May 29, 2019
Hello friends! Great news: Ace vendor Ocean Hugger Foods just created Ahimi, the “world’s first alternative solution to raw tuna” and it’s made from—get this—Roma tomatoes!
That’s right: the 100% Kosher, gluten-free, vegan product contains only 5 simple ingredients: tomatoes, Tamari soy sauce, sesame oil, water, and sugar. It will also remain fresh for up to 2 years if frozen, is completely free of GMOs, and happens to be mercury-free (and therefore perfect for pregnant women). Honestly, what’s not to love?!
“I eat a lot of animal foods,” says Matt Fried, Ace’s Customer Service Manager. “But I also know that I can do better by reducing that. The problem I have is that the ingredient panels of many plant-based alternatives are complicated. Ahimi solves that. As a holistic nutrition coach, I get asked a lot of questions about diet. With only five simple ingredients, Ahimi follows my #1 rule for what a person should eat: read the ingredients. Ahimi does that while improving our food system, and our planet. That’s a real win for everyone.”
Ocean Hugger Foods was founded by Master Chef James Corwell after the Atlanta native visited Tokyo’s Tsukiji fish market and became aware of the massive amount of tuna that was being harvested and sold daily.
Shocked into action by the dwindling numbers–and impending extinction–of these predatory fish, Corwell founded Ocean Hugger with a firm commitment to ocean sustainability. Crafting plant-based seafood alternatives from “highly renewable resources” (think fruits and veggies), Corwell has been lessening human pressures on the ocean ever since.
If you’re skeptical that Ahimi is as meaty and savory as real tuna, think again. The meat-like texture actually comes from the high amounts of naturally-occurring glutamic acids in tomatoes.
Says Fast Company: “I had a chance to try Corwell’s [Ahimi] delivered fresh from his kitchen. As a seafood lover, I was skeptical. But it was tasty—thick and fatty, just like real tuna, with a savory taste…I would mistake it for tuna in a line-up.” The Huffington Post had a similar reaction: “Picky eaters, vegetarians and vegans rejoice: Fish-less tuna is here, and it’s going to turn your world upside down.”
Now that he’s tackled tuna, Corwell says Ocean Hugger will focus on making plant-based alternatives to eel, salmon, and other popular seafood products. In the meantime, Ahimi has already been adopted by restaurants countrywide, debuting in poke bowls, maki, and nigiri.
Ace is currently selling Ahimi! We carry 2.2 lb. bags as well as full cases of 13/2.2 lb. bags, with the latter being slightly cheaper per pound. To see where else you can find Ahimi, check out this handy menu locator. For additional inspiration, follow Ocean Hugger on Instagram, where they often post photos of the delicious dishes that feature their product. And click this link for foodservice inquiries. Enjoy!