NYCEDC Announces Four Winners of 2nd Annual Fancy Food Show Contest to Send Local Food Manufacturers to International Trade Show
Winning Companies Goodie Girl, Liddabit Sweets, Wholesome Kitchen and Hella Bitters Will Participate in Specialty Food Association’s Summer Fancy Food Show in New York City
Three Runners-Up Earn Spots at Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce’s Brooklyn Eats Trade Show
New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) today announced the four winning businesses of a City-sponsored competition designed to send New York City-based food manufacturers to a major international trade show taking place this summer in New York City. The four winning food manufacturers – Goodie Girl, Hella Bitters , Liddabit Sweets and Wholesome Kitchen– each earned a booth sponsored by NYCEDC at the Specialty Food Association’s Summer Fancy Food Show, which is being held at the Jacob Javits Center from June 30 – July 2. For each winner, NYCEDC is funding and coordinating the design, marketing and promotion of the booth, and providing 2013 membership to the Specialty Food Association. The show is expected to attract more than 24,000 buyers from around the world to source products for their stores and restaurants for the coming year, with exhibitors representing more than 80 countries and regions displaying over 180,000 products.
“The four companies selected to participate in the Summer Fancy Food Show represent the enormous creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of New York City,” said NYCEDC Executive Director Kyle Kimball. “The industrial sector is a key source of economic activity in New York, and the success and growth of these companies will positively impact the overall economy and success of our City.”
“Specialty food is all about innovation, creativity and a passion for excellence,” said Specialty Food Association President Ann Daw. “We applaud the winners of this year’s Fancy Food Show contest, and NYCEDC for supporting this important and growing part of the city’s economy.”
“Supporting the food manufacturing industry in New York City creates jobs and spurs economic growth – this event achieves both of these goals,” said City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn. “The Annual Fancy Food Show Contest connects local food manufacturers with buyers, distributors, suppliers and industry experts, helping them gain a competitive edge and grow their businesses. Events like this tap into the enormous potential of our food system and will help keep New York City one of the great culinary capitals of the world. I congratulate the winning businesses and thank the New York City Economic Development Corporation for supporting this wonderful event.”
The competition to participate in the Summer Fancy Food Show was designed to help address challenges faced by local food manufacturers, including limited resources to plan for growth, difficulty in fully accessing local, regional, and national markets, and access to technical assistance services. In preparation for the Fancy Food Show, the four winning companies will receive promotional services and expert marketing and technical assistance to help them refine their sales pitch, product display and business plan to successfully obtain and fulfill larger contracts.
Based in Tribeca, Goodie Girl specializes in creating gluten free cookies with surprising flavors and exciting twists on classic cookies that evoke the fantasy of childhood. Cookies range from timeless favorites, to unique creations inspired by life in the city and culinary trends. All of its cookies are hand baked, rolled and dipped at a commercial kitchen in Brooklyn.
"I have been to the Fancy Food Show seven times and have always dreamed of being on the other side,” said Shira Berk of Goodie Girl. “This is the most incredible opportunity to get in front of our exact target audience, and the best part is, we could never have afforded to display this year without winning."
Hella Bitters is an all-natural craft bitters company committed to being the premium alternative to mass-produced and often artificially flavored competitors. Its commitment is to quality in all practices, and its goal is to reach the broadest possible audience of food and cocktail lovers. Its bitters are meticulously handcrafted to be delicious and user friendly, and its charming wisdom and superior flavor satisfy the taste of a generation always seeking authenticity.
"We are absolutely ecstatic to win NYCEDC's 2nd Annual Fancy Food Show Contest,” said the Hella Bitters team. “It's an honor to be considered alongside the many specialty food producers that New York City has to offer. We look forward to upholding NYCEDC and The Fancy Food Show's core values and character. A huge thanks go to our friends and mentors at Hot Bread Kitchen Incubates, our wonderful network of supportive bartenders, chefs, family and friends. We'd like to congratulate all our fellow specialty food producers that continue to motivate and inspire us and we look forward to seeing you all at the show!"
Liddabit Sweets is a candy company based in Brooklyn specializing in handmade candy bars, caramels, honeycomb candy, lollipops and much more. Liddabit was founded with the idea that candy should not have to be such a guilty pleasure. With an abiding love for all things fresh and seasonal, the company has set out to create luscious treats that taste great and also support local growers and producers to strengthen the community at large.
“Liddabit is thrilled and honored to have been selected to participate in the Fancy Food Show,” said Liz Gutman of Liddabit Sweets. “As an established but still-small company, this opportunity will give us a leg-up in gaining national exposure and access to larger buyers. We're ready to take the next step, and the Specialty Food Association and NYCEDC have put us right where we need to be in order to be able to grow and share our product with a national – and eventually international – audience.”
Established in 2010, Wholesome Kitchen produces premium quality food for the entire family. All of their products are produced and packaged in Far Rockaway, Queens, with the goal of creating healthy and nutritious grain based products, an alternative to traditional side dishes such as rice, pasta and potato.
“We're delighted to be chosen as winners of the NYCEDC Fancy Food Show Funding Award,” said Ilan Eshed, Vice President of Operations at Wholesome-Kitchen. “This award embodies our New York spirit post-Hurricane Sandy, and will help in our ongoing recovery efforts as we continue to strive forward with our manufacturing in NYC. We’re honored to be included with all the other New York State companies in this award.”
The winners were determined by a judging panel of NYCEDC staff. In addition to the winners, four runners up were selected to receive a one-year membership in the Specialty Food Association, sponsored by NYCEDC. These companies include Three Tarts, Joray Candy, Mama Oh’s Premium Kimchi, and A&B American Style. A company must be a member of the not-for-profit trade association to exhibit at the Fancy Food Show.
Three Brooklyn-based runners up, Joray Candy, Mama Oh’s Premium Kimchi and Three Tarts, also received the opportunity to participate in the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce’s Brooklyn Eats trade show. Brooklyn’s first food & beverage trade show seeks to support food manufacturing businesses and create a borough- wide community of food producers. NYCEDC’s sponsorship of these three companies also includes a one-year membership to the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce.
"Brooklyn Eats will give everyone – from the general public to buyers and restaurant owners – a chance to sample and buy food and beverages and help these upstart, Brooklyn-based manufacturers sell their products across New York City and beyond,” said Carlo A. Scissura, President & CEO, Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce. “I want to thank the 100-plus food and beverage vendors who will take part in our show and NYCEDC for sponsoring Joray Candy, Mama Oh’s Premium Kimchi, and Three Tarts and allowing them the opportunity to participate in our wonderful event.”
The Fancy Food Show Contest was originally launched in October 2011 at the first ever City-sponsored food manufacturer business expo and networking event which was attended by over 100 New York City-based food manufacturers. The expo was a result of both the Mayor’s immigrant entrepreneur initiatives and the Speaker’s FoodWorks initiative, which is part of a larger effort to grow the local food economy by supporting the city’s food manufacturers. There are nearly 1,000 food manufacturing firms in New York City, employing over 14,000 people. Last year, NYCEDC funded four winners, Taste of Ethiopia, Morris Kitchen, Chulita’s Famous, and Davidovich Bakery, to attend the Summer Fancy Food Show, which was held in Washington, D.C.
The City has taken a number of steps over the last few years to support and grow the City’s food manufacturing industry. Two kitchen incubators, the Entrepreneur Space in Long Island City and HBK Incubates at La Marqueta, were launched in partnership with the City in January 2011. Together these incubators provide over 8,000 square feet of low cost commercial kitchen space where small food manufacturers can start to grow their businesses.
The food manufacturer business expo was also one of three pilot initiatives announced in March 2011 by Mayor Bloomberg to support immigrant-owned businesses to start, operate and expand their businesses in New York City. The other two pilot initiatives include a new series of free NYC Business Solutions courses in Chinese, Korean, Spanish, Russian and Haitian Creole; and Competition THRIVE, a business plan competition designed to address the challenges faced by immigrant entrepreneurs, including access to credit, financial management, language barriers, and access to business networks. The initiatives were the result of a year-long series of roundtables with community groups and are part of the City’s agenda to support immigrant communities to grow and create jobs.
New York City’s immigrant population has more than doubled since 1970 – from roughly 1.4 million to 3 million – and immigrants now represent nearly 40 percent of the City’s population and 45 percent of the City’s labor force. Immigrants are a significant and important piece of the City’s entrepreneurial economy: Immigrants make up 51 percent of all self-employed workers in the City compared to 29 percent in New York State and only 18 percent in the U.S.
New York City Economic Development Corporation is the City's primary vehicle for promoting economic growth in each of the five boroughs. NYCEDC's mission is to stimulate growth through expansion and redevelopment programs that encourage investment, generate prosperity and strengthen the City's competitive position. NYCEDC serves as an advocate to the business community by building relationships with companies that allow them to take advantage of New York City's many opportunities. Find us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter, or visit our blog to learn more about NYCEDC projects and initiatives.
About the Specialty Food Association
The Specialty Food Association celebrated its 60th anniversary in 2012. It is a not-for-profit trade association for food artisans, importers and entrepreneurs established in 1952 in New York City to foster commerce and interest in the specialty food industry. Today there are more than 3,000 members in the U.S. and abroad. The Specialty Food Association operates the Summer and Winter Fancy Food Shows and presents the sofi™ Awards honoring excellence in specialty food. For more information on the association, go to specialtyfood.com.
About the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce
The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce promotes economic development across the borough and serves as an advocate for its member businesses. Our mission is to promote a healthy and robust business environment throughout Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce is the foremost resource for doing business in Brooklyn, respected as a leader in advancing public policy, new technologies, products, services and programs that support and promote a vibrant local economy.