Issue Date: December 1, 2009
A Note from the Seattle Office
Wow, it is incredible that the holiday season is almost upon us and we are about to begin a New Year together! Our Northwest pea, bean, corn, potato and carrot crops are now a distant memory and farmers are beginning to prepare the land for our 2010 crop season.
In this December issue we bring you updates on our winter crops in Guatemala and Mexico and we've added some healthy tips and recipes, which I am sure you will all enjoy.
Be on the lookout for our newly formatted monthly report-- The Intelligent Food Report- coming in January 2010. And don’t worry...Noon International will continue to bring you the most updated information on our U.S. crops ...but we have taken your comments to heart and we'll be adding more content including additional crop data as well as special reports about our frozen and canned food industry...with special focus on food safety.
As the year comes to a close we would like to thank you sincerely for your support and send you our best wishes for a joyous, safe and healthy holiday season.
Betty Johnson & all the Seattle Staff
Our Mexican and Guatemalan Crops: Frozen Vegetables
*The Crop status is subject to sudden and unexpected change due to the unpredictable nature of weather and growing conditions.
Broccoli/Mexico: The late rains affected Broccoli quality and yields in September and October, however Mexico processors are now receiving high quality broccoli from the Bajio region. Good quality and high yields should continue through April. Processors are also receiving high quality broccoli from the north of the state and this region will continue to supply broccoli through the end of December.
Cauliflower/Mexico: Cauliflower supplies are reportedly tight in Mexico due to lack of inventory and late rains in September/October. During the last few weeks processors have been receiving good quality and better yields from the Bajio region and supplies should be back in balance by middle December.
Broccoli/Guatemala: While this year there has been more rain than usual, Guatemalan broccoli continues to perform well in both yield and quality. Manufacturers are shipping broccoli ahead of schedule.
Eat Smart & Healthy…Eat Broccoli!
Everyone’s mother told them to eat their broccoli when they were young and it turns out that mother was right! In 1992 Johns Hopkins scientists first isolated a compound in broccoli called sulforaphane, a chemical thought to help the body fight cancer and help prevent cancer from forming. Sulforaphane is found in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage and kale with the highest source being found in broccoli sprouts.
The antioxidant action of sulforaphane also helps to fight high blood pressure and a study by the Tokyo University of Agriculture has shown that people eating about 100 g of broccoli sprouts every day for one week experienced reduced levels of cholesterol.
Broccoli is rich in nutrients such as vitamin C, vitamin E, folic acid and fiber.
And did you know that steamed broccoli has higher concentrations of many carotenoids (lutein and beta-carotene) than raw and actually retains 70% of its Vitamin C after steaming.
Food for Life
Broccoli and Garlic
1 lb. frozen chopped broccoli
6 garlic cloves
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons water
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Steam frozen broccoli in a microwave steamer or over boiling water until broccoli is tender and bright green (time depends on the volume of broccoli and water). It is important not to overcook all cruciferous vegetables.
Put olive oil in a skillet over medium heat and add minced garlic and salt when the oil is hot. Sauté, stirring frequently, just until the garlic starts to soften. Quickly add the water and the cayenne pepper if you like some heat!; Turn heat low and simmer for a couple of minutes. Put the broccoli in a large bowl. Pour the garlic mixture over it, mixing gently to coat.; Serve and enjoy.
This recipe is easy to prepare and can be a tasty addition to salads or quiches.
Keeping Food Safe In The Cold Chain
From grower to processor to cold storage – from loading docks to the container, truck, railcar or ocean vessel, from distributor to restaurant or supermarket to your car and finally to the table in your home…we are all players in the frozen food industry and are part of the very long and important cold chain. We are all inextricably linked and therefore, all responsible to the end consumer.
Everyday in America and in other countries throughout the world millions of pounds of frozen foods including meat, poultry, fish, fruits and vegetables are served to the public. And most frozen foods whether served in school lunch programs or high-end restaurants have traveled through the cold chain.
Now as we know, consumers don’t often stop and think about the cold chain…they don’t sit down at a restaurant and stop to ask where the vegetables or chicken came from before they take a bite. No…they normally don’t ask any questions unless there is a problem…unless someone gets very sick from the food.
And then they need to know everything. They want answers. They demand better protection – and more “food safety” regulations.
Food recalls are on the rise and with these recalls come more stringent regulations but also better traceability systems and solutions. At Noon International we believe strongly in the necessity for responsible food safety and traceability in all areas of the frozen food industry.
In the coming months we’ll be focusing on the important topic of food safety to bring you the latest updates and most pressing issues that affect our industry. If there is any specific area of food safety you’d like to see reports on please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org