Whole Blueberry" slogan!

Ghiradelli!   Note the "Real Blueerry" on the pack!

Another big year for blueberry new product development.

The USHBC Food Technology Program message is:  Supply + Demand = Opportunity!

The nation's food industry is responding and we are seeing steady new product development with blueberries in the past year.   USHBC subscribes to a service called MINTEL Global New Product Database, which monitors products on supermarket shelves in the USA and abroad.   Typically, a specialty ingredient such as a blueberry will see 500 or so new products in a year,   The four year average) (2010-2014  of new blueberry products in North America totaled 1,198.     The four year average 2000-2014 was 706!  This 2014 launches included national brands of food products from breakfast foods to desserts.   One very interesting development: Many of the new blueberry products are in categories that did not even exist in 2000 when USHBC was created!   These include blueberry pet foods, blueberry cosmetics and health care items.   Another trend: we are seeing more and more prominent blueberry identification on packages.    This proves that the blueberry image has value.  Get ready for
another big year in 2015!

Blueberry Mania Continues Worldwide!

Fresh, processed and further processed blueberry shipments are booming around the world.   The USHBC has revved up promotions in  selected markets around the world, and we are seeing blueberry markets across the globe join the blueberry craze.

Ten years ago, USHBC had a strategic plan goal to ship 17 million lbs of US highbush blueberries.    This was followed by fresh and processed promotions in Japan., Taiwan, and South Korea.    In just ten years, shipments to non-Canadian export markets have risen more than 270 percent.  It is not a coincidence that the markets with the largest growth are USHBC targets where we have conducted building-block activities such as trade shows, seminars, advertising PR and retail fresh and food industry initiatives.  

Some very good indicators:
  • Frozen shipments to South Korea have jumped to more than 7 million lbs from less than a half million when promotions began a decade ago.
  • Fresh shipments to South Korea after the market opened up have doubled in the last year with a big push from USHBC retail promotions.
  • USHBC food technology activities have ignited the Japanese food industry market with more than 150 new blueberry-containing products introduced in 2014.
  • Fresh promotions at retail and foodservice have driven shipments to Taiwan and Hong Kong into multi-million lbs levels that continue to climb.   Just wait until China opens the door to fresh blueberries from the USA!