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NRA’s List of Most Innovative Restaurant Products For 2012

The National Restaurant Association announced last month their list of the country’s most innovative products through its 2012 Food and Beverage Product Innovations Award winners.

The association recognized the role and contributions of the products’ manufacturers in the growth of today’s restaurant businesses, drawing attention to the benefits they offer—menu enhancements, better-for-you nutrition, and all the flexibilities that can be found in between.

“These companies really stood out among all others, and as we recognize them, we are also giving other restaurant operators time to think and consider them during the NRA Show on May 5-8,” said NRA Convention Chair Jack Crawford.

Among the recipients of the 2012 Food and Beverage Products Award are:

Mara’s Pasta, manufactured by Cook Natural Products. Going by the tag “for the love of fiber,” this best tasting, all-natural, 100% whole wheat pasta is the modern restaurant chef’s partner in creating nutritious pasta, especially for his most finicky customers. Each 2-ounce serving holds 7 grams of dietary fiber and 8-grams of protein.

Extreme Beans, Tempura Battered produced by Cavendish Farms. This tasty snack first took the bar and restaurant scene by storm back in the early 2000s. Its crunchy, refreshing, spicy and pickled taste presents an extra appeal and excitement to the menu that restaurants chefs, in their smart-looking chef aprons, prepare.

MaxSnax Barbeque Chicken made by ConAgra Food Service, under its Max Fit For Kids Plus line. Restaurateurs find this perfect for kids’ meals – 51% whole-grain quesadilla-made mini triangles loaded with pieces of white-meat chicken, a variety of cheeses and tangy, sweet barbeque sauce which easily met the new standards for kids’ school lunches.

Angela Mia No Salt Added Crushed Tomatoes manufactured by ConAgra Foodservice. The only one of its kind in the market today, delivering fresh 100% California tomato flavor, color and aroma with only 14% of sodium.

3 in One Soup, Dip or Sauce by HJ Heinz Company. Three great uses with one unique product, where chefs in their cozy chef aprons can customize their menu items simply by changing the reconstitution methods. Add milk for a delicious soup, sour cream for a fantastic dip and whole milk for a tasty sauce.

Copa di Vino Wine by Copa di Vino. This innovative wine by the glass has sustainability implications, allowing operators to help the environment by reducing waste; not to mention, of course, the convenience of serving wine without the need to uncork bottles and pour.

Grape Escape from HMC Farms. Think about fruits and all those healthy food we have to prepare for today’s children (and adults, too)—and think of these fresh de-stemmed green and purple berries conveniently packed in single serve 2-ounces and 3-ounces bags, washed and ready to eat. It has no preservatives nor additives, and has a shelf life of 18 days.

Kraft’s Yes Pack. With the aim of helping out restaurant operators manage operational costs and optimize kitchen efficiencies, the YES Pack – yield, ease, sustainability—was created. Among its many advantages is maximum yield, precision pouring and easy handling.

And by the recognition that these products got from the leaders in the industry, we can safely say that yes, they are also the most recommended restaurant products to use today, endorsed for use by restaurant operators across the country.