CASE STUDY: Jane Bennett
Most wasabi paste, the stuff we find in the store, isn’t wasabi at all – it’s a blend of horseradish and mustard oil. The punchy heat of true wasabi is a rarer and more delicate chemical process. With fresh wasabi, the enzymatic reaction that creates the heat lasts 30 minutes and dies forever.
When Jane Bennett, CEO of TasFoods, acquired Shima Wasabi, she led a team to accomplish the impossible: to squeeze that magic into a paste.
It has taken two years of research and testing, and a lot of investment.
“There is no commercial product in the global market that met the flavour, colour, and shelf life requirements,” says Jane.
This is both exciting and terrifying, because even as they discovered the secret they realised they had to convince buyers to move from a “cheap, shelf-stable product containing little or no actual wasabi to a Shima Wasabi authentic wasabi paste.”
The magnificent plants grow in Tasmania’s temperate northwest, which can mimic Japanese growing conditions while adding a Tasmanian flare: clean air, pure water, and people who are prepared to create something that is unlike anything else in the world.