Source: U.S. Meat Export Federation
U.S. exporters recently met with hundreds of buyers and representatives of Japan’s retail and foodservice industries at FoodEx Japan, Asia’s largest food trade show. Greg Hanes, U.S. Meat Export Federation assistant vice president for international marketing, says the show attracted a mix of attendees, ranging from representatives of small importers and restaurants to top executives from some of the largest food companies in the world.
To stay a step ahead of competitors in the important Japanese market, the USMEF prepared U.S. beef and pork dishes for attendees to sample. For pork customers, thin-sliced and fried U.S. pork cutlets were prepared and served in a convenient way that caters to “on the go” Japanese consumers.
“The Japanese market is very focused on convenience. This concept not only provided convenience, but also played to one of Japan’s favorite pork dishes,” he says. “It’s sort of like a comfort food and our chefs did a really spectacular job with it.”
Hanes says popular topics at this year’s FoodEx were the availability of chilled red meat and the importance of branding. USMEF member companies could discuss these issues with buyers and learn about their needs.
Because beef tongue is very popular — Japan imported more than 8,300 metric tons of U.S. beef tongue in 2016 at a value of $87 million — the tenderness of corn-fed U.S. beef tongue over that of grass-fed competitors was featured.
Click on the window below to hear Hanes talk about presenting U.S. pork and beef to Japanese customers.