As the need for transparency and traceability grows within the foodservice industry, Jordano’s makes an extra effort to align itself with business partners who identify with this concept on both a local and global scale. Welcome, Kai Gourmet.
Kai Gourmet offers premium fish and natural gourmet food products from New Zealand and around the world, primarily sourcing products that use sustainable fishing and farming methods. Sustainability and traceability are at the forefront of Kai’s culinary mission. Because they care about communities and the environment, they source from both local and global producers who share their beliefs.
“We sincerely care about the environment and want to be as thoughtful as we can in our approach to sourcing fish,” said Kai’s Vice President of Purchasing and Sales, Kathleen Hanson. “There are so many fishermen and farms out there that are all about quantity rather than quality. We only sell seafood and products that we would eat ourselves. There is a lot of misrepresentation out there, and we want to be as transparent as possible with our entire product line. It’s this commitment that inspired our slogan, ‘Quality without Exception.’”
Separating Themselves from the Pack
With a myriad of gourmet fish companies to choose from in today’s market, Kai Gourmet is unique in that, in addition to their premium line of offerings, they also offer an amazing line of platinum quality items that they’ve spent years evaluating, sourcing and cultivating for their discerning clientele. Included in this platinum line are New Zealand products such as Alfonsino, Tai Snapper, John Dory, Tarakihi and Trevally. The majority of this fish is wild, long-line caught, Ike-Jime killed – which has almost zero stress on the fish – and can be delivered to your business within 36 hours of it coming out of the water. You can truly see and taste the difference.
New Zealand was one of the first countries in the world to place a rigid quota system on wild caught seafood. Recently, the Monterey Bay Aquarium awarded New Zealand farmed King Salmon a ‘best choice’ rating – yet another way Kai differentiates itself. “We were thrilled with the news as we’ve been carrying Ora King Salmon from New Zealand since we opened our doors in 2013,” said Kathleen. “We knew it was a superior product, and the recognition from the Monterey Bay Aquarium reinforced this. In fact, the Monterey Bay Aquarium recognizes many of the items we source as “best choice” or “good alternatives” such as the Glacier 51 Toothfish (aka Chilean Seabass) and U.S.A. squid – all of which are available through Jordano’s.”
It’s no surprise that positive relationships are key to any business. Over the years, Kai has worked extensively to develop and maintain close relationships with their suppliers who, in turn, provide them with cutting-edge menu concepts and products.
“We are always looking for new and interesting items and partnerships through seafood shows or recommendations from fellow colleagues who share the same philosophy and work ethic as we do,” said Kathleen. “When possible, we like to visit the vendor so we can see first-hand how they conduct their business. Plus, we believe in building relationships. Trust and commitment are paramount in this business, and we want to ensure we keep the supply chain intact from the boat or farm to the customer’s plate.”
With over 38 years of experience in the seafood industry, Kathleen definitely knows a thing or two about partnerships. And, it was her partnership with Jordano’s Assistant Director of Purchasing and Center of the Plate Specialist, Larry Fiscalini, that brought Kai’s product line to Jordano’s in mid-2016. “I’m so happy and excited we have partnered with Jordano’s as we share the same philosophy of pride and commitment in our products and services. I work closely with Larry, Kim Hall (Jordano’s seafood buyer), and Jordano’s amazing Account Executives to bring that experience to you, the Jordano’s customer.”
For more information about Kai Gourmet, visit www.kaigourmet.com or find them on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. A wealth of unique recipe concepts utilizing Kai’s products are also available on their Pinterest page.
At a Glance: Kai Gourmet's Product Line
For more information about other Kai Gourmet products available through Jordano’s, contact your Account Executive today.
Article by Kiersta Halseth Tibbetts, Assistant Director of Marketing, Jordano's Foodservice