This summer, I found myself on a tour of Israeli industries, courtesy of the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute. Israel (population 7.5 million) is tiny—if the Middle East was the size of a football field, Israel would be the size of a pack of matches. Since about 60% of Israel is desert, picture eight matches on that field, and you have the idea. Yet, the Western-oriented country’s devotion to pushing beyond the boundaries of technology is evident at every turn. It’s been the world leader in medical, computer and other science for two decades—flash drives, the modern cell phone, pill cameras, 3-D copiers, radiation-free mammograms, VOIP, Skype…the list is endless. And, the fields of foods, beverages, ingredients and nutraceuticals are no exception to the restless ingenuity on tap in this ancient—yet ultra-modern—land.  

Israel was fortunate enough to have its ducks in a row a few years ago when China, after becoming a food and supplement ingredients leader, fatally dropped the food safety ball. Israeli facilities in China operate according to already high Israeli standards, including strict kosher supervision. This “answering to a higher authority” (to borrow Hebrew National’s slogan) is a boon to purity, so ingredients such as soy proteins, fiber, citric acid, sweeteners, starches, etc. from Israeli companies and facilities at home and in the Far East could jump into the gaps when other China-based sources were being shunned or shut down.

Food production facilities in Israel benefit from the same exacting standards and practices. Every facility we saw was spotless; its ingredient makers adhere to the strictest QC standards at home as abroad. And, as a country at the crossroads of food cultures for some 6,000 years, with immigrants from more than 100 countries, Israelis know food. Look on the Prepared Foods website at for my in-depth report on the companies we visited. Until then, I’d like to say thanks to Algatechnologies, Anlit, Dorot, Galam Group/NutriGal, Gan Shmuel, Gat Foods/Prigat, GreenLite Bakery/Eytan’s Bakery, Herbamed, Innobev, Lemon Tree, Lycored, Mycolivia and Novel Creation, and to Liat, Michal and the Israel Export and International Cooperation Institute.

P.S. This has nothing to do with food or nutraceuticals, but it’s too cool not to pass along, especially as an example of ingenuity taken to a whole new level—it is Israeli inventor Izhar Gafni’s soon-to-market bicycle made entirely from $9 worth of recycled cardboard:

Keynote Address—Bimbo: The Story Behind a Global Multilatina Company

Presented by Daniel Servitje, President and CEO, Grupo Bimbo

Join us at Latin America’s premier educational conference, which provides product development and manufacturing solutions to the Food & Beverage Industry. Educational sessions focus on Formulation and R&D Challenges; Food Safety; Manufacturing Proficiencies; and Plant Modernization Solutions.

LAFC offers attendees a unique opportunity to network with industry experts, while learning how to improve business practices, efficiencies and develop new products. Attendees will include owners, presidents, vice presidents and directors; and leaders of operations, R&D, sales and marketing personnel.


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