The company is looking to inspire European consumers with a wide range of healthy ingredients from the Asian continent
SIAL Daily spoke with Eric Granddidier, director of Loragro, about why these new products are sure to peak people’s appetite.
What products are you promoting at SIAL Paris 2022?
We are presenting a range of Asian products – Cat Chu mango, edamame, dragon fruit, sea grapes and lemongrass – which are all healthy and flavoursome. We are looking to introduce these products to the European market, where consumers are less familiar with them. There are not many suppliers in Europe because you have to spend a lot of time there and get to know the products. Exports have therefore been a little late compared to other continents like South American. For example Cat Chu mangoes, which possess a beautiful golden colour and are naturally very soft and sweet, while containing very few calories and a large amount of vitamins A and C, as well as nutrients which boost the body’s immune system.
What do you see as the key market trends?
In terms of our frozen range, we had two fantastic years in 2020/2021 because restaurants were closed, so people were buying frozen ready meals to cook at home. Today, this sudden growth in demand for frozen products has plateaued and is expected to return to 2019 levels. But retailers have understood that the market had attracted new customers and that we are going to regain them. That’s why we are bringing new products like aloe vera and lemongrass to their home cooked meals.
What are the most popular products?
Edamame is definitely one of the most popular products, and we are also seeing growing demand for aloe vera and lemongrass. The latter is used in Asian dishes like tom yum, but can also be adapted for European dishes and gives a delicious lemon flavour. Today, consumers are looking to discover new flavours through their cooking. Of course there is a drive to produce and eat local, but there are limits. Asian cuisine on the other hand offers a real explosion of flavours, it offers an alternative to traditional dishes and allows people to travel through their cooking.
What are the most important cold chain innovations?
So the market is working to reduce its carbon footprint by innovating refrigeration and storage technology – by using different gases for example. So in other words, we are doing more cold with less energy. Providers have put a huge amount of effort into this, to reduce the CO2 impact and make it more environmentally friendly.
How important is SIAL Paris 2022 for Loragro?
After years of absence, SIAL is returning and once again allows us to organise producer-buyer meetings. It therefore serves as an international trading platform, where suppliers from South America, Kenya, Egypt and Asia can meet our customers face-to-face, and it’s through these exchanges that new ideas and products are born.
HALL 5A, STAND T90
Photo: Eric Granddidier, Director of Loragro (© Laurence Deleau)
Legend has it, Loragro’s sea grapes are the secret to a long life
Sea grapes, a type of algae originally from the Japanese island of Okinawa, are just one of the Asian products Loragro is presenting at SIAL Paris 2022. Legend has it, the small bundles of ‘grapes’ could explain why the Japanese island is home to a large number of centenarians. Whether this is true, they certainly contain many vitamins and minerals that help maintain a healthy immune system and digestive system. Sometimes referred to as green caviar, the grapes are also a rich source of fibre and can be enjoyed with a grilled sesame sauce or used as a garnish with fish or salad. They are dehydrated and frozen before being shipped, but can then be rehydrated, therefore regaining their soft and succulent texture.