Winning new product contest propels AFM

This year's finalists for the International Boston Seafood Show New Products Competition face some steep competition. But the winners of the best new retail and foodservice products, which will be announced in the Culinary Demonstration Theater at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, will earn more than bragging rights.
Amazing Food Manufacturers, creators of the patent-pending Chef Papillote packaging, beat out 90-plus entries to sweep the 2008 contest. Notoriety from the award helped the company more than double its sales, from USD 4 million (EUR 3.1 million) in 2007 to USD 12 million (EUR 9.4 million) in 2008, despite a challenging economic climate.
"[The show and the award] really contributed to our business growth. Without a doubt it's been a major asset to this business," said AFM Chef Eric Carré. "We are still receiving inquiries after what happened last year at the show."
Just last week, Carré received four inquiries about the Chef Papillote technology, two from companies that approached him after last year's winners were announced.
One such company was SeaPak Shrimp Co. of Brunswick, Ga., which approached Carré with interest in AFM's technology.
The companies partnered soon after and entered SeaPak's Lemon Honey Shrimp in the retail category for the 2009 competition, though the product wasn't among the 10 finalists. AFM and SeaPak will also co-exhibit at the show in booth No. 1157.
New product finalists will be judged on packaging, convenience, marketability, nutrition, originality and overall eating experience.
The 10 finalists are: Smoked Salmon Bagel Slice from MacKnight Smoked Foods of Miami; Salty Seas IQF Half Shell Oysters from Southeastern SeaProducts of Melbourne, Fla.; Pan Grilled Asian Glazed Salmon from Inland Market Premium Foods of Atlanta; Shrimp Sheet from Azuma Foods International USA of Hayward, Calif.; Mussels in a Creamy Lime and Ginger Sauce from Bantry Bay Seafoods USA of South Boston, Mass.; Sweet Apple Salmon on Cedar Plank from Hartley's NW Seafood of Woodland, Wash.; Steamer Creations™ from Phillips Foods of Baltimore; PanaPesca Ready Meal Kits from PanaPesca USA of Pembroke, Mass.; and Maine Lobster Ceviche and Maine Lobster Carpaccio from Shucks Maine Lobster of Richmond, Maine.
To register for the International Boston Seafood Show, click here.

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