In August, more than 250 international U.S. soy buyers were fed a meal featuring U.S. high oleic soybean oil. The buyers were participating in a field day prior to the U.S. Soy Global Trade Exchange & Specialty Grain Conference in Chicago, Illinois.
Trade teams from the Americas, the Asia Subcontinent, the Black Sea Region, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, the Middle East / North Africa (MENA) region, Taiwan, Northern and Southern EU, and Southeast Asia, participated in industry and farm tours, visiting container loading facilities, a lock and dam, rail yard, river loading facilities, and more, before arriving on six buses at soy grower Jeff O’Connor’s farm in Kankakee, Illinois. The international delegations enjoyed a lunch consisting of fried green tomatoes, fried chicken, and deep-fried Oreo cookies, along with salads and high oleic soybean oil potato chips.
Many of the buyers were able to witness the high oleic soybean oil frying demonstration, the U.S. Soybean Export Council’s (USSEC) largest high oleic demo to date, in action. Buyers were able to experience the functionality and neutral taste of high oleic soybean oil and were also able to discuss the oil’s frying quality with Chef Charlie Baggs Culinary Innovations, the company who prepared the meal.
“High oleic soybean oil is gaining traction outside of the United States, as export customers discover the product’s extended fry life, clean flavor, and ease of equipment clean up post production,” states United Soybean Board (USB) Vice President of Oil Strategy, John Jansen. “Many of our luncheon guests mentioned the product’s versatility for frying, salads and sauces. High oleic soy is the perfect answer to extended fry life, and consistent food quality, batch after batch.”
“The lunch items were fantastic and tasted really great, especially the fried chicken and potato chips,” comments Karim Ashraf, who is director of administration at SeaTrade in Pakistan.
Majyd Aziz, President, Employers’ Federation of Pakistan commented that he had kept one packet of the potato chips in his bag and tasted them when he returned home. “The taste is different from the usual chips we have here, but I am sure that by adapting it to our taste, there could be a value-added market for chips fried in soy oil [in Pakistan],” he says.