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Period: October 14, 2018 to October 21, 2018
Comment & Opinion or Companies, Organizations or Consumers or Controversies & Disputes or Deals, M&A, JVs, Licensing or Earnings Release or Finance, Economics, Tax or Innovation & New Ideas or Legal, Legislation, Regulation, Policy or Market News or Marketing & Advertising or Other or People & Personalities or Press Release or Products & Brands or Research, Studies, Advice or Supply Chain or Trends

Inventor’s “Twist & Grip” Bag Preserves Bread’s Flavor, Freshness Longer

InventHelp says it has helped an Atlanta, Ga.-based inventor develop a bread bag that seals more effectively, preserving the freshness, flavor and shelf life of the loaf. The “Twist & Grip” bag allows the package to open and close easily, and also contains an easy-to-grip handle for carrying. The bag is recyclable and reusable. The invention is available for licensing or sale to manufacturers or marketers by contacting InventHelp at its Pittsburgh, Pa., headquarters.

"Inventor Develops Stay Fresh Bread Bag (AAT-1637)", PR Newswire , September 24, 2018

FDA May Soon Update The Definition Of, And Permitted Ingredients For, Yogurt

The FDA is looking into the possibility of “modernizing” regulations governing the content and even the definition of yogurt. The dairy industry has been pushing to open up the yogurt standard as manufacturing practices and consumer tastes have changed. The FDA established a standard for foods labeled as "yogurt" in 1981 that limited the ingredients. But the industry objected; the following year the agency suspended enforcement of various provisions and allowed the addition of preservatives. A 2009 rule that was never finalized created a unified standard that allowed emulsifiers as well, but yogurt makers said the rule created confusion and left it open to lawsuits. Meanwhile, milk producers hope the FDA’s “modernized” standards will soon crack down on soy and almond drinks that call themselves "milk," which current standards say must come from a cow.

"'Yogurt' to get more modernized definition in U.S.; Industry wants greater liberty to use term in food labels", The Associated Press, September 25, 2018

Suit Alleges Pret a Manger’s Baked Goods Contain Weed Killer Ingredient

Washington, D.C.-based non-profit Beyond Pesticides announced it is joining GMO Free USA and Organic Consumers Association in a lawsuit charging restaurant chain Pret a Manger with “deceptive marketing and sale of certain bread and other baked goods” as "natural food" though they tested positive for glyphosate. The lawsuit accuses Pret of exploiting consumers' preferences and willingness to pay more for products marketed as natural. A component of Roundup weed killer, glyphosate is patented as a chelator and an antibiotic, but is linked to adverse health effects including cancer, infertility, and non-alcoholic fatty liver and kidney diseases. The suit would have Pret fully disclose glyphosate in its products and reformulate them to be glyphosate-free.

"Nonprofits Sue Pret A Manger for Deceptive Marketing of Foods as 'Natural'", PR Newswire , September 25, 2018

McDonald’s Removes Artificial Preservatives, Flavors, Colors From Menu Items

Hoping to attract more health-conscious consumers to its restaurants, McDonald's is getting rid of the artificial ingredients in its menu items. Seven classic burgers – the hamburger, cheeseburger, double cheeseburger, McDouble, Quarter Pounder with Cheese, Double Quarter Pounder with Cheese, and Big Mac – will no longer contain artificial preservatives, flavors or colors. The changes apply to the bun, the cheese, and the sauce, but not to the pickles. Ingredients eliminated include the artificial preservative calcium propionate from buns and the preservative sorbic acid from its American cheese. Th company is also removing potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate, and calcium disodium EDTA from the Big Mac Special Sauce without "sacrificing that signature taste."

"McDonald's removing artificial additives from its burgers", CNN Money, September 27, 2018

FDA May Soon Require Non-Dairy “Milks” To Change Their Labeling

In what may be the first step toward changing the way plant-based dairy substitutes are labeled, the FDA is soliciting comments from producers and other experts on how consumers use the alternative “milk.” The agency wants to know whether American consumers understand how substitutes differ from cow’s milk in nutritional content and cooking performance. As sales of non-dairy substitutes like soy and almond milk National Milk Producers Federation asked the FDA to enforce what's known as a "standard of identity." The for milk reads, in part: "the lacteal secretion, practically free from colostrum” – the milk produced after giving birth – “obtained by the complete milking of one or more healthy cows." Companies and consumers have 60 days to respond to the FDA's questions.

"U.S. Explores Renaming Almond Milk in Victory for Dairy Industry", Bloomberg, September 27, 2018

Starbucks Is Getting Ready To Build A New Standalone Princi Bakery In Seattle

Starbucks has filed a site plan with Seattle’s construction and inspection department for a $1.1 million, 40-seat second standalone Princi bakery. A 231-square-foot outdoor patio would hold an additional 15 seats. Besides the first standalone bakery,  Princi operates two bakeries in the city within a Roastery and Starbucks headquarters. Standalone Princi bakeries are centered around the ovens that make fresh pastries and pizza onsite throughout the day. The menu also offers baked eggs in a spicy tomato sauce, cornetti sandwiches, focaccia sandwiches, and Italian cakes, tarts and other desserts. The new bakery would be the third standalone Princi in the U.S.

"Records reveal Starbucks is planning a second stand-alone Princi in Seattle", Puget Sound Business Journal (Seattle, Washington), September 27, 2018

Belgians Adopt Food Nutrition Labeling Scheme Developed In France

The Belgian government has introduced a voluntary scheme for front-of-pack nutritional labeling that is now being implemented by the country’s grocery retailers. The Nutri-Score scheme was developed by the French government and put in place in France a year ago. The system was designed to inform consumers about the nutritional quality of a product by using color coding associated with letters from A to E. Five levels range from the most nutritionally favorable product (class A) to the least (class E). U.S exporters to Belgium will not have to comply with the scheme if they don’t want to. Two large retail chains, Ahold Delhaize and Colryut, have committed to applying the scheme by the end of 2018.

"Belgium Adopts Nutri-Score for Front of Pack Nutritional Labeling", USDA Foreign Agricultural Service , October 03, 2018

Bioengineering Company’s New Technology Delivers “Natural Preservatives”

Responding to consumer demands for simple and understandable food ingredient labels, manufacturers are looking to replace artificial preservatives. To help in that endeavour, Mass.-based bioengineering firm Conagen announced a “ready-to-go” technology that can create the “next generation of natural preservatives.” The fermentation technology produces a highly pure compound with significant anti-microbial effects and preservative functionalities. It is stable in various pH conditions, colorless with a slightly sweet taste, and water soluble. The company says the compound will be ready for commercial scale production in 2019, with regulatory approvals “on the way.”

"Next Generation, Non-GMO Natural Preservatives Developed By Conagen", PR Newswire, October 03, 2018

USDA Researchers Work To Develop More Nutritious Wheat Varieties

Scientists at the USDA Agricultural Research Service in Lincoln, Neb., are developing experimental biofortified breeding lines of winter wheat, the first step in the long process of creating a new type of nutritious wheat that farmers can grow. The goal of biofortification is to have the wheat used to make bread dough naturally contain more iron – 60 percent of the world's population doesn't get enough of this mineral in their diet– and other nutrients. The team combined low levels of the antinutrient phytate and high grain protein without reducing grain yield, while at the same time increasing levels of zinc, calcium, and manganese. More work needs to be done to get it in wheat that can be planted by farmers, but the genes can be used to develop more nutritious wheat without sacrificing yield.

"Wheat That Pumps Iron, Naturally", Science Daily, October 03, 2018

Nestlé USA Forms New Partnerships With Innovative Food Start-Ups

Nestlé USA announced three new partnerships with innovative food start-ups as part of the TERRA Food & Agriculture Accelerator founded by RocketSpace and Rabobank. The partnerships are with with Jackson's Honest, Miyoko's and Here, each of which is “creating on-trend foods focused on plant-based nutrition, simple labels and fresh ingredients.” Chicago-based Here Foods turns fresh produce ingredients grown by independent farmers into products like cold-pressed juices, spreads, dips, and salad dressings. Jackson’s Honest sells more than 20 Non-GMO Project verified snacks, including potato chips, tortilla chips, and grain-free puffs cooked “low and slow” in organic coconut oil. Miyoko Creamery makes non-dairy cheese, butter, and other products from organic nuts, legumes, and other plant-based ingredients.

"Nestlé USA Partners with Start-ups Disrupting the Healthy Snacking and Plant-based Foods Categories", PR Newswire, October 03, 2018

FDA Drops Seven Approved Flavoring Chemicals After Data Prove They Cause Cancer

Responding to two food additive petitions, the Food and Drug Administration has removed seven synthetic flavoring substances and flavor enhancers (adjuvants) from its list of approved ingredients because they have been proven to be carcinogenic. Data presented in one of the petitions submitted to the FDA by Breast Cancer Fund and nine other watchdog groups show that six of the synthetic substances caused cancer in laboratory animals under the conditions of the studies. The seventh synthetic flavor was dropped from the list because it is no longer used by industry. The six flavoring substances include synthetically-derived benzophenone, ethyl acrylate, eugenyl methyl ether (methyl eugenol), myrcene, pulegone, and pyridine. 

"FDA Removes 7 Synthetic Flavoring Substances from Food Additives List", USFDA, October 05, 2018

Fast-food, Restaurant Chains Wooing Millennials Spurn Processed Cheese

Fast-food and fast-casual restaurant chains bowing to the demands of the Millennial generation are spurning the century-old sandwich favorite processed American cheese – made with sodium citrate, calcium phosphate, natamycin, modified food starch, and milk – in favor of premium cheeses that contain no synthetic or artificial ingredients. Wendy’s, for example, offers asiago, AW's Canada locations use real cheddar, McDonald's replaced its Big Mac American cheese with a version that contains no artificial preservatives, and Panera Bread is now using a four-cheese combo of fontina, cheddar, manteau and smoked gouda to make its grilled cheese sandwich. The result is higher sales for the restaurants, and a significant drop in American cheese sales for the fourth straight year. U.S. sales of processed cheese, including brands like Kraft Singles and Velveeta are projected to drop 1.6 percent this year.

"Millennials Kill Again. The Latest Victim? American Cheese", Bloomberg, October 10, 2018

Innovation & New Ideas  

Indian Company Zenith Drinks Introduces Anti-Aging Beverage

India’s Zenith Drinks has launched what it calls “the world’s first complete anti-aging beverage,” inspired by modern science and the ancient holistic healing system Ayurveda. Auric is a functional beverage available in three blends: mind rejuvenation, body defense and skin radiance. Formulated using eight herbs – including ashwagandha, brahmi, and gotu kola – Auric restores the balance of free radicals and antioxidants to prevent inflammation, according to the company. The low-calorie beverage, containing no chemicals or preservatives, is sold in more than 500 stores across India, and online. The company plans to create a distribution network over the next three years in the top 15 cities in India and in five other countries.

"Zenith Drinks launches Auric, world’s first complete anti-aging beverage", Food And Beverage News, October 13, 2018

Market News  

Fairlife Debuts RTD Milk-Based Smart Snacks

Dairy milk beverage producer Fairlife has launched a line of RTD between-meal smart snacks made with Fairlife ultra-filtered milk. The milk is cold-filtered to remove lactose, but provides 50 percent more protein and 50 percent less sugar than regular milk. The milk snacks, available in chocolate, French vanilla, and creamy strawberry, contain calcium plus 15 grams of protein and five grams of dietary fiber in an eight-ounce (8-oz) bottle. No artificial preservatives, artificial flavors, and no artificial colors fare used. Smart snacks are available in select Walmart stores, on Amazon.com, and with limited distribution nationwide. The suggested retail price is $2.29 for a single serve eight-ounce bottle and $24.99 for a multipack of 12. In partnership with The Coca-Cola company, Fairlife ultra-filtered milk and Core Power high protein shakes are distributed in the U.S. and Canada.

"Fairlife Satisfies Snack Cravings with Launch of Fairlife smart snacks", PR Newswire, October 17, 2018

Products & Brands  

New Coca-Cola Vegetable Juice Tops List Of New Product Debuts

Coca-Cola will introduce a tomato juice blend into the convenience store channel early in 2019. Minute Maid Tomato Juice Blend – a mixture of tomato, carrot, celery, cucumber, and beet juices – joined several other new Coca-Cola products unveiled at the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) show in Las Vegas. The company also showcased a cold-brew coffee, Far Coast, due to hit store shelves in January in three flavors: Single Source Ethiopian, Signature Blend - Latin America and Café con Leche - in resealable aluminum bottles. Other unveilings: smartwater alkaline and smartwater antioxidant; a fruit juice puree “snack” dubbed Simply Smoothie in three flavors; and Sprite Lymonade (lemon-lime flavor) set to launch in February.

"The Coca-Cola Co unveils vegetable juice as new products put in spotlight", just-drinks.com, October 11, 2018

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