Sunday, 17 February 2013

Ginger Popcorn, Exports Halted & Ginger Ale Recall

We are a little late with this post as we are working on a major development at All Things Ginger. We are not going to tell you what it is yet but when it is ready we think you will be impressed.

The Dieline, a website dedicated to package design, reports that Canada Dry Green Tea Ginger Ale is the most successful new product launch to date for Dr Pepper Snapple Group. I've never tried it but I am quite taken with the look of the can.

A gingerbread-flavoured popcorn has been launched ready for Easter by the UK gourmet popcorn maker Joe & Seph’s. Popcorn sales in the UK have increased rapidly over the last three years with the market in 2011 worth £53 million according to Mintel. (Source: The Food & Drink Innovation Network).

There was a blunt message last week in The Produce News - "Chinese ginger exports have ground to a halt". What normally happens in China is that ginger is harvested in November and placed in sand to cure and dry in caves until January. But this winter China is experiencing one of its coldest winters in four decades and the ginger is not curing. The price of Chinese ginger has already risen as a consequence and is expected to continue rising.

The ginger revival in Sierra Leone has been boosted by the news that the Africa Growth and Opportunities Act has certified ginger for export to the USA and Europe. Sierra Leone has been exporting ginger on a small scale to the Netherlands for a number of years. This has been quite an achievement as the Sierra Leone ginger industry was all but wiped out during the civil war from 1991-2002. (Source: Awoko).

Here is some important news if you live in New Zealand and you have bought a Schweppes Dry Ginger Ale with a best-before date between January 10th and January 30th, 2014. It has got to go back. Coca-Cola is recalling this drink along with four other Schweppes drinks because of a possible problem with the glass bottle. (Source: 3news).

Greene King, the pub retailer and brewer, has revealed its 2013 guest ales calendar. And guess what? The brewer has a ginger offering. Twisted Wheel, a light ale with a twist of ginger, will be available from April to June. According to The Drinks Business, this beer is named after the famous Manchester northern soul club which had previously been the UK's first Mod club.

The Maine Organic Farmers & Gardeners Association has published an interesting article about growing ginger in the state. We have mentioned growing ginger in Maine before in this post. Farmers in the state appear to concentrate on producing immature (or baby) ginger which is popular both cooked and raw in salads.

The Fiji Times reported that over the last ten years the country's production of ginger has been 75% immature (baby, green) and 25% mature. With the country set to start exporting mature ginger to Australia, the Ministry of Agriculture needs farmers to convert their immature ginger crops to mature ginger.

In our last post we reported that Nepal has now become the third largest producer of ginger in the world. The Himalayan has now stated that Nepal is third in terms of the total export volume of ginger but eighth in terms of value. In other words, Nepal is not getting enough for its ginger compared to other countries. The article also mentions that ginger production in Nepal is growing a faster rate than in the major competitor countries of India, China and Indonesia. The Kathmandu University School of Management has found that the best way to increase export earnings is to export value-export value-added ginger. And the best form of value-added ginger is ginger powder which is seeing increasing demand around the world.

The price of Nigerian dried ginger appears to be stable even though 70% of the current harvest has been sold. Incidentally, Nigeria used to be the third largest exporter of ginger until Nepal overtook it.

The Radio Taiwan blog published a post on the benefits of ginger in winter. What took my eye was the fact that ginger is harvested in Taiwan all year.