Lotus Foods is proud to announce that its signature Forbidden Rice® has been selected as a finalist in the 2014 sofi™ Awards in the "Classic" category. Forbidden Rice® is one of 125 Finalists selected by a national panel of food professionals.
June 24, 2014 (Newswire) - Lotus Foods is proud to announce that its signature Forbidden Rice® has been selected as a finalist in the 2014 sofi™ Awards in the "Classic" category. A sofi Award is the top honor in the $86 billion specialty food industry. These awards are made annually by the National Association for the Specialty Food Trade (NASFT) to recognize "specialty outstanding food innovation" or sofi.
Forbidden Rice® is one of 125 Finalists selected by a national panel of specialty food professionals from from a record 2,737 entries across all 32 awards categories. Gold Winners will be announced at a gala ceremony Monday June 30, at the Summer Fancy Food Show in New York.
"We are delighted by this honor," says Lotus Foods co-owner Caryl Levine. "What a journey it's been. Our Forbidden Rice® has gone from "Outstanding New Product" in 1998 to "Outstanding Classic" in 2011 and again this year. It shows how dynamic our food industry is and how even a small company like ours can have a big impact on consumer tastes and trends. It was the discovery of this exotic black grain with its huge taste that launched our company in 1995, and started getting people excited about heirloom rice."
Besides its exceptional taste and dramatic plate presentation, the rice's legendary Imperial pedigree may also have contributed to its success with consumers. In China it was called 'Longevity' or 'Tribute' rice, reserved for the emperors to ensure their good health and long life. "We tried to capture the legend and sense of exclusivity by calling this rich ancient grain Forbidden Rice®," explains Levine. "We registered the trademark in 1995." Taking a product from niche to mainstream is every manufacturer's goal and certainly helps to support its 'classic' status. Recent research shows that pigmented red and black rice have higher antioxidant capacity than any other grain, including quinoa, and also other pigmented fruits like blueberries.
This year, Lotus Foods introduced a new product made with Forbidden Rice®: gluten-free Forbidden Rice®Ramen. Normally, Ramen noodles are wheat-based, making them off-limits for anyone with intolerance for gluten. This means this cherished comfort and convenience food is now available to everyone. In addition to Ramen made with Forbidden Rice®, Lotus Foods also offers Ramen made with its Jade Pearl RiceTM and a hearty blend of Millet and Brown Rice.
Since 1995, Lotus Foods has been partnering in fair trade with small family farmers around the world who are growing rice sustainably and preserving heirloom and specialty rices. The company's objective is not only to help rice farmers earn a living wage but to bring healthier rice choices to consumers. More information and recipes are available at Lotus Foods' website: www.lotusfoods.com.