Coming to a Grocer Near You – NPEW Highlights

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I flew out of Vancouver early Thursday, March 7, 2013 via Westjet on route to this years Natural Products Expo West (NPEW) held at the Anaheim Convention Centre in California.

It’s hard to explain exactly what to expect when going to the largest natural products event in North America. With over 60,000 industry people (not open to the public) and 2600 vendors, it truly is something you have to experience first hand.

With my good friend Carl outside the main entrance

I have been to many healthy food trade shows and events since launching Power of Food in 2003, but NPEW was by far the most exciting and tiring yet. Held in over 5 exhibit halls, thousands of natural food producers, ingredient sources, packaging companies and equipment wholesalers all came together to entice potential buyers to enlist their items and score a deal.

Who was buying? Retail grocers in search of the latest hot item, new food companies looking for ingredients and companies looking to streamline their processes with new equipment and cleaner packaging, where all herded through the exhibit doors like cattle.

What was I doing there? 

Well that’s a secret you will have to wait a few more months to find out, but I think you may get the idea.

The herd getting excited on day 1

If you are in the food business, especially the healthy eating food business, this event is so much fun. It brings all the great companies doing great things under one roof. Yes there are a few companies trying to sneak in as healthy products, but it’s pretty hard to get past my radar these days.

For 2 days I walk every exhibit and tried some amazing samples while meeting some of the industries coolest people. I am now happy to share with you …..

Adam’s NPEW Highlights – Good Food & Great People

Top 5 Food Companies Who Impressed! 

With over 2000 food companies in attendance, there is a lot to choose from. Here are my top 5 picks for Best at Show. In no particular order they are……..

1. Brads Raw Foods

Me with my friend Carl & Brad – the founder of Brad’s Raw Foods

Only 3 years into starting his company, Brad Gruno has built a raw food empire one leafy green kale at a time. His line of kale chips which are highlighted with falvours such as Pina Kale-Ada and Vampire Killer, are some of the tastiest on the market. And Brad’s new line of recently launched doggy treats has his company expanding into a whole new market.

Is your dog worthy of some raw living food treats? check them out here! 

Look for Brad to continue offering tasty and very healthy snacks for years to come.

Thanks Brad!!!!

For more info on Brad and his amazing line of raw food visit www.bradsrawchips.com

2. RawFoodz

Me & Sher – Co-founder of Rawfoodz

Oh Canada! I am proud to share with you this homegrown success story. Rawfoodz is not only the tastiest salad dressing to hit your grocery store shelves, but it is the hard work of two very dedicated women from Toronto Canada who made it possible. Sher Kopman and Michelle Cass are the dynamic duo behind Rawfoodz who bring their scrumptious dressings and all raw/vegan butters to the Canadian and US consumer one grocer at a time.

Made with extra virgin olive oil, apple cider, hemp seeds and chia seeds, the Sea-zar Serenity salad dressing was my top pick for new products at the NPEW. YES, it was that good and healthy too!

I just asked my local Nesters (grocery store) here in Squamish, British Columbia to start stocking it. I suggest you ask your local grocers to do the same. You will thank me BIG TIME!

To find out more about Rawfoodz and all they have to offer, visit www.rawfoodz.com

3. Hail Merry

About to enjoy some Hail Merry samples at the NPEW

Hail Merry made my list for the simple reason that they make sweet treats that are super healthy and guilt free. I have to admit, after walking their sample line at the NPEW event, I could not believe how fresh and delicious Hail Merry’s raw macaroons tasted. It was as if I had just made a fresh batch myself, which I tend to do just about EVERY WEEKEND!

To top it off, Hail Merry now offers a line of refrigerated Miracle Tart’s. The name fits the taste of these scrumptious single serve delights. Made with organic maple syrup, cacao powder, raw almond flour, coconut oil and seas salt, these tarts have made my list of must try recipes in the Power of Food kitchen.

Even thought I only sampled the chocolate tart, I am sure Meyer lemon, Persian Lime, Almond Butter and the entire line of Miracle tarts are equally as delicious.

I expect to see many more new products being launched by Hail Merry as they gain more market share in the raw living food space.

To find out more or to order directly to your front door visit www.hailmerry.com

4. Coconut Bliss

Number 4 on my Top 5 Food Companies Who Impressed at this years NPEW is none other then Luna & Larry’s Coconut Bliss. When talking about Coconut Bliss you truly have to give it the justice it deserves. Known to foodies in the know as the best none dairy ice cream on the planet, Luna & Larry (founders) have made it very tough for any competition to enter the market.

With a tag line that delivers….. The Evolution of Ice Cream……Coconut Bliss made my list thanks to its newest flavour – Salted Caramel. Although it won’t make its way into Canada anytime soon (boohoo), getting to sample the salted caramel might make taking a trip to Seattle (closest US location to my home) a must.

If you are not yet familiar with Coconut Bliss, check out the flavours below. And for all you fellow Canadians, notice at the bottom right of each flavour there is a flag letting you know which ones you can find locally.

 

Made with organic coconut milk, each bite of Coconut Bliss will have you wishing you gave up the Moooo Cream long ago.

To find a location to get your next Luna & Larry’s Coconut Bliss fix, visit www.coconutbliss.com

5. Chia Pod Pudding

Cheers to the best pudding out there!

I have seen a lot of healthy raw, natural products before, but this is the first chia pudding I have ever seen being marketed for retail.

If you are like me, chia pudding is nothing new. Living off a plant base diet full of nuts and seeds, chia is a main ingredient in many of my Power of Food recipes such as my Goji Chia Vegan Jerky and Back to School Milkshake.

What makes this new product unique is the fact that someone finally was smart enough to put it inside a 6oz container with a handy spoon attached and bring it to market. This is not just any company doing it either. The Chia Co. out of Australia is responsible for this little bit of genius. Who is The Chia Co? They just happen to be the worlds largest producer of natural, raw chia seeds.

Now with their first line of products, Chia Pod pudding, I would expect to see The Chia Co making its way onto grocery shelves across the globe in the near future. With a strong background in farming The Chia Co. is a great example of how to grow ethical and sustainable crops while caring from mother earth at the same time.

In my opinion  they have hit a home run with their first consumer product in the Chia Pod puddings. With 3 flavours to choose from, blueberry, banana and mango, these 3 ingredient puddings (chia, fruit and coconut milk) are a fantastic way to get your daily intake of omega 3’s and enjoy it too!

They taste just like the tapioca pudding I used to eat as a child!

At this time there is no online information avaiable for Chia Pod Pudding, but it should be coming soon.

To read all about The Chia Co. and their amazing work, visit www.thechiaco.com.au

Special Bonus Mention

Well there you have it folks, my Top 5 Food Companies Who Impressed – Best at Show for the Natural Products Expo West 2013. 

There are a couple of honourable mentions I would like to make. These companies also impressed me, but did not make the top 5. They were Go Raw for their amazing all raw snacking line, Daiya Foods for their all dairy free line of cheese that actually melts and Sprout Baby Food who’s tag line “Your Child’s Relationship with Food Begins Now” really hit home for me.

   

If you have a favourite natural food product you think the Power of Food community should know about, let us know below in the comment section. We would love to hear from you!

Stay tuned early next week as I share all my industry celeb pictures from the NPEW with you and why I love these very special people so much! 

 

 

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About Adam Hart

Adam Hart is the bestselling author of The Power of Food. When not on stage speaking, Adam can be found helping one of his many corporate clients in awakening an abundance of energy through his highly engaging stress management solutions.Contact Adam to book a demo for an enhanced corporate wellness experience.

Comments

  1. Excellent! Need all the info you can share, anytime. Thanks!

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