Summer Fancy Food Show in Washington, DC: Deadline is this Friday, June 3.

May 31, 2011

Last chance to register for the Summer Fancy Food Show at a discounted rate, North America’s largest trade event for the Specialty Food Industry! Deadline is this Friday, June 3! After June 3 rate goes up to $60!

The Summer Fancy Food Show will be held in Washington, DC July 10-12, 2011… Click here to register http://www.specialtyfood.com/fancy-food-show/summer-fancy-food-show/attend/

Advertisements

August New Members

September 14, 2010

Congratulations to these new NASFT members accepted in August 2010!

City Olive

Datz Delicatessen

Eden Chocolates USA, Inc.

The Epicurean Connection

French Embassy Trade Office

Golden Edibles

Gourmet Gardens Specialty Foods, Inc.

KMJ International

Lemley’s Catering

Luck Chen

Mani Imports

Mother-in-Law’s Kimchi

Mrs. Munchies

My Brother’s Salsa

Nut Nation

Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine

Skipping Stone Productions

Surdyk’s Cheese Shop & Liquor Store

Tell City Pretzel Co.

30 Minute Seder

Up With Paper

Vermont Cookie Love

Villa Gourmet

Virginia Artesian Bottling Company

Woodstock Farmers’ Market

Zydeco Spice


Happy Anniversary!

August 24, 2010

Congrats to these NASFT members celebrating big milestones as of July 1, 2010!

50-Year Member:

Byrd Cookie Company

25-Year Members:

Independent Can Company

Long Grove Confectionary Company

Good Groceries Company

Lynch Specialty Foods, Inc.

Sohn Manufacturing, Inc.

10-Year Members:

Panola Pepper Corporation

Rose Hill Enterprises, LLC

Anthony-Thomas Candy Company

Devine Foods, Inc.

Mama Lil’s Peppers

Art Mart Corporation

Howard Imprinting Machine Company

Screamin’ Mimi’s Salsa, Inc.

Superior Quality Foods, Inc.

Maple Leaf Cheesemakers, Inc.

Wald Imports, Ltd.

Arizona Pepper Products Company, Inc.

Mom ‘n Pops, Inc.

ESM Metro New York

Food For Thought, Inc.

Stone Silo Foods, Inc.

Los Chileros De Nuevo Mexico

Thomas Catanese and Company

Valley Fig Growers

Q&B Foods, Inc.

Sisters Gourmet, Inc.

Mrs. Prindable’s Handmade Confections

FAGE USA Dairy Industry, Inc.

That’s A Nice!

Ritrovo Italian Regional Foods, LLC

Tortuga Rum Cake Company, Ltd.

La Panzanella, LLC

Arturo’s Hot Flavors of Hawaii

5-Year Members:

Wholesome Sweeteners, Inc.

Aussie Crunch, LLC

Dominion & Grimm USA

Original Gourmet Food Company, Inc.

New Grass Bison Company

La Dolce Vita

Langford Foods

SaltWorks, Inc.

Casanova Wine Imports, LLC

Housewaresdirect, Inc.

Pastor Chuck Orchards, LLC

Savor California

Hint, Inc.

Oh Sugar, LLC

Wine-A-Rita, LLC

Celtic Passions

Tidewater Foods & Catering, LLC

Stella Cadente Olive Oil Company

Ariston Specialties, LLC

Rosa Mexicano Kitchen

Fresh Food Sales and Marketing

Ellie’s Country Delights, Inc.

ZT Packaging & Merchandising, Inc.

Dogswell

El Pinto Foods, LLC

Koeze Company

Sunshine International Foods, Inc.

Great Atlantic Trading, Inc.

Mishima Foods USA, Inc.

Kernel Season’s, LLC

Meyenberg Goat Milk Products

Mareblu Naturals

American Natural & Organic Spices

Brockmann’s Chocolate, Inc.

Creative Foods, Inc.

War Eagle Mill, Inc.

Marque Foods, Inc.

We are announcing this year’s 50-year and 25-year milestones today. http://bit.ly/domvUM

Congratulations to everyone!


Interview with Winter Fancy Food Show Trend Game winner, Eddi Marie of Beckles Candies

May 20, 2010

Q: Please tell us about your current job and what it entails. Tell us something about yourself and your lovely shop in Modesto, California.
A: We have owned and operated Beckles Candies and Gifts in Modesto, California, since December of 1988. For the most part, Jim and I oversee the daily operation of the shop, including  making and selecting products, packaging, and interacting with the customers. We have known some of them since they were children!  Although Jim is not at the shop every day, he is a very important part of the business and readily “on call!”  Our daughter worked with us during her teenage years, and still covers for us in emergencies.

Beckles is an old time candy shop, selling chocolates, our on-site-made fudge,  gourmet truffles, a variety of licorices and candy jar favorites, including a nice selection of sugar free products.  We like to shop for things we believe our customer will enjoy. Custom packages are prepared in any gift item or container the customer selects and we pre-package in traditional and non-traditional containers. We also enjoy helping corporate clients and special event planners meet their unique needs and successfully stay within their budgets.

Q: How did you become so knowledgeable of food trends coming into the Winter Show? What professional food related publications, blogs, etc. do you read regularly?
A: I’m not at all sure I am that knowledgeable! I do try to listen, pay attention to food trends, and generally be aware of what is going on in our area.  The California Central Valley is known for it’s agricultural success. Staying “green” and being self-sustaining are very important to us. Personally, I am quite health conscious, while still allowing myself the joys of treats, sweets, and special indulgences. 

Several trade publications come across my desk regularly and I always find interesting material in them. Reading printed matter I can hold in my hands is more my style than reading screens! Although, blogs and Internet information is sometimes handy, indeed!

Q: When you go out to eat—do you go to the same place or do you explore other cultures and types of restaurants?
A: We have long time favorites and are basically traditionalists.  However, new places must be investigated, and authentically prepared food of other cultures can be most interesting and even enlightening! I am more adventurous than Jim!

Q: What is your favorite type of food? Favorite meal/dish?
A: I like Salmon or Halibut, usually baked (sans oiliness)! Al dente steamed vegetables rank high on my list, as do fresh fruits and vegetables of most any kind. Southern barbecue, but not too spicy hot, is another favorite. And, of course great chocolate desserts!!! I use lots of nuts when preparing dishes and, although I like both, I go for weeks without eating beef or pork.

Q: How was your experience at the Winter Fancy Food Show? What was your favorite part?
A: Jim and I had a really good time. It was a quick, one-day trip from Modesto. I think our favorite part is anything that directly relates to our business, especially items we can almost link to specific customers. At times it becomes a game we play.

The displays were great,  the vendors were most cordial, the products were varied, and the attendees were enthusiastic. While conscious of the economic situation, people were not overwhelmed with gloom! We mentioned that en route home.

Q: Have you ever been to a Summer Fancy Food Show? If yes, what are the major differences between the Winter Show and Summer Show?
A: We have never attended the Summer Show, but we are excited!

Q: Do you have any tips to offer for attending/walking the show?
A: I go with a plan, or at least a list of items about which  folks have inquired or in which I have a particular interest.  We usually go for the “What’s new “area first,  then walk the rest of the show rooms. Some of the seminars would be helpful; however, we are always on a limited time schedule.

Q: What are you most excited about for the upcoming Summer Fancy Food Show in New York?
A:
It is a new adventure! I’ve been told it is bigger than the Winter Show. It will be interesting to see how some of the winter focused items are doing, how they may have been adapted, and what’s new!

Q: Are you on any social media? (Twitter, Facebook or do you have a blog?) Website?
A: We do have a Beckles website.  It is in a stage of reconstruction, but viewable.  You can find it at BecklesCandiesandGifts.com


EDITOR’S LETTER: What sofi ™ is Telling Us About Trends

May 6, 2010

By Denise Purcell, Editor of Specialty Food Magazine

Following is Denise Purcell’s editor’s letter, which first appeared in the recent May issue of Specialty Food Magazine. It highlights trends spotted at the recent sofi Awards Finalist competition, Part 1.

The start of the annual sofi ™ Awards competition is unfolding around me as I write this. All week, hundreds of boxes have been arriving at the NASFT offices, and thousands of products are being unpacked and carefully sorted by the core sofi team, led by Communications Director Louise Kramer. I’m passing shelves of products every time I head to the kitchen or supply room, which is providing me the ideal opportunity to take a front line peek at what all those submissions are saying about industry trends.

As I was getting started, Project Manager Marilyn O’Hara and Project Consultant Fran Curiazza, two members of the team who were opening and logging every entry, were happy to chime in with their own trend-spotting—lots of products with honey and figs. They are absolutely right. These, like many other themes I spotted on the shelves, are on target with larger industry trends that have been recently identified through NASFT and Mintel International.

In case you missed it, in March, NASFT co-hosted a webinar with Mintel that revealed several overarching trends, including those a panel of food journalists identified as the top trends at the Winter Fancy Food Show (you can read more under the March 2010 issue in Food Trends or visit specialtyfood’s Knowledge Center to download the webinar.)


Here, in no particular order, are several industry trends that are supported by what we’re seeing in sofi entries.

Grown-Up Treats: Savory and sweet snacks with sophisticated flavor profiles:

• Candied walnuts

• Curry or fig flavored crackers

• Prickly pear dried snacks

• Honey Roasted Ham and Cranberry potato chips


Simple Made Special:
This is especially prevalent in nostalgic candies and treats such as toffee, caramels and marshmallows that are being updated:

• Marshmallows in flavors like Pistachio, Coffee and Toasted Coconut

• Sesame toffee

• Caramels in flavors like Carrot Cake


Good-for-You Foods:
Healthful twists including gluten-free, sugar-free, high fiber and antioxidants:

• Baked lentil and falafel chips

• Gluten-free sugar cookie mix and brownie mix made with stevia

• Raspberry Rooibos chocolate


Latest Flavors:
Many of these were spotted at the Fancy Food Show, by

the Food Trend panel as well as the editors of Specialty Food Magazine who tweeted from the Show floor at twitter.com/nasft. Coconut, bacon, maple, cherry, walnut, lime, honey—all hot. Here’s a sampling:

• Cherry Merlot Wine ice cream

• Coconut popcorn

• Maple Bacon pretzels

• Plantain chips with lime

• Salsa with cherry and peri-peri

• Carob seed honey from Morocco

• Walnut vinegar

The sofi Award submissions are telling us a lot already and at presstime packages were still arriving for the 31 categories in Part 1 of the competition. Like the rest of the trade, I’ll eagerly await what the full breadth of entries and judges’ picks ultimately reveal about the industry’s best foods and beverages.


The New specialtyfood.com

April 30, 2010

By Matt Thomas, Publisher of Specialty Food Magazine

For seven years, specialtyfood.com has been my go-to source anytime I needed more information on some aspect of the trade. Whether I was looking for manufacturer contact information, specific category trends, the dates of the 2012 Summer Fancy Food Show, whatever<it was always right there.

Yet, all long-running reference sources take on a Rube Goldbergesque quality as needs change and different features get tacked on to the side. It was with great pride that I could find almost anything on that site, no matter how buried, but it was time for a new edition.

After dozens of meetings involving every department of the NASFT, dozens more rounds of wireframes and hundreds of hours of programming, testing and debugging, the switch has been thrown and the new site is here.

As I was thankfully spared most of the development process, I am looking at the new site with what I believe are fresh eyes and can tell you that to refer to the new specialtyfood.com as a relaunch would be a gross understatement. Encompassed on the site are several thousand brands, tens of thousands of pages of content, a seemingly infinite number of products and all of it carefully organized and tagged to make it intuitively navigable for people like you and me. The result of all this intensive activity is a greatly improved user experience.

All the content from our old site is still there but is much more accessible and easy to find. For instance, content from Specialty Food Magazine can be accessed via the foodle™ search engine or through the Magazine Archive in the News & Trends tab. Content has also been tagged in helpful categories such as Retail Operations, Food Trends, Prepared Food Recipes and so on. When it’s time to plan your Fancy Food Show experience, either as an attendee or exhibitor, you can find everything you need through simple tabs.  All of NASFT’s education information from the past five years can now be accessed and downloaded under the Knowledge Center. Put simply, pretty much anything you used specialtyfood.com for in the past will be better and easier with the new site.

Where things get really interesting is in the new features. Under the Community tab you will find a wealth of exciting functions. For the first time we will have a dedicated specialty food industry Job Board. There’s also a Classifieds section where you can sell your used equipment or offer services to the trade. If you’re an expert, believe you are or at least have a topic you’re passionate about, you can create your own blog. Or post pressing questions for advice from your peers.

I will miss that old workhorse but the new site looks better, works better and has lots of useful new features. So dive in, explore the new resources and features and let us know what you think so we can continue to improve content and functionality. |SFM|

Find us at:  http://www.facebook.com/specialtyfoodmedia