NEW YORK — They could have gone to France, but chose Pennsylvania instead.
At least that was the case for dozens of buyers who attended the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade's Summer Fancy Food Show here last week.
In addition to visiting pavilions for France, Germany, Italy and dozens of other countries, many also browsed sections for Texas, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and other state-produced food and beverages.
Such local fare is experiencing growing popularity among consumers, said Bart Giacalone, a buyer at PSK Foodtown, which operates 14 stores in Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey.
“Local foods do well,” Giacalone told SN. “It has a lot of green appeal, since it saves on gas and has other benefits.”
What's more, many state-produced foods tap into health and wellness trends.
In the “New York” section, for instance, there was gluten-free pasta sauces by Cucina Antica Foods in Bedford Hills; gluten-free, all-natural seasonings from Onion Creek Farms in Chili; fair trade coffee from A Taste of the Adirondacks, Morrisonville; and kosher cookies from La Vita Health Foods in Suffern.
In the Virginia pavilion, buyers flocked to Route 11 Potato Chips, which come in unique flavors like dill pickle and Chesapeake crab.
In Texas, there were four new varieties of Doctor Kracker crisps: fire-roasted, apple, cherry semolina and hummus maximus.