Beautiful Blueberry Extracts for Vietnam

Two years ago, we started seeing Korean skincare products on the market in Vietnam.  Now here is an example of a new Vietnam-made product using USA blueberry extract and olive oil!   Hana, our local foodtech, has been linking local companies with samples and supplies!

Seoul Food & Hotel

What a great exposition in Seoul.   Korea has seen a rapid rise in imports of frozen blueberries in the past decade.  Now, we are working on new uses of all forms of blueberries including frozen, liquid dried and vert dry powders and flakes.

FoodTech Sunyong lee works on blueberry sauce formulations in advance of the Seoul Foods Exposition.

Preparation of samples for tasting.

Laboratory testing and analysis to answer the questions of the potential end users.

Preparation of formula and prototype documentation.

Off to the USA Blueberries both at the Seoul Food and Hotel at Ilsan.

The US Ambassador to the Republic of Korea visits the blueberry booth and is happy to see the blueberry bi-bim-bap sauce!




Seoul Foods Expo – 2019

Korea FoodTech Sunyong Lee presents unique Korean sauce concepts utilizing frozen Blueberries at the Seoul Foods Exposition in Ilsan May 21-24, 2019 A bit hit in the land of spicy foods!

Blueberry Honey Sauce.  Combines two ingredients for health as well as ginseng!

Blueberry Bi Bim Bap Sauce.  This popular one bowl dish includes rice (bap) and  veggies (bi bim).  No bi bim bap is complete without a savory sauce which is applied and mashed into the healthful mixture!  The savory Korean sauce with blueberries is a big hit here at the Seoul Foods and chefs are snapping up the recipe.

Blueberry Sesame.   Amazing how well the blueberry mellows out the traditional dipping sauce!

Blueberry Chutney. Although not Korean,  Indian foods are a trendy item.   Not too hot the way I like it, but Korean visitors like the combination of red hot chili and blueberry.





Korea New Blueberry Innovation

Lots of blueberry innovation in the and of the morning calm!

Blueberry jam on the Go!

Single-serving blueberry cheese cake.

Blueberry yogurt puff for baby!

Beautiful yogurt pack at E-MArt!

Real Blueberry Juice

Meal kit for making three blueberry pancakes!


Oh Myanmar

It all started almost a year ago in New Orleans, Louisiana.  USHBC exhibited at the Dairy Deli Bakery Exposition which is a gathering of up and coming companies in the food industry.  It was an excellent show, lots of interest in blueberries.  All of a sudden, a group of 15 bakery owners from Myanmar (Formerly Burma) arrive at our booth!  They were in town on a USDA sponsored training visit.   They were excited to see blueberries!  After a nice visit — I mentioned “why don’t you head up to Mississippi and see the real thing.”  After a call to one of the growers in Poplarville, off they went to blueberry heaven!

Now beam ahead to 2019.  We received a note from the USDA office that this same group of bakers were organizing an all day seminar and exposition in Yangon, the capital.  The concept was for the traveling group to share experiences with the local baking industry.  USHBC was invited as VIP guest and Tom and Hana headed off to Myanmar!

I arrived at midnight to this exotic Southeast Asian city.  In the morning, here is the view from my hotel window.  This place is the fastest growing economy on earth according to the World Bank!

Welcome to the Showcase!

In the morning, we had an exposition and bakers and suppliers from throughout Myanmar attended.  Here is Hana hard at work at the booth.

Next we had a chef demonstrate how to make a Myanmar pizza with  blueberries.

Yummy pizza!

A great success.  We re-connected with our Myanmar friends and some are already using frozen and dried blueberries in local products!

Hana gets participation award from Rachel Nelson of the USDA in Myanmar.

Good day from Myanmar!

Food & Hotel Vietnam Expo

This was the third and most successful Food & Hotel Vietnam participation for USHBC

Food Hotel Vietnam (FHV) is the big event for USHBC in Vietnam each year.  This year, Hana and her crew did a wonderful job organizing the USHBC stand.  Visitors were lined up to taste smoothies made on the spot!  In just two years, USHBC has developed a network of trade contacts that are now purchasing and distributing blueberries.  This includes, frozen, juice, dried and ingredient solutions.

Hana meets with visiting food processors

Here is the USHBC display at a USDA-FAS Sponsored Showcase. Another great opportunity to expand our commercial network.  Mandy Chen (on left) from Taiwan helps staff the booth!  This year — everyone is talking about Fresh Blueberries coming soon!


See you next year!


The Long March

Delegation visits California


A long journey for our visitors from China Customs.  But, a good one.  First we visited Blueberry Farms and Packing facilities in the Bakersfield area.  Temperatures were in the 100s!  Then to Orlando and up to Gainsville to see the Florida production.

California visit

Here are some photos below.  Want to thank the growers and packers in California and Florida who helped make this journey happen!    Also all of the experts who stepped up to share their tremendous knowledge.

Chinese Customs officials visit farms in California and Florida.

This was an important visit where Chinese officials visited and assessed the US blueberry fields as far as a potential item to be allowed into China.  (Currently, fresh blueberries are restricted).  Lots of documents and paperwork have been exchanged over the past years and having the Chinese officials in the country and in the field was a great step towards market access.


Mission Accomplished!    Almost!


GLIFT = Great Lakes IFT Meeting


Welcome to Battle Creek Michigan.  As the sign says this is the place where breakfast cereals are made.  It is the home of Kellogg’s and Post and others.  What brings the Blueberry Guy to Michigan this April: The annual Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) Great Lakes Section Expo!  (GLIFT)

USHBC has been active in the IFT from the start.  We participate in the annual meeting, advertise in the publication read by members.  These are the product developers who are launching the hundreds of new products each year!

Welcome to my “office.”

While the managers attend the big shows in Chicago and Vegas — the workers attend the regional meetings.  This is a great time to set up an “office” at the event center next to the Kellogg’s world Research and Development Center in downtown Battle Creek.  We arrange informal meetings and drop ins from the different research laboratories stop by.  It is a great way to research the food industry and promote processed blueberries to the food industry.

Friends from Van Drunen Farms, big boosters of blueberries!

In my view, the most important activity at these events is to meet up with the sellers of blueberry ingredients.  These are the industrial food brokers who are continually in the field selling our blueberries.  They are important and we support in any way.  They are always happy to see the support and attendance of the USHBC FoodTech program.

The GLIFT run is also a great opportunity to meet up with growers and packers in the area!

See you next year!

Michigan Meets Myanmar

What a great opportunity after the GLIFT meeting to buzz up to Lansing to meet up with our good friend Entomologist Deluxe, Dr. Rufus Issacs of Michigan State University  (Middle person waving) .  Rufus will always drop whatever is doing to help with market access documents and foreign visitors.   Now on the far left is a special visitor: Dr. Yee from Myanmar who is on a study visit to MSU to see market access work first hand.   Of course we found the only Burmese restaurant in town and sat down for an enjoyable meeting and discussion.   The highlight of the evening was when Dr. Yee pulled out her smart phone and showed us a copy of the market access request from the US Blueberry Industry that she diligently reviewed and approved last year!  This has led to the first shipments of fresh US blueberries to Myanmar this season!   Thank you Dr. Yee and Myanmar!  Thank you Rufus and your crew at the MSU Entomology lab!



Expocomer Panama


Bienvenidos to Panama!   USHBC conducted the first trade mission and expositon to the Republic of Panama March 27-30, 2019 in Panama City.  For the past five years, we have met dozens of Panamanian companies at expositions in Miami.  Food companies in the region including baking, confectionery and snacks are seeking Real Blueberries and this year Blueberry FoodTech hopped the short flight to Panama for a look!

Commercial bakeries in the region look to use frozen blueberries in muffins and other items.

Dried blueberries work in the snacking culture.

Purees and puree concentrate is desired for ice creams and sorbets.  Panamanians are crazy for ice cream, especially in the heat of the April Summer where the temperatures soar to 90s and high humidity!

The USHBC Strategic directs  marketing and promotional activities to seek out new high value markets!   While most activities continue in the Asian markets, it is time to look close to home in the Central American market.

Stay tuned.

Adios from Panama!


Taiwan Frozen Polybag Promotion to the Rescue

PX Mart is the largest retail grocery chain in Taiwan. To start off the new season.

Simple Concept” Sampling of frozen polybag blueberries in-store, preparing smoothies with simple ingredients sold in store!

Results: Blue bar is before, orange bar after. The most positive result — importers of frozen blueberries greatly appreciated the support and are back on track with USA frozen imports!


Global Pet Expo

Orlando, Florida – USHBC FoodTech is just back from the GPE!

Ten years ago, you had to look very hard for blueberry-containing products.  In fact many were in the bird feed area.  Today, we see blueberry use in all areas of the multi-billion dollar pet food industry.  The big trend: we are seeing more and more use of pure, powder and higher value ingredients.

Stay tuned for some more GPE excitement!

Saigon Chefs Association

USHBC FoodTech Hana presents concepts at Saigon Chef Association meeting

Ho Chi Minh City – Hana continues to work the booming foodservice channel in Vietnam with cooperation with the local chef association.   Chefs are excited to see frozen blueberries available at last in Vietnam as well as dried and soon fresh!

Food Ingredients China

Food Manufacturers from throughout China attend FIC

China is a huge country of more than 1.3 billion.  How do you reach the food processing companies spread throughout 23 provinces.   Just like back home in the USA food processors attend major trade expositions similar to the Institute of Food Technologists.  Attendees include Research and Development staff from food companies from all over China.  They include local companies as well as multinationals.  What are they looking for?  The answer is — attractive value added ingredients that are formula ready.   Besides frozen, they are looking for dried, liquid and high tech ingredients such as powders, flakes and others.