December 31, 2014

2014 – This years top ten lets remember when             December 31st,2014

We are at the end of another tremendous year in the produce industry.  While we try and publish relevant content all year long, we reserve the final two editions of Market Notes to be as irrelevant as possible. This edition enhances that challenge even more. In an attempt to have life imitate art we have actually made up a few of this year’s top ten.  See if you can guess which ones are art and which ones are life. Either way, enjoy this doctorate level tongue in cheek review. Although they are numbered their importance is equal.  

  •      We Are Only In It For The Money-   We are always fascinated when people in the produce industry end up in jail. For an industry that is all about feeding people and takes such pride in what it does it is always humbling to find the incidents where ego’s do not apply and greed takes over. Potatoes growers looking for a better bottom line applied Rid-X (a bacteria that breaks down food for septic tanks) to their crop so they could claim the loss. Hope these growers don’t get jobs in the prison kitchen or that population may reduce as well.
  •      Food Show Etiquette – NOT –   Another Culinary Classic!  Food shows are huge stress for us. From the cooking stations to the product display combined with the media, advertising and covering our absence it is tireless work. Along with meeting, greeting and feeding the attendees we are always looking for new business at these events. We often invite our growers to add authenticity to our booth of brokers. So, imagine how surprised we are when while serving potatoes, an attendee tells us he can get the potatoes for us cheaper, not realizing he is speaking to the grower. So, go ahead, ask us why we don’t do food shows any more.
  •      Vaporize Your Truffles And Peel Your Pot – This is a no brainer for users of both but the Bio-Medico University of Rome in Italy has made it official. They have discovered that black truffles have the means to make anandamide to attract animals that will eat the truffle and spread the truffle spores in their dung. Anandamide is part of the endocannabinoid system that affects mental states and bodily function.  Bottom line is truffles, like cannabis effect and release serotonin that creates joy or bliss. As pure THC becomes a culinary ingredient, can you imagine when the two ingredients are combined in the kitchen. New judgments for eating now include, taste, texture, and post meal mood. Could be bad for the spirits industry.
  • Musically Enhance Your Taste Buds- Researchers at the University of Oxford have discovered that the musical tones can have an effect on the flavor of the food you are eating while listening.  They suggest the high tones enhance sweet flavors and, you guessed it, low tones enhance bitter flavors.  Restaurants are now analyzing their day part menus and while paring with wine they are also pairing with music. Individual music at each table is being considered so music, like wine can now match the meal. So now you can order a steak with potatoes and beans, match it with a good Cabernet and Sgt. Peppers side two.
  • Ugly Fruits And Vegetables- We think this is a great idea.  A supermarket chain in France has started marketing misshapen fruits and vegetables at prices that are reduced as much as 30%. This allows for less food thrown away and an opportunity for consumers to eat more fruits and vegetables. As many of these vegetables are cut up prior to use, the original shape is irrelevant. We hope to see a new category for retailers to choose from; US #!, #2, culls and uglies.
  • Environmental Changes For Produce Consumption- Springfield City Council member Mr. Earl Duckforth introduced a new measure restricting the consumption of certain vegetables by other council members 24 hours prior to meeting. Mr. Duckforth believes that this is just a common courtesy but several members apparently do not agree. “Our meetings are very long, the room is very small, and things can get tense,” explained Duckforth. “With all the high energy and emotion, the excess methane can really send you over the edge,” Duckforth concluded. Broccoli, Beans, Garlic, and several other cruciferous vegetables were listed.  While commodity trade boards were up in arms (another problem according to Duckforth) other suggestions such as breathing filters along with an ice cream and cookie bar were discussed.
  • Job Security – Emory University concluded a study that proves continued consumption of fruits and vegetables (except for spinach and sprouts in certain cases) lower mortality rates.  This same report also indicated that there is not enough produce to serve the global community.  The studied showed they we are currently behind by about 22% and that figure in expected to get as high as 50% by the year 2020.
  •  Kalettes – The hot item of 2014 is a nightmare for those who do not enjoy kale or Brussels sprouts.  However it is a quick way to get great fiber and other nutrients. Predictions for next year include beet greens, Chinese cabbage and watercress.
  • Competition for Ramps- The wonderful seasonal green might be challenged. Ramps, an early spring green with a six week season are highly prized for the amazing combination of onion and garlic. Following the same concept behind the Kalettes, a Culinary Professor at Kendall College in Chicago predicts that there will soon be a combination of garlic and onions (Gunions or Unlicks)  and this actually makes sense as they are both members of the Allum family. With all the onion and garlic varieties this could open up an amazing new category.
  • How To Make A Deadly Virus Useful- -“We figured that we could apply this technology to the produce business”-Walden Watercress, Lead Developer of the “EBOLANATOR” which uses a genetically modified strain of the Ebola Virus to eat the skin from fruits and vegetables prior to processing. “It is very precise.  It eats just the skin and leaves the rest of the product ready to go!  We are very anxiously awaiting someone from the USDA to return our calls so that we can move toward approval.”

From us and ours to you and yours wishing you a safe happy and healthy New Year

PRODUCE QUIZ RESUMES ON JANUARY 8,2015
  Call 908-789-4700 –Lisa, Mark or Richard– Fax 908-789-4702
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Culinary Specialty Produce, Inc., 2014

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