TOKYO, JAPAN -- Last fall, the Nishimoto Trading Company introduced its own brand of U.S. medium grain rice to the Japanese market. Called "Sunshine," the brand is available both online and at Nishimoto stores and also at the Kaldi Coffee Farm grocery store chain.
In February and March, the USA Rice Federation has plans to conduct two promotions at more than 150 Kaldi Coffee Farm stores throughout the country. During the first promotion, customers who purchase more than $10 of Sunshine rice will receive an additional free sample along with a gumbo rice recipe card. The second promotion is a "Cal-Bowl" rice recipe book featuring U.S. medium grain rice that will be given to every customer who purchases a bag of Sunshine rice.
"Right now, there have not been many brands of U.S. rice available in the retail market in Japan," said Jim Guinn, USA Rice vice president of international promotion. "We have worked extensively with the Japanese foodservice industry since 2008 to offer U.S. rice on restaurant menus as a way for Japanese consumers to sample U.S. rice. And now we're excited to support retail brands as they introduce the Japanese consumer to identified, unblended U.S. rice for home use."
Chris Crutchfield, a rice miller from Williams, California and chairman of the USA Rice Millers' Association added, "Thanks to promotions with partner companies like Nishimoto and Kaldi, the Japanese consumers are much more accepting of U.S. rice than they were a decade ago. USA Rice has laid the groundwork for the ready acceptance of U.S. rice by the Japanese people, and we're prepared to benefit from increased market access in Japan from a successful Trans Pacific Partnership agreement."
Contact: Bill Farmer (832) 302-6710