The national Institute of Food Technologists (IFT) is the “Superbowl” of our yearly food tech activities for the year!  This is where food product developers from all over the country and world convene for conferences and the annual Food Expo.  USHBC has a super booth in the middle of the action and for three days met with friends old and new and talked blueberry use in the food industry.

Also attending the show were packers and shippers of blueberry ingredients and we met, assisted and talked blueberries!

This year, we participated in the Food Export Association Midwest trade mission where sponsored companies attend and meet at appointments during the expo.  This year we met with companies from:

Cost Rica, Mexico, Guatemala, Japan, Colombia, Indonesia, Dominican Republic, South Korea

This year, our FoodTech from Vietnam Hana attended and helped man the booth and attend meetings.  We received a team from Vincommerce in Vietnam and organized a visit to farms in Mississippi and subsequently in California, Oregon and Washington.

Interesting developments this year:

Ingredient solutions are hot.  Items like powders, extracts, purees and concentrates are appealing to the global food industry who need ingredients for high speed processing, extrusion and other processes.

Latin American companies are on the move and USA blueberries are of interest for dairy, baking and confectionery.  Even countries who produce blueberries are interested in US highbush blueberries.

See you in Chicago next year!