Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Fancy Food and Peaceworks

The great thing about going to Food Shows is that you not only have the opportunity to find out about, and sample, some wonderful food from all over the world, you also learn that the common love of food overrides any issues involving race or religion. The New York Fancy Food show featured food produced in all regions of the US, Europe, Asia, and Africa - some of the vendors were seasoned producers and others were new companies from developing countries just starting out. It was also great to see the large number of companies promoting Fair Trade and organic produce.

One of the exhibitors we came across was PeaceWorks International who were promoting a selection of food products from different regions of the world, and educating people about of their mission. The concept of their organization is that they are a not-only-for-profit organization, and they believe that people working together under conditions of equality learn to shatter cultural stereotypes and humanize their former enemies. In fact, the PeaceWorks Foundation has fostered co-existence between many regions of conflict, proving the theory that when people work together striving to co-exist and prosper, amazing things can happen!

PeaceWorks currently does business with Israelis, Palestinians, Egyptians, South Africans, Turks, Indonesians and Sri Lankans and they have created some unique and exciting specialty foods using all natural, fresh ingredients. Some of the products we came across were Kind Fruit and Nut Bars, a health food bar from Australia made from whole nuts; Indonesian Bali Spice, a women-owned company producing sauces, seasonings and noodles that create a fusion of Indian and Thai flavors; Meditalia Pestos and Tapenades. These Mediterranean flavors are created through a partnership between Arabs and Israelis. PeaceWorks have proved that they can build and sustain a profitable company while doing a little good in the world, so who can complain about that?

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