Suppliers & Producers

Black garlic is not a specific variety whose cloves are naturally black. Neither is it smoked garlic – the colouring of the cloves is due to the production process, which takes varying lengths of time depending on the producer. You have surely read more about this in the leading article on black garlic – if not, do so before you look at the producers and their variations of black garlic!

The production of black garlic takes place mainly where it is currently used most – in Asia. China, Korea and Japan stand out in particular. Some European companies are also supplied – as far as already peeled garlic is concerned – mostly from these countries.

Quelle: nerofermento.it

However, when it comes to whole tubers, most European distributors and producers use Spanish garlic, especially that from Las Pedroñeras. The Spanish suppliers are of course the most numerous – but there are also suppliers from England and Germany.

A supplier from Italy swears by his black garlic – this comes to 100% from Italy – whether rightly, we will at least try to find out culinary.

I have written small “most wanted posters” for you about the various suppliers who have kindly supported us with product samples, pictures and their many years of expertise on the subject of “black garlic”.

Not all producers produce the whole range of possible products – so there are some who do not produce a paste and there are others who get their conventional garlic from different suppliers as their organic version.

At the BIOFACH in Nuremberg, the Italian company NERO Fermento presented not only a new BIO line, but also a new product – powder of black garlic. An ideal aroma to refine sauces or to give delicious bruschetta the final kick just before serving.

Don’t forget to have a look at the recipes I have linked at the end of each article about black garlic.

 

Recipes with Black Garlic

We have tested some recipes with black garlic for you, you can find them under the menu item @erikskitchen in the category recipes.

  • Leg of venison with black garlic, root vegetables & mushrooms
  • Mussels in tomato white wine broth with black garlic
  • Turkey mallets with black garlic and jolly mushrooms
  • Penne Nere Rigate
  • Black garlic butter – a real eyecatcher

SCOTLAND HILLS Cowboy Steak

In the end I got my hands on a couple of Cowboy Steaks of the R & S brand SCOTLAND HILLS by chance at EDEKA and was really surprised for a long time again. It had been a while since I was allowed to cook in a home environment with beef of such excellent quality.

Not only was the meat easy to process and it hardly lost any volume when grilled or roasted – it had a breathtaking taste of its own, and this with a tenderness that otherwise only “boring” fillets got.

Since this chance purchase I have of course already processed many, many kilos of this premium meat with its fine, even marbling and great texture. At this point I would like to show you briefly what I think is the ideal procedure for preparing this gourmet meat.

First of all, of course BBQ is the method of choice for this meat – but I too was already forced to use a pan for weather reasons. In any case I recommend you to choose a “cast-iron pan” – best with strong “ribs” and almost make it glow, so that the result is as close as possible to that of grilling.

First, I let the Cowboy Steaks on the bone come to room temperature and only then I divide the rack into slices with a thickness of 4-5 cm each. Then I salt them only very lightly with coarse crystal salt (with preference Himalayan salt from Pakistan) before grilling and provide each slice with a light film of virgin olive oil before they land on the very hot grill.

The oil causes the surface of the meat to briefly flare up and “seal” it. Once this is done, I close the grill so that the smoke can settle sufficiently on the meat and the burned oils can convey the desired grill taste.

Depending on the thickness of the slices, I turn them over as soon as – and this is important – they can be lifted off easily by themselves. Then you have already got the desired drawing of the grill grate. Up to the plate each side should have been heated at least twice and ideally – for optical reasons – show a cross pattern.

I still check the cooking degree traditionally with my finger – the Australian method. Of course, you can also use meat thermometers. It’s also a nice thing to grill the edge of the steaks first – I do that sometimes when time permits – but that’s up to you.

Of course, you can also work with Sous Vide – whether forwards or backwards – but then I would advise you to debone the rack of Cowboy Steaks and prepare them as a whole to get the best result.

You should always remember to let the meat rest for a while (5-10 minutes) after grilling or roasting – for example on the resting area of your BBQ, or in the preheated oven at a maximum of 55°C. This way the “juices” stay in the meat when you cut it and that makes the real difference!

If you have got an appetite now, go to EDEKA or if the barbecue event is still a few days away, order online from Genusswelt – the Cowboy Steak will not disappoint you!

Oh yes, and don’t forget to serve a decent wine with it – of course I recommend a Shiraz from my favourite winery – Mollydooker from Australia! We had a 2016 Boxer and a 2015 Blue Eyed Boy for the Cowboy Steak and that more than matched…

WINEfair berlin 2020

As I had just returned from BIOFACH in Nuremberg for the weekend, I unfortunately did not manage to visit the WEINmesse berlin 2020 on the first day of the event. On Saturday, however, the time had come and I made my way to the Messe Berlin – the entrance to the WEINmesse berlin this time was at Hall 21 in the Masurenallee.

The fair opened at 1:00 pm – although I didn’t get there until around 3:30 pm – and a large crowd of guests were already waiting in front of the entrance area for admission. The reason for this was a short stop of admission due to the big rush. This year, halls 21 & 22 were available to exhibitors and guests and by 3 pm they were already so full that the fair management was forced to react with a stop of admission.

From the first official WEINmesse berlin in 1993, the event has grown steadily from around 70 exhibitors and 1,800 visitors to the present day. As a result, it has become necessary to change premises more than once – today with over 330 exhibitors, more than 4.000 wines and around 25,000 visitors expected, the event has found its home at Messe Berlin – and there is still plenty of potential for scaling up.

The WEINmesse berlin has thus been developing from an initially small trade fair into a new visitor magnet every year since its 25th anniversary as part of the Messe Berlin event portfolio. At just 17 euros per person, compared with others of its kind, this fair is a real bargain and always a reason to get to know new wines.

After about half an hour the visitors continued as usual. After checking their tickets, they hurried to the glass dispenser – visiting the WEINmesse berlin without a glass is only half the fun.

For all those who wanted to lay a better foundation before the tasting session – in other words, all those who showed up without having had a proper breakfast – a handful of stands had what it needs.

So there was not only an almost unmanageable amount of the finest cheeses such as mountain cheese, alpine flower cheese, white & red wine cheese, pecorino & parmesan, and much more, but also bacon & sausages such as garlic bacon, beef, venison and pork ham, porcini mushroom, fennel & truffle salami, chimney root and many extraordinarily tasty, handmade breads.

Of course, there was also some sweet things. At the stand of Mallek`s Gourmet Dreams, for example, you could find processed exclusive sweets as well as raw masses such as marzipan, organic almonds, nougat with whole hazelnuts, pressed cranberries, Turkish honey and much more in excellent quality.

The small chocolate sweets at the Goufrais stand were also very tasty – “Der kühle Genuss” – so to speak a more noble version of the popular ice cream confection – comes in a Gugelhupf look.

This delicacy is produced in Weil am Rhein, where gluten, nuts and alcohol are not added at all – only the purest cocoa is used here as a separating agent.

From here on, you could concentrate on the essentials – the almost endless wine tasting. It made sense to draw up a “battle plan” beforehand on the basis of the free list of exhibitors (there were extra note pages for this), so that you could taste the wines in a halfway orderly fashion, and without having to make unnecessary “loops” through the halls.

Basically, there was everything the heart of the wine lover desires, from white to rosé to red, from dry to sweet, from natural to sparkling, from cheap to exorbitantly expensive – it was all there.

A few exhibitors also offered other products based on wine, for example the Deppisch family – Weinhaus Anker – with their fine and exquisite wine jelly. There were two varieties of this at the WEINmesse berlin, one with chilli – something completely different.

Of course, there were also some BIO wineries at the fair this year. For example, the BIO-Winery Martin was striking, which on the one hand presented itself with colourful bottles and gimmick design, but on the other hand also referred to the family tradition.

Also interesting was the Silvaner from the Rothe Winery – a real organic product through and through. In a conversation with Manfred Rothe it quickly became clear that this is “wined and dined” with heart, hand & expertise.

The Münster wine dealer Sandfire – australien wines was also represented at this year’s berlin Wine Fair and offered some great Australian wines for tasting – unfortunately no Mollydooker, but you can still get one at Aixvinum in Aachen.

Besides the wines, of course, all kinds of other alcoholic products such as sparkling wines, beers, brandies, vodkas, whiskies and much more were on offer.

In my opinion gin took the biggest place next to the wines. At the moment this spirit is on everyone’s lips worldwide – the varieties shown here not only captivated by their quality and special taste, but also by their great bottle designs.

Champagne was offered by H.Blin with the credo “it’s time to drink champagne and dance on the table”. Many guests took this to heart when drinking champagne – I didn’t notice if the second motto was also implemented.

At some of the stands this year there were also delicious fruit juices to be discovered – I think this is a must to round off a culinary evening. Especially in the vineyards you can find many interesting and often rare kinds of fruit to distinguish them from the others. Of course, there are not large quantities, but maybe this makes for more exclusive products.

I also liked the offensive of Novino – a start-up which produces a new, non-alcoholic fermented beverage from pure Riesling and Cabernet grapes, which do not contain more alcohol than conventional fruit juices.

Novino rightly asks the question “…and what do you offer to your guests who don’t drink wine”, because on every occasion there should be special drinks for those guests who want to celebrate alcohol-free.

Further back in the halls there was again something for the “physical well-being”.

In addition to “Flammkuchen” in a wide variety of variations – with bacon, onions, leaf spinach or even salmon, Serrano ham and Parmesan cheese – there was above all an excellent food truck with the Pasta Pirates. The highlight of the Pasta Pirates this time was the truffle parmesan pasta, whose tempting aroma could be heard as soon as you entered the hall.

If you wanted to indulge in something sweet in between, the Crêperie was the right place to go – here you could get hold of all the classics from nature to Nutella, banana, cheese & ham.

For all tense visitors and exhibitors Fix Back Massage offered a fair-massage – basically a fine thing, but not only I would have liked it better if the massages had taken place in an area similar to a stand and not so close to the hustle and bustle.

A very personal highlight for me was the “Trüffel Manufaktur Göschle” from Schwaben. Not only that I liked the “presenter” with his “Berliner Schnauze” and his friendly and direct manner – no, also the products had done it to me.

All of them carefully designed and presented in a chic way, but most of all many innovative truffle products. I have to admit that truffles have done it to me in general – this has nothing to do with price and decadence, I just love the aroma of good truffles.

Freshly cooked pasta, a dash of good extra virgin olive oil, a little salt and freshly ground pepper and then a little fresh truffle shelves over it – not many ingredients, but a culinary delight!

In the future I will certainly write a contribution on the subject of truffles – we’ll see when I’ll be able to do so during the visits to all those fairs…

So far regarding this year’s WEINmesse berlin. Many thanks to the exhibitors, who were kind enough to present their products to me, and to Messe Berlin GmbH for the invitation to the WEINmesse berlin and for providing a photo (Mr. Rothe) for my article.

In 2021 it will once again be called “the WEINmesse berlin opens its doors” – be there, take a look at the fair, it’s worth it.

Poikain Parhaat – Pure Finnish Flavours

Pure Finnish flavours!

The young company Poikain Parhaat Oy Ltd, Poikain Parhaat for short, is managed by Nikolas Jokisalo & Pertti Hakala from Tampere – they both pursue the idea of bringing Finnish quality & flavours to the world.

Poikain Parhaat mainly produces beverages – for example lemonades based on delicious berries from the Finnish nature, but also flavoured iced tea (Jäätee) & coffee, these and traditional flavoured teas are also available in seasonal varieties – so it is always worth to visit the website of this dynamic company.

Then there are of course the unusual and high-quality Scandinavian mulled wines based on black currant juice, paired with fresh ginger and traditional mulled wine spices. Here, but also for all other products, they offer the possibility to have them provided with your own labels – for Christmas presents within the company, for example.

I find the freeze-dried berries of Poikain Parhaat particularly worth mentioning – freeze-drying preserves not only the vitamins but also the colour and texture of the berries. The colourful berries can be used to decorate or complement desserts, cakes or food and drink of any kind. In addition to the authentic and concentrated taste, the fruits also contain a lot of antioxidants, fibre and therefore pass as Finnish superfood.

Poikain Parhaat currently offers two different coarse herbal salts – sea salt, which is of course hand-mixed with high-quality Finnish herbs.

At the International Green Week, in addition to the products that can also be found on the website, there was a selection of delicious jams of Finnish blackcurrants, blueberries and lingonberries – a must for every berry lover.

Last but not least to the website of Poikain Parhaat, which is currently already delivered in HTTPS and offers Finnish and English language. Besides it got an excellent performance and a very attractive design – My compliments.

I wish this young company continued success and much inspiration for new future products!

Puula-Saervin

The Finnish family business in Hirvensalmi called JÄRVI-SUOMEN KALATUOTE OY, or Puula-Särvin for short, convinced me at this year’s International Green Week in Berlin with products that I actually didn’t even have on my agenda – canned fish.

The company, whose success story began in 1980, has dedicated itself in particular to the topic of high-quality canned fish specialities, in addition to the range of fresh and smoked (hot & cold) fish. A speciality of the products that are provided with oil is that Puula-Särvin mainly uses oil from turnip rape (Oleifera) – a plant related to the better-known rape, which is found in Finland in particular.

Marjatta and Seppo Pulkkinen – the founders of the family business – turned their hobby into a profession and Puula-Särvin became a full-time entrepreneur in 1996, becoming a company known beyond the borders of Finland.

One of Marjatta and Seppo’s principles still applies today and, in addition to the demand to always process only the best quality, is certainly one of the most important factors for the success of this family business: nothing should ever be wasted and everything should have its value!

This sustainable approach has come back into fashion today, but has been lived by Puula-Särvin for decades.

The first canned fish that, after a few “test series” – many of their neighbours helped by acting as test eaters – established the success of the still young company contained fish with tomato sauce – like all products, according to a family recipe from Pulkkinen`s.

Even today the tomato sauce varieties “Tomaatti Muikku” vendace & “Tomaatti Särki” roach but also “Tomaatti Valkosipuli Muikku” vendace in garlic-tomato sauce are still very popular. Vendace is also available in natural, smoked or in variations with garlic, dill, pepper & onions and more. Chef Teemu Kaijanen also appreciates the Muikku – as found in the Saimaa region.

Vendace has been eaten in Finland for centuries and is something like the national dish. These fish can be eaten – if small enough – with head & fishbone, like the “Kieler Sprotte”. Puula-Särvin also offers “Muikunmäti” – the rare vendace roe.

With time, canned mushrooms and smoked fish followed – with Marjatta and Seppo always testing all new variations until they were satisfied with them before offering something new. An important wisdom that Marjatta always followed and that she passed on to her son Jari, was to never produce anything that he would not eat himself – this is the only way to stand behind your products 110% and be successful.

In 2007, Puula-Särvin saw a generational change – Marjatta and Seppo went into well-deserved retirement and their son Jari and his wife Saara took over. The team was strengthened in 2019 by the managing director Tuomas Pöyry.

Most of the tins on offer weigh 220g each, with around 170g of this being fish – so they are considerably larger than the tinned fish commonly found in the German trade. So, they are always sufficient for a small round of fish lovers and are a real eye-catcher with their design, which reminds me of the 1950s.

At Puula-Särvin they only produce on the basis of Finnish fish that has been caught or bred sustainably! My personal favourite is and remains “Särki“, the canned version of small roach – the fish melts on the tongue and tastes even milder than the Muikku (vendace). By the way, Puula-Särvin has put some recipes online for the use of the many products – but unfortunately only in Finnish at the moment.

Puula-Särvin also carries some seasonal & special products, dried fish and since 2019 also pet food – if you want to know more about this, the marketing & sales team of the family business will be happy to answer all your questions.

Last but not least a few words about the website of Puula-Särvin, which is only available in Finnish at the moment – moreover, despite the contact form offered, it is not secure, so it is not yet delivered in “HTTPS” – this should be changed soon.

The website is very appealing and illustrated with many beautiful photos of delicious fish, some of them scurrying dynamically across the screen. Personally, I think it would be a fine thing to use the retro design of the canned fish as a basis for the website design, this would have the value of recognition.

So much for this institution of the Finnish fish trade – have fun trying out the many variations.

Arctic Sparkle

Arctic Sparkle is a non-alcoholic sparkling wine product of the family business Saimaan Marja (Saimaan Marja Ky) based on Finnish cloudberries. The small but fine company was founded in 2004 and since then has been producing a variety of products. What all products have in common is that the raw materials used in their production come from Finnish nature.

Saimaan Marja is located in Savonlinna in the middle of Finland’s fantastic lake district, about one and a half hours east of Mikkeli. In addition to Artic Sparkle, the extensive portfolio of the family business includes all conceivable Finnish berries, an excellent fruit sauce from cloudberries, jams, wild mushrooms, purees, juices and very tasty lemonades of cranberries, for example. In addition, Saimaan Marja offers a catering service as well as a beverage and delivery service.

It is important to mention that at Saimaan Marja all drinks are made from wild berries. Cultivated berries are not used and no flavours or colours are added – all flavours and colours come from real berries.

With Arctic Sparkle – which unfortunately is not yet available on the company’s website – Saimaan Marja has launched a very interesting product. The cloudberry or swamp blackberry used for this product is a landmark of Lapland and is mainly found in the northernmost regions of the world. It is not only healthy and rich in vitamins and trace elements, but also tastes deliciously fruity and invigorating.

Arctic Sparkle is an ideal drink for celebrations where toasts are required but alcohol cannot or should not be drunk. Saimaan Marja therefore calls it a “sparkling celebratory drink” on the fancy bottles. Arctic Sparkle is not too sweet and has a very fine bubble – almost like champagne. The fragrance has a fruity note, which is also found in the taste of this drink.

From my point of view, Arctic Sparkle is a really tasty thing to drink not only on celebration days.

  

As far as shelf life is concerned, Arctic Sparkle is added potassium sorbate as a preservative, Saimaan Marja has chosen to use it because this substance is already present in the berries in its natural form. Personally, I am not a fan of preservatives and if so, only of those such as sugar, citric acid or similar natural substances – but here I am not expert enough, I just have my own opinion.

Saimaan Marja let me know that the issue of sustainability is playing an increasingly important role for them. In Finland, the recycling rate of metal packaging parts is over 80%, which is why they deliberately chose metal foil as the material for the bottle neck of Arctic Sparkle.

Last but not least to the web presence of Saimaan Marja, this is actual only available in Finnish and German – however, despite the offered feedback form, it is not secure, i.e. not yet delivered in “HTTPS” – this should be changed soon. The website could be technically a bit more contemporary at all. Unfortunately, the product Artic Sparkle cannot be found there yet – what a pity.

Rose Petal Confiture

Matti and Tuuli Kotaja from the Finnish family business Finnish Plant FP-Kotaja Oy, founded in 1983, are real enthusiasts – with their high-quality rose petal confiture they have a unique delicacy on the market. It is particularly likeable and impressive that Matti’s family has been active in agriculture since the 16th century – he has always had his profession in his genes.

The rose farm is located in the southwest of Finland – more precisely in Vampula, Huittinen – whereby the building of today’s rose farm was built in 1907 by Matti’s grandfather. Kotaja Farm has been managed as such since 1917 and celebrated its centenary in 2017.

The Kotaja family started the professional rose cultivation at the beginning of 2007 with the installation of an experimental plantation – of course roses had been cultivated here in the years before, but not yet with the aim of commercialization – certainly not with an own confiture production.

In 2012, however, the time had come – with the Rosa Rugosa, which originates from East Asia, a rose had been found that was ideal for the production of a rose petal confiture. In addition to the characteristics of this type of rose, everything that thrives in the mild Finnish sun is much more delicate and restrained in taste and aroma than if it had been grown in southern Europe, for example. Based on the great success of the new jam, the farm expanded significantly in 2013 & 2014 in order to meet the requested production volume.

It is precisely this delicate and unobtrusive aroma of the roses from the Kotaja family farm that makes the difference. Rose aromas are often perceived as too obtrusive in dishes – this is not the case here. The rose petal confiture has a light and refreshing rose flavour and is suitable for use in a variety of foods and drinks.

The sugar content is around twenty-five percent and the confiture is therefore by no means as sweet as ordinary confitures. Fortunately, no artificial fertilizers, pesticides or preservatives are used during planting & production. A positive health aspect is the high content of flavonoids in the jam – I had already shown the positive effects of flavonoids in my article on black garlic.

Sugar is the main contributor to the shelf life of the confiture – whereby the confiture is additionally refined with some lemon juice and currant. In addition, some water is added and the organic pectin serves as gelling agent. The consistency of the confiture tends to be liquid-like at room temperature, which is in line with the application. Specially to achieve a good mixing for example when used in drinks like with Prosecco, teas or juices, this is a desired property.

Matti and Tuuli have told me that their rose petal confiture is excellent for desserts, dairy products such as cheese and yoghurt, but also for dressings. In addition, it can also be used for meat, such as game, lamb, turkey or chicken, in other words, much more than I initially thought.

I myself have so far only tried the confiture on fresh white bread, with chocolate, on crème brûlée or with rosé champagne – but it went perfectly with all these things.

There are already a number of European chefs in France or Germany – for example, the Finnish star chef Sauli Kemppainen – who have already discovered their love for the Kotaja family’s rose petal confiture. Currently Sauli cooks at the Berlin restaurant SAVU – interestingly enough, Nordic, Spanish and Italian elements meet here.

So, if you want to try Kotaja`s rose petal confiture, you don’t have to travel to Finland. Meanwhile you can also get it in a 120 gram jar at Galeria Kaufhof or online at LittleFinland.

On YouTube Matti shows us in a small image film about rose petal confiture not only impressive pictures of the rose plantations and the breathtaking landscape and location of the Rose farm, but also his talent at the piano. With its relaxed atmosphere and clear images, the clip fits the product and the drone shots have become really beautiful.

Last but not least to the web presence of Finnish Plant, the site is multilingual and very lovingly made – but despite the offered contact form is currently not secure, so not in “HTTPS” delivered – this should be changed soon. Matti and Tuuli have already let me know that the renewal of the site is already in full swing and I am sure that the result will be at least as appealing as their image film.

Aten Marja Oy – Natural Juice

The Finnish company Aten Marja Oy – ATEN for short – was founded in 1997 and is based in Hietanen, not far from Mikkeli, producing direct berry juices. There is a small outlet with an attached café right next to the production plant in Hirvensalmi.

Besides the popular juices, you can enjoy a cup of coffee and a piece of traditional local cake, jellies & jams, as well as other local products – if you are in the area, a flying visit is recommended.

All berries used by ATEN are frozen immediately after harvesting to preserve aromas and vitamins. In order to ensure this for the finished juices, the berries used for the direct juices are cold-pressed without any addition of water.

In addition to the red cranberries, which are very popular in Finland, ATEN also processes lingonberries and forest blueberries, which are very common there, into juice. In addition, juices are also produced from sea buckthorn, raspberries and both black and red currants.

All juices are available in two versions – on the one hand the 100% unsweetened direct juice, on the other hand a sweetened version with a fruit content of about 90%. Both variants are ideal for mixing with water. To ensure that the juices remain durable, they must of course also be pasteurised at ATEN.

This is done at a gentle temperature of 84°C during the filling process – so even very heat-sensitive vitamins such as vitamins B1, B5, B6 and C, but also anthocyanins and glucosinolates are preserved in the end product.

I personally liked the sweetened forest blueberry juice best – by adding sugar – which is also a natural flavour enhancer – you could taste the great aroma of these berries even more clearly than with the unsweetened version.

I recommend a mixing ratio of 1-part juice to 4-parts water – so you get a very refreshing mixture for everyday use. Furthermore, the variety “Attes Schmacksaft” has a good reputation – unfortunately this mixture of red currants, raspberries and strawberries was not available when I visited ATEN at the International Green Week – what a pity.

ATEN’s chic web presence is clearly arranged, very informative and whets the appetite for their products.

I would be very happy if ATEN would dare to try the great cloudberries (Moltebeeren) – I think this could be a unique juice – let’s see.

JYMY Ice Cream

JYMY ice cream is a Finnish, multi-award-winning organic product from the small but fine company Suomisen Maito Oy. This ice cream manufacturer still uses genuine craftsmanship to create a culinary experience for its customers using sustainably produced organic raw materials.

An important principle of the company is to act ethically – this means that all parts of the supply and production chain are also ethical. This starts with the production of vegetable ingredients, continues with the observance of all standards in the rearing and keeping of dairy cattle and ends with the treatment of employees and suppliers.

When selecting the chocolate, JYMY deliberately chose Cru Virunga chocolate & beans from Eastern Congo. In this way, every portion of ice cream sold with these ingredients helps to support the preservation of Africa’s oldest nature park, Virunga. The support benefits local farming families, initiatives to recultivate the tree population and above all the remaining population of mountain gorillas.

In addition to milk-based classics such as “Naked Milk”, “Cream Caramel” or “Wild Blueberry”, JYMY has also been offering the “Pine” flavour for some time now. At the International Green Week I had the chance to try this rather rarely offered flavour, which was released to mark the one hundredth anniversary of the independent Finland – so it is an anniversary ice cream. This variety and a few more have also made it into Finnair’s renowned business class.

In addition to the milk ice cream varieties made with fresh bio cow’s milk, JYMY also offers some vegan ice cream varieties – for example the “Two Berries” variety based on whole grain organic oats. This variety naturally stands out for the unique quality of Finnish blueberries and strawberries – Finnish berries, whether wild or cultivated, simply taste uniquely good.

JYMY has taken advantage of the fact that there are many fresh pine shoots in Finland, which only need to be harvested to flavour ice cream, as in this case.

The ice cream tasted great, it had a very light ethereal note – hardly noticeable and otherwise tasted like a particularly light & delicious milk ice cream.

All JYMY ice creams are made without the addition of artificial flavours, gluten, preservatives or emulsifiers.

I would have loved to try the many other promising varieties, but at the International Green Week – as far as I mentioned – there was only the pine variety.

Last but not least to the web presence of Suomisen Maito Oy, that offers actual Finnish, German, Swedish, Japanese and English – my compliments for this variety of languages delivered. The site is responsively programmed, very attractively designed, clearly arranged and very informative.

Finland

This year at the International Green Week 2020 I spent a lot of time in HALL 8.2 – especially at the Finnish stand. Reasons for this – besides the wish to learn more about the northernmost country of the EU and to write a new article on “Meet the Chef” (Teemu Kaijanen) – were mainly the relaxed atmosphere and the many natural products there.

There is always “all hell breaking loose” at the Green Week, although I think that with the large number of visitors every year it is becoming more difficult to explore the variety on offer in a relaxed manner.

So it was all the more pleasant that the atmosphere at and around the Finnish stand was so relaxed. Even when the hall was properly filled, the Finns were always in a good mood and this of course contributed to the feel-good factor of the visitors. Here one could get away from the hustle and bustle of the fair & masses and gather strength for the next few kilometres of walking.

Besides the music program, which took place from time to time, there was a variety of extraordinary and tasty culinary highlights to marvel at and of course to taste. It was especially noticeable that the prices and quantities for the offered delicacies and drinks at the Finnish stands were more than fair compared to other nations & halls.

That I would take the chance to meet the chef Teemu Kaijanen, who is well known beyond the borders of Finland, at the Finnish stand was self-evident. Everybody who tried the dishes that were created by Teemu could only be astonished – a simple and yet so convincingly tasty cuisine is rarely found.

On top of that, of course, there was the open and friendly nature of Teemu, which is why I enjoyed writing about him twice as much. Have a look at the article – there I will go a little closer to the delicacies Teemu cooked for the fair.

I have made some “wanted posters” about the Finnish products & producers – have a look, one or the other is surely interesting for you. Some of them are already available in german supermarkets – but some of them are not yet…

As soon as I arrive, a handful of company portraits will follow.

 

Innovation Award 2020

The FRUIT LOGISTICA Innovation Award is an exciting event every year – companies are nominated here that offer innovative products in the international fruit and vegetable sector.

In recent years, for example, manufacturers of new types of packaging systems, new approaches to planting salads, food-safe printing on fruit and vegetables or a small Berlin start-up, Pook ChipsPook even won the award 2018.

This year again, there were some innovations to marvel at, here are the nominees:

 

Tomato YOOM™ [The Winner]

Tomatoes from the Netherlands have been on German plates for more than a hundred years – but with the new Tomato YOOM™ the Dutch company Syngenta Seeds B.V. has managed to create not only a visual but also a culinary treat.

This tomato, with its high content of amino acids, appeals in particular to the umami sense of taste and therefore tastes very intense, piquant, meaty and hearty – a real firework of taste.

This innovative product contains all sorts of vitamins and minerals, but just like its strong colour, it also reveals a lot of anthocyanins, which are known for their antioxidant effect in addition to carotenoids.

Another advantage of this new tomato is that it can be grown at any time of the year and also under artificial light – so the cultivation conditions are of course ideal.

All this and the fact that this is something that each of the voting participants could taste is the reason why it is called:

…and the winner is Tomato YOOM™!

Tomato YOOM™ has won the FRUIT LOGISTICA Innovation Award 2020 – congratulations!

 

SoFruMiniPak® EcoView

The Polish company SoFruPak Witold Gaj produces a chic range of packaging made from renewable raw materials. The packaging is very stable, attractively printed and one hundred percent biodegradable – in other words, completely in line with sustainability.

The viewing windows are made of cellulose and thus allow a view of the inside of the packaging without the use of plastic.

In addition, the packaging is well thought out in terms of stackability and ventilation. They are easy to close / re-seal and are ideal for fruit, vegetables & mushrooms.

 

TENDERSTEM ROYALE®

The company SAKATA VEGETABLES EUROPE SAS presents a new plant crossing as part of the FRUIT LOGISTICA Innovation Prize 2020. In this case, Chinese kale and broccoli were crossed in a natural way.

The result is impressive – not only is it visually appealing and almost looks like wild broccoli, but the new broccoli can even be eaten uncooked.

It tastes slightly sweetish and is very rich in protein and fibre – fat, sodium and sugar, on the other hand, are hardly represented – a real superfood candidate.

 

Proband V1000

The also nominated company project Service & Produktion GmbH from Germany showed their Proband V1000 – a portable machine, which is able to place paper banderol’s on fruit, vegetables or other things.

The innovation here is, on the one hand, that the welding of different bands can be done with a quick and uncomplicated change of the frame – on the other hand, that it is possible to process paper bands with a plastic content of less than 5%.

  

 

Mosswool®

The company Novarbo Oy from Finland has thought about what it needs to replace the stone wool that is partly used in vegetable growing. Of course, they wanted to replace it with natural and renewable raw materials in order to be sustainable.

The result of these considerations was moss wool panels – as a purely organic raw material, these are ideal for growing vegetables, herbs and fruit and are of course also easily compostable.

Novarbo Oy has designed its portfolio of moss wool boards for all kinds of applications and presents the various products clearly on the company’s website – currently in Finnish, Swedish and English.

 

New mildew-resistant (high) sweet basil

CN Seeds Ltd, UK has succeeded in modifying the seeds of the popular sweet basil species “Ocimum” so that they are no longer susceptible to downy mildew.

This is a real breakthrough for the producers of this widespread herb, as many harvests worldwide have previously fallen victim to this plant disease. Now the seeds are genetically resistant to downy mildew in an environmentally friendly way.

 

Sinclair EcoLabel®

With EcoLabel, the British company Sinclair has launched an innovative, compostable labelling solution. The labels can also be removed from fruit, vegetables or other items without leaving any residue.

The printing inks, the outer material and the adhesive are food-safe and the product has already been certified by the Austrian TÜV.

The labels dissolve after twelve weeks and are biodegradable after a total of one hundred and eighty days.

 

Violì

With the Violì, the company Apofruit Italia Soc. Coop. Agricola has launched a new variety of artichokes on the market. In addition to their captivatingly beautiful colour, these artichokes are characterised by their tenderness. The characteristics of the artichoke were already appreciated by the Romans, which is why it was given the title “Queen of the Garden”.

The new artichoke variety is grown from a hybrid seed and according to exact production specifications – it is available for nine months within each year. This ensures consistent quality and ensures consistency in size and appearance.

On the Violì product page you will find all kinds of tips, delicious recipes and information on nutritional and health properties.

 

Compostable, flexible, printable packaging

Among the nominees is the company SILBO SP. Z.O.O., another Polish company takes part to the Award  this year. Here too, the innovation lies in a new packaging – these fruit & vegetable packaging’s are not only solvent-free but also compostable.

The environmentally friendly packaging is produced on the basis of water-soluble and food-safe paints and adhesives. They consist of recycled paper and/or cellulose films.

To guarantee that the packaging industry can handle this innovation, the company has ensured that the product can be used on both vertical and horizontal packaging machines.