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My Finds at the Grocery Specialty Food West 2016

I just love this event! The Grocery Specialty Food West highlights some of the most innovated new products in the market – from crazy flavour combinations, to new labels and packaging. It brings together more than 300 booths and over 160 exhibitors. This year’s event took place on April 4-5, 2016 at the Vancouver Convention Centre East.

This year did not disappoint. I found so many new products and new versions of old favourites. My picks for the 2016 show are:

Crim City Soda

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Photo Credit: Josh Rimer

This new soda is changing the game. I was drawn to their booth by the original hand illustrated labels (designed by David Kuo), reminiscing of old video game illustrations (circa GTA 2010). The soda is made with all natural flavours and no preservatives, and uses cane sugar as a sweetener.  It comes in four flavours: Kingpin Kola, Renegade Root Beer (my fave!), Pepper’s Brew and Brawler’s Bubblegum.  Watch for it at your favourite retailer coming soon, or buy directly on their website.

Bottle Green Sparkling Mango and Coconut

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Photo credit: Josh Rimer

From my friends at Tree of Life Canada, this new drink by Bottle Green is so delicious. Flavours of sweet mango and coconut will have you thinking you’re on a tropical vacation. This is a refreshing and light drink with just the right amount of sparkling.

Lee Kum Kee Sriracha Mayo and Sriracha Chilly Ketchup

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Photo Credit: Josh Rimer

Once you try this combo you’ll never go back to traditional condiments again! Lee Kum Kee’s Sriracha Mayo adds the perfect amount of heat to sandwiches, hotdogs and wraps. It can also be used for marinades, dips and spread. It’s been available on the States for a year now, but its just making its round to Canadian grocery shelves now. It’s available right now at Walmart, or online at Amazon.

Sunshine Farms Pickles

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Photo Credit: Josh Rimer

Very popular in Ontario, Sunshine Farms is starting to make its way West.  This family operation started with a recipe for pickled asparagus and it exploded from there. Currently they offer 23 types of pickles, half are certified organic. The vegetables are processed right away, fresh from their fields and have no preservatives, fillers or additives. I’m a bit of a pickle snob, and was very impressed with their products! The spears have a nice crisp and are mixed with just the right amount of vinegar and spices. I admin I could eat a whole jar by myself. Try them for yourself. 

Inno Specialty Foods Coconut Snacks

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Photo Credit: Josh Rimer

This healthy snack contains fibre, protein and taste great. The coconut has a very satisfying crunch and it full fills sweet cravings like nothing else. Plus did I mentioned they’re organic? You can find them at London Drugs.

Karma Wellness Water

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Photo Credit: Josh Rimer

Premixed vitamin drinks can lose their strength over time. Karma Wellness Water mixes the vitamins and the water when you’re ready to drink them so you’ll able to enjoy all their benefits at their maximum potency and peak freshness. Plus it tastes great.

Judges in food and media handpicked 10 products from the New Product showcase based on uniqueness, buzz and innovation.

Top 10 Most Innovative Products (no particular order):

1. Almond Milk Puddings (Dark Chocolate, Dulce de Leche, Vanilla Bean), Lakeview Farms

2.Jams (Sour Cherry, Rose Hip, & Fig), Bosa Foods

3. Creamed Raw Prairie Honey, Wendell Estate Honey

4. Oasis SmoOthies, A. Lassonde

5. Ready to Eat Quinoa (Mango & Jalapeno, Artichoke & Roasted Peppers, Spicy Jalapeno & Roasted Peppers, and Basil, Pesto), Tree of life

6. Blackberry Ginger Ale (Naturally Flavoured), Coca Cola

7. Crim City Soda, DD Beverage Co.

8. Tortilla Bowls, General Mills

9. Fish Fillets, Cold Fish Seafood Company

10. SKYR Icelandic Style Yogurt, Dairy Farmers of Canada (Lekker Foods)

For more information on Grocery & Specialty Food West, please visit www.GSFShow.com

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