August 2018



Welcome to the August issue of the USAPEEC ASEAN Regional Office’s newsletter.

This newsletter seeks to provide readers with useful product and major market information for institutional and consumer users of U.S. poultry. Readers will find in every issue a variety of general market information, program activities as well as useful product information.

This issue, we share several activities that took place in Southeast Asia.


  • SCA collaboration with USAPEEC Singapore in training for junior chefs
  • Growing appetite for imported gourmet food in Thailand
  • Mall-ification of Bangkok’s street food
  • Revival of traditional ayam goreng dishes in Indonesia
  • News Bites
  • Trump-Kim summit themed meals
  • The legendary tale of Qu Yuan
  • Star-studded restaurants in Singapore



Additional Market Information Available

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SCA collaboration with USAPEEC Singapore in training for junior chefs

USAPEEC Singapore recently collaborated with the Singapore Chefs Association (SCA) to carry out a series of three Master Classes for junior and trainee chefs. This collaboration aims to enhance their knowledge and creativity in the use of U.S. chicken, turkey, and duck in Asian, Western cuisines and in savory pastry dishes.

The workshops were presented separately by Chef Eric Low, Chef Ong Jing Qing, and Chef Ben Goh. They were carried out on May 19, May 26, and June 2 at the Sapling Training Kitchen in the Enabling Village.

The participants expressed high satisfaction that the presentations provided in each Master Class resulted in increased awareness in the use of U.S. poultry throughout a wider variety of dishes and different food applications.


Chef Eric Low demonstrating the use of U.S. poultry ingredients in Asian dishes

USAPEEC ASEAN Director Margaret Say welcomes participants at the Master Class presented by Chef Ben Goh

Chef Ong Jing Qing providing more details in the use of U.S. poultry in selected Western dishes


Growing appetite for imported gourmet food in Thailand

With rapidly rising incomes and growing affluence, Thai consumers are developing greater awareness and appreciation of a wider variety of high quality food products and gourmet cuisines. High-end supermarkets in Bangkok now include a gourmet meat section selling premium cuts of meats sourced from international and local markets.

For the more discerning consumer, there are also a growing number of butchers that cater to specific segments of the market. KRBB caters to those who desire high quality Japanese beef such as Wagyu from different regions in Japan1. Australian beef lovers may purchase their wares from The Accidental Butcher in Soi Ekamai2. Even specialty grocery stores selling imported food products supply vacuum-packed chilled salmon and grass-fed red meats sourced from specific regions that are air-flown directly into Thailand for freshness.

US exports have benefited from this trend towards quality gourmet food. While beef dishes are popular in Thai cuisine, a rising exposure to international gourmet beef meals such as dry aged steaks have led to an increase in beef imports into Thailand. Thai consumers have a growing appetite for imported quality consumer-oriented foods including cooked turkey, sausages, and prepared meals with chicken and meat ingredients. Imported seafood such as salmon and various shell fish including lobster and oysters are also gaining increasing popularity as evidenced by rising import figures. Sales of US salmon likewise grew 14 per cent from 2016 to 2017. Even U.S. turkey, traditionally consumed during Christmas season, saw its sales in Thailand grew seven per cent to US$500,241 last year3.

1. KRBB,
3. Retail FoodsThailand, by Paul Welcher, GAIN Report Number TH8089, 7/2/201


Gourmet beef products in a display chiller in an upscale supermarket

An upmarket gourmet food store


Mall-ification of Bangkok’s street food

It might have been a burning hot day or a wet rainy day. However, shoppers felt none of that as they wandered down the air-conditioned aisle while browsing a colourful selection of snacks that were previously only available on the streets of Bangkok. Nestled in between the supermarket and the food court within Siam Paragon, a high-end mall in Bangkok, is an organized mess of booths designed to replicate Bangkok’s famous street food scene. Similar scenes are appearing in other malls in Bangkok.

Street food used to be readily available throughout Bangkok, providing workers with a multitude of cheap yet scrumptious meals. The bustling street food scene also serves as one of the city’s major tourist attractions. A recent move by the Thai government to clean up the congested side-walks has limited the once vibrant street scene to just two touristy locations: Bangkok’s Chinatown Yaowarat and backpacker’s haven Khao San Road.

The malls have swooped down on the opportunity to recreate the vibrant scene in a cleaner, more organized and hygienic condition – at a higher price. Meals, which used to be priced under US$1, now, cost more than US$2. In this setting lit by a multitude of artificial lighting, street food in the mall is not cheap. However, the atmosphere remains vibrant and the food as colorful and tasty as those sold along the sidewalks.


Booth selling popular street food satay at an upscale mall

Student browsing a street food booth in an upscale mall

Street food booths in an upscale shopping mall


Revival of traditional ayam goreng dishes in Indonesia

The humble ayam goreng (fried chicken) remains a popular household staple despite rising income, urbanization, and an influx of new international cuisines. However, the recent international fad in fried chicken may rejuvenate a much-loved traditional dish.

Traditional ayam goreng, unlike Western-style fried chicken, do not use any batter. The chicken, marinated in local spices, is usually boiled till soft before it is deep-fried. The result is an aromatic, soft, and juicy meat on the inside with a light crispy skin on the outside. Ayam goreng is usually served with rice and sambal, a local spicy dip.

There are different styles of ayam goreng across different regions of Indonesia. Ayam penyet, also known as “smashed chicken” is perhaps the most well-known, and it originates from East Java. The marinated bone-in chicken is deep fried and then smashed with a mortar pestle, before it is served with steamed rice and sambal.

Ayam Pop proves that it is not necessary to have a crispy skin to be a fried chicken dish1. Skinless marinated breast meat is boiled and deep-fried in coconut oil to give this dish a unique flavor. Ayam Pop is served with a special spicy dip made with local petai bean.

The current fad in Indonesia is the ayam goreng kremes, which is believed to originate from the Central Java and Yogyakarta region. The marinated pre-boiled chicken pieces were deep-fried alongside flavored crispy flour bits. The crispy bits served as condiments to the chicken, which is served with rice and a special spicy shrimp dip called sambal belacan. McDonald Indonesia capitalized on this fad by offering their own version, the Ayam Kremes Sambal Matah, as their limited time offering (LTO) for the holy month of Ramadhan2.

1. King of Chicken Pop, by Tris Marlis,, Apr 19, 2013
2. McDonald’s introduces latest menu item ‘ayam kremes sambal matah’, News Desk, The Jakarta Post, Wed, June 6, 2018


The popular Ayam Penyet dish


Newsbites - Consumer Markets


TTC Hospitality Group to open first overseas hotel in Cambodia
TTC Hospitality recently launched its first overseas hotel, 4-star TTC Hotel Premium-Angkor, in Siem Reap, Cambodia. The hotel hopes to capitalize on the growing number of Vietnamese and international tourists heading to Cambodia. Vietnamese are the second largest group of overseas arrivals into the country, accounting for 835,335 out of 5.6 million international visitors

Japanese Ringer Hut Ramen to open restaurants in Vietnam
Ringer Hut, a Japanese fast-food chain, signed a franchise agreement with Vietnamese instant noodle producer, AceCook, to operate their restaurant chain in Vietnam. The first outlet is expected to open in the second half of this year. Ringer Hut Vietnam will serve its original Japanese menu.


Singapore’s No Signboard to launch its own Asian-themed burger joints
Singapore’s No Signboard company, known for its seafood restaurants, will launch its own brand of Asian-themed burgers and wraps. According to Singapore media, the company aims to open three outlets by early 2019. The company is currently in the process of applying Halal certification and a 24-hour permit for their planned outlets.

Japan’s Don Don Donki opens second Singapore outlet in 100AM mall
Deliveroo, an online food delivery company, opened their second Deliveroo Editions kitchen in April 2018. It comes with a 20-seat dine-in facility as well as a self-collection option. The second kitchen located in Lavender will host seven restaurants: Kurry Korner, Aloha Poke, Street of Saigon, Da Paolo Pizza Bar, Blu Kouzina, Wolf Burgers, and Do Si Rak. Customers will have to place their orders online before popping by for self-collection or for the dine-in option.

Hong Kong Tsui Wah Eatery launched its first Singapore outlet
Hong Kong Tsui Wah Eatery, a classic Hong Kong cha chaan teng (Hong Kong’s casual dining cafe, with its literal meaning ‘tea-time meal hall’), opened its first store at Clarke Quay, Singapore on Friday, June 15. Six chefs from Hong Kong operation staff flew to Singapore to train the local staff. Tsui Wah’s cha chaan teng in Hong Kong is known for its fishball noodles, Hainanese chicken rice, and popular local crispy top buns Bo Luo Bao.

Singapore hosts a new research facility to create healthier Asian food
Singapore will host a new research laboratory focusing on creating healthier food products for Asian consumers. The $10 million (US$7.3 million) facility was jointly set up by agribusiness group Wilmar, the National University of Singapore (NUS), and the National Research Foundation (NRF), with the aim of exploring more nutritious alternatives such as plant proteins and cholesterol-friendly cooking oil.


Trump-Kim summit themed meals

June 12 marked the summit between the President of the United States of America, Donald Trump, and North Korean leader, Kim Jong Un1. They were hosted in Singapore for a peace treaty this year. Plenty of food and beverage outlets in Singapore rolled out themed meals to honor this ground-breaking meeting1. Here is a list of some meals that were offered for a limited time.

Trump-Kim burger
The Royal Plaza on Scotts hotel debuted its Trump-Kim burger1. The dish had a harmonious fusion of American and Korean flavors. The grilled patty consisted of minced chicken, seaweed, and kimchi patty. To complete the dish, Korean fires and rice rolls were served as sides. Additionally, a ‘summit iced tea’ was prepared by blending Korean honey yuzu to conventional iced tea. The burger was priced at SG$12 (US$8.80) while the drink was retailed at SG$6 (US$4.50) to mark the date of the summit between the two leaders1.

Credits: Royal Plaza on Scotts Singapore’s Facebook Page

Cowboy kimchi burger
The Butcher’s Kitchen featured their new burger invention known as the Cowboy kimchi burger during the historic summit. Combining flavors from American and Korea, the burger used US Black Angus beef patty2. It was topped with spicy kimchi, onions, tomatoes, cheese and lettuce. The buns were home-made by the chefs2.

Credits: The Butcher’s Kitchen’s Facebook Page

The rocket man & El trumpo cheeseburger tacos
Lucha Loco Singapore, a Mexican restaurant, prepared exclusive summit themed tacos1. To represent Korea, it served tacos with Korean fried chicken and spicy dressing. The taco representing the United States contained a beef cheeseburger with pickles in a taco. Each taco had a mini country flag as decoration. They were sold at SG$10 (US$7) each.

Credits: Lucha Loco - Mexican Cocina Y Bar’s Facebook Page


1. The Straits Times. (2018). Trump-Kim summit: 10 places to go for summit-themed food and drinks. [online] Available at:

2. The Butcher’s Kitchen’s Facebook Page. (2018). Commemorating the upcoming Trump-Kim Summit in Singapore, The Butcher’s Kitchen presents The “Cowboy Kimchi Burger” to mark this historic occasion. [online] Available at:


The legendary tale of Qu Yuan

The Dragon Boat Festival, also known as the Duanwu Festival, originated from China. It is a traditional celebration that commemorates filial piety and patriotism1.

The roots of this festival can be traced back to the tale of Qu Yuan which is over 2,000 years old2. The folklore stated that he was exiled by his emperor due to a political conflict of interest. Upon losing all hope, he drowned himself in the Milou River3. Fishermen used their oars to stop the flesh-eating fish in the river from ripping Qu Yuan’s body apart. Other villagers tossed wrapped cooked rice into the water, hoping that the fish would be distracted and consume the rice instead.

This festival is widely celebrated across China, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore and more3. Today, it features dragon boat races and dumplings in its annual tradition1. consists of purely dragon boat races and dumplings1.

Bak zhang is a common delicacy consumed during this festival1. It is made of glutinous rice dumplings that are triangular in shape. It is wrapped in pandan leaves, leaving an aromatic fragrant and contains a variety of fillings. The widely consumed bak zhang is filled with mushrooms, pork, and water chestnuts1. For those with a sweet tooth, buyers can purchase kee zhang, where it has no meat fillings. It is served with palm sugar syrup instead1.

In Singapore, the Golden Peony restaurant at Conrad Centennial Singapore serves its well-known bak zhang that comes in X.O. sauce London duck4. Each dumpling is served at SG$24.80 (US$18.30). During this festival, Hua Ting - a Chinese restaurant at Orchard Hotel Singapore - breaks away from tradition and will serve square-shaped bak zhang instead4. Each dumpling consists of premium ingredients such as abalone, roast duck, roast pork, scallops, mushrooms, salted egg yolk and chestnuts for a hearty and robust flavor4.


1. Visit Singapore. (2018). Dragon Boat Festival. [online] Available at:

2. South China Morning Post. (2018). Hong Kong celebrates Dragon Boat festival with rowing rituals, family and fancy dress. [online] Available at:

3. TIME. (2018). Here's What to Know About Asia's Annual Dragon Boat Festival. [online] Available at:

4. Singapore Motherhood. (2018). Glutinous Rice Dumplings 2018: 29 Places for ‘Bak Zhang’ to Suit All Budgets. [online] Available at:


Traditional bak zhang

Preparing a bak zhang


Star-studded restaurants in Singapore

Glitz and glamorous. Singapore is home to a series of celebrity-owned restaurants. From famous chefs such as Gordon Ramsay to local names like Violet Oon, here is a list of star-studded restaurants in the Lion City.

Bread Street Kitchen
The Bread Street Kitchen is owned by critically acclaimed celebrity chef, Gordon Ramsay1. This international chef has secured seven Michelin stars throughout his career2. The fourth Bread Street Kitchen outlet is located at Marina Bay Sands in Singapore1. This British restaurant serves Gordon’s signature dishes such as traditional fish & chips, eggs benedict, beef wellington and more2.

Classic beef wellington served at Bread Street Kitchen by Gordon Ramsay
Credits: Marina Bay Sands

Jamie’s Italian
Driven by his passion for Italian cuisine, world famous chef Jamie Oliver opened his series of Italian restaurants around the globe4. He has two restaurants in Singapore that are located at Vivo City and Forum at Orchard5. His menu features his classic dishes such as Italian steak and fries, buttermilk-fried free range chicken burger, and chicken al mattone6.

A chicken dish served at Jamie’s Italian by Jamie Oliver
Credits: Jamie’s Italian

National Kitchen
Food connoisseur Violet Oon has spent 50 years mastering the art of cooking in Singapore7. The National Kitchen, ran by Violet, is located at the National Gallery of Singapore7. Violet has two other restaurants that can be found at Bukit Timah and Clarke Quay7. Violet serves grilled chicken skewers with peanut sauce, turmeric chicken wings, chicken and prawn bostador and many more8.

Local dishes served at the National Kitchen by Violet Oon
Credits: Violet Oon Singapore


1. Marina Bay Sands. (2018). Bread Street Kitchen by Gordon Ramsay. [online] Available at:

2. Marina Bay Sands. (2018). Chefs Bio. [online] Available at:

3. Marina Bay Sands. (2018). BREAD STREET KITCHEN BY GORDON RAMSAY. [online] Available at:

4. Jamie Oliver. (2018). Our Story. [online] Available at:

5. Jamie Oliver. (2018). Restaurant Location. [online] Available at:


Disclaimer: All opinions and views expressed in the articles published in the newsletter are those of the individual journalists and do not necessarily reflect those of the publisher, the newsletter's sponsors or USA Poultry & Egg Export Council.

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