U.S. exporters recently met with hundreds of buyers and representatives of Japan’s retail and foodservice industries at FoodEx Japan, Asia’s largest food trade show. Greg Hanes, U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) assistant vice president for international marketing, said the show attracted a mix of attendees, ranging from representatives of small importers and restaurants to top executives from some of the largest food companies in the world.
To stay a step ahead of competitors in the important Japanese market, USMEF prepared U.S. beef and pork dishes for attendees to sample. Because beef tongue is very popular – Japan imported more than 8,300 metric tons of U.S. beef tongue in 2016 at a value of $87 million – the tenderness of corn-fed U.S. beef tongue over that of grass-fed competitors was featured. For pork customers, thin-sliced and fried U.S. pork cutlets were prepared and served in a convenient way that caters to “on the go” Japanese consumers.