Birmingham, Alabama — Convenient and portable may not be the first qualities that come to mind when you think of a big, whole watermelon. However, the National Watermelon Promotion Board (NWPB) is challenging that thinking and creating new occasions for eating watermelon.
NWPB recently visited Time Inc. Food Studios in Birmingham, Ala., to demonstrate endless ideas for watermelon-on-the-go as breakfast, snacks, lunches and beverages. The media event drew attendance from food editors and recipe developers from Time Inc.’s 11 different brands, including Southern Living, Cooking Light, Health and Real Simple. At the test kitchen, NWPB conducted a watermelon butchery demo, cutting wedges, sticks and diced watermelon from the flesh, blending it for juice and even using the edible rind for zero waste.
“Snacking and on-the-go eating occasions are on the rise with consumers’ busy lifestyles. We showed food editors how one watermelon offers various cuts and can create multiple simple and portable recipes,” said Stephanie Barlow, NWPB senior director of communications. “We can’t wait to see how the demonstration and menu samples inspire future editorial content and recipes.”
The National Watermelon Promotion Board (NWPB), based in Winter Springs, Florida, was established in 1989 as an agricultural promotion group to promote watermelon in the United States and in various markets abroad. Funded through a self-mandated industry assessment paid by more than 1,500 watermelon producers, handlers and importers, NWPB mission is to increase consumer demand for watermelon through promotion, research and education programs.
Watermelon packs a nutritious punch, providing vitamin C, vitamin A and vitamin B6, with only 80 calories per serving. Watermelon consumption per capita in the United States was an estimated 15.9 pounds in 2016. Watermelon consumption in the United States was approximately 5.1 billion pounds in 2016 according to Agricultural Marketing Service, an agency within the United States Department of Agriculture. The United States exported an additional 348.7 million pounds of watermelon. For additional information, visit www.watermelon.org.
Source: The National Watermelon Promotion Board (NWPB)