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New Generation of Taiwanese Chefs Learn About Versatility, Safety of U.S. Beef

Published: Friday, March 18th, 2016

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Chefs and restaurant staff in Taiwan learn about U.S. beef during the USMEF New Cuts and Creative Cuisine Seminar

Chefs and restaurant staff in Taiwan learn about U.S. beef during the USMEF New Cuts and Creative Cuisine Seminar

Taking a new approach to inspire young Taiwanese chefs and foodservice managers to utilize more U.S. beef cuts, USMEF conducted a “New Cuts and Creative Cuisine Seminar” for chefs, cooking instructors and other key restaurant staff. The seminar, at Shen Yen Teppanyaki Restaurant in Yilan, was funded by the USDA Market Access Program (MAP) and the Beef Checkoff Program.

USMEF’s strategy was to share information about U.S. beef with Taiwan’s new generation of menu planners by highlighting new dish ideas and re-enforcing the high standards of U.S. food safety.

“We have always provided new cut information to foodservice operators, but many have grown accustomed to certain products, making it difficult to persuade them to alter their cooking methods,” explained Davis Wu, USMEF director in Taiwan. “However, the younger generation of chefs and foodservice owners in Taiwan have different mindsets. They belong to a group which is bold, willing to try new things and eager to find customers. We believe the foodservice sector is changing hands, so information needs to be delivered strategically to this younger generation in order for U.S. beef to continue to have success in Taiwan.”

Creating new menu ideas using U.S. beef was a key focus of the seminar

Creating new menu ideas using U.S. beef was a key focus of the seminar

Dishes were sampled by participants following cutting and cooking demonstrations

Dishes were sampled by participants following cutting and cooking demonstrations

USMEF planned the seminar to attract workers from a variety of restaurants, such as Japanese, hamburger and yakiniku, to expand the reach of new U.S. beef cuts to different sectors of the industry. The style of the cooking demonstrations was also innovative, as USMEF chefs used four teppanyaki tables at the same time to allow participants to compare a variety of cuts and dishes.

As always when promoting new cuts or a new food culture in Taiwan, assuring food safety was a vital part of USMEF’s effort. Dr. Yun-Chu Wu, a meat expert from National Tunghai University, who is helping the Taiwanese government establish food safety standards, was invited by USMEF to speak on meat science and safety. Dr. Wu tested four U.S. beef cuts – petite tender, clod heart, rib cap plate and plate fingers – and shared his analysis with attendees. After Dr. Wu’s presentation, the chefs and restaurant staff in attendance discussed their experiences with U.S. beef.