Future Fridays: Andrew Brentano on Cricket Farming

In this edition of the Future Fridays series, Andrew Brentano, co-founder and CEO of Tiny Farms Inc., explains how cricket protein may help save the world. In his What's the Big Idea? talk at the Winter Fancy Food Show, Brentano said, “Eating bugs is not a new idea. People have been eating insects around the world forever." By identifying a sustainable way to farm crickets, Brentano’s company is able to feed countless people for a fraction of the resources needed to raise livestock or agriculture. In addition, farming crickets emits less greenhouse gases as well, helping to reduce our carbon footprint. “There is no guidebook for how to grow crickets. You can’t call up your local agriculture office and ask. But we wanted to create a sustainable solution for everyone, so every farmer can get it up and running.” Though it may be a little gross to some, Brentano noted that the “ick” factor is decreased by turning the crickets into powder, which can then be added to everyday products like chips, sauces, pasta, energy bars, or even pet food.

Related Video: Future Fridays: David Kay on Disrupting the Meat Industry

Original Article

Buyers’ Picks: Grab Your Picnic Basket

Spring is the perfect time to grab a friend, some good food and drink, and soak up the sun. Buyers share some of their favorite specialty food recommendations for dining al fresco.

“My favorite go-to for an impromptu picnic meal: all you need is this (Meredith Dairy Marinated Goat) cheese, a baguette, a bottle of bubbly wine, and your preferred salad greens. It’s unlike any other you have ever experienced and completely irresistible.”

—Lydia Burns, Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread, & Wine, Chicago

Jenny Rojas Cline, Bi-Rite, San Francisco

  • Kookra Krisps
  • Massa Organics Organic Whole Almonds
  • Olli Salumeria Genoa and Calabrese
Sliced Salami
  • Pan’s Mushroom Jerky
  • Wave Soda

Valerie Neff-Rasmussen, Zingerman’s, Ann Arbor, MI

  • Italian Products Classic Tarallini with Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Raye’s Mustard Down East Schooner Yellow Mustard
  • Spring Brook Farm Reading Cheese
  • Underground Meats Summer Sausage
  • Zingerman’s Bakehouse Brownies

“Picnics are an important part of our business, as both of our markets are located next to iconic parks in San Francisco. And we are always looking for new crackers, salumi, snacks, and beverages to keep people’s baskets fun and interesting.”

—Jenny Rojas Cline, Bi-Rite, San Francisco

Laura Heifetz, Greene Grape Provisions, Brooklyn

  • Brooklyn Cured Sweet Soppressata
  • Dona Spice Sodas
  • Jalapa Jar Salsa
  • Matzo Project Salted Matzo Chips
  • Roelli Cheese Haus Red Rock Cheese
  • Sohha Savory Baba Ghanouj
  • Uncle Jerry’s Specials Pretzels

Lydia Burns, Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread, & Wine, Chicago

  • Aroeira Organic Brazilian Pink Pepper Blossom Honey
  • Finca Pascualete La Mini Retorta
  • La Quercia Cured Meat Spreads
  • Meredith Dairy Marinated Goat Cheese

Matt Caputo, Caputo’s Market & Deli, Salt Lake City, UT

  • Caputo’s Mesa Tome
  • Divina Cornichons
  • Elevation Meats Mexican Mole Salami
  • Fossa Chocolate Lychee Rose Dark Milk Chocolate
  • Jose Gourmet Trout Paté with Port Wine
  • Natur Puglia Taralli Fennel Crackers

Michael Lederman, Joanna’s Marketplace, Miami, FL

  • Chukar Cherries Classic Dark Chocolate Dipped Cherries
  • Flyer Candy Bars
  • Joanna’s Marketplace Tartine Bread
  • The Pea Green Boat Cheese Sablés
  • Ritrovo Caramiele Natural Honey and Hazelnut Spread
  • Ritrovo White Bean Appetizer

“In considering picnic food here in Miami my mind automatically imagines a beach picnic. They are especially nice in the winter here when the temperatures plunge into the mid to low 60s. I would make sure to have a salty appetizer, a main portion of the meal, and something sweet at the end.”

—Michael Lederman, Joanna’s Marketplace, Miami, FL

“This mustard gets its vibrant hue from Californian Cabernet Sauvignon grape must and its unique flavor from whole grain mustard seeds, a dash of vinegar, and warm spices. Use for the ultimate ham sandwich.”

—Asha Loupy, Market Hall Foods, Berkeley, CA

Erin Lynch, Rosemont Market & Bakery, Portland, ME

  • Deep River Potato Chips
  • Fresh Local Strawberries
  • La Spinetta Rosé
  • Ritter Sport Chocolate Bars
  • Rosemont House Made Focaccia
  • San Pellegrino Sparkling Fruit Beverages

Asha Loupy, Market Hall Foods, Berkeley, CA

  • Hayden Flour Mills Red Fife
Wheat Crackers
  • KL Keller Violet Mustard
  • Masseria Mirogallo Cruschi Peppers
  • Soom Sesame Premium Tahini

Arielle Feger is content associate for Specialty Food Magazine.

Original Article

Cheese Focus: Cheeses from the Heartland

Midwest cheese producers are bringing something new to the table.

To many Americans, the Heartland is that vast, flat prairie between the coasts with the amber waves of grain. Certainly corn, wheat, and soybeans thrive in the Heartland—also known as the Midwest—but dairying is huge, too, especially in Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Michigan. Artisan cheese from the Midwest barely registers in the region’s economy, but the segment is growing. For merchants, these up-and-coming creameries contribute new flavors and fresh stories to the cheese case. A few Midwest producers, like Capriole Goat Cheese, Hook’s Cheese Co., and Roth Cheese, are veterans that continue to innovate. Many others have yet to complete their first decade.

Retailers who aim to offer a representative sampling of American cheesemaking talent should be sure these gems from the Heartland are part of the rotation.

From Indiana

Capriole Flora: The newest cheese from goat-cheese pioneer Judy Schad is a six-ounce ashed disk inspired by France’s Selles-sur-Cher. A ripe Flora has a wrinkly rind, an oozy layer just underneath (the so-called “cream line”), and a seductive mushroom scent. Julianna, an aged goat tomme cloaked in herbes de Provence, is another gem from this creamery.

Jacobs & Brichford Cheese Ameribella: This farmstead operation makes only raw cow’s milk cheese. A standout in the lineup is the Taleggio-like Ameribella, a semisoft square with a yeasty, garlicky, beefy aroma.

Tulip Tree Creamery Trillium: A triple-cream cow’s milk cheese in a square format, Trillium catches the eye in a cheese case. Under its bloomy rind is a spreadable paste with a faint mushroom scent and the buttery lushness typical of a cream-enriched cheese.

From Iowa

Milton Creamery Flory’s Truckle: The milk comes from the Flory family farm in Missouri, and this clothbound Cheddar spends its first two months there. Then it’s transferred to the cellars at Milton Creamery where it matures for another 10 months. Flory’s has Cheddar-like aromas of melted butter, fresh-mown grass, and toasted nuts but with a fruity pineapple scent as well. It is sweeter and less tangy than the classic English Cheddars, a mellow style that Americans seem to love.

“Another cheese that I recently brought in from Milton is the 4 Alarm Cheddar,” says Lydia Burns, buyer for Pastoral Artisan Cheese, Bread & Wine in Chicago. “It has ghost pepper in it and is definitely on the kickier side, but it’s been really popular, especially in summer with burgers.”

From Minnesota

Alemar Cheese Bent River: This 13-ounce bloomy-rind cow’s milk wheel resembles a large Camembert. When perfectly ripe, it’s dreamy, with aromas of cooked onion, garlic, cabbage, mushroom, and aged beef.

Shepherd’s Way Farms Shepherd’s Hope: This sheep cheese producer makes the excellent Big Woods Blue and a superb natural-rinded aged tomme called Friesago, but Shepherd’s Hope, a four-pound fresh wheel, is its most original creation. Think feta without the brine.

From Michigan

Idyll Farms Idyll Pastures: This farmstead goat producer in Northern Michigan has been amassing awards at the annual American Cheese Society competition. Burns is a fan of the creamery’s fresh goat cheese, Idyll Pastures. Packed in a four-ounce tub and sealed, it has good shelf life, says Burns. Consumers can invert the tub onto a board and present a molded cheese with an embossed surface. The price point is appealing, too, says Burns.

From Missouri

Baetje Farms Miette: The farm was recently sold but Veronica Baetje expects to remain on as cheesemaker, producing the beauties that she originated, like the mixed-milk Miette. Approximately 30 percent sheep’s milk, with goat’s milk making up the rest, the petite bloomy-rind Miette leaves the creamery at about two weeks. Over the next few weeks, it becomes much softer, developing a fragrance of porcini mushroom and the flavor of cheesecake.

Green Dirt Farm Fresh Sheep Cheese: Nothing this creamery makes disappoints. Try the washed-rind sheep’s-milk Bossa and the aged Aux Arcs, a tomme from mixed sheep’s and cow’s milk. But the little tubs of fresh, spreadable, lemony sheep cheese fill a niche at the cheese counter and have impressive shelf life, says C. J. Bienert of the Cheese Shop of Des Moines. “Everyone needs to start eating more of it,” says Bienert. “It’s so fluffy and delicious.” Cross-merchandise with dark bread and smoked salmon.

From Nebraska

Dutch Girl Creamery Rosa Maria: These four-pound farmstead goat wheels are drained in colander-shaped molds, like English Berkswell, and matured for a minimum of four months. The colander produces an eye-catching studded pattern on the natural rind, and the aging yields Garrotxa-type flavor. Cheesemaker Cheruth Van Beuzekom has spent time working with Mary Holbrook, a highly regarded British goat cheese producer. With the aged Rosa Maria, she is helping fill a niche that American goat-cheese makers have largely ignored.

From Wisconsin

Deer Creek Cheese The Blue Jay: This rindless cow’s-milk blue wheel is scented with juniper berries. Ignore the quintuple-crème claim on the label. Triple crème would be more accurate. In any case, the cheese is luscious and the juniper scent does not overwhelm.

Hook Triple Play Extra Innings: Tony and Julie Hook developed Triple Play in 2014, then decided to give a few batches of this three-milk cheese (cow, goat, and sheep) some extra age. Made in 40-pound rindless blocks and matured about 15 months, Extra Innings develops a Gouda-like caramel sweetness, a nutty aroma typical of Swiss alpine wheels and some mellow Cheddar character, too.

Landmark Creamery Anabasque: The two partners behind Landmark specialize in sheep’s milk cheese and the washed-rind Anabasque is their flagship. Modeled after Ossau-Iraty, the aged French Basque tomme, Anabasque smells of caramel and warm butter and has a firm yet creamy texture.

Roelli Cheese Haus Select Cheddar: This new creation from award-winning cheesemaker Chris Roelli is a 20-pound bandage-wrapped Cheddar with a twist. Roelli adds some non-Cheddar cultures to produce nutty, mellow flavors and he tints the interior the color of butterscotch with annatto. “People gravitate to it because of the color,” says Burns, “but then they try it and it’s delicious. It’s a little more fudgy and earthy, not a bitey Cheddar.”

Janet Fletcher writes the email newsletter “Planet Cheese” and is the author of Cheese & Wine and Cheese & Beer.

Original Article

Future Fridays: Sophie Egan on the Conscious Eater

In this Future Fridays talk, Sophie Egan, contributor to The New York Times and author of “Devoured: How What We Eat Defines Who We Are,” looks at maker opportunity. Egan discusses two consumer trends she finds prevalent: a growing interest in functional foods, and an increase in personalized and build-your-own foods. In her What's the Big Idea? talk at SFA's Winter Fancy Food Show, Egan also introduces the concept of the “conscious eater,” someone who is interested in the larger impact of food on society. "I really think there's a huge market opportunity to co-opt this underlying desire for food to serve a function towards food as serving a greater function in the world," she says, "And with that, I think each of you can really think about ways to position your brands in a way that you not only meet the needs of the 'conscious eaters' but can also possibly breed more 'conscious eaters.'"

View Egan's full talk above as part of the SFA's Future Fridays series.

Related Video: Future Fridays: Minh Tsai on Rethinking Tofu

Original Article

Future Fridays: Nick Mendoza on Sustainable Seafood

For this Future Friday installment, Nicolas Mendoza, founder and CEO of OneForNeptune, speaks on sustainable seafood consumption. During his What's the Big Idea? talk from the Winter Fancy Food Show, Mendoza explained how he transitioned from a marine science and sustainable aquaculture researcher to a snack industry innovator, noting, "As soon as I looked into the direction of the [snack] market, it was obvious that consumers were hungry for something healthier, and that in the three billion dollar meat snack space, more and more people were moving away from resource-intensive and, at times, unhealthy red meat for alternative options." OneForNeptune uses sustainably sourced white fish to create a jerky that appeals to those looking for a healthier snack, as well as those who want to help save the environment.

Related: Future Fridays: Max Kaniger on Eliminating Food Deserts

Original Article

Future Fridays: Mohammad Modarres on Interfaith Meat

This Future Friday installment features Mohammad Modarres, founder and CEO of Abe’s Meats, speaking on how he created the first Halal and Kosher meat on the market. One night, while having dinner with friends from different religious backgrounds, he asked himself, “Could you bring the halal and the kosher process together to create one product for everyone?” During this What's the Big Idea? talk at the Winter Fancy Food Show, Modarres explained how he set out to answer that question, consulting with religious leaders and food producers, and eventually created an interfaith meat under his brand, Abe’s Meats.

Related: Future Fridays: David Kay on Disrupting the Meat Industry

Original Article

Future Fridays: David Kay on Disrupting the Meat Industry

In this Future Fridays video, David Kay, manager of communications and sustainability at Memphis Meats, explains how he is revolutionizing our meat production system. During his What's the Big Idea? talk, presented at the Winter Fancy Food Show, he explained, “Meat is beloved. That’s true across cultures, geographies, and time. In the future, that’s only going to increase.” However, our current meat production process uses one-third of the world’s water and emits 18 percent of greenhouse gases, while also using up valuable land. Memphis Meats proposes one small change in the system that can make a huge impact: using a small quantity of cells from livestock that can be harvested and prepared in the same way as traditional meat. In addition to saving precious environmental resources, cell-based meat can lessen bacterial contaminations and reduce food waste.

View Kay's full What's the Big Idea? talk above as part of the SFA's Future Fridays series.

Related Video: Future Fridays: Mohammad Modarres on Interfaith Meat

Original Article

SFA News Live: What’s Next in Food

SFA News Live correspondent James Mellgren visits What's Next in Food, a new attraction at the Winter Fancy Food Show. The exhibit highlights food sustainability and biodiversity throughout the supply chain and is produced in partnership with Seeds&Chips, a Milan-based food tech organization working to build a better food system, and The Future Market, a New York-based futurist food lab that explores the innovations and ideas that will shape our food system over the next five to 25 years.

Original Article

SFA News Live: Patrick Mateer, Seal the Seasons

Patrick Mateer of Seal the Seasons, one of the SFA's 2019 Leadership Award winners, vistis SFA News Live to talk about disrupting the food system by becoming the first "national local" brand. Seal the Seaons partners with local farms across the country to freeze their food and sell it in their local state. "We're here to tell their story and create the ability for local consumers to support their local farmers all year round," says Mateer.

Original Article

SFA News Live: Lisa Curtis, Kuli Kuli

SFA News Live host Phil Lempert talks with Lisa Curtis of Kuli Kuli, one of the 2019 SFA Leadership Award winners. Curtis speaks about the origins of Kuli Kuli and how she has grown the company with the help of the Association. When asked why Kuli Kuli won a Leadership Award, Curtis says, "I think the real reason we won an award is because we've built our business in a mission-based way. We are farmer first, focused on how can we support small farmers to grow moringa and use it to improve nutrition and livelihoods in their communities."

Original Article

SFA News Live: Michelle Simon, Plant Based Foods Association

Michelle Simon, president of the Plant Based Foods Association, talks about the growing plant-based food movement and its impact in this SFA News Live segment. "What's happening now is a combination of two things," says Simon. "One is consumers generally being more and more concerned about healthy eating. Now we're seeing mainstream consumers, conventional retail stores making room on the shelf for healther eating. The other is the innovation that is happening right now with new companies that are pushing the envelope."

Original Article

SFA News Live: Khalid Mushasha, Piri Pica

SFA News Live host Paul Barron talks with Khalid Mushasha, founder of Piri Pica, about Mushasha's background in foodservice and the benefits of fast-casual dining. Piri Pica has taken the traditional idea of piri piri cuisine and gave it a Mediterreanean slant for a healthier, fresher approach. Mushasha wants the experience to be more accessible, "People still want to go out and have an experience, but it doesn't need to be with all that added cost," he says. "We wanted to make it much more approachable and affordable to go out and have dinner or lunch, or even to order in, without being burdened with spending $35 for a main course."

Original Article

SFA News Live: Charles Bililies, Souvla

Charles Bililies, founder and CEO of Souvla, discusses food trends and the state of the foodservice segment with SFA News Live host Paul Barron. They cover Bililies start in foodservice, being a pioneer in "fine casual" dining, and putting a California spin on traditional Greek food. Bililies also talks about the growing delivery business. "Five years ago," he explains, "delivery was non-existent in San Francisco. Shortly after we opened, we started to see the rise of delivery. The timing just so happened to line up, and we aproached it diligently and we wanted to make sure we picked the right partner. We're at the point now where we're basically engineering the restaurants not to do just delivery, but to make delivery more efficient and effective."

Original Article

Product Roundup: Coconut-Based Products: Everyday Indulgences

Coconut’s reign as an alternative to dairy and traditional oils like olive or vegetable is still going strong.

And it’s no wonder why. Providing a sweet, slightly nutty taste, coconut can be used as an ingredient in dishes to add flavor, or as a crunchy, chewy snack all by itself. And the best part? You don’t have to get stranded on a desert island to enjoy it.

Coconut Island Dark Chocolate Coco Bites – Original Recipe. Dark Chocolate Coco Bites are made of moist shredded coconut drenched in rich dark chocolate, topped with toasted coconut. Each sweet bite will transport you to your own personal island getaway. Another one of Coconut Island’s products, Coconut Cashew Crunch with Dark Chocolate Drizzle, was the winner of the 2017 Product of the Year and Best Sweet Snack sofi Awards from the Specialty Food Association. coconutislandsnacks.com

Cornelia Confections Cocomos Toasted Coconut Chips – Orange & Sunflower Seeds. Cornelia Confections’ Cocomos are a coconut chips snack made with all-natural ingredients. As a reflection of Cornelia’s Jamaican roots, she has always had a passion for creating flavor combinations using different herbs and spices. This snack has a light citrus tone, great for orange-lovers, and a slight nutty note of sunflower seeds. With zero corn syrup and trans fats, the brittle is also vegan and gluten-free. corneliaconfections.com

Dewey’s Bakery Moravian Style Toasted Coconut Cookie Thins. This light, indulgent cookie is baked with unprocessed coconuts from the Pacific, with no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Moravian-style cookies are thin and date back to the Colonial American communities of the Moravian Church. Since it was founded in 1930 in North Carolina, Dewey’s Bakery has crafted a delicious baking tradition based on simple ingredients and unique flavors. deweys.com

Fat Badger Bakery Toasted Coconut Cookie. Buttery, chewy, and nutty, Fat Badger Bakery’s Toasted Coconut Cookie is made with no preservatives and all-natural ingredients. Available in packs of 12, the cookies are also vegan, kosher, and Non-GMO Project Verified. In addition to Toasted Coconut, the cookies come in seven flavors and several sampler and gift packs. fatbadgerbakery.com

Green Joy Cinnamon Coconut Superfood Salad Mixer. Cinnamon Coconut Superfood Salad Mixer can be added to salads, yogurt, fruit, and ice cream. Made with ingredients like organic coconut, pumpkin seeds, pecans, and brown sugar, this mixer can even be eaten straight out of the bag. Using only the highest-quality, clean, whole food ingredients, Green Joy’s purpose is to make it exciting to eat your greens. The company uses responsible sourcing to reduce food waste. greenjoylife.com

Leaner Creamer Coconut Oil-Based Coffee Creamer – French Vanilla. Made with coconut oil and other natural herbal supplements like Citrus Aurantium Extract, Hoddie, and Green Tea Extract, which suppress appetite and may promote weight loss, Leaner Creamer is a healthy, guilt-free powdered coffee creamer. The creamer is shelf-stable for one year and balances creaminess and sweetness. It is lactose-free, sugar-free, gluten-free, and kosher certified. leanercreamer.com

LQD Hard Coconut Water. LQD is a collective of brewmasters and curious creators who are inspired by the transformative power of fermentation. LQD products offer a fresh take on an age-old brewing process, transforming simple, quality ingredients into something unexpected. LQD Hard Coconut Water, in Original and Pineapple flavors, begins with coconut water and pure cane sugar that are naturally fermented into alcohol, and blended with fresh coconut water to create a beverage with no artificial flavors, colors, or sweeteners. LQD also offers two Hard Green Tea products in Passion Fruit and Peach flavors. drinklqd.com

Minute Mixology Coconut Mojito Cocktail Mixer. Minute Mixology has reinvented the category with convenient, cocktail mixers offered in single-serve packets. The Coconut Mojito powdered cocktail mixer is made with natural lime, mint, and coconut flavors. Each box contains eight mix packets to be stirred in and enjoyed on the rocks. Low on sugar, this mix is also non-GMO, gluten-free, and kosher certified. minutemixology.com

Rodgers’ Coconut Pudding. Rodgers’ Puddings satisfy sweet cravings with none of the guilt, while also providing a good source or protein and calcium. This Coconut Pudding is available in 4- and 16-ounce sizes. The ready-to-eat pudding is produced with organic, pasture-raised whole milk, pure cane sugar, and coconut flakes. It is Non-GMO Project Verified, kosher certified, and a good source of protein and calcium. When refrigerated, the puddings have a three-month shelf life. rodgerspuddings.com

Weller Original Coconut Bites. Made with coconut, cane sugar, and tapioca, this product is a bite-sized crunchy treat. Each serving contains full-spectrum hemp, which is extracted using a clean process called CO2 extraction, free of solvents like butane. Weller also offers Caramel Coconut Bites, Dark Chocolate Coconut Bites, and several sampler packs. The Boulder, Colorado-based wellness company believes that snacks should be both delicious and functional. With a focus on simple, high-quality ingredients, Weller treats satisfy cravings for feel-good, taste-good food. welleryou.com

Arielle Feger is a content associate with Specialty Food Magazine.

Original Article

Category Education: What Buyers Should Know About Honey

Hyperlocal honeys are being sought for a range of benefits.

Consumers are buzzing about honey, and producers can barely keep up with demand for the product that one honey farmer described as “caramelized sunshine.”

Americans consumed about 585 million pounds of honey in 2017, which equates to approximately 1.8 pounds per capita, according to a recent report from the National Honey Board, citing data from the USDA. The total volume consumed increased 50 percent from 2009 to 2017, the research found.

Local honey, in particular, has seen an uptick in demand, as consumers have sought out local products overall and as they have gained a greater understanding of the role that bees play in their local environments. “People increasingly want to support their local community, and bees do a special, magical job in that they help pollinate all kinds of wonderful foods, and then they also produce honey,” says Margaret Lombard, CEO of the NHB, which is based in Longmont, Colo. “They are these perfect little creatures that are great ambassadors for the environment.”

Consumer interest in natural sweeteners as an alternative to processed sugar is also helping drive increased honey consumption, she says. “Local honey products are sort of naturally poised for that food trend,” says Lombard.

Health Benefits

Several health benefits have been ascribed to honey, from its use as a cough suppressant to a sleep aid to a salve for wounds. Advocates of local honey also cite its ability to alleviate some seasonal allergies and its antioxidant properties.

“Made with the same local pollens that adversely impact some, ingesting those same pollens may build natural resistance to the symptoms that make many people uncomfortable during allergy season,” says Andrew Coté, owner of Andrew’s Honey, which has more than 100 beehives in New York City.

Andrew’s Honey sells the products at the Union Square Greenmarket in New York as well as through area supermarkets, restaurants, and bakeries. “Farmers markets are one of the best places to get local honey,” says Coté. “People tend to look for local honey, and the more local the better. People in the know look for their caramelized sunshine via small, local producers.”

Andrew’s is a family business that has maintained beehives since the 1800s. For the past decade-plus, the company has maintained apiaries atop various landmark buildings and other locations all over New York City, including the grounds of the United Nations headquarters. Coté suggests that specialty retailers can maximize their sales of local honey by touting its environmental benefits—it likely has a lower carbon footprint than honey brought in from a greater distance—as well as its efficacy in treating local pollen allergies.

Paul Hekimian, director of HoneyLove, a Los Angeles-based nonprofit conservation organization that seeks to protect the honeybee population through consumer education and by inspiring urban beekeepers, agrees that consumers are seeking out local honey to treat their allergies. Hekimian himself makes small batches of high-end honey, which he provides to a handful of discriminating chefs.

Glen’s Garden Market, Washington, D.C., is among the many retailers that have been building out their local honey portfolio. “We’ve found that folks looking for honey are seeking out two things: raw honeys with proven health benefits and super-local honeys that can be used to mitigate allergies,” says Danielle Vogel, Glen’s founder.

Vogel says that Glen’s, which sources almost all its products from within the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, looks for ultra-local honeys harvested within 20 miles of the store in order to maximize the products’ immunity-boosting properties.

Other Attributes

In addition to seeking out local honeys, consumers have also become more attuned to honey varietals, says Lombard of the NHB. The pollens of specific clovers, for example, or from produce such as blueberries or avocados, can all produce unique honey varietals that obtain their flavors naturally.

“People are increasingly interested in, for example, a buckwheat honey to use in making a barbecue sauce, or perhaps an alfalfa honey or a lavender honey for tea,” says Lombard.

Producers small and large—but mostly small—are jumping into varietals. Specialty food supplier and retailer CP Farms in Paso Robles, Calif., for example, which specializes in producing its own olive oils, lavender, and related products, recently introduced its own Wildflower Honey.

“It is made from nectar collected from our Paso Robles olive and lavender farm, which gives it a natural aroma and flavor,” the company said in a statement. The company’s website also touts the product’s health benefits, and the retention of heathy enzymes that it says would be lost through pasteurization.

Many honey farmers also infuse their honeys with on-trend flavors. Andrew’s Honey, for example, offers several varieties of infused honey, including ginger, sea salt, matcha, turmeric, vanilla, and chili peppers. In fact, hot honey infused with peppers has been trending. The winner of the 2018 Summer Fancy Food Show’s Front Burner Foodservice Pitch Competition was Mike’s Hot Honey, which is made using a hot chili pepper grown in Brazil and wildflower honey from New York.

Lombard of the NHB notes that consumers are also looking for honeys that are organic, raw, or minimally processed. “The biggest trend is this idea that people want to have an ingredient they feel good about, and that they know where it comes from, and they know how it’s produced,” she says. “You don’t need a centrifuge to create honey. You can just open a bee box and see a honeycomb.”

Interestingly, the honeycomb itself has been trending as an interesting component of a cheese tray or a dessert, for example. “We’re seeing a lot of honeycomb being used, which is naturally produced right from the bee and totally edible, and it makes a very beautiful presentation,” says Lombard.

Honey at the Bar

Another growing use for local honeys is in cocktails and spirits. Barry Gambold, general manager of Hotel Indigo-Baton Rouge, in Louisiana, has transformed an area of the hotel’s rooftop to an apiary, which produces honey for use in specialty cocktails at the hotel bar and as gifts for VIP guests. “The product is much better when you get it right out of the hive,” he says.

The hives produce about eight gallons of honey per year, collected in four harvests of about two gallons each. It’s enough for making some specialty cocktails at the bar and for bottling as gifts, but not enough to supply the kitchen, Gambold explains. The gift bottles are packaged with a Hotel Indigo label, and recipients are told that the honey is produced on-site.

The bees obtain some of the pollen to make the honey from the herbs and other plants that are grown in the rooftop garden—including mint, thyme, and peppers—which results in the honey picking up small amounts of flavor from those sources. The bees travel within about a two-mile radius, however, so they are also gathering pollen from other local plants.

Honeys can be incorporated into a variety of cocktails, including the classic “Bee’s Knees,” a Prohibition-era drink that combines gin, honey, and lemon juice. Honey is usually blended with warm water to create a syrup that can be blended easily into cocktails.

“Honey makes a beautiful simple syrup,” says Lombard, who noted that the NHB has done a lot of outreach with mixologists and others to show them how to incorporate local and regional honeys into their cocktail recipes.

Mixed into cocktails, eaten by the spoonful right out of the jar to battle allergies, or incorporated into baked goods or barbecue sauces, honey is becoming an indispensable element of the American diet.

“Folks are eating a lot of honey, and enjoying it,” says Lombard.

Beekeeping: A Labor of Love—and Pain

Harvesting honey, says Barry Gambold, general manager of Hotel Indigo-Baton Rouge, “is a painful thing.”

The hotel installed a rooftop apiary, which supplies honey to the hotel bar and for use as gift bottles for VIP guests. Despite using an automatic device that harvests the honey from the screens, workers “have been stung a few times,” he says.

While protective equipment generally keeps beekeepers insulated from the venom of their honey producers, they also have to endure other hardships. Andrew Coté, owner of Andrew’s Honey in New York, says rooftop honey farming introduces its own set of challenges.

“It is often difficult to find parking, to avoid tickets, to battle traffic, and to carry heavy, bee-filled boxes up and down several flights of stairs,” he says. “The only way to overcome it all is to power through it. Beekeeping requires a strong back and patience—and urban beekeeping more of both.”

It is a labor-intensive business. Labor, in fact, accounts for 50 percent of beekeepers’ costs, according to a recent report from the National Honey Board, prepared by the University of California Agricultural Issues Center.

“These are extremely hard-working folks,” says Margaret Lombard, CEO of the NHB. “It is a real labor of love—there’s nothing glamorous about being a beekeeper. These are dedicated folks who usually come from generations of families who take pride in the products they produce.”

Glossary

More than 300 unique types of honey are available in the United States, each originating from a different floral source, according to the National Honey Board. Honey varies from almost clear in color with a mild taste to dark brown with bold flavor. The color and flavor of each differs by the source of nectar visited by the honey bees.

Here are some of the most common U.S. honey floral varieties.

Alfalfa honey, produced throughout the U.S. Created from the plant’s purple blossoms, light in color with a pleasingly mild flavor and aroma.

Avocado honey, made from California avocado blossoms, is dark in color, with a rich, buttery taste.

Blueberry honey is made in New England and Michigan from the tiny white flowers of the blueberry bush. The honey is light amber in color and has a full, well-rounded flavor.

Buckwheat honey, dark and full-bodied, is produced in Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin.

Clover honey has a mild taste with color varying from white to amber depending upon location and type of clover. Clovers are the main contributor to honey production in the U.S.

Eucalyptus honey is produced in California from a diverse group of plants and hybrids. Though it varies greatly in color and flavor, it tends to be a stronger flavored honey with a distinct scent.

Fireweed honey is light in color and comes from a perennial herb that grows in the Northern and Pacific states.

Orange blossom honey is light in color with a mild citrus taste. It is produced in Florida, Southern California, and parts of Texas.

Sage honey, primarily produced in California, is light in color, heavy bodied, and has a mild flavor.

Tupelo honey is produced in northwest Florida. It is usually light golden amber in color with a greenish cast and has a mild taste.

Wildflower honey is a term often used to describe honey from miscellaneous flower sources.
Source: National Honey Board

Mark Hamstra a regular contributor to Specialty Food Magazine.

Original Article

SFA News Live: Denise Purcell, SFA

Denise Purcell, SFA director of content, talks about Winter Fancy Food Show trends with SFA News Live host Phil Lempert. Purcell speaks about the SFA Trendspotter Panel, which is made of retailers, buyers, industry watchers, and the trends they predicted for 2019. CBD or cannabis-infused products is a growing trend in the food and beverage industry, but still has yet to take off at the Fancy Food Show. Hemp products, however, are being seen increasingly on the exhibitor floor. Purcell also noted that global and regional cuisines are on the radar of the trendspotters, noting, "Right now we're seeing a lot of South Asian, Latin American, and really interestingly, regional African flavors. I think at this show, that's going to be pretty prevalent."

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SFA News Live: Cathy Strange, Whole Foods Market

Cathy Strange, Whole Foods Market's global specialty coordinator, discusses the retail chain's growing emphasis on hyperlocal. "It's about what consumers want," Strange says. "I can be hyperlocal down to specific markets where one manufacturer may only be in one store." Whole Food's commitment is in taking these small entrepreneurs who many not yet understand the business side of the trade and becoming a partner to them, Strange explains in this SFA News Live segment from the Winter Fancy Food Show.

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Future Fridays: Minh Tsai on Rethinking Tofu

In this Future Friday talk, Minh Tsai, founder of Hodo Foods, breaks down his mission to reintroduce consumers and chefs to tofu. Tsai's What's the Big Idea? session at the Winter Fancy Food Show shined a light on what is driving the plant-based food industry and what consumers are looking for in a plant-based dish. Though there were several considerations while creating Hodo's products, there was one thing that could not be compromised. "We knew this 15 years ago when we started the tofu company," says Tsai, "We wanted to make a better tofu and consumers will always want taste, no matter what. …Taste remains paramount."

Related Video: Future Fridays: Nancy Cohen on Building a Brand Identity

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Trend Report: Trends from the Winter Fancy Food Show

The Specialty Food Association’s Trendspotter panel covered the recent Winter Fancy Food Show, held in San Francisco, Jan. 13 – 15, to report on new and emerging trends among the 90,000 foods and beverages on display. Among their findings, long-term movements in sustainability, plant-based ingredients, and protein continue to proliferate with new ingredients or expanding categories.

Here are some of the trends from the Winter Show with examples of each. For a full list of the Winter Show trends go to specialtyfood.com/news/wffstrends.

The TRENDSPOTTER Panel

The Winter Fancy Food Show Trendspotters included:

  • Polly Adema, PhD, director & associate professor, Master of Arts in Food Studies, University of the Pacific San Francisco Campus
  • Reem Assil, chef/owner, Reem’s California, partner, Dyafa
  • Andrew Freeman, founder, af&co.
  • Lawrence Jacobs, specialty and grocery buyer, Oliver’s Markets
  • Kara Nielsen, vice president, Trends & Marketing, CCD Helmsman
  • Tu David Phu, chef/owner, AN – a Vietnamese Dining Experience
  • Wendy Robinson, buyer, Market Hall Foods
  • Melina Romero, manager, Trend Practice, CCD Helmsman

#1 Upcycling and Biodiversity Trends Drive Sustainability Movement

Many companies and products powered by environmental and social concerns were visible throughout the show. More producers are getting serious about product development that addresses food waste, creating upcycled products. Additionally, there is growing awareness about foods made from diverse crops to ensure a variety of crops and animals that makes the food system more resilient and exposes consumers to an assortment of foods and flavors.

Here are some examples identified by the panel:

  • Believe in Bambara Beans and Flours, made from bambara, a biodiverse crop
  • Render Foods LLC Bryner, vegetable drink upcycled from leftover pickle juice; Weyla, sparkling fruity beverage upcycled from whey
  • Renewal Mill Extra Dark Chocolate Chip Cookie, made with okara, a superfood harvested from the pulp of organic soybeans that is created during soymilk production
  • Terviva Pongamia, a long-living tree that produces seeds similar to soybeans
  • Ugly Juice LLC Good Use Ugly Juice, cold-pressed juice from imperfect fruits and vegetables
  • Yolélé Foods Fonio, a biodiverse, gluten-free, ancient African supergrain

#2 Kelp Is the New Ocean-Harvested Star Ingredient

Another driver of sustainability, and intertwined with the plant-based movement, kelp has emerged as the latest sea-based superfood. Examples include:

  • Barnacle Foods Kelp Salsa and Kelp Pickles
  • Blue Evolution kelp-based pasta and salad
  • New Frontier Foods Ocean’s Halo kelp-based superfoods drink

#3 Nut-Based Dairy Expands

Almond and coconut milk are still prevalent among plant-based dairy alternatives, but more varieties are coming to market. Examples include:

  • Earth’s Own Food Happy Planet Oat Milk
  • Elmhurst Milked Oats Barista
  • Kotatsu Cashewmilk Cheese
  • Milkadamia Macadamia Buttery Spread and Coffee Creamers

#4 Everything’s Coming Up Roses in Edible Beauty Products

The Trendspotter Panel named Edible Beauty a top trend for 2019, driven by the inclusion of collagen and argan oil in more foods and beverages. At the Winter Show, the latest edible beauty ingredient emerged—rose water or rose petals, noted for their antioxidant and hydrating properties. Examples include:

  • Deep Rose Deep Petal Lemonade
  • Nielsen-Massey Vanillas, Inc. Rose Water
  • Petal Sparkling Botanical Blend beverage

#5 Jerky Revolution Spurs Protein Trend

With the growing popularity of protein-rich diets, plus the plant-based alternative protein phenomenon, this trend isn’t fading anytime soon. Innovation and new applications continue. Examples include:

  • Bovino Crispy Beef Jerky
  • Maruden Co. Ltd. Cod and Salmon Jerky
  • Shima’s Jerky Chips
  • True Jerky Jerky Trail Mix

#6 Single Serve and On-the-Go

More producers are emphasizing portions and packaging designed for single servings and convenience. Examples include:

  • Lotus Foods Rice Ramen Noodle Soups, individual cups
  • Rustic Bakery Pecan Shortbread 3-Pack, snack pack
  • Split Nutrition LLC Almond Butter and Strawberry Spread, individual split fast pack

#7 CBD, Fermentation, and Adaptogens Propel the Latest Beverages with Benefits

Often referred to as functional foods, many products at the Winter Show correlated to a variety of health interests: energy and recovery, detoxing, stress relief, gut health, antioxidants. Examples include:

  • Buddha Teas CBD Ginger and Turmeric Tea
  • Lumen Hemp Elixer, with adaptogenic and Ayurvedic herbs
  • New Age Beverages Marley, Marley+CBD Mellow Mood
  • Numi Tea, Daily Super Shot, with adaptogenic plants and herbs
  • The Republic of Tea SuperAdapt Burnout Blocker Herbal Tea Supplement
  • Purely LLC Q-Soo Sparkling Fruit Tonic, fruit-infused drinking vinegar (shrub) and sparkling water

*More states have legalized sales of hemp-derived CBD products. The segment has its challenges as cannabis is still illegal at the federal level.

#8 Plant-Based Extends to Flour Alternatives

The latest expansion in plant-based foods is an array of produce-based flours for baking or blending into smoothies. Examples include:

  • AvoLov Avocado Powder
  • Kaibae Organic Baobab Fruit Powder
  • Hearthy Foods Flours, including apple, banana, spinach, and broccoli

Denise Purcell is editor of Specialty Food Magazine.

Original Article

SFA News Live: Ellona Ferson, Napa Hills

SFA News Live host Paul Barron talks with Ellona Ferson of Napa Hills, a 2019 Front Burner Foodservice Pitch competition contestant, about how Napa Hills creates the antioxidant-rich water and how it has the benefits of a glass of wine without having any of the alcohol. Ferson reveals that the idea for the product came from a very personal place. “When I grew up in the oldest wine-making region in the world, I was exposed to the health benefits of wine,” she explains. “I knew the healing properties of wine are powerful. But I lost three of my relatives to cancer because of excessive alcohol consumption, so I also knew there was a detrimental affect to drinking too much. So I had an idea, what if I could extract the healthy properties of red wine and infuse them into a refreshing, delicious water beverage?”

Original Article

Epic Wine Library Collection Grows

The institution known as the greatest wine library in the world is only getting better with age. Recently, two of the most influential wine writers alive today donated their entire collections to UC Davis University Library’s already substantial collection, which focuses on the work of wine writers. Hugh Johnson, author of the World Atlas of Wine, bequeathed his archive of nearly 60 years of wine-book writing, followed by British wine writer Jancis Robinson donating 40 years’ worth of papers. In addition, Napa grape grower, winemaker, land preservationist, and philanthropist Warren Winiarski gave the library a $3.3 million gift, which MacKenzie Smith, university librarian and vice provost of digital scholarship at UC Davis, says, “will further build the wine writers’ collection and make these works more accessible to researchers and the public.” She adds, “The wine writer collection can be used not only as a lens through which to understand the evolution of wine, but also, as Mr. Winiarski envisions, a resource to improve the very making of wine.”

Original Article

Category Education: The Buzz About Cannabis: What Buyers Should Know

Hemp-derived products gain traction at retail as consumers seek anti-inflammatory benefits.

Specialty food retailers seeking to break into the booming market for cannabidiol—better known as CBD—can be forgiven if they are a little dazed and confused. Products containing CBD and other compounds derived from the cannabis plant have been proliferating at retail outlets around the country, but a patchwork of state regulations and federal actions have created what some see as a gray area of legality surrounding the items.

Among the cannabis compounds, called cannabinoids, is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which is the psychoactive agent that gives marijuana users a “high.” Products containing THC are illegal under federal law but have been legalized in a handful of states around the country for either medicinal or recreational use, or both.

Such THC products are only available through licensed dispensaries. However, the dozens of other cannabinoids, which have been said to provide a range of health benefits, have been widely accepted to be fair game for sale by retailers—provided they are derived from industrial hemp plants, which are cannabis plants that have been bred to contain only trace amounts of THC. Several states have specifically legalized the sale of hemp-derived CBD products.

Products containing CBD and other cannabinoids have been appearing on store shelves around the country in the form of oral supplements, topical applications, and in various edible forms that include chocolate, candies, and other snack foods, as well as coffee and tea.

“The sky’s the limit—almost anything you can infuse, you are seeing infusions of,” says Rob Eder, founder of Firpo Productions, and a retail consultant specializing in cannabis products.

Eder recently moderated a symposium for retail buying platform ECRM on the topic of hemp-derived CBD products. He is also a cannabis entrepreneur who is developing a monthly subscription box called Leafed, which he describes as a “multisensory experience curated around a specific strain of the very best cannabis that’s available in a specific state.”

He says the edibles category has been strong in the adult-use (THC) cannabis market and has potential in hemp-based CBD products as well. In marijuana dispensaries, 22 percent of the volume has been in edibles, says Eder, citing data from research firm BDS Analytics.

According to the Hemp Business Journal, sales for the U.S. hemp industry rose 16 percent to $820 million in 2017, including $190 million for hemp-derived CBD products, $181 million for personal care products, and $137 million for hemp food products, led by the snack food category. Hemp food products include hemp hearts, which are the nutrient-rich seeds of the hemp plant and have been widely available in natural food stores for years.

A new report from consulting firm A.T. Kearney found strong consumer interest in non-psychoactive, cannabis-derived products, especially edibles. More than half of consumers surveyed (55 percent) in the U.S. and Canada said they would be interested in trying infused items such as chocolates, candies, and other packaged foods, and nearly a third—32 percent—said they would be interested in infused non-alcoholic beverages.

Strong Sales at Alfalfa’s

Alfalfa’s, a natural foods retailer in Boulder, Colo., has been merchandising CBD products for the past three years, says Betty Bailey, wellness manager for the two-store operator.

“It’s been really good for us,” she says. “It’s definitely one of the leading categories for us in terms of sales.”

Alfalfa’s has been focused on offering full-spectrum liquid extracts (which contain all the cannabinoids in industrial hemp plants), she says, noting that most manufacturers have shifted away from the CBD-only label on hemp-infused items.

The retailer also carries a range of infused topical products, including balms, salves, and creams, as well as such infused edibles as caramels, chocolates, coconut snacks, honey, and coffee. The items are touted as having a range of health benefits, but customers are often interested in addressing the discomfort caused by inflammation, Bailey says.

One of the brands Alfalfa’s carries is Weller, a locally based manufacturer of Coconut Bites with hemp extract. Weller describes the product as containing 5 milligrams of “full-spectrum hemp extract in every bite.” The company’s hemp-infused Coconut Bites come in original, dark chocolate, and caramel flavors.

The hemp-infused coffee Alfalfa’s carries also is produced locally, by a company called Restorative Botanicals, which offers an organically grown Peruvian coffee product infused with a full-spectrum hemp oil extract from Colorado.

“They’re doing a really smart extraction method where they’re actually infusing during the roasting process so the hemp is driven into the bean,” says Bailey. “It’s definitely one of the most effective techniques I’ve seen for a coffee.”

Alfalfa’s also carries a locally produced honey that is infused with hemp, from Frangiosa Farms. The Colorado Hemp Honey comes in 12-ounce jars containing 1,000 milligrams of “full spectrum hemp extract,” and is available in three varieties: Raw Relief, Tangerine Tranquility, and Lemon Stress Less.

“We focus primarily on local in general as a company and store, but also especially when it comes to hemp products, just because we have so many people doing it so well in their backyard,” says Bailey. “Colorado’s leading the way and has paved quite a solid path for the hemp industry.”

Focus on Quality

Linda Gilbert, managing director of consumer insights, BDS Analytics, says that specialty food retailers need to pay close attention to the quality of the infused products they may be bringing into their stores.

“The first rule of thumb is to be loyal to the practices that have made you successful to-date,” she says. “That means in most instances putting an emphasis on taste and putting an emphasis on that variety of experience that specialty foods bring to people.”

She says there are “a lot of challenges with infused edibles” because the compounds can sometimes be bitter or can impart a gritty texture.

“You really need to do your homework, and make sure that you’re delivering the quality of product that people have come to expect from your brand,” she says. “Just because it has cannabis in it, or hemp in it, or CBD in it, doesn’t mean that people are willing to have a chocolate bar that’s gritty.”

Products need to focus on communicating the experience that the products will produce, rather than the actual science around it, Gilbert explains.

“Is it going to give me energy or help me to sleep? Is it going to relax me or give me that extra edge I need to get through my power walk? It goes back to when we started fortifying foods,” she says. “Consumers don’t want to understand the science of calcium. They want to know that if I drink this, it’s good for my bones.”

Gilbert also suggests that retailers should pay close attention to the experience and skill sets of their suppliers.

“To paraphrase what someone once said to me, ‘The ability of a marijuana or hemp producer to make a fine chocolate is probably far less than the ability of a fine chocolatier to develop an infused chocolate,’” she says.

Gilbert sees ample opportunity for hemp-infused edibles. Many of the products available today are candies and sweets, she says, but consumers may also be interested in a range of savory items as well.

She says she expects a range of suppliers to get on board with these types of products, or to at least explore the opportunities.

“We are going to see everything from startups to very well-established, mainstream companies start to look at this,” she says. “They’re already looking at it. Some are going to decide, ‘It’s not for us.’ Some are going to decide, ‘There’s opportunity for us here.’

But you would almost be negligent or irresponsible today to not be looking at it. It might not be right for you, but you ought to be looking at it.”

Hemp Grows in a Legal Gray Area

Daniel Shortt, a Seattle-based attorney with law firm Harris Bricken who works extensively with entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry, says that specialty food retailers who offer CBD or hemp-infused products need to be sure that the suppliers they are buying from are sourcing their products from industrial hemp.

However, some confusion still exists around the legal definition of industrial hemp, he says. He also notes that some federal authorities issued a statement of principle in 2016 that the 2014 Farm Bill—which legalized the cultivation of industrial hemp—did not allow the commercial sale of industrial hemp products, nor did it allow the interstate transfer of industrial hemp. However, Congress has prohibited the enforcement of that interpretation, Shortt explains.

“Businesses are creating these CBD products from industrial hemp, and for a buyer of specialty foods who’s looking into CBD, it’s important that that buyer is assured that the product is, in fact, derived from industrial hemp and has documents and evidence to support that,” says Shortt.

The 2018 Farm Bill is expected to include the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, which would remove hemp as a controlled substance, formally allow CBD to be sold legally in all 50 states and, observers say, open up the industry to robust market development.

Cannabis Brings Marketing Challenges, Branding Opportunities

Chris Epp, who oversees marketing at Boulder, Colo.-based Alfalfa’s, says marketing hemp-based products can be a challenge. Much of the retailer’s marketing has been conducted in-store and through direct email outreach.

“The hurdle we keep running into is that most of the larger media companies will not allow you to advertise for anything that says ‘hemp’ or ‘CBD,’” says Epp. “You can’t post on Facebook, you can’t use Google Ad Words or any of the traditional or obvious methods to market these things.”

The reluctance on the part of large media companies to carry hemp or CBD advertising could reflect the fact that the legal status of these products has varied by state and has been in a state of flux.

Consultant and cannabis entrepreneur Rob Eder, founder of Firpo Productions, says brand names are an important element of marketing in the cannabis market.

“Brands really matter in this space, whether you are talking about cannabis or CBD specifically,” he says, noting that several celebrities—including Jimmy Buffet, Snoop Dogg, Willie Nelson, Whoopi Goldberg, Tommy Chong, and Melissa Etheridge—have jumped into the space.

“There’s a tribalism in this business,” says Eder. “People are gravitating toward brands that resonate with them.”

Singer-songwriter Etheridge has been marketing a range of cannabis-infused products in California for several years through the Etheridge Farms label. Among the recent introductions is a cannabis-infused wine, available only through licensed dispensaries.

Glossary

THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is a cannabis compound that is the psychoactive agent. In other words, this is what gives marijuana users a “high.” Products containing THC are illegal under federal law but have been legalized in a handful of states around the country for either medicinal or recreational use, or both. Such products are only available through licensed dispensaries.

CBD, or cannabidiol, is a cannabis compound that can be derived from marijuana or from hemp oil. CDB found in edibles is derived from industrial hemp plants, cannabis plants that have been bred to contain only trace amounts of THC. Several states have specifically legalized the sale of hemp-derived CBD products.

Hemp is derived from the stalks and seed of the cannabis crop. For cannabis to be considered hemp, it must have no more than 0.3 percent THC. Hemp oil also only has traces of CBD. Hemp products are widely available, especially in natural food stores.

Mark Hamstra a regular contributor to Specialty Food Magazine and Specialty Food News.

Original Article