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Culinary Collective Celebrates 15 Years of Spanish, Peruvian Imports

By Jazmine Woodberry

CulinaryCollective-SDGourmet importer Culinary Collective celebrated its 15th anniversary in September, marking a decade and a half of importing goods from Spain and bringing them to the taste buds of eaters stateside.
The business started as a hobby for Betsy Power and her business partner, Pere Selles, after relocating from Spain to Seattle so Power could attend graduate school.
“We moved and realized there wasn’t any good food from Spain in the Northwest,” Power said. “And we ended up starting at the right time. The commercial offices from Spain were really promoting wines from Spain then, and people were asking, ‘Well, what do I eat with those wines?’” That’s where Culinary Collective came in.
First a small business with a couple vendors, Culinary Collective now works with more than 30 vendors distributing more than 140 different products, many of which fall under the Matiz España line, which focuses on traditional Spanish ingredients like olive oil, paella rice and spices.
The Matiz España line launched in 2003 as a Culinary Collective brand used to promote and showcase the vendors behind the products. “Having one brand made a lot of sense from a marketing and financial standpoint, while allowing us to highlight the vendors and connect them to the consumers,” Power said.
After the bump in the exchange rate in 2006 and 2007, Culinary Collective pushed to incorporate Latin American items into its offerings. “When the exchange rate started going crazy, we expanded into Latin America using our same model—small producers, native foods. We weren’t looking to replace items from Spain but to use our same model in a new region,” Power said. “We bounced around and landed on Peru because there’s so much food diversity in Peru. It’s one of the most diverse food cultures in the world next to Mexico.”
This push brought to light the Zócalo Gourmet line, which marks the company’s expansion to South America. Zócalo Gourmet features Peruvian vendors powering a collection of all-natural foods such as grains, flours, beans and chili pastes.
“When we turned to Peru, we wanted to have a completely different brand and a different division,” To the delight of both Power, who suffers from celiac disease, and others with gluten sensitivity, the line contains only naturally gluten-free items.
Culinary Collective uses strict sourcing criteria to ensure that their products are all-natural and that their producers are rooted in their communities and operate under a fair trade model.
However, Power said what truly sets Culinary Collective apart from others is focusing on foods native to the countries from which they are importing. “A lot of importers bring in such things as piquillo peppers and white asparagus from Peru and it’s had an impact on Spanish vendors,” she said. “We wanted to focus on such items as kañiwa, purple corn, and aji or chili peppers—items that are native to Peru.”
The company’s expansion has spread to Culinary Collective customers as well, as the importer has branched out from importing select products to Seattle to serving customers throughout the United States and Canada. Through September 2014, Culinary Collective will be highlighting and promoting different vendors monthly to commemorate this milestone. Providing foods through both direct sales to retailers and through distributors, Culinary Collective will be going over each region’s vendors with a fine tooth comb and allowing retailers and consumers to access a passport-style voyage through Spain and Peru via Culinary Collective foods.
“The hard part is getting the products into the American market,” Power said. “Our resources are very limited, and competition is very high. I would like to let our customers know about our mission and why we’ve chosen each vendor and product and why they should purchase it. Consumers are really ready for that message and we could do a better job of making that known and getting customers on board, [as well as] working with the sales staff at the retail level to help promote these products.”

Online Markets Changing the Way Consumers Shop for Groceries

By Jazmine Woodberry

An increasing number of consumers across the country are ordering their groceries online, both from dedicated web outlets and from the digital iterations of brick and mortar stores, simply having these groceries delivered to them at home. Now, specialty foods companies are looking to adapt to this new retail climate in a $1 trillion grocery retail industry where more than $4 billion are spent by companies on online ads each year.
Working with more than 140 grocery brands, including Kroger, Shoprite and Albertsons, as well as more than 200 Consumer Packaged Goods brands, MyWebGrocer provides a suite of leading-edge eCommerce and eMarketing solutions to the grocery and CPG industries, with products for every digital touch point. Grocers can utilize MyWebGrocer’s software platform where shoppers can head online and do a range of things—from creating shopping lists, acquiring coupons and pulling up digital promotionals, to purchasing goods online for home delivery. Consumer packaged goods companies have the ability to follow a different path, with digital marketing campaigns for grocery websites, as well as ways to measure the effectiveness of those digital advertising efforts.
“Changing consumer behavior is pressuring grocers and CPGs to adopt digital solutions,” said Hudson Smith, Principal at HGGC, a MyWebGrocer investor in a release. Smith said he thinks “new eCommerce-focused entrants seeking to take share from traditional grocers” can look to online grocers both to shop online and enrich brick and mortar experiences via digital offerings.
MyWebGrocer is not alone in the push to move the grocery industry online. Founded in 1989, online grocery ordering and delivery service Peapod now serves customers in Illinois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Maryland, District of Columbia, Virginia, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, New Hampshire, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Peapod offers a unique online grocery shopping option that fits into consumers’ busy lives.
“In a time when schedules are more demanding than ever, Peapod offers more than an online shopping service—it’s a lifestyle solution,” said Bradley Porter, Peapod’s Director of Marketing. “And it’s evolving to help people knock out their grocery shopping wherever and whenever they’d like via a Peapod mobile app, virtual stores, and more.”
Peapod is expanding convenience with home delivery or drive-through-style pick-up. Same day, next day and advance scheduling are available, accommodating “anytime, anywhere” grocery shopping with a handy mobile app and virtual stores. Peapod also adds value with built-in sorting features for nutritional requirements and a ‘checkout counter’ that helps manage spending as you go. In a Consumer Reports study from fall 2012 on how online grocery shopping eases grocery bills, Peapod.com topped the list as a money-saving site where shoppers can spend less and get more.
In addition to dedicated online grocery services like Peapod, food retailers are also utilizing other online venues, not usually known for their edible offerings. This includes online megastore Amazon.
Daphna Havkin-Frenkel’s business, Bakto Flavors, started in 2006 with a few options but has since expanded to several dozen gourmet spice and flavoring options that move far past the company’s initial vanilla starting point. The growth of Bakto Flavors has been in part due to the availability of Bakto Flavors’ products on Amazon. With Amazon behind the company’s sales, the former small shop now has global customers.
According to Havkin-Frenkel, Bakto Flavors still utilizes brick and mortar stores in the New York City area to reach consumers, but the company’s proprietary website sales, partnered with the sales it makes on Amazon have made the Internet the company’s biggest overall sales forum.
Of course, despite the growing trend of online grocery sales, experts are quick to point out that time honored physical trips to the grocery store are not going away any time soon. Still, retailers and CPG companies that are not yet online would be wise to consider this as an important venue for future sales. “While weekly trips to the grocery store are a time-honored tradition, consumers in 24 markets across the country are eating up the idea of online shopping…where hand-picked, hand-delivered groceries are always just a click away,” Porter said.

British Specialty Food Companies Queuing Up to Enter U.S. Market

By Lucas Witman

Less than a decade ago, many Anglophiles and British expatriates living in the United States were compelled to seek out niche specialty retailers and online food stores when looking for their favorite U.K. brands. Today, however, nearly every major grocery store contains at least a small section of British imports, and picking up a package of PG Tips or a Cadbury Flake bar can be as simple as heading to the local market. For a country that once viewed British cuisine with a collective air of disdain, the recent explosion in popularity of U.K. imports in this country may have come as a surprise to some. However, for those involved in the burgeoning British specialty food industry, this trend has been a long time coming.

British culture has perhaps never been more omnipresent in the United States than it is today. One cannot navigate contemporary American popular culture without a proper education in Harry Potter, Downton Abbey, Simon Cowell and Adele. Recently, the 2012 London Summer Olympics, Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee and the royal wedding of Prince William to Kate Middleton have put Great Britain at the epicenter of international attention. It was perhaps somewhat inevitable that British cuisine would follow as the logical next trend to emerge from the British Isles

“I think British products have got a real sort of cache here,” said U.K. Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Owen Paterson. “Obviously there is a very longstanding close relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom. The Olympics gave, I think, a huge shove in this great campaign of British culture, British history, British fashion, British music—and I think British food is part of that. There’s a real interest.”

According to Paterson, it is the British specialty food industry’s emphasis on family-run companies producing artisanal products in small batches using high quality, locally sourced ingredients that particularly appeals to a 21st century U.S. clientele.

“I think that probably the attraction for U.S. consumers is that they know that these are made by small niche family businesses working in small rural areas where you will have completely impeccable traceability of raw material and very reliable systems of production,” Paterson said. “You’re not buying anonymous meat products washing around the world commodities circuit in gray frozen blocks. These are local materials converted very rapidly into top class products and sold by the people who bought the material, who converted them into a food product and who actually shipped them and marketed them. I think that’s really attractive to many American consumers.”

Nina Uppal, Owner of New York Delhi, a British snack company most famous for its ViP Nuts brand, echoes Paterson’s sentiments. “There is such a desire for good food, for quality food and for innovation in food as well. You get all of that in the U.K.,” Uppal said. “The British brand alone draws so much attention from around the world, and that’s the impression we get wherever we go…People want to know what the Brits are doing next. That’s what we see. We not only offer the quality, but it’s also the innovation. Those are really the two things that you need when it comes to great food.”

Unfortunately, for British companies anxious to enter the U.S. market and reach out to a brand new consumer base that is increasingly hungry for U.K. imports, there are potential roadblocks as well. Navigating U.S. regulations, getting FDA approval and filling out necessary paperwork can be serious challenges to small food companies hoping to introduce their products to the United States. However, Paterson emphasizes that his office and the U.K. government are committed to helping small companies overcome these obstacles, and he sees nothing that is truly insurmountable for companies that are committed to navigating the process.

For Paterson, the biggest challenge British food companies will face is finding the right American partners to help them get their products into the hands of consumers.

“I think the challenge is finding a good distributor and a good agent who they can work with,” he said. Uppal cites the same issue, saying her biggest concern is “getting a credible importer, somebody that understands your product, who is passionate about your product, and can get the right sort of distribution for it as well.”

Looking to the future, U.S. specialty food retailers are anxious to predict what might be the next major food trend to emerge from Great Britain. Both Paterson and Uppal have their own predictions for what foods, flavors and fashions are sure to show up next in the international aisles of grocery stores across the United States.

For Paterson, the one trend really dominating the British food scene today is the use of particularly strong, bold flavors. He joked, “With deepest respect to American chocolate…It does tend to be a bit bland compared to our chocolate. And I think bland might be another adjective one could apply to American cheese.” Taking a more serious tone, Paterson continued, “I think there is interest in quite strong flavored products. [British] chocolate is really strong. There’s [also] quite a lot of hot products, chili products.”

Uppal points to the growing interest among British consumers in eating healthier, cleaner foods. “The huge emphasis is on natural and non-GMO. People are very specific about what they’re eating. They’re very aware of what they’re eating and what goes into their food,” she said. “So I think the cleaner the ingredient, the better…It’s not so much the organic thing, though I believe that’s still popular, people just need to be reassured that what they’re getting, it’s nutritious. It’s good. It’s clean. That’s what they’re looking for.”

Paterson hopes to be able to promote increased trade between the United States and the United Kingdom, recently meeting with officials in Washington D.C. in an effort to promote a potential free trade agreement between the two nations. Ensuring that the recent successes experienced by British specialty food companies in this country are not merely the evidence of a fleeting fad but rather represent the beginnings of a long and fruitful relationship will require sustained work on the part of government officials and industry leaders alike.

Foodies and Cheesemongers Lament Looming Loss of Beloved French Mimolette Cheese

By Lucas Witman

Cheese loving consumers and cheese retailers alike are up in arms about a recent move made by the Food and Drug Administration to block imports of French cheese, mimolette. News of the possible crackdown came after American and French media learned that a 1,100-pound shipment of the cheese had been refused entry into the country when FDA inspectors in New Jersey found unacceptable levels of microscopic cheese mites on the product. Today, the future of mimolette in the United States is uncertain, as FDA rules may prohibit future imports of authentic French-made mimolette into the country.

Mimolette, traditionally made in Lille, France, is a hard cheese with a distinctive bright orange color and a mottled gray rind. Sometimes compared to a Dutch Edam or aged Gouda, this cow’s milk cheese is prized for its nutty flavor and chewy texture.

Mimolette is also distinctive for the way it is ripened: through the intentional introduction of cheese mites, which add flavor to the cheese while eating away at the wheel’s exterior. It is these mites that are at the center of the ongoing controversy surrounding mimolette.

The FDA has set the acceptable limit for cheese mites at six mites per square inch. The agency believes that a higher concentration of these microscopic organisms on cheese can negatively impact the health of those with certain allergies. The agency, however, denies explicitly blocking the importation of mimolette cheese. It states that it is merely enforcing existing food safety standards and conducting routine surveillance sampling.

“Technically there is no ban,” said Benoit de Vitton, North American Representative for Isigny Sainte Mère. “[The FDA] will tell you there is no ban, but there is a ban.” Isigny is a major French producer of mimolette cheese that is imported into the United States. According to de Vitton, by prohibiting the importation and sale of cheeses with a certain concentration of cheese mites, the FDA is effectively banning all mimolette imports, as this cheese requires these mites as a necessary element of its production.

“We bring the product to this country. We have to respect the rules,” said de Vitton. “We’ll do our best, but it is very difficult.”

With the exception of some die-hard mimolette connoisseurs, most consumers and retailers are likely to be little affected by a ban on one relatively obscure variety of French cheese. However, de Vitton is quick to point out that the FDA’s stance on mimolette has potential market implications reaching far beyond this one cheese. “There are a lot of other cheeses that are affected,” said de Vitton. “It’s going to be a threat to a lot of other cheeses that are aged.” This is because cheese mites call not only mimolette, but a wide variety of hard cheeses produced both in France and here in the United States, home.

“American cheese makers will tell you that of course they have mites too,” said de Vitton. “Any type of aged cheese will have mites.” He worries that a crackdown on one cheese could snowball into a wider cheese industry sweep.

When asked whether he believes that the FDA has a legitimate reason to be concerned with the concentration of cheese mites on mimolette or other hard cheeses, de Vitton responded definitively: “Absolutely not.” He thinks that the U.S. government is simply overreacting to a benign if somewhat unsettling organism that everyone inevitably comes into contact with each and everyday.

“It’s really sad,” said de Vitton. “You can eat [fast food burgers], and it’s going to make you sick five minutes after eating it. People eat these things all the time.” He argues that it is extremely unlikely that mimolette cheese offers much of a health threat to the public, especially as the mites live on the cheese’s inedible rind. “For two people who maybe could eventually get sick—It’s a hyper precaution,” he said.

The question remains whether mimolette will return to U.S. cheese cases in some form or another, or whether U.S. consumers will have to travel across the Atlantic for a taste of the cheese. “Mimolette and how it’s made today—you won’t see it,” said de Vitton. “For sure you won’t find mimolette with the rind ever again in the U.S.” He said that some cheese producers may attempt to wash the rind to eliminate the mites or to import the cheese without its rind, but this will mean that U.S. consumers will not have access to the cheese in its authentic form.

Asked whether he thinks there is a chance that the FDA might relax its six-mites-per-square-inch restriction, de Vitton predicts that there will be a change in these standards, but it will not benefit his industry. “Now it’s six mites per square inch. It’s going to be zero,” he said.

Meanwhile cheese hungry consumers in this country are not taking the FDA’s implicit mimolette ban in stride, with some taking to the streets to express both their disapproval with the agency and their passion for the dairy delicacy. At one recent event in New York City, protestors dressed in orange shirts, hats and sunglasses worked to educate passersby about the cheese, passing out free samples and spreading information about the ban.

The most important message the protestors at the event had for interested consumers, both those with a longtime affinity for mimolette and those who are new to the product, is to get it while you can. With many U.S. cheese retailers going through the last of their stocks it is unclear if and when they will be able to get more. Therefore, if you see mimolette at your local shop, now is the time to grab it.

For de Vitton, it is important that consumers and cheese retailers continue to stay abreast of the FDA’s changing food safety standards when it comes to cheese, as you never know when a product you love and rely on may be taken off the shelves: “It’s mimolette today. It’s going to be something else next time.”

Retailers Cope as Beef Prices Hit All Time High

By Lucas Witman

As the first days of summer began driving outdoor cooking enthusiasts to load up their grills with hamburgers and T-bones this year, many consumers were taken aback by the high prices of these seasonal staples. The price of beef nationwide hit a record high in June, with the national average price for steak standing at $4.81/lb. and the average price for ground beef reaching $3.51/lb. With prices still on the upswing, many consumers are being forced to consider switching to more inexpensive proteins.

The reason for rising beef prices is multifarious, according to Ty Freeborn, Owner and CEO of specialty beef producer Steakhouse Elite. “You’ve obviously got higher input costs, from corn to fuel,” said Freeborn. “More importantly, you’ve gone through six to eight years of drought in the largest cow producing part of the country.”

Over the past several years, as drought has plagued much of the country, the price of cattle feed has risen as well. As a result, ranchers have been forced to reduce the size of their herds. The reduction in herd size has led to an overall reduction in beef supply, in turn effecting a rise in prices. “There just aren’t the mother cows left to produce a calf every year,” Freeborn said.

There is little indication that cattle stocks will be replenished to pre-drought levels in the United States any time in the near future. “Historically, this trend is only headed in one direction,” said Freeborn. “I don’t know if you’re ever going to see America’s cow herd turn the corner and start growing again.” In short, higher beef prices are likely here to stay, and this is a reality to which consumers, retailers and the beef industry itself are going to need to adapt.

The good news for those invested in the marketing of beef is that consumers do not seem prepared to abandon the protein altogether, regardless of its rise in price. “Most consumers are staying in the beef franchise. They’re continuing to be customers,” said John Lundeen, Executive Director of Market Research for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. According to NCBA research, just 24 percent of today’s consumers are eschewing steak altogether, because of price, and only 16 percent state that they are abandoning ground beef for the same reason. This means that the majority plan to continue to purchase the protein.

Although consumers may not be prepared to drop beef from their dinner plates, beef retailers and the industry itself will need to shift the way they reach out to these individuals if they are going to keep them coming back to the meat case. It will be increasingly important to identify what exactly shoppers are looking for when it comes to purchasing beef and to change the product accordingly.

According to NCBA research, the top three things consumers are looking for when making meat purchases is a longer shelf life (48 percent), freshness (46 percent) and freezer-friendly packaging (37 percent). In short, the same old plastic wrapped Styrofoam containers simply are not cutting it any more when it comes to satisfying consumers’ desire for a fresher, longer-lasting, freezer-friendly product.

“Extended shelf life packaging takes on importance,” said Lundeen. “With higher priced inventory, you have to take action to minimize shrink.” One company that is working to innovate beef packaging is Sealed Air’s Cryovac®. Cryovac is bringing vacuum seal technology to the meat case, offering beef purveyors a new type of packaging that helps the product stay fresher longer, that can be placed immediately in the freezer without transferring containers, that risks fewer leaks and that is more environmentally sustainable. “We know there are benefits here for the consumer for this packaging type,” said Lundeen.

The team at Cryovac acknowledges that effectively marketing vacuum sealed beef to a consumer populace that has always purchased their meats in the same type of packaging will require some work on their part, as well as on the part of retailers themselves. “Education on the features and benefits of vacuum packaging can change consumer perception,” said Jerry Kelly, Food Retail Expert for Sealed Air’s Cryovac Brand. “The more consumers know about the features and benefits of vacuum packaging, the more definite intent to purchase increases.” According to Kelly, after being educated about this new packaging, 76 percent of consumers were more likely to purchase vacuum packaged beef, with 58 percent much more likely.

Of course, it is not only the consumer that must be educated about the new packaging, but those who work behind the meat case as well. “We talk about education. We need to educate meat department people as well,” said Kelly. “We’re committed to helping retailers.”

While Cryovac is working to satisfy the growing consumer demand for a fresher, longer lasting product, Steakhouse Elite is responding to another prominent desire of those purchasing beef. For Freeborn, his company’s success is based on satisfying customers by giving them a product that is worth every penny they spend on it.

Steakhouse Elite specializes in American Kobe-Crafted beef, a high end product that outshines its competitors in the meat case in both taste and texture. “American Kobe-style beef has a unique texture and flavor that just can’t be matched,” said Freeborn. “People try to build a better burger by adding toppings and sauces. We made the burger itself better.”

Freeborn argues that grocery shoppers today are willing to spend a little more on beef if his company offers them something that they feel merits the cost. “It is bringing a lifestyle upgrade along with it,” Freeborn said about Steakhouse Elite’s Kobe-style beef. “People are buying into a better way of life for a few bucks. People like that.”

Still, regardless of what retailers and beef suppliers do to reach out to consumers, it is inevitable that for the time being some will eschew high priced red meat for less expensive protein options. According to Freeborn, there is little more that the industry can do to market beef to this group than wait for perceptions to change. “If you used to be able to buy a pork chop for $1.50, and now you see the pork chop for $3, you don’t see value in that,” he said. “It’s going to take a while for consumers to get used to it. It will take a little time for consumers to adjust.”

The Happy Chocolatier Launches Signature Truffle Cubze

1-HappyChocolatierFILL-CSThe Happy Chocolatier™, LLC recently went national with Cubze, the company’s signature cube-shaped truffle confections for the specialty food, gift basket and retail gift trades. Cubze are truffle centers formed into one inch cubes, coated in rich milk or dark chocolate and hand-wrapped in jewel-toned foils with an inspirational message about happiness.
Made by hand with the finest all natural ingredients, Cubze truffles are available in a variety of flavors including chocolate, chocolate raspberry, chocolate cappuccino, chocolate mint, chocolate walnut, cookies and cream, cranberry walnut, and peanut butter. Each piece is a one-inch cube.
The Cubze gift collection includes a variety of attractive gift boxes and bags with seasonal bands. In addition, the Cubze are available in bulk for display in candy cases or for use in gift baskets or in counter displays.
For information on wholesale ordering, contact The Happy Chocolatier by email at info@thehappychocolatier.com, by fax at 978.268.5025 or by phone at 781.910.0904. Also, visit the company online at www.thehappychocolatier.com.

Cherry Cordials from Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate Company

3-ChocolateChocolateFILL-CSPlump Maraschino Cherry Cordials from Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate Company contain no artificial colors, no artificial flavors, no preservatives and no high fructose corn syrup. The gourmet confections are naturally cordialized in a liquid center and dipped in all-natural milk chocolate. Your customers will taste the difference in this all-natural version of a classic sweet treat.
Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate Company’s Maraschino Cherry Cordials are available in eight-piece, 4-ounce boxes for a SRP of $11.95.
For more information, visit Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate Company online at www.chocolatechocolate.com or at http://wholesale.chocolatechocolate.com. In addition, contact Dan Abel Jr at 314.338.3501, ext. 130.

Vintage Bee’s Creamed Honey with White Chocolate Almond

4-VintageBeeFILL-BGJust like the luscious nougat one might find inside a chocolate-covered cherry, but minus the cherry, Vintage Bee’s Creamed Honey with White Chocolate Almond features only raw creamed honey without any added sugar, preservatives or dairy. The product can be used as a syrup over ice cream, as icing for brownies, as a topping for bagels or as a sweetener for coffee or oatmeal. Try it right out of the jar for a great pick-me-up. There is truly no wrong way to eat Vintage Bee’s Creamed Honey with White Chocolate Almond. And with less than ½ a gram of fat per teaspoon, the product is a great alternative to a candy bar.
Vintage Bee’s Creamed Honey with White Chocolate Almond is available in an 8-ounce jar for an SRP of $7.99.
For more information, contact Vintage Bee at 919.699.6788, or visit www.vintagebee.com.

Graycliff Chocolatier’s White Chocolate Passion Fruit Bonbons

GraycliffChocolatiers-CSThe team at Graycliff Chocolatier believes in creating the finest chocolate from the bean to the bar, using only the highest quality ingredients sourced from fair trade origins. It is also the company’s aim to incorporate a taste of the Bahamas into every bite. With that in mind, the company introduces its White Chocolate Passion Fruit Bonbon.
Made from scratch using Jamaican cacao beans, the soul of this chocolate is enrobed in silky white chocolate. The bonbons are then beautifully hand-painted in reds and yellows.
At the ‘heart’ of this masterpiece lies fresh passion fruit, pureed and blended with a hint of fresh lime zest to further enhance the natural flavor of this fabulous fruit.
Graycliff Chocolate is truly authentic, truly delicious and truly Bahamian.
For more information head to www.facebook.com/GraycliffChocolatier.

Chocolate and Confections from Prova Inc. and Sotiros Foods

macaroonsProva Inc. has been processing and making vanilla products, cocoa flavorings and coffee extracts for 67 years. Using proprietary techniques, the company’s flavoring products are more concentrated and more heat stable than conventional products. These flavoring products perfectly complement entremets, ice cream, cream desserts, mousses, biscuits and confections.
Sotiros Foods Inc. is a foodservice distributor, serving the professional chefs in Chicago for 28 years. Sotiros Foods is committed to bringing in any of their products even if they do not normally stock it.
Sotiros Foods has represented many of its suppliers, including Guittard Chocolates, for more than 10 years. Guittard Chocolate Company has been processing cocoa, and making traditional chocolate products and confectioners coating for 145 years. The “Collection Etienne” artisan product line was recently expanded to include more couverture chocolates, each made with all natural non-GMO ingredients, such as pure cane sugar and real vanilla beans. Current offerings include two white (31 and 35 percent), two milk (38 and 41 percent), seven dark (55, 58, 61, 64, 70, 72 and 91 percent), one organic milk (38 percent) and one organic dark (66 percent).
These two fine companies, Prova Inc. and Sotiros Foods Inc., sampled and sold their products at the Chicago Fine Chocolate Show from Oct. 18 to 20, 2013, and at the National Chocolate Show from Oct. 20-22, 2013. Contact Glynn Searl at 708.371.0002 for additional information.