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ITALIAN DELICACIES TEMPT THE PALATE AT THE SUMMER FANCY FOOD FAIR
You can rediscover the fine Italian habit of slicing ham by hand: cooked ham, but more especially the uncooked “prosciutto crudo”, served with other delicious cured meats such as salami or mortadella sausage from Bologna. Following that, you can enjoy a good plate of pasta, made strictly from durum wheat flour: drained while it is still “al dente” (as the Italians like it), then lightly dressed with tomatoes and basil, in accordance with Mediterranean tradition. Alternatively, you can enjoy a tasty pizza margherita, made with the very best buffalo mozzarella. To finish, you can order a shot of espresso coffee, served in a pre-heated cup, and perhaps also a dessert, with a choice of sweet biscuits, cake or ice-cream.
Make yourselves comfortable, for you are guests in the Italian pavilion at the Summer Fancy Food Fair. Unfortunately, you will have to use your imagination for now, but if you happen to be in Washington between July 10th and 12th, you can then savour these various delicacies in person. The food will be prepared before your very eyes, at the stands of the different companies involved, all carefully selected by the Italian Trade Commission to achieve a varied and high quality delegation.
Whether you are a visitor to this festival of flavours, or an operator in the sector, there will be surprises in store and maybe also opportunities to arrange important business deals. Treat yourself to a pizza straight from the oven, topped with melting strands of mozzarella, anchovies and Taggia olives, or to a plate of pasta with Ligurian pesto. Then finish your tour of the stands with a hot, black Neapolitan coffee and an after-dinner liqueur. It will certainly be easier to choose an Italian business partner after you have tried out the products on offer. This year, attention will also be focused on particular types of diet, such as vegetarian, kosher, organic or health foods, now acquiring a growing following. Wines will be accorded an equal status to food at the Fair. A goblet of Italian red or white, whether sparkling or dry, when combined with the right food can make a meal unforgettable. Drink it slowly, savouring its aroma to the full, and take advice from those manning the stands.
The USA constitutes one of Italy’s most important business partners in the context of the agro-food industry. In fact, the country is the main market for Italian food exports outside the Europe Union. About 138 million Americans consume Italian food specialities, amounting to a total value of over 60 billion dollars. Of this amount, 3.4 billion (5.6%) relates to products imported from Italy. In the first eight months of 2010, agro-food exports to the United States were worth 1,341 million Euros, showing a 9.3% increase on the same period in 2009. The potential for growth in the Italian agro-food industry is still very high. In fact, it is estimated that the sale of so-called "Italian sounding" products is ten times that of the genuine Italian articles.