“It was the best organized and most effective delegation I’ve ever attended, and I’ve been participating in business delegations since 2004,” said Oren Blonder, VP Sales & Marketing at Advanced Mem-Tech. Mem-Tech is one of four Israeli water technology companies who recently returned from a series of meetings with large food & beverage companies in Chicago, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, and Delaware. “Thanks to the excellent preparation work done by everyone involved, the meetings were very effective. Actually, I believe this one delegation did more for our business then all six trade fairs Advanced Mem-Tech participated in this year.”
Rotem Arad, Head of Sales and BD, USA, Europe and Japan, and Head of Global Food & Beverage at Atlantium Technologies, agrees: “The delegation opened business opportunities for us at both new and existing customers. For example, Coca Cola is already a customer of Atlantium’s, and we have 250 of our systems in place at Coca Cola facilities around the world. And still we discovered during this delegation’s visit a Coca Cola opportunity that we weren’t familiar with before, and which opens up new business potential for us. Moreover, the delegation helped us to get access to companies that we weren’t previously able to create relationships with, such as Campbell’s Soup, ADM and Cargill. It was clear that the Israeli water sector has a lot to offer the F&B market, in the areas of safe water, water reuse, water ratio and better sustainability,” concluded Arad.
The Israeli water delegation was a joint effort of Israel New Tech, the Israeli Export Institute, the Israeli Economic Missions in NY and in the Midwest , the Israeli consulate in Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Israel Chamber of Commerce. This joint effort was one of the major factors in the success of the delegation.
Adi Yefet, head of the water arena at Israel NewTech, explained how this delegation fits into Israel NewTech’s overall strategy: “For the past few years we have been focusing on finding new industries and avenues to introduce Israeli water companies to internationally. This food & beverage delegation follows international delegations in oil & gas and pharmaceuticals. There are very significant business opportunities for Israel’s water technology companies outside the traditional water industry, and Israel NewTech is focused on identifying them and bringing the companies directly to these potential markets.”
Rebecca Weinberg, Director of Business Development at the Economic Mission in New York, was involved in organizing the Pennsylvania and Delaware leg of the visit, together with John Churchill, the Economic Director at the Israeli Consulate in Philadelphia and Vered Nohi Becker the Executive Director of the Philadelphia Israel Chamber of Commerce . This leg included meetings with food & beverage giants such as the Philadelphia Distilling Company, Purdue Farms, Coca Cola and many others. “The companies we met with were very receptive to the Israeli companies and technologies,” said Weinberg. “The visit at Campbell’s Soup was one highlight, and their VP of Infrastructure and Environmental Programs Bob Shober expressed a lot of interest. They, and other companies, are putting more and more emphasis on environmentally sound treatment of both their incoming water and wastewater, and this is where the Israeli technologies can play a significant role.”
Oren Blonder of Advanced Mem-Tech agrees. “The companies we met with are huge producers of food & beverages of many kinds, and their manufacturing process creates enormous amounts of wastewater. They are more and more concerned with corporate social responsibility. The regulation is also becoming more strict in this arena, so all in all these companies are seeking out solutions for wastewater treatment and are willing to invest considerably in relevant innovations. This presents a great opportunity for Israeli companies with relevant solutions to offer.”
Daniel Cohen, Director of Business & Trade Development at the Midwest Economic Mission in Chicago, agreed. “The Israeli water delegation presented a variety of solutions for the food & beverage industry to cut costs and achieve a higher level of water purification. Whether it’s new membranes for use in filtration, improved UV wastewater treatment, biological solutions for removal of nitrate and phosphate, or advanced drip irrigation technology, American food and beverage companies were interested in getting their feet in the game with Israel’s innovative water technology. Increased water and food consumption in the near future will only heighten the importance of investing now in sustainable water technologies.”
Oren Blonder and Rotem Arad concluded, “We’d really like to thank everyone involved in the excellent organization of this delegation, including Adi Yefet and Oded Distel at Israel NewTech, Niv Morag at the Israel Export Institute, the teams at the New York and Chicago Economic Offices, John Churchill at the Philadelphia Consulate, and Vered Nohi-Becker at the Philadelphia-Israel Chamber of Commerce.”
The Israeli companies in the delegation were Advanced Mem-Tech, Atlantium, RWL Water and Fischer Planning.
Participating US food & beverage companies included: 3M, ADM, Campbell Soup Company, Coca-Cola, Cargill, Chicago Metropolitan Water Reclamation Department, Creative Water Solutions, Dietz and Watson, the Delaware Secretary of Agriculture, Mountaire Farms, Perdue Farms, Pentair, Philadelphia Water Department, Tonka Water, True North Venture Partners, Veolia, and Yards Brewing Company.