Last updated on July 29th, 2015 at 01:35 pm
The second annual Blount Culinary Summit on food industry trends and challenges was held July 22-23 at the Newport Marriott in Newport, Rhode Island. About 125 invited industry guests, including chefs and retailers, attended—more than double the number that attended last year. The summit was designed as a forum for exploring and discussing how trends, challenges, laws and the market affect the way American consumers eat.
One of the key speakers was Lee Smith, publisher of Deli Business Magazine, who discussed “Transparency & Clean Label Products.”
Smith said consumers who are, in part, distrustful and suspicious of manufacturers that “may be cutting corners at the consumer’s expense” drive the move to transparency.
“Consumers want transparency and will get it,” she added.
Also driving the movement is social media, instant technology and well-educated consumers.
Among the highlights from Smith’s talk:
• The time has come to go back to eating the clean, fresh ingredients that previous generations grew up on; and
• Once something gets into the food supply through food science, it’s nearly impossible to get it out if the science changes, which it always does. For example, trans fat has gone from being considered the “safe” fat alternative to one of the main causes of heart disease.
Opening the conference was Todd Blount, president of Blount Fine Foods, who led guests on a manufacturing facility tour of the main Blount plant in Fall River, Massachusetts.