Here’s to Healthy Blueberry — Hong Kong

I once met a veterinarian from Canada who told me how freeze dried blueberry powder was used in horse racing and cutting horse feeds.   On an unrelated discovery — check out the popular race horse Healthy Blueberry which has been a fan favorite at the Jockey Club Race Track at Happy Valley Hong Kong.  According to the local raisin form, this popular gelding was born on August 29, 2006 in Bahrain (Middle East).   Healthy Blueberry had a record of 4 wins in 61 starts — which is pretty good! This has garnered almost $3.5 million USD in prize money.   We wish Healthy Blueberry a wonderful retirement and long healthy life!

Hello from the “Garden State”

New Jersey is the home of highbush blueberry cultivation.   Check out our tabletop booth at the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) in Somerset (North Jersey).   Local food processors are getting excited about the upcoming Centennial.

New Product – Blueberry Seeds

Check out what I saw at the recent New York/New Jersey Institute of Food Technologists exhibition. Blueberries have a very small seed and this is also pressed for an oil and milled to make a powder. The applications: seem to be many including natural cosmetics and health foods and supplements.

Fruitsmart Blueberry Seed Oil
Fruitsmart Blueberry Seed Powder
Fruitsmart Blueberry Seeds

Mascot Mania – Korea

From the “land of the morning calm” — by popular demand — here is a short video on our Mascot Contest!   70 designers – 70 mascots and one winner!   Tell us what you think!

Blueberry Muffin Cracker

It is great to see a blueberry product category like a muffin — turn into a product extension in a totally unrelated area!   Check out the new Blueberry Muffin Cracker!  (Lance)

“Blueberry” Bagel???

Visited the Maple Leaf Lounge of Air Canada at the Vancouver International Airport (YVR) yesterday morning on the way back from the BC Blueberry Council 25 year Anniversary Gala.   Grabbed what I thought was a plan bagel and popped it into the toaster.   All of a sudden the sick sweet smell of artificial blueberry aroma!     Not only is this “blueberry” bagel artificial, but you cannot even see the artificial blueberries in the bagel.   Not even a speck of the blue fat bits, grain bits or whatever they make them with was visible.

This is the worst I have seen yet and you can bet we will track it down and comment.

Dried Blueberries Launched in Colombia!

The South American nation of Colombia is a true emerging market for blueberries.   Colombians love blueberries, they have locally produced blueberries available at times of the year.

Now, they are enjoying dried blueberries.

Check out this interesting pack just launched.  Although named after a Canadian province — the dried blueberries are from the USA.

BC Blueberry Council 25 Year Anniversary Gala

Blueberry Guy had a great time at the BC Gala.   Wonderful turnout, great food, and especially a chance to meet some of the real pioneers in the blueberry industry.  A few quick shots.

The highlight of the event, presentation to the Blueberry Pioneers! More on these wonderful people later!
Chairman Parm Bains of USHBC and Mark Sweeney the BC Blueberry Guru.
BC Blueberry Council Chairman Jason Smith, and my boss Mark Villata, Executive Director of the USHBC
Excellent North Indian Buffet

USA Food Showcase Showcases Blueberries!

Look what I just got in the mail!   The Annual USA Food Showcase  is held each year in Chicago, sponsored by the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA).   The “Blueberry Flyer” reports that thousands of domestic and international food industry buyers from more than 75 countries will attend.  This flyer is sent to these thousands and will certainly give highbush blueberries some great exposure.

Locally Grown!

Nothing like fresh blueberries!   Now, local fresh berries in April!!!

As a native Californian, “Blueberry Guy” did not have a lot of fresh blueberries to choose from while growing up.   It is so wonderful to go to the market and see kids dragging their moms to the blueberry displays at the market.

Check out this ad from my local Mollie Stone market.   While fresh blueberries have long been available in April from Florida, it is amazing to see the developments on the west coast!

Roy and his Jarred Blueberries in Japan

Nothing like seeing a friendly face when abroad.    Walking down the produce aisles in a Japanese store, saw this display of jarred blueberries from Oregon Berry Packing.  Note the promotional material with Roy Malensky and his two sons Jeff and Brian!   Japanese consumers look for a connection to their food supply, and local produce quite often contains information and photos of the farmers and the land they farm.    While standing with my iPad, I noticed two consumers pass, notice the sign and scoop up jars of the product.    Although this display was in the jam and jelly section — the jarred product normally is positioned in the produce section near the fresh berries.

Sheipa Leisure Farm – Taiwan

Ten years ago, Taiwan was unfamiliar with blueberries.   Now it is one of the leading markets for US fresh blueberries.   Check out the Sheipa  Leisure Farm in Wufang Township, Hsinchu County – Taiwan.

According to the website, they introduced highbush blueberries to the farm in 1988 and offer visitors a u-pick blueberry experience in July and August.    The area is in the beautiful mountains near Sheipa National Park.


Highbush Blueberries – The Beauty Berry

For years we have been marveling at the Asian attraction to blueberries as part of a beauty regime.   Ask consumers why they purchase: skin, hair, nails are the normal answer.   For centuries Chinese and Asian medicine research has discussed the role of blueberries as part of beauty and skin care.

Here is our new booth which had a debut in a recent exhibition in Japan.