Kingdom Organic Cheddar, one of the newest entries into the U.S. cheese market, captured three top honors this week at the prestigious International Cheese Awards competition held in Nantwich, England.
In competition featuring 4,443 cheeses from 26 countries, Kingdom Organic Cheddar won Gold Awards for Farmhouse/Traditional Mature Cheddar, Export Award, and Cheddar/Cheddar Style.
“The judges at the International Cheese Awards validated what we have known all along: Kingdom isn’t just the only organic European cheese in the U.S. Market, it is the top cheddar in the world,” said Nicola Turner, Export Director at the Organic Milk Suppliers Cooperative (OMSCo,) the organic dairy farmers’ co-op that manages the production of Kingdom Cheese.
Kingdom is a traditionally handcrafted cheddar, made exclusively with milk from a small number of organic family farms located in Devon, in the Southwest of England. The temperate climate and ample moisture in this region creates pastures of lush grasses which impart a unique flavor to the milk.
“Our cows are kept on a simple grass based system with little or no stress, giving us beautiful, natural milk,” said Geoff Thorne, one of the farmers who produces milk for Kingdom Cheddar. “Our cows are on pasture more than 10 months each year with green grass comprising more than 80 percent of their diets.”
The International Cheese Awards is considered one of the most rigorous competitions for cheese makers around the world. More than 200 judges spend two days selecting the world’s top cheeses.
Kingdom Organic Cheddar is available in many Whole Foods Markets, HyVee Markets, select Costco stores, and other natural and specialty retailers. A listing of retailers carrying Kingdom Organic Cheddar is available at: http://www.kingdomcheddar.com/contact-us/stockists/.
Stonewall Kitchen’s Maple Bacon Aioli adds a delicious fillip to a grilled cheese sandwich. Just spread the aioli on the outside of the bread, in place of the usual butter, and grill the sandwich as usual. The bread browns beautifully with a crispy surface texture, and the maple flavor adds a long finish that’s just fantastic. Glorious!
– Lorrie Baumann
Gustus Vitae Condiments is a new line of sea salts and spice blends created created from high quality local and international ingredients and then hand-packed into tins in a Los Angeles facility. Unlike many spices and salts available today, Gustus Vitae products are never irradiated, not treated with EtO (Ethylene Oxide) gas, and are free from gluten, soy, MSG, and artificial colors and flavors. Gustus Vitae’s products retail from $8 for individual tins to $159 for gift sets and collections, and are currently available at select Whole Foods Markets, Albertsons, Southern Season and online at www.gustusvitae.com
Gustus Vitae’s gourmet spice blends are crafted to taste like places, allowing delicious meals authentic to different cuisines to be quickly and simply created. It’s easy to create fabulous, fresh dishes like Thai chicken, Jamaican rice, or Tuscan roast potatoes with just a pinch or a rub of seasonings and spice blends. The Gustus Vitae gourmet sea salts are wonderful finishing touches, naturally adding bursts of flavor and vibrant color to your meals, transforming simple plates into signature dishes.
Kristin Fritz Kubiszak of Brookside Farms, a grower for MBG Marketing – The Blueberry People, was one of only 15 national honorees named as a Champion of Change this year by the White House and the United States Department of Agriculture. The award honors agriculture leaders from across the country who are taking innovative approaches to support American farming and ranching—both now and in the future, by showcasing their actions that ensure and advance the future of agriculture.
Kubiszak is the retail manager for Brookside Farms located in Paw Paw, Michigan; and is a fifth-generation member of her family to operate a farm that distributes fresh blueberries through MBG’s cooperative marketing network under the Naturipe® brand. After obtaining her bachelor’s degree in social work from Cornerstone University, Kubiszak returned home to her family farm, which focuses on growing and packing top quality blueberries. Kubiszak’s involvement in the agriculture industry doesn’t stop with just her family farm; she also sits on the board of directors for the Van Buren County Farm Bureau as Chair of the Promotion and Education Committee. With this position she has dedicated her time to educating the community with trips to local schools, the Ag Venture tent at the local Youth Fair and other youth and consumer education programs. “Kristin is another member of the Fritz family farming operation that makes us proud that they are part of our MBG and Naturipe families.” said Bob Hawk, President and CEO of MBG Marketing.
Kubiszak’s primary goal is to educate, not only about agriculture, but also how families impact agriculture and how important it is to continue family farms. Brookside Farms started as a dairy farm in 1876 and Kubiszak’s grandfather planted his first blueberry bush in 1956. That was the same year the family joined Michigan Blueberry Growers Association, a grower-owned cooperative, and the year Kubiszak’s father, Bill Fritz, was born. Like his farming predecessors, he has continued the family tradition of active agricultural leadership, by serving on the boards of both MBG Marketing and Naturipe Farms of which MBG is an owner/ partner. “We were absolutely delighted when we learned that Kristin was selected for this program” said Bill. “She is a wonderful representative of the next generation that has the desire and drive to continue our commitment to family farming and the broader agricultural community”.
Kubiszak and the other honorees were congratulated by Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack of the USDA and recognized at a ceremony in the White House by Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Krysta Harden and Assistant to the President and Director of the Domestic Policy Council, Cecilia Munoz. They were given a tour of the First Lady’s Garden at The White House by Sam Kass, who is President Barack Obama’s Senior Policy Advisor for Nutrition Policy and Let’s Move Executive Director. “It was a true privilege to represent the blueberry industry as a Champion of Change. Since we grow blueberries, which are known for their great flavor and incredible health attributes, I was especially pleased to learn first-hand about some of the efforts by the First Lady to encourage children to eat a healthy, brighter array of fresh fruits and vegetables” said Kubiszak. “It was great to share the story our family blueberry farm. It has always been a passion of mine to educate others about what we do, and this was another great opportunity”.
To learn more about Kubiszak and the other “Champions of Change” visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/champions.
Mary S. Moore, Owner and CEO of The Cook’s Warehouse, will be the guest chef this Saturday morning, August 2, at the Morningside Farmer’s Market, the only all-organic farmers market in Atlanta, Georgia.
Her special sous chef will be Harald Wüsthof, scion of the German knife-making family and managing partner of the worldwide firm. This year is Wüsthof’s 200th anniversary. Chef Moore will be cooking with okra from Crystal Organic Farm. Her recipes will be available at the demonstration, which begins at 9 a.m.
An extra-special front-row guest is Lee Wiggins, who has attended the farmers market’s cooking demonstrations for many years. She will be celebrating her 95th birthday this weekend. Wüsthof will present Lee with a special autographed knife set commemorating the company’s 200th anniversary.
Bridor Inc., which makes authentic European breads and Viennese pastry for the retail and foodservice industry, is expanding its U.S. facility at Vineland, New Jersey. The plant will continue to produce Bridor’s broad line of baguettes, breads and rolls that reflect the company’s 30 years of European heritage and baking mastery. The $32 million expansion will enhance its laminated pastry dough and signature flaky croissant capacity. The enlarged facility will increase from 136,000 square feet to 183,000 square feet, and its employee count will grow from 132 to 177 employees.
“This expansion represents our deep commitment to our U.S. customers and significantly enhances what we can offer them,” said Jean-François Duquesne, CEO, Bridor Inc. and Bridor USA Inc. “We pride ourselves on being an industrial baking company that combines advanced manufacturing technology with traditional European baking techniques. This enables us to produce on a large scale the highest quality, authentic European pastry and breads in the world.”
The pastry line that Bridor will manufacture in its expanded Vineland facility will cater to the taste and other preferences of the U.S. customer. It will include a wide variety of croissants and Viennese pastries with distinctive homemade fillings that incorporate locally-sourced, high quality ingredients. Bridor’s research and development department of master bakers travels the world to stay ahead of consumer trends and baking innovations. The company continuously adapts and makes new bread and pastry products to meet its customers’ evolving needs.
Big Tree Farms’ unrefined, organic coconut sugar line has received Fair Choice certification from Control Union Certifications. The acquisition of this certification makes Big Tree Farms Coconut Sugar the first and only fair trade coconut sugar on the market. As a pioneer in the fast-growing coconut sugar segment, Big Tree Farms’ certifications extend beyond Fair Trade, including USDA organic, non-GMO and low glycemic certifications. All certifications will be featured on Big Tree Farms Coconut Sugar packaging going forward, allowing shoppers to see a clear difference in coconut sugars.
Control Union Certifications are awarded on an enterprise’s ability to commit to stringent social, environmental, and economic development principles. Dedicated to social and environmental responsibility, safe working conditions and fair trade practices, Big Tree Farms is the only vertically integrated brand of coconut sugar on the market. The company works with and supports more than 14,000 family farmers across the archipelagos of Indonesia. Every bag of Big Tree Farms Organic Coconut Sugar is harvested from partner farms and processed at Big Tree’s own factories in Indonesia.
Big Tree Farms Coconut Sugar is made from pure flower blossom nectar of the coconut tree. Considered one of the most sustainable sweeteners on the planet, coconut sugar is an unrefined, high nutrient and low glycemic sweetener that can be used in place of anything that normally requires cane sugar. With a 1 to 1 replacement ratio, coconut sugar is an easier substitute compared to other popular alternatives like stevia or agave, which often have a different taste and substitution ratio. Big Tree Farms Organic Coconut Sugar is the only coconut sugar to obtain a low glycemic verification, consistently maintaining a glycemic index of under 40, which also verifies that it is not adulterated with cane sugar.
For more information visit www.bigtreefarms.com
Ozery Bakery, the artisanal baker best known for Morning Rounds® Breakfast breads, today launches yet another bakery first: pre-sliced Soft Ciabatta Thins. Available in Multi Grain and Chia and authentic Sour Dough varieties, Ozery’s newest sandwich breads are non-GMO certified, vegan, low fat and cholesterol- and preservative-free. They are also the first true Italian ciabatta bread crafted to make the ultimate sandwich: perfectly square, soft, thin, pre-sliced and less bready than conventional ciabatta bread.
Putting the chia in chiabatta bread, Ozery’s Multi Grain variety brings chia seeds to the party along with cracked wheat, rye, barley, oats, crushed flax and sunflower seeds to elevate the Omega-3 content while providing a whopping 8 grams of fiber per serving. Similarly, the Sour Dough has the authentic tang you would expect and toasts up to a satisfying crackly crunch.
“We’ve had our eye on ciabatta bread for some time now. We tinkered with our recipe over the past two years until we got it right,” says Alon Ozery, who, along with his brother, Guy, is driving innovation in the baked goods industry. “Ours is the first soft ciabatta thin sandwich bread in the market. We hope you like it as much as we do!”
Ozery Soft Ciabatta thins are available at natural and specialty food stores in addition to other fine retailers across the country for a suggested retail price of $4.69 for each 16.9-ounce package containing six buns. Food service packaging and pricing is also available.
Pereg Gourmet, a family-owned company offering a wide array of all-natural and exotic pantry staples, is introducing a lineup of premium ancient grains, rice and beans that are easy to prepare and ideal for rounding out a meal.
One hundred percent pure and naturally rich in health benefits, the new products include: white quinoa, red quinoa, farro, wheat berries, chickpeas, basmati rice, pearl couscous, traditional couscous, bulgur, soup mix, black beans, French lentils, Texas chili beans, orange lentils, green lentils, an autumn lentil blend, yellow split peas, green split peas, red kidney beans, and white beans. Of these 20 different varieties, each are completely free of preservatives and OU kosher certified. Most of the new items are also gluten-free certified and non-GMO verified.
Packaged in a stand-up, re-sealable pouch to maintain freshness, each bag measures in at one pound and features recipe ideas on the back. The new grain, rice and bean lineup is now rolling out at select retailers across the country and online. The suggested retail price is $2.99 to $3.99 for everything but the quinoa and $5.99 to $6.99 for the quinoa items. Visit www.pereg-gourmet.com for detail on the company.
Robert Rothschild Farm announces its first complete line of organic sauces after recently achieving organic certification of its manufacturing facility in Urbana, Ohio. Robert Rothschild Farm produces sauces, dips, preserves, mustards, spreads and other gourmet products that are all natural, gluten free and kosher.
Robert Rothschild Farm grows and manufactures all their food on the Ohio farm, but is the first certified organic line. This new line of organic products will launch the beginning of a movement to convert the majority of the Robert Rothschild Farm’s current product offering to be organic certified.
“We are conscientious of current healthy lifestyles and want to provide the consumer what they desire,” said Jim Gordon, President and CEO of Robert Rothschild Farm. “We felt compelled to provide organic products that tasted great. Taste should not be compromised when seeking organic products using Non-GMO ingredients.”
The new organic line of sauces was announced at the Summer Fancy Food Show on July 1, 2014 and includes Blueberry Balsamic, Citrus Chardonnay, Pineapple Habanero BBQ, Sriracha Teriyaki, Whiskey Pepper Cream and White Wine Creole sauces.
This year also celebrates Robert Rothschild Farm’s 30th Anniversary of producing specialty foods. Robert Rothschild Farm is continually recognized as one of the top gourmet food manufacturers in the United States and has been honored with numerous awards for its branded product line, but the company also produces gourmet products under many private labels. Robert Rothschild products are carried in over 5,000 grocery and specialty stores throughout the US.
“Creating organic products shows our commitment, not only to high-quality, flavorful products but taking our company to the next level,” said Gordon. “Organic foods are a growing market in which Robert Rothschild Farm is well positioned to produce and provide these essential products. We look forward to leading the specialty food industry and bringing our consumers the finest in organic, open and serve products that they have come to expect from us.”