Since over half of the population relies on rice as a dietary staple, and one-fifth of the world’s population—over one billion people—depends on rice cultivation for their very livelihood, the quality and success of rice crops are vital to both the global food supply and the global economy.
In one year, 740 million tons of rice were grown and harvested across the globe, as a main source of nutrition for the majority of people on earth. Rice is an undeniable food staple globally, accounting for 42% of the human population’s total caloric consumption. And for some in poorer countries, it can account for 50% or more of daily caloric intake.
Rice is one of the leading food sources across the entire globe. In fact, more than 3.5 billion people rely on rice for 20% or more of their daily caloric intake.
The Philippines have named 2013 the National Year of Rice in their government’s bid to achieve rice self-sufficiency through the help of Filipino producers, policy-makers and consumers. As we mentioned in our Thanksgiving Blog, we’ve seen our customers champion for this cause, even in the face of a deadly typhoon. Embracing the Year of Rice, we at Kett love to see our test instruments make self-sufficiency possible. A simple moisture meter or rice whiteness analyzer allows farmers to optimize their crop yields, regulators to enforce necessary quality standards and manufacturers to ensure their raw ingredients are up to par.
The International Baking Industry Expo, known simply as the Baking Expo markets itself as “North America’s largest, most comprehensive trade event of the year.” With 20,000 grain and flour professionals, baked goods manufacturers, packaging experts, and cupcake shop owners in attendance, we decided to jump into the mix (so to speak) this year October 6th- 9th in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Discovering new spices and recipes, sampling new foods, and taking home delicious new recipe ideas is all part of the enjoyment of IFT - we should know, we've been doing this for over 15 years.
Innovation is the name of the game at Kett. While we’re ever conscious of the challenge to keep our designs current and top-of-the line, we’ve also been making an effort to keep our company on the edge of today’s market. Thus, we’ve officially joined the social media revolution, starting a Twitter account and a Facebook Page to meet our customers wherever they may be.
Today, farmers, food manufacturers, quality assurance and R&D specialists are all on social media to disseminate information faster than ever before. With this year’s rice harvest coming up, we’ve been following the Twitter hashtags #rice, #crop2013, #ag and #agriculture to monitor real time updates from the USDA, the Institute of Rice Research Institute, the California Rice Commission, and a host of other agricultural information centers around the globe. Keeping up with what interests our customers helps us understand how our products can meet their needs, while following trends informs us about what we need to be designing next.
In this week’s hashtag hunt we learned the Food and Agriculture Resource Center of the United Nations (#UNFAO) issued their April 2013 Rice Market Monitor Report, announcing a 1 million ton uptick in rice yields and an estimated 1.8% increase in global rice utilization for the next year. We also found a study presented on Radio Australia reporting that 70% of the world’s population is now dependent on rice for food. In the hopes of averting monumental crop losses, governments are now initiating long-awaited research and development funding. In lesser news, we also discovered that the first crop circle of the season has been found in a UK oil seed patch! Oh, sorry, got distracted for a moment there.
Well, you’ve got to have some fun on Twitter, but in all seriousness, with the upcoming public release of our C130 powder whiteness tester and the recent debut of both our PQ520 rice moisture meter and our C600 grain whiteness meter, we’re looking forward to contributing our test equipment to help meet the global rice industry’s growing demands. Monitoring the latest industry news has shown us the importance of ensuring our moisture meters and quality measurement instruments are available to this growing market.
While it’s certainly been an adventure to explore new territory in the realm of social media, it’s the human-to-human interactions that really get us excited about what we do. The relationships we’ve formed over the past 25 years at conferences like PittCon and the Institute of Food Technology (IFT) conference have become the heart of Kett. We’re hoping to merge the two worlds and connect to at least a few of the 20,000 professional attending IFT, as we’ll be introducing ourselves and our products under #IFTExpo for the first time this year.
Having started Kett specifically to serve farmers just like the ones posting their first harvest’s photos on Twitter under #rice, we are thrilled to be merging our technology with that of today’s world of communication.
As a supplier of grain quality test equipment, we educate ourselves on the greatest needs in the industry and pass along best practices to our customers.
With the second quarter of 2013 well under way, the year is quickly shaping up to be one of Kett’s busiest in recent memory. Following last month’s successful trip to Pittcon, one of our industry’s most important events, and the launch of the PQ520, our newest single grain moisture tester, I’m proud to share our latest innovation: the C130 powder whiteness tester.