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Top 5 Organic Food Trends for 2012

Top 5 Organic Food Trends for 2012

I see these five products, issues and technologies making some real noise in the organic food industry this year. AFRICAN SUPERFOODS In the U.S., we are very familiar and comfortable with superfoods from Latin America, such as maca, chia seeds, and acai. Yet, Africa has its own group of superfoods as well, and they are […]

Expo East Expo West Food Trends Pressed Juice Superfoods USDA

I see these five products, issues and technologies making some real noise in the organic food industry this year.


In the U.S., we are very familiar and comfortable with superfoods from Latin America, such as maca, chia seeds, and acai.

Yet, Africa has its own group of superfoods as well, and they are only going to grow in popularity.

These extremely nutritious, protein-rich and antioxidant-heavy foods, such as moringa (above) and baobab, will become much more ubiquitous and prominent in 2012.

I have read that moringa has 10x the Vitamin A of carrots, 17x the calcium of milk, 15x the potassium of bananas, 25x the iron of spinach, and 4x the chlorophyll of wheatgrass.


The majority of the pressed organic juice sold in NYC and other cities throughout the country is raw and unpasteurized.

As a result, it has a very short shelf-life and is difficult to ship nationwide.

Furthermore, if there were ever a crackdown on unpasteurized juice, similar to what is going on with raw milk, juice bars who make and sell pressed organic juice are going to be in real trouble.

How to deal with this? High Pressure Processing (HPP) technology.

The high pressure chamber of HPP kills harmful bacteria, yet a majority of the beneficial enzymes and nutrients of the juice remain intact. This is all done without heat, or traditional pasteurization.

HPP technology was one of the primary reasons why Starbucks acquired Evolution Fresh for $30 million late last year.

Harmless Harvest, one of the most promising early-stage organic beverage companies that I’ve seen, utilizes HPP as well.


Sacha Inchi has the potential to be the next quinoa but most people have never heard of it. Yet.

Originating from Peru, Sacha Inchi (above and also known as Inca Peanuts or Inca Nuts) is available as a nut, protein powder and oil.

Sacha Inchi oil is believed to be the most unsaturated vegetable oil available, superior to flax and olive oil, and has significant anti-inflammatory properties.

Along with having a nutty and rich taste, the seed contains 48% omega-3 and is rich in proteins, iodine, Vitamin A and Vitamin E.


Without question, 2012 will be a defining year for the labeling of genetically-modified food.

In 2011, the first GMO March from New York City to Washington D.C. was held and several class action lawsuits (Wesson Oils, Naked Juice, Frito-Lay) were filed against companies for using genetically-modified ingredients whose products are marketed as “all-natural”.

While many other similar class action lawsuits will be definitely be filed, two big events should grab the public’s attention in 2012.

1) The FDA’s reaction, response and/or public hearing to the official petition that was filed mandating that genetically-modified foods be labeled.

The U.S. Patent Office gives patents to GMOs because they are unique and different, and yet the FDA and USDA tell us that GMOs and non-GMOs are essentially the same thing.

2) The ballot initiative to get GMOs labeled in California in 2012. From everything I am hearing, this is gaining some serious momentum and has secured significant funding commitments from several of the major players in the organic industry.

While numerous other states have their own individual initiatives, none is more important than California, simply because of the sheer size of the state’s economy.


When you go to Natural Products Expo East or Natural Products Expo West, the organic food industry’s two big trade shows, the one topic that always gets discussed is the range of alternative sweeteners in the market.

Everyone has a different opinion about the most popular ones – palm sugar, coconut nectar, agave, maple syrup, honey, and brown rice syrup.

Yet, one that never gets mentioned is organic molasses. I don’t know why this is the case but it has just never caught on and is widely ignored.

I believe that molasses will finally start getting some attention, primarily because of its over-looked nutritional value. Organic, unsulphered black strap molasses is rich in iron, calcium, copper, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and zinc.


  • L says:

    Universal Cold Storage had a HPP machine explode While processing foods at 87,000 pounds per square inch June 11, 2012. Owner John Jacobson said ” we were lucky no one was killed.
    Thats making food safer? . HPP machinery is extremely expensive I think I would definitely be in a lawsuit.

  • lisa says:

    HPP processing has a growing lengths of lawsuits for false claims.
    Google it .. Blue Print and Hines has found the claims for HPP to be no
    better than Pasturzation and after 5 days the nutritional value dropped

  • Tom says:

    Whoa, lots of misinformation here concerning HPP. The process kills bacteria through pressure, it has nothing to do with boiling. In fact higher pressure would raise the boiling point, not lower it. This is why foods need to be boiled for longer periods at high elevations – the pressure is lower the higher you go and boiling temperature correspondingly goes down.

  • Jamie says:

    Thanks, I always love reading your blog/newsletter email because I learn about new things!

  • Jay says:

    Love your blog!

    Do you mean to say that HPP alters the liquids boiling point? I was under the impression that it just created an environment in which pathogenic bacteria cell walls burst.

    My guess is that the team at BluePrintCleanse is utilizing HPP, would you agree? That shelf life is unreal!

    • Max Goldberg says:

      Hi Jay,

      Thanks so much!

      When you increase pressure to a chamber, the boiling point (212 F) goes down.

      The raw food community believes that food can be heated up until 118 F before it starts losing minerals and enzymes.

      So, if you increase the pressure such that the boiling point drops below 118F or whatever the number may be, the enzymes stay intact. This is my understanding of how the technology works.

      I don’t follow BPC because they are not organic. So, I am not sure if they use HPP or not.

      Live well,

  • Ashley says:

    Came across your blog today from a local organic stores newsletter and love it! Thanks for providing great information!

    • Max Goldberg says:

      Hi Ashley,

      Thank you so much!!! I really appreciate it.

      Just curious. Which store’s newsletter was it?

      Live well,

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