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NAA Exhibits at CAFÉ Conference

NAA Exhibits at CAFÉ Conference

The National Aquaculture Association (NAA) exhibited at the annual Center for Advancement of Foodservice  ducation (CAFÉ) Conference, a meeting that brings together culinary instructors from schools across the             country. Over 60% of the seafood consumed in the United States is eaten away from home in restaurants and other foodservice establishments. This makes chefs a critical audience. Having presented an educational session last year, the NAA was not eligible to do one this year, but the NAA exhibit did include strategies to make this an educational event.
Clear Springs Foods provided trout that were prepared by the chefs at Niagara Culinary School to emphasize the versatility and ease of preparation of the product.   At the opening reception, smoked trout and a trout with asparagus and a brown butter sauce was served. Those dishes were garnished with sturgeon caviar from Anastasia Gold. Many of the instructors did not realize that the caviar was truly sturgeon caviar produced right here in the United States. This was a great opportunity to talk about the importance of U.S. aquaculture, especially for species like sturgeon that have an uncertain future in their native range. Trout was also featured as fish and chips on Friday and a wrap on Saturday. There were lots of positive comments about both products and these were backed up by people who went back for second helpings. The chefs did an amazing job which initiated positive side conversations during meals and workshops.

The NAA conducted a quick five question quiz to identify issues that are still unclear to this audience. Since these are instructors who reach hundreds of students each year, it is important that they have correct information. The five question quiz was focused on important concepts and an answer sheet to make sure that the participants had a good understanding of U.S. aquaculture was distributed. On Saturday, the NAA staff participated in the InfoFair which allowed another opportunity to distribute materials and answer specific questions. Lots of folks remembered the programs that the NAA offered for culinary schools and wanted to know if the NAA would be repeating those programs for new classes of students.

Exhibiting at the CAFÉ conference was another opportunity to get a positive, science-based message about U.S. aquaculture to educators who will reach thousands of students who will be the buyers of the future.


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