- By glens
- In Danielle's Mission Check
- Posted June 30, 2017
The Fancy Food Show
In this series, Glen’s Founder, Danielle Vogel, shares her thoughts on current events, products and makers, and any and everything that impacts our mission.
One of the best parts of running a specialty grocery store is finding new, delicious food to put on our shelves. The acquisition process takes all different forms – sometimes a person will walk through our doors with a great new product they’d love to sell at Glen’s, sometimes we’ll see something at a farmer’s market or in another store that we’ll want to integrate into our produce mix, and from time to time we’ll go to small trade shows or tastings and pick up a few things. But once a year, we head up to New York for specialty grocery’s main event: The Fancy Food Show.
Every June, about six thousand vendors from around the world gather to fill the Javits Center with all manner of things – from great jams and jellies, to funky new small-batch stuff like pasta sauce made from crickets, to gift baskets and label-making machines. It’s three full showroom floors of shoulder-to-shoulder merchants and their (mostly) edible wares.
The Show provides an opportunity for us to reconnect with vendors we have relationships with – to touch base, and see what new products they’re working on – and to form tons of new friendships with folks just entering the food space. We always go to the show with a list of things we’re looking for, and we are ALWAYS delighted to find all sorts of stuff we didn’t realize we couldn’t live without. It’s a great chance to refresh our inventory, and confirm that we’re offering a cultivated subset of the very best small-batch foods our region has to offer.
This year was no exception. We found some really great food that we’re super excited about, and you can expect to see it in the stores next week! We’re so excited to bring in everything from a super-fun-to-eat green tea mochi, to organic bouillon, to some tasty new pasta sauces and beautiful jarred vegetables and my personal favorite food on earth: blue cheese stuffed olives – really, REALLY good ones. We found delicious jams and preserves and great little cheese crackers. All-in, we found about 70 new products to help round out our selection.
Blue Cheese Stuffed Olives coming to a market near you!
These are some of my very favorite new products we found at the show:
88 Acres Pumpkin Seed Butter – This is some glorious green stuff. Of the hundreds of products we tasted over three days, this was the most delicious. It’s organic, GMO-free pumpkin seed butter that would be killer on a banana for breakfast or in a funky PB&J. If you’re a fan of our kale salad, I have a feeling this stuff will be right up your alley, because of its wonderfully pronounced pumpkin seed flavor.
Click to learn about their story!
Safe Catch Tuna – I love tuna, but I’m not interested in consuming a bunch of mercury, a bio-accumulative neurotoxin that tends to be found in higher quantities in top-of-the-food-chain animals like tuna. Sean Wittenberg, a tech-guy from Silicon Valley felt the same way, so he developed a probe to test each individual tuna fish in order to confirm it has appropriately low mercury-levels. If it fails, he refuses to buy the fish. He also happens to care deeply about sustainable fishing and ecosystem vitality, so his canned tuna meets the very highest sourcing standards in the business. That’s a can of tuna I can really get behind.
Bee Free Honee – Here’s a crazy thought: what if we could make honey without harming bees, which are positively integral to the maintenance of our ecosystems. Bees have had a pretty rough go of it lately, between rampant pesticide use and Colony Collapse Disease, they could really use a break. Katie Sanchez innovated a way to make honey out of apples. It tastes just like the real thing AND they donate a portion of the proceeds to pro-pollinator organizations. Pretty sweet!
Fire Cider Apple Cider Vinegar Tonic – I’m really getting into the drinking vinegar thing this summer, and so I was taken with this stuff immediately. It’s got all of the health benefits of apple cider vinegar, but it’s spicy and ultra cocktail-ready. Or, if you love vinegar as much as I do, pour it in a small glass and take it to the dome – it’s happiness in a shot. If you’re not quite there on shooting vinegar, pour a little over ice and fill the rest of the glass with seltzer. It’s tart, spicy, refreshing and… good for you!!! Can’t beat that for a mocktail.
Click to learn about their story!
The bottom line is, we found some great stuff, and you’ll see it all on our shelves soon! Next time you’re in, please ask me for a private tour of the new products, I’d be thrilled to point them out! You can also find many of them in our “new products” displays in both stores. Give ‘em a try, and know that everything we bring in was chosen because it’s delicious and consistent with our Mission and Values.