Specialty Food Magazine

Winter 2020

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

Issue link: https://www.e-digitaleditions.com/i/1194330

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Page 94 of 115

"Products that have better ingredients, are classic in nature, evoke innovation and discovery. You want products that are a step up. If it's a product that's … done in a small batch with very high-quality ingredients, that makes it more special and that is obvious in the taste. A product that [in a] blind tasting would tell you it's a special product." —Ken Blanchette, FreshDirect "To me, a specialty food is something that's non-commodity where we can tell the story or authenticity of the product, the heritage or tradition, and then connect with the consumer for an entertaining purpose or something that would really bring joy or happiness to their life." —Scott Case, DiBruno Bros. Imports "Specialty food is an interesting term because it's not special at all. It is really something your great- grandparents or grandparents made in any country that you're trying to recreate in your own home. If you're trying to make an expat feel comfortable, you'd make them what their mother or grandmother made for them. So, it's become very much a world cuisine." —Rex Howell-Smith, Central Market "Those foods that are a layer above your average grocery item. Things that are more culinary derived and chef driven." —Brad Albaugh, DPI Specialty Foods "I define specialty food as anything that is a craft product that is in a unique package, has a unique ingredient profile, or has a unique story. For me, specialty often is defined by what is special to consumers and that usually falls into one of those three buckets." —Dwight Richmond, The Fresh Market "I mostly define specialty by the channel of delivery and distribution. I know that's not the sexy answer. Obviously, we are dealing with high- quality product, mostly [but not all] produced by smaller manufacturers but the distribution is often regional or local. In our environment, we deal with national distributors as well." —Richard Tarlov, Canyon Market Specialty food buyers need to understand both the scope and the limits that define their product lines. Here, buyers from retail and distribution settings offer their definitions of specialty foods. While the responses vary, illustrating the richness of the market, quality and uniqueness are the overarching themes. Q: How do you define specialty foods? 92 SPECIALTY FOOD SPECIALTYFOOD.COM industry voices These answers are excerpts from the Specialty Food Association's recently released Professional Food Buyer Certificate Program, created in cooperation with eCornell. This self-paced program will enable buyers to better understand and develop an appreciation for the key principles and best practices associated with supply chain management, strategic partnerships, strategic sourcing, and product success in the food industry. To learn more, visit learning.specialtyfood.com.

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