ASMI wraps up trade mission to China
The Alaska Seafood Marketing Institute on Thursday called its week-long trade mission to China a success.
The goal of the trade mission was to help Alaska's seafood suppliers develop relationships with seafood buyers in each of China's major regions. Alaska is trying to expand its presence in what's already its second largest seafood export market by reaching out to the companies that supply China's growing hospitality, supermarket and quick-service restaurant markets.
"China is obviously thriving amidst a global downturn," said Joe Jacobson, director of ASMI's international marketing program. "China's rapidly growing middle class is willing to spend something extra for high quality, safe imported food."
Shanghai, Qingdao and Hong Kong were among the cities visited by ASMI and representatives of Ocean Beauty Seafoods, Icicle Seafoods, Trident Seafoods, SOGDA, Bering Select Seafoods, Snopac and American Seafoods. Also participating were officials from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service, which helps fund ASMI's international promotions.
ASMI also exhibited at the China Seafood and Fisheries Expo in Qingdao earlier this month.
"China is an emerging market with immense potential," said Ray Riutta, ASMI's executive director. "Lots of our work in China supports the Alaska seafood brand through educating the buyers and the users. When we send Alaska chefs like Al Levinson and Naomi Everett to China, they are teaching retail seafood managers and culinary students how to properly handle and prepare frozen Alaska seafood. When we conduct a trade mission it allows people on both sides of the table to become more fully acquainted with the potential opportunities."