Ahimi, the vegetarian and vegan-friendly sushi substitute, is tomato-based. It's produced by NYC's Ocean Hugger Foods.
The product consists only of non-GMO tomatoes, non-GMO and preservative-free soy sauce, sugar, sesame oil and filtered water. Additional flavors can be layered on top.
Andy Sasser, senior category leader for prepared foods and bakery at Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods, found the product at the 2017 National Restaurant Association trade show.
“This was luck, honestly,” Sasser said, when asked if Whole Foods had been actively searching for a plant-based sushi option when it found Ocean Hugger. “I happened to be attending the National Restaurant Association show in Chicago and I stumbled across the Ocean Hugger team demoing the product.”
Sasser described the product as “fairly mild, not tomato-y at all,” and said that he thinks the alternative will attract more than just vegetarian and vegan sushi shoppers.
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