TOKYO, JAPAN -- USA Rice hosted a promotional event here last week targeting food bloggers and consumers who entered and won an online “Wanna Eat U.S. Medium Grain” contest.
Kyara Kyara, a well-known chef and food blogger, was the center of attention at the promotion as she demonstrated the making of two non-traditional sushi dishes, “Salmon Sunshine Sushi,” and “Lollipop Sushi.”
Jim Guinn, USA Rice director of USA Rice Asia Promotion Programs, who attended the event made a presentation about the California rice industry and got feedback from all the contest winners on their impressions of U.S. medium grain.
“All the ‘wannabe’ sushi chefs and food bloggers thought the rice quality was excellent and were surprised to find they had difficulty distinguishing Calrose from traditional rice varieties in this cuisine,” said Guinn. “Many also thought this type of non-traditional sushi could be prepared at home as compared to traditional sushi that takes years of training to master.”
“New Style” sushi is the newest strategy USA Rice has employed in Japan promotions beginning earlier this year, and also featured in the annual Chefs’ Contest, the premier promotions event in August (see USA Rice Daily, August 30, 2018
USA Rice is focusing on maximizing imports of U.S. rice under the Simultaneous Buy-Sell (SBS) import scheme that allows rice to enter commercial channels as table rice, and thus the highest value to U.S. exporters. Imports of U.S. rice under SBS have set records the last two years and held a 78 percent market share in the first two SBS tenders of 2018.