Over the course of three days, thousands of foodies descended upon the Moscone Center in downtown San Francisco for an impressive showcase of the latest and greatest in specialty foods at the 2015 Winter Fancy Food Show. From well-established brands to new start-ups, the show offered a plethora of new flavors, textures and innovative uses of ingredients.
This year we had guest correspondent, Emily Munday, culinologist/nutritionist at CuliNex, attend the show and share her key takeaways with us. Here are her findings from the event.
Fermented products and probiotic claims were plentiful. Two of the standouts included Coach Farm’s Cultured Goat Milk in Strawberry, Mango Peach, Blackberry and Plain and Mother-in-Law’s Kimchi in Muu Daikon Radish and White Napa Cabbage.
Ubiquitous kale has paved the way for other nutrient-dense vegetables, and seaweed is positioned to take over as the king of greens this year. Gold Mine Natural Foods showcased kelp noodles in a sesame vinaigrette. The toothsome noodles offer a unique texture and neutral flavor profile, and are raw, vegan, rich in minerals and low in calories. Seasnax featured its crunchy Chomperz line of seaweed snacks, in flavors such as Barbecue, Jalapeno, Onion and Original.
Move over kombucha—there’s a new kid on the block: Pok Pok Som Drinking Vinegars are tangy and refreshing, letting true fruit and vegetable flavors shine. Particularly interesting were the Thai Basil and new Chinese Celery flavors. Other delicious flavors include the Tamarind, Pomegranate and Ginger. Simply mixed with soda water, the Soms make for an upscale soda that’s not too sweet. It can also be used in cocktails for a classic “shrub.”
With health and wellness at the forefront of consumers’ minds, along with a desire to eat more plant-based foods and protein, it’s a no-brainer that seeds stole the show. Purenola offers the health benefits of sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and nuts in granola-like clusters that are sweetened with real maple syrup. The paleo-friendly snack comes in several flavors, including Salted Chocolate, Coconut, Persimmon and Rosemary Spice.
From healthy snacks to indulgent desserts and everything in between, the Winter Fancy Food Show had something for everyone. Thanks to Emily Munday for her report on this year’s show.
Emily Munday is a culinologist/nutritionist with CuliNex, the nation’s premier clean-label product development consultancy. CuliNex brings successful new products to market for retailers, food manufacturers, ingredient suppliers and multi-unit foodservice operators so they can achieve their growth goals.
Emily holds an associate degree in Culinary Arts and a Bachelor of Science degree in Culinary Nutrition from Johnson & Wales University. She has experience working in a wide variety of foodservice settings, from large-scale catering operations to intimate fine dining. In addition to product development and project management, she leads the sales and marketing initiatives at CuliNex.