Farmers and growers teamed up with the state Department of Agriculture to create the Hawaii Seals of Quality, which guarantee locally grown and Hawaii-made products.

Those products are now being requested across the Pacific.

Foodex is the largest trade show in Japan, and attracts more than 80,000 buyers and 3,000 exhibitors from around the world.

“It is a must-go show if you’re working in the food industry, because you can see the food trends in one place,” said Yukashi Smith, economic development specialist, Department of Agriculture. “It is also very important for Hawaii companies to be able to meet potential buyers in the show, and learn about how other competitors are doing, just working the show.”

Eighteen companies from Hawaii are signed up for exhibits this year, including Rusty’s Hawaiian, Maui Gold, Big Island Bees, and Hawaiian Chip Co.

“Because of their participation in Foodex Japan show, their products are all over Japan, in retailers and restaurants,” Smith said of Hawaiian Chip Co. “Japan has been and continues to be the number-one export market for Hawaii companies.”

Foodex takes place March 6 through 9 in Chiba, Japan.

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