The Summer Fancy Food Show, was held again this year at the Javits Center in New York, with more than 2,670 exhibitors displaying specialty foods and beverages from the U.S. and 55 countries. More than 47,000 specialty food professionals were in the exhibit halls, which spanned the equivalent of six football fields.
Owned and produced by the Specialty Food Association, the show ran from June 26 – 28, and was the largest such marketplace in North America. “The show is the place to discover the latest in specialty food and what’s next for stores and restaurants,” says Laura Santella-Saccone, the Association’s chief marketing officer. “Record sales for specialty foods have contributed to the strength of our show.” A complete listing of all the products displayed at the show is available at www.specialtyfood.com. There, separate categories include what’s new, what’s hot, a gift and holiday guide, a natural and organic category and the Sofi Awards. Here’s a modified version of what visitors sampled.
Tunisia — the show’s official partner country sponsor — was front and center with olive oil, harissa, dates, and many more North African specialties. The country’s products ranked among the Mediterranean countries of France, Italy, Spain and Greece.
Bellucci produces EVOO the Organic Italian Extra Virgin Olive Oil. In California the newest product in extra virgin olive oils was the ENZO Clementine Crush. Other oils included black walnut oil, macadamia, hazelnut oil, pumpkinseed oil and almond oil to name a few. New to the show is Agrumato Olive oil from Lucero Olive Oil in Corning, California.
While a young Balsamic vinegar can be used as a salad dressing or a marinade, the thick, Aged Balsamic Vinegar produced by Acetaia Agricola Leonardi or Lesley Elizabeth accompanies cheeses, caviar, seafood, desserts or cocktails.
Halal foods included dates, ready to cook, ready to eat, deli and shelf-stable foods. The new (and a sofi Award winner) was a hot pepper spread from Wisconsin, a flavor enhancement for most foods. California Sun-dried Ketchups came from Traina, and black truffle mustard is produced by Truffle Hunter in London. Nago Foods produces a ginger Sesame Miso, which doesn’t overpower the taster’s palate.
In the meat department, Fermin Chorizo Iberico Picante is made from the original Iberico pig from Spain and is laced with hot paprika, oregano, cumin and nutmeg. The Lowell International Foods Company imports dozens of products including a delectable Canadian Maple Ham. The Smokehouse Spiral Sliced ham from S. Wallace Edwards & Sons is available in whole-or half-bone-in or boneless frozen and is shipped in temperature-controlled air/ground methods.
The whole Italian Pantry at the show represented 1000 hand-picked products from Italy. Among a plethora of cheeses, pastas and sauces was the tender, rich and sweet taste of Volpi Italia traditional Prosciutto and tomato sauce with onion and prosciutto from Italian Products USA.
In the fish department, the visitor could name it: from Marky’s Siberian Sturgeon Caviar to sockeye smoked salmon and cold-smoked rainbow trout to lox from Seabear Smokehouse to Coho Salmon with Lemon Pepper and Garlic, produced by Salty Girl Seafood, of Goleta California.
Dairy- gluten-free and organic products made a large showing as well, such as chestnuts, acai from Brazil and varieties of gluten-free frozen foods from California. Organic Amaranth and Quinoa Bread has a delicate, nutty flavor, and is rich in dietary fiber.
Delicious, rich coffees were sampled from Mexico, Brazil, Costa Rica and came in a variety of makers – from single cup to multiple servings. Crio Bru is 100% organic ground cocoa beans, which provides long lasting energy without the caffine rush. Tea is inching into a bold showing with matcha supreme. The fragrant aroma and health benefits of the tea make this drink a favorite among tea drinkers and recent converts to tea.
Chocolate, a powerful superfood by itself, is everyone’s favorite and fruits in dark chocolate is a delicious sweet from Healthy, Fruits in Chocolate. Several choices – prune, apricot, cherry and cranberry – are available.
Many of the exhibitors were seeking to add to their list of distributors, while others were making their debut at the show looking for distributors. Some, like Millar Trading, had made appointments with distributors, while the press went from aisle to aisle looking for stories. In all, the Summer Fancy Food Show was a huge success.
Photos ©Denise Mattia