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(photo credit: Courtesy)
Thanks to a group of evangelical Christians in the United States, Israeli food
companies are being given exposure to the world through an online food network
that boasts around 11 million visitors per year.
The Food Channel
recently selected Israel to be the first country to feature in the new “world
market” section of its online store, which promises to find handselected items
for purchase that aren’t easily available in the US. And according to one of the
partners in Food Channel International – which runs the network’s overseas
operations - Israel’s inclusion was no mistake.
“The food here is
terrific, it’s not well known in the States, even with all the distribution
efforts that have been made over the last few years, and I felt like Americans,
no matter what their faith base is, would thoroughly enjoy this wonderful
treasure of food over here that very few know about,” Cary Summers told The
Jerusalem Post on Tuesday while on what he said was his 65th visit to Israel in
“We chose Israel the first, frankly that was part of our deal
with the Food Channel – that we would help but that Israel had to be the first
one, and they honored that,” he added.
As CEO of Missouribased consulting
firm the Nehemiah Group, Summers has many business interests in Israel,
including Nazareth Village – a replica of a first century Galilee village built
in the northern Israeli city of the same name.
He said the chance to
present their wares on the Food Channel presented a big opportunity for Israeli
companies because the network appeals mainly to the mid-upper income group,
people who “skew much higher as active travellers, they obviously skew much
higher for wanting to experiment with food, to learn about food and gourmet
“They don’t have to be Jewish, they don’t have to be Christian…
it’s just people who want to understand foods from different parts of the
Two Israeli companies have already been featured on the channel’s
website since its food market section was launched on April 1: Aunt Berta’s –
which sells kosher sauce, preserve, honey and nut butter products manufactured
at Kibbutz Beth El, and Fruits of Galilee – which produces preserves and
marmalades made by descendants of Christian German settlers living on Mt.
Now, in conjunction with the Israeli Export Institute’s food and
wine division, the network has begun approaching other manufacturers in Israel,
and will hold talks in coming months in the hope of attracting local companies
in time for the US holiday season later this year.