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Loliware Introduces Edible Straws Made From Seaweed

October 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
As pressure intensifies on single-use plastics, one bioplastics company claims to have the answer to eliminating plastic straws. Loliware has developed the LOLISTRAW, made from a bio-degradable and marine-degradable material sourced from seaweed. They come in different colors, last for a day in a beverage, become soil in around 60 days, and are edible - flavors include “citrus” and “vanilla dust”. One variant – “air” – is clear and has no flavor. The straws follow the company’s edible cups, which it pitched to the Shark Tank reality investor TV program in the US in 2015.[Image Credit: © LOLIWARE]
Mia Mercado, "LOLIWARE's Edible Straws Could Be A Solution To The Plastic Straw Problem", Bustle, October 17, 2018, © Bustle
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After Some Genetic Manipulation, Cottonseed-Based Foods May Soon Find Their Way To Market

October 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Now that the USDA has opened the door to farmers who want to grow a cotton plant genetically modified to make the cottonseed edible for people, consumers may soon have available a protein-packed food source that could help raise the economic prospects of cotton-growing countries beset with malnutrition. The FDA needs to approve the seeds as food for humans and animals, But once approved, high-protein cottonseed meal – what remains after the oil is removed – could be turned into flour for use in breads, tortillas, and protein bars. Roasted and salted whole cottonseed kernels can be consumed as a snack or used to make a peanut butter type of paste, Ordinary cottonseed is unfit for humans and many animals to eat because it contains a toxic chemical. But Texas scientists used so-called RNAi, or RNA interference, technology to “silence” a gene, virtually eliminating the toxic compound from the cottonseed.[Image Credit: © Jan Haerer from Pixabay.com]
"Could Cotton be the next superfood? Regulators give go ahead to 'protein packed' cottonseed (and say it tastes like a chickpea)", MailOnline, October 17, 2018, © Associated Newspapers Ltd.
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How Europe’s Wheat Farmers Can Plan For Climate Change-Induced Drought

October 16, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Climate change in Europe is likely to bring frequent heat waves and drought, both of which will challenge production of wheat and maize, according to scientists at Denmark’s Aarhus University. Drought in particular will cause crops, especially those sewn in spring, to wither and die as they did in this past summer. The researchers wondered which was the bigger problem in the long run for winter wheat and maize: heat or drought. It is important to differentiate because the defense mechanisms of plants against drought are different from those used to protect against heat stress. Wheat and maize under climate change will be most affected by drought, less so by heat. Knowing this will help farmers and plant breeders develop suitable crop varieties and management systems. [Image Credit: © minka2507]
"Climate changes require better adaptation to drought", Science Daily, October 16, 2018, © Science Daily
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UK’s Ocado Will Soon Stop Using Non-Recyclable Polystyrene And PVC In Own-Label Items

October 16, 2018: 12:00 AM EST


UK online supermarket Ocado says it will stop using non-recyclable PVC and polystyrene from its own-label products before Christmas and will remove black plastic by next spring. Ocado signed the UK Plastics Pact earlier this year, which is a commitment to stop using “problematic and unnecessary” single-use plastic packaging by 2025. Ocado’s website includes ‘low plastic’ and ‘recyclable’ categories, and has also added a ‘widely recycled’ category.[Image Credit: © Ocado Retail Limited]
Steve Farrell , "Ocado pledges further cuts to its single-use plastic packaging", The Grocer UK, October 16, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Kiwi Scientists Figure Out How To Convert Fermented Plant Pulp Into Flour

October 16, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
New Zealand scientists have developed a technology that transforms pinot noir grape – and other plant – fermentation by-products into zero-waste, gluten-free, vegan, low-carb, low-fat, fiber- and nutrient-rich flour. Greenspot Technologies has successfully created flour from pinot noir, sauvignon blanc, apple, beetroot, orange, carrot and parsnip pulp. The sophisticated fermentation process was developed in the research labs of the University of Auckland. The key to the process is the conversion of sugars in the pulp into nutritious protein. The flours can be used to make bread, snack bars, protein bars, biscuits, vegan products, pasta, pizza, or as a dietary supplement. The start-up is using an investment of $782,700 to spread the word in France.[Image Credit: © BY GREEN SPOT TECHNOLOGIES]
Cecile Meier, "Could this zero waste, gluten-free, vegan, low-carb NZ pinot noir flour be the next superfood?", Stuff.co.nz, October 16, 2018, © Stuff Limited
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U.K. To Finally Act On Folic Acid Fortification Of Flour

October 15, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
British Prime Minister Theresa May is backing a plan to add folate supplement to bread flour to stem the tide of neural tube defects occurring in early stage fetuses: at least two pregnancies a week are terminated because of the defect, which leads to conditions like spina bifida. The U.K. has one of the highest rates of neural tube defects in Europe; folic acid fortification could help alleviate the problem. The Royal College of Midwives has urged the government to introduce mandatory fortification “as soon as possible.” Senior British government sources suggest the change could be made a reality within weeks. [Image Credit: © Hanjörg Scherzer from Pixabay]
Alex Matthews-King , "Folic acid 'to be added to flour' to reduce serious birth defects in U.K.", independent.co.uk, October 15, 2018, © independent.co.uk
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Indian Company Zenith Drinks Introduces Anti-Aging Beverage

October 13, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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, © Food And Beverage News
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Austin’s Eateries Must Recycle Unsold Food – Or Compost It

October 12, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Austin, Texas, has barred its restaurants from trashing unsold made-to-order and other processed foods, the city’s Universal Recycling Ordinance (URO), whose goal is greater sustainability, requires eateries to compost food scraps or give them away. Food enterprises covered by the new law include restaurants, shops, and farm markets that serve made-to-order food, as well as places that prepare and process food. Employees of these establishments are required to receive training in handling the waste. The ordinance also covers dirty or used paper, like cardboard, paper towels and napkins; flowers, and landscape trimmings from restaurant plants and gardens. Violators can be fined as much as $2,000. According to a local government study, 37 percent of materials sent to landfills is organic and could be donated or composted.[Image Credit: © City of Austin]
"US city bars restaurants from throwing away food waste", World Economic Forum , October 12, 2018, © Primedia Broadcasting, A Division of Primedia (Pty) Ltd
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New Coca-Cola Vegetable Juice Tops List Of New Product Debuts

October 11, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.
Andy Morton, "The Coca-Cola Co unveils vegetable juice as new products put in spotlight", just-drinks.com, October 11, 2018, © just-drinks.com
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Fast-food, Restaurant Chains Wooing Millennials Spurn Processed Cheese

October 10, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © Hans Braxmeier from Pixabay]
Lydia Mulvany and Leslie Patton, "Millennials Kill Again. The Latest Victim? American Cheese", Bloomberg, October 10, 2018, © Bloomberg LP
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Seventh Generation Introduces ‘Game-Changing’ Innovation In Laundry Detergent Packaging

October 10, 2018: 12:00 AM EST


Unilever’s Seventh Generation detergent brand has launched what it claims is a game-changer. The 23oz bottle contains 100 per cent recycled PET and uses 60 per cent less plastic and 50 per cent less water than a typical 100oz bottle, for the same number of laundry loads. The product also features EasyDose™, a new automatic dosing technology in the cap. The EasyDose™ Ultraconcentrated Laundry Detergent was launched as an online exclusive. [Image Credit: © Seventh Generation, Inc]
"PepsiCo, Seventh Gen, CLF Bring Sustainable Plastics Closer to Reality", Sustainable Brands, October 10, 2018, © Sustainable Life Media Inc.
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Lidl In Ireland And Northern Ireland Is Eradicating Its Use Of Black Plastic

October 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Lidl announced it is eliminating black plastic in packaging before Christmas from its fruit and vegetables in all of its stores in Ireland and Northern Ireland. It will be withdrawn from fresh fish products by February next year, and its poultry and fresh and cured meat products will follow by August. Lidl also announced that it had stopped selling single-use plastic items, such as straws, plastic plates, cups and cutlery. They will be replaced by biodegradable items. The retailer added that it continues to test unpackaged fruit and vegetables. Over a quarter of its fresh produce has no packaging. [Image Credit: © Lidl UK GmbH]
"Lidl Ireland & Northern Ireland Remove Unrecyclable Black Plastic Packaging", Packaging Europe, October 08, 2018, © Packaging Europe Ltd. A Rapid News Communications Group Company.
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LifeAID Launches Immunity Beverage That Is “Emergen-C On Steroids”

October 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Functional drink producer LifeAID Beverage Company has launched ImmunityAID, a blend of vitamins A, C, and D, zinc, turmeric, ginger root, chamomile, astragalus, and echinacea designed to help consumers weather the cold and flu season. The orange-flavored product, labeled as a dietary supplement, contains 45 calories per 12 oz. can and will retail for $2.99. It was unveiled at the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) show, and will soon be available in about 2,000 stores nationwide, including Whole Foods, H-E-B, Vitamin Shoppe, and GNC. “Think of it like Emergen-C on steroids,” said co-founder and president Aaron Hinde.
Brad Avery, "LifeAID Launches Immunity Line", BevNET.com, October 08, 2018, © BevNET.com
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Kroger Fund Food Waste Prevention Curriculum For El-Sec Students

October 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Grocery chain Kroger has joined a Zero Hunger | Zero Waste partnership with World Wildlife Fund (WWF) to prevent and recover food waste in U.S. elementary and secondary schools. WWF, whose WIld Classroom provides an environmental curriculum for teachers and parents, is expanding the curriculum with the help of a $400,000 grant from Kroger’s foundation to focus on promoting food conservation education and best practices. The Food Waste Warrior Toolkit, a classroom-friendly curriculum that aligns with USDA and state educational standards, turns the school cafeteria into a classroom to inspire students to become Zero Heroes by making a lifelong commitment to reduce food waste. The free toolkit was tested in Washington, D.C., using resources from science, math, ecology, conservation, and sustainability.[Image Credit: © The Kroger Co.]
"Kroger Partners with World Wildlife Fund to Educate Students About Responsible Food Practices", PR Newswire, October 08, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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North London Budgens Opens Plastic-Free Zones

October 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A north London branch of supermarket chain Budgens is introducing plastic-free zones. The Belsize Park outlet, Thornton’s Budgens, offers over 1,700 products in plastic-free packaging, using alternative materials such as beechwood nets, paper and glass to wrap foods. It enlisted the help of A Plastic Planet, a campaign group, and created the zone in 10 weeks. Mr. Thornton claims his store is just the second worldwide to have plastic-free zones, with Dutch supermarket Ekoplaza the first.[Image Credit: © Booker Retail Partners GB Limited]
Sabrina Barr, "Budgens store becomes one of world's first to have plastic-free zones", The Independent, October 08, 2018, © Evening Standard Ltd
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FDA Drops Seven Approved Flavoring Chemicals After Data Prove They Cause Cancer

October 5, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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. [Image Credit: © Breast Cancer Prevention Partners (Formerly Breast Cancer Fund)]
"FDA Removes 7 Synthetic Flavoring Substances from Food Additives List", USFDA, October 05, 2018, © U.S. Food and Drug Administration
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Austrian RTD Meal Replacement Company Goes Head-To-Head With Soylent In U.S.

October 4, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Austrian RTD meal replacement beverage Saturo has launched in the U.S. where the main competitor is Soylent. The company says it is introducing two of its most popular flavors to the American market, , chocolate and vanilla in 330 ml bottles (330 calories per bottle) available as a package of eight on Amazon. Each bottle contains 26 vitamins and minerals, fatty acids, carbohydrates, fiber, and protein. Saturo is entering the competitive market hoping to define themselves by flavors, taste, and being non-GMO. They are targeted at individuals with busy schedules, such as office workers, sports enthusiasts, students or gamers. As the U.S. customer base expands, the company says it will introduce more of its products to the U.S. market.
"European Meal Replacement Brand Saturo Launches in U.S.", BevNET.com, October 04, 2018, © BevNET.com
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Nestlé USA Forms New Partnerships With Innovative Food Start-Ups

October 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © Nestlé]
"Nestlé USA Partners with Start-ups Disrupting the Healthy Snacking and Plant-based Foods Categories", PR Newswire, October 03, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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Belgians Adopt Food Nutrition Labeling Scheme Developed In France

October 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © Ahold Delhaize]
"Belgium Adopts Nutri-Score for Front of Pack Nutritional Labeling", USDA Foreign Agricultural Service , October 03, 2018, © USA.gov
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USDA Researchers Work To Develop More Nutritious Wheat Varieties

October 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © Manfred Richter]
"Wheat That Pumps Iron, Naturally", Science Daily, October 03, 2018, © Science Daily
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Bioengineering Company’s New Technology Delivers “Natural Preservatives”

October 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.”[Image Credit: © Conagen-Inc.com]
"Next Generation, Non-GMO Natural Preservatives Developed By Conagen", PR Newswire, October 03, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC.
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Nestlé, Unilever, Coca-Cola On Shortlist In Bidding For GSK Consumer Portfolio

October 1, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
As negotiations for the Indian GlaxoSmith-Kline nutrition portfolio, including Horlicks, begin to heat up, Nestlé, Unilever and Coca-Cola are among companies shortlisted for a second round of bidding. Other food and drinks companies that have shown interest in the auction include PepsiCo, Reckitt Benckiser, General Mills, Danone, and Kellogg’s, as well as India’s ITC and private equity buyout funds like KKR. It’s not clear how many bidders are still in the running. 
Ratna Bhushan, Arijit Barman, "Coke, Nestlé for second round in Horlicks race ", The Economic Times, October 01, 2018, © Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd.
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U.K. Grocers Sell Cheaper “Fauxdough” Bread In Place Of Expensive Sourdough

October 1, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
British Millennials love sourdough bread, which is more nutritious and easier to digest than conventional offerings. So the classic bread has become very popular in the U.K. Popular but, it turns out, very expensive: about $5 per bakery loaf. Which is why sales of cheaper sourdough bread at grocery stores are on the rise. But according to British consumer watchdog Which?, just four out of the 19 supermarket sourdough loaves tested contained the traditional four ingredients: flour, water, salt and what’s known as a mother or starter culture. Many of the loaves – dubbed “fauxdough” – contained yeast, ascorbic acid, yogurt and vinegar, added to speed up the rising process, boost volume or create sour flavor. And they defeat the purpose of eating the more healthful sourdough.[Image Credit: © GAIL's]
Rachel Hosie, "75% Of U.K. Supermarket Sourdough Breads Don't Follow Authentic Recipe", independent.co.uk, October 01, 2018, © independent.co.uk
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Czech Firm Isoline Debuts Functional Drink With Novel Three-Chambered Cap

September 28, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Czech Republic beverage company Isoline has developed a functional drink that uses fruit and herbal extracts like schisandra, ginseng, matcha tea, ginkgo biloba and guarana, and is sweetened with stevia. A unique feature is the 3D SportTop cap composed of three chambers, each containing the drink concentrate. The cap makes it possible for buyers to obtain three drinks from one bottle. The company says Escalate’s ingredients fight fatigue, improve concentration, focus and memory, and support “regeneration after intense activity.” The beverage was developed with professional athletes and nutritional scientists from Masaryk University in Brno, Czech Republic.
"Escalate – The functional drink of the future", FoodBev Media, September 28, 2018, © FoodBev Media Ltd
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Australian Coca-Cola Unit Commits To Full Recyclability By 2025

September 28, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Australia’a Coca-Cola Amatil has promised that all bottles, cans, plastic wrapping, glass, and cardboard will be fully recyclable by 2025 and compliant with the National Packaging Targets announced by Federal Environment Minister Melissa Price. The company will also focus on removing unnecessary single-use packaging through improved design, innovation or the implementation of recycled alternatives. The recently announced packaging targets include 70 percent of Australia’s plastic packaging to be recycled or composted by 2025 and 30 percent of packaging to be made from recycled content.
"Coca-Cola Amatil to make all packaging recyclable by 2025", Packaging Gateway, September 28, 2018, © Verdict Media Limited
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Asia-Pacific Is Ramping Up Efforts To Reduce Single-Use Plastic

September 28, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
There is a growing awareness of single-use plastic in the Asia-Pacific region, with governments and companies acting to reduce the volume of plastic waste. However, there are also concerns that too little is being done, and too slowly. In India, PepsiCo has committed to using 100% compostable, plant-based packaging for some of its snack brands, and Nestle plans globally to make 100% of its packaging either recyclable or reusable by 2025. Unilever has a similar target. In South Korea, supermarket chains Lotte Market, E-Mart, Mega Mart, Homeplus and Hanaro Mart, announced plans to reduce the number plastic shopping bags and encourage the use of reusable ones. In Singapore, a new zero-waste store opened in May 2018. Unpackt uses no packaging, inviting customers to bring their own containers. Governments too are acting. In India, the state of Maharastra introduced a ban on single-use plastics, and the whole country aims to be free of single-use plastics by 2022. A senate inquiry in Australia has recommended a national ban on single-use plastics, following state bans of single-use bags in Victoria and New South Wales. [Image Credit: © Unpackt]
Pearly Neo , "Tackling APAC’s plastic waste crisis: How Pepsi, Nestlé and Lotte are stepping up", Food Navigator ASIA, September 28, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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McDonald’s Removes Artificial Preservatives, Flavors, Colors From Menu Items

September 27, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

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."[Image Credit: © McDonald's]
Jordan Valinsky , "McDonald's removing artificial additives from its burgers", CNN Money, September 27, 2018, © Cable News Network
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Starbucks Is Getting Ready To Build A New Standalone Princi Bakery In Seattle

September 27, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © Starbucks Corporation DBA Princi.]
"Records reveal Starbucks is planning a second stand-alone Princi in Seattle", Puget Sound Business Journal (Seattle, Washington), September 27, 2018, © American City Business Journals
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FDA May Soon Require Non-Dairy “Milks” To Change Their Labeling

September 27, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © rawpixel from Pixabay]
Anna Edney, "U.S. Explores Renaming Almond Milk in Victory for Dairy Industry", Bloomberg, September 27, 2018, © Bloomberg LLC
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Market Report Finds That Americans Want Functional Coffee

September 26, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
RTD coffee should be more than a caffeine-delivery vehicle, market researcher Mintel found in a survey of U.S. consumers, it should be functional, providing perhaps antioxidants, probiotics, and brain health benefits. The online survey questioned 613 U.S. Internet users aged 18 and older who drink any ready-to-drink (RTD) coffee products. Respondents said they want options that include antioxidants (47 percent), promote brain health (40 percent), are anti-inflammatory (35 percent), or have added probiotics (30 percent).The findings support the general trend that U.S. consumers want brands and products offering health and functional benefits.
Adi Menayang, "Consumers seek functional benefits even in their cup of joe, Mintel study finds", Beveragedaily.com, September 26, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Start-Up Launches Aronia Berry Beverages

September 26, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Kansas City, Mo.-based Tohi Ventures has introduced four antioxidant-rich aronia berry beverages. Tohi – a Cherokee word meaning both “peace” and “wellness” – was founded by two female entrepreneurs with backgrounds in investment and science. The functional beverages are 30 percent single-strength aronia berry juice, 70 percent water, noncarbonated, low-calorie, and available in four flavors: original, blackberry raspberry, dragon fruit, and ginger lime. All are sweetened with monk fruit. The 12-ounce cans are available on Amazon.
"Tohi Ventures Launches New Aronia Berry Beverages", PR Newswire , September 26, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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British Grocers, Producers, Hotels Commit To Food Waste Reduction Roadmap

September 25, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A British charity dedicated to waste reduction and sustainability has launched a Food Waste Reduction Roadmap with the cooperation of government, large food retailers, food producers, manufacturers, and hospitality and food service companies. The Roadmap encompasses the food supply chain from field to fork, and outlines the actions large businesses will take to address food waste in their own operations, among their suppliers, and with consumers. The first major milestone on the Roadmap, set for September 2019, is to have fifty percent of the U.K.'s largest 250 food businesses measuring, reporting, and acting on food waste, with all 250 companies doing so by 2026. [Image Credit: © The Waste and Resources Action Programme]
"A World First: U.K. Food Industry Commits to a Landmark Roadmap to Halve Food Waste", Waste and Resources Action Program (WRAP), September 25, 2018, © WRAP
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“Waste Bread” Incorporates Unsold Sourdough Loaves Into New Ones

September 25, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A British bakery has developed what it calls Waste Bread, made by crushing unsold loaves, rolls, and bloomers (London-style white bread) to make a porridge. A new batch of sourdough then incorporates the porridge.  Gail’s Bakery’s 43 sites in London, Oxford, and Brighton will introduce the sourdough in October at a price of $5.50 a loaf. The co-founder of Gail’s said the process took nine months to perfect because it is so complicated, but it is worth the effort because it continues the company’s commitment to sustainability and reduction of food waste.[Image Credit: © GAIL’s Limited]
Gill Hyslop, "U.K. bakery chain has developed a sourdough made from surplus loaves to cut down on food waste", BakeryAndSnacks.com, September 25, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Suit Alleges Pret a Manger’s Baked Goods Contain Weed Killer Ingredient

September 25, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © Beyond Pesticides]
"Nonprofits Sue Pret A Manger for Deceptive Marketing of Foods as 'Natural'", PR Newswire , September 25, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC.
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FDA May Soon Update The Definition Of, And Permitted Ingredients For, Yogurt

September 25, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © Aline Ponce from Pixabay]
Candice Choi , "'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, © The Associated Press
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Land O’Lakes Launches Digital Tool To Help Farmers Get More Sustainable

September 24, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Land O'Lakes SUSTAIN is to launch Truterra Insights Engine, an interactive digital platform to help farmers and food companies measure their sustainability in real time. The platform combines agronomic expertise and technical capabilities from several contributors, including the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service, and combined with other tools can help farmers measure the economic and environmental benefits of their sustainability efforts. It also helps them identify farm management options. The company claims Truterra Insights Engine is better suited to farmers since it was created by a farmer-owned cooperative.[Image Credit: © Land O’Lakes, Inc.]
"Land O'Lakes SUSTAIN debuts first-of-its-kind digital platform to support farmer-led stewardship", PR Newswire, September 24, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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Inventor’s “Twist & Grip” Bag Preserves Bread’s Flavor, Freshness Longer

September 24, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
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.[Image Credit: © InventHelp ® All Rights Reserved]
"Inventor Develops Stay Fresh Bread Bag (AAT-1637)", PR Newswire , September 24, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC.
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Gluten-Free Ancient Grain From Africa Is Catching On In New York City

September 24, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A Senegalese chef who last year began exporting a gluten-free ancient grain from the impoverished Sahel region of Africa plans to double production over the next five years to meet demand from New York City foodies. Fonio – known as “the lazy farmers’ crop” because it is easy to grow and requires little water – is now on the menus of 60 restaurants and will soon be available at Whole Foods Market locations, according to Pierre Thiam’s start-up company Yolele Foods. The idea behind the import initiative is to help the smallholder communities of the Sahel, which ranges from Mauritania in the west to Eritrea in the east and is home to more than 100 million people.[Image Credit: © Yolélé Foods Inc.]
Thin Lei Win, "Senegalese chef puts supergrain on NYC menus", Thomson Reuters Foundation, September 24, 2018, © Thomson Reuters
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San Francisco Chef Plans Food Waste-Focused Restaurant

September 21, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Although there have been restaurant pop-ups focused on food waste, no one in the U.S. with a fine dining background has opened a restaurant devoted to food waste. But San Francisco chef Nick Balla, who has a reputation for creating delicious meals from surplus foods, is toying with the idea. He recently shared his business plan during the San Francisco Global Climate Action Summit at an event focused on reducing food waste. Balla says the restaurant he launches, possibly in the Bayview neighborhood, will have to have room for equipment needed to juice, dehydrate and jar the tons of food he will process. There will also be a bakery for incorporating leftovers into bread. He predicts that embracing surplus and ugly food will soon move from buzzword status to a national trend.[Image Credit: © Couleur from Pixabay]
Tara Duggan , "San Francisco chef Nick Balla plans food-waste-focused restaurant ", The San Francisco Chronicle , September 21, 2018, © Hearst
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Dutch Supermarket Chain Uses Blockchain To Make Orange Juice Supply Chain Transparent

September 21, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

According to International Supermarket News, Dutch supermarket chain Albert Heijin is using Blockchain to make transparent the supply chain for its orange juice. The new system will be launched in partnership with Refresco, one of the company’s suppliers and will enable customers to track the product’s journey from Brazil to the Netherlands by using a QR code on the carton. The food industry is beginning to discover and embrace the potential of blockchain, helped by tech companies working on solutions for the sector. For example, Walmart has been working with IBM on a blockchain system to reduce food waste and improve food safety.[Image Credit: © Gewoon bij Albert Heijn]
Marie Huillet, "Dutch Supermarket Giant Adopts Blockchain to Make Orange Juice Production Transparent", Cointelegraph, September 21, 2018, © Cointelegraph
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AlgoTek Develops An Algae-Based, Degradable Plastic For Single-Use Market

September 21, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Startup AlgoTek has developed an edible and biodegradable plastic made mainly from brown algae powder. The plastic, which is created using a proprietary process, is durable and can be used for various single-use products such as capsules and bottles. The plastic, which is degraded by water, can withstand heat up to 140 degrees F and cold down to 10 degrees F. AlgoTek was established by chief executive officer David Crinnion and his college friends to help address the global plastic waste problem. AlgoTek has raised 35,000 dollars, is looking for manufacturing partners and aims to secure patents so it can license its technology to other users.[Image Credit: © AlgoteK ]
Eric Mack, "It's Plastic. It's Edible. It Could Be A Very Big Deal.", Forbes, September 21, 2018, © Forbes Media LLC
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Multinational Corporations Support Campaign To Reduce Ocean Plastic Pollution

September 20, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Multinational corporations, including Coca-Cola and Walmart, pledged their support for the Ocean Plastics Charter signed by Britain, Canada, France, Germany, and Italy in June 2018. Despite an abstention by the two other G7 nations, United States and Japan, several non-G7 nations supported the plan to achieve 100 percent plastics recyclability by 2030. An announcement by Canadian Environment Minister Catherine McKena to create a new partnership with businesses to reduce plastic waste secured support from several companies, including Loblaws, Walmart, and IKEA, and Nestle Canada. Separately, Unilever announced the launch of a not-for-profit venture to reduce consumer and business waste.[Image Credit: © kakuko from pixabay]
"Coca-Cola, Walmart to cut plastic pollution in oceans", Phys.org, September 20, 2018, © AFP
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Analysts Predict Nestlé Will Divest Skin-Health Business To Focus on Beverages, Food

September 20, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Nestlé may be planning to divest its $2.79 billion skin-health business as a way to placate an activist investor who believes the company should focus on food and beverages. Selling the unit could generate $4.1 billion, according to analysts, but the company did not comment on the speculation. Investor Daniel Loeb took a $3.5 billion stake in Nestlé last year and has since pressured the company to sell its investment in L’Oréal SA and in the skin-health arm set up in 2014 after Nestlé assumed full control of Galderma. CEO Mark Schneider has said the key to reviving stagnating growth is to focus on core areas with growth potential like coffee, pet care, water, and infant nutrition. Regarding coffee, the company recently bought the rights to market and sell Starbucks coffee and tea products in grocery and retail stores, and last year bought a majority stake in U.S. premium coffee chain Blue Bottle.
Saabira Chaudhuri and Brian Blackstone, "Nestlé Sharpens Focus on Food and Beverages With Review of Skin-Health Unit", The Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2018, © Dow Jones & Company Inc.
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Novel Edible Utensils Enhance Customer Experience And Help Eliminate Plastic Waste

September 19, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Companies are responding to consumer concerns about plastic pollution and regulation restricting the use of plastic straws, with a range of innovative solutions. After announcing it would remove single-use straws globally by 2020, Starbucks introduced a pumpkin spice cookie straw. In the summer Diageo introduced flavored edible straws that supposedly complemented its canned cocktails. Beyond straws, British packaging startup Skipping Rocks Lab partnered with delivery service Just Eat to offer seaweed-based edible sauce sachets. Consumer awareness continues to rise as the scale of the issue becomes clear. One study found that just 9 percent of the 8.3 billion metric tons of plastic produced worldwide is recycled, underling the work still to be done.[Image Credit: © Skipping Rocks Lab]
Emily Safian-Demers, "Edible utensils", J. Walter Thompson Intelligence, September 19, 2018, © J. Walter Thompson U.S.A., LLC
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Florida Bakers Offer Their Take On Desserts Trending On Social Media

September 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Florida food writer Savannah Vasquez discovered that some mouth-watering dessert innovations posted on social media were actually available in locations across the northwest part of the state. Among the treats she happened upon – and food in several bakeries – were two-layered tart cakes, re-imagined by an Israeli chef and now trending on Pinterest and Instagram. Often shown in the shape of numbers or letters, they can feature “extravagant” toppings like edible flowers, macaron cookies, and fresh fruit. Also having their 15 minutes of fame on social media are: edible cookie dough, custom donuts, and Japanese crepes.[Image Credit: © [Image Credit: © Steve Buissinne @ Pixabay.com]]
Savannah Vasquez, "Trending Desserts and where to get them", Northwest Florida Daily News (Fort Walton Beach, FL), September 18, 2018, © GateHouse Media LLC
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Irish Agricultural Technology Companies See Export Opportunities in the North American Agricultural Market

September 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Enterprise Ireland sees large opportunities in the US for Irish agricultural technology companies and recently opened a Chicago office to help companies to secure business. It seeks to help companies that offer a range of products, often leveraging digitalization to help farmers optimize efficiency, maximize profitability, and reduce costs. For example, Moocall sells wearable sensors to the bovine industry to improve calving, MooMonitor provides a system to monitor animal health and fertility and MagGrow has technology that improves spraying efficiency and reduces spray drift by up to 70 per cent.[Image Credit: © Enterprise Ireland]
Ryan J Shaughnessy, "US agritech is a new digital frontier for exporters", Farm Ireland, September 17, 2018, © Independent.ie
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Coca-Cola Looks For Opportunities In CBD-Infused Beverage Market

September 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Coca-Cola has issued a statement confirming that it is “closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD (cannabidiol) as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world.” The company is one of many that are monitoring the development of CBD-infused beverages, or have – like Molson Coors Co. and Constellation Brands – invested in the segment. Bloomberg reported that Coca-Cola is discussing the possibility of new products with Aurora Cannabis Inc. of Vancouver, Canada.
Tonya Garcia, "Coca-Cola says it's 'closely watching' the opportunities in CBD-infused beverages", MarketWatch, September 17, 2018, © MarketWatch, Inc.
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Arkansas’ Food Companies Make Progress In Battle To Cut Food Waste

September 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Food waste in manufacturing and packaging costs corporations $2 billion each year – in addition to $15 billion for farmers – while dumping 52 million tons of waste into landfills. In the state of Arkansas, food and beverage industry companies are taking steps to eradicate food waste. Tyson Foods this summer launched bite-sized chicken crisps, dubbed ¡Yappah!, made with upcycled chicken breast, rescued carrots, and celery puree from juicing, or malted barley from beer brewing. Walmart has introduced a technology that focuses on tracking the freshness of produce as it travels from farm to wholesaler to retailer to table. Eden’s sensors measure and report temperature, moisture and metabolite data used to assess carton-level freshness and shelf life based on FDA standards. And ConAgra Brands says it achieved an 81.7 percent landfill diversion rate in 2017 corporate-wide.[Image Credit: © New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC)]
"How one state is fighting food waste", Brandpoint Content, September 17, 2018, © Brandpoint
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Resorts, Hotels Adjust To The Evolving Era Of Legalized Pot

September 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
As legalization of cannabis-based foods and beverages for functional and recreational use spreads gradually across the U.S., hotels and resorts have geared up to offer cannabis-based menu items and wellness treatments. The Hollywood Roosevelt hotel, for example, serves a mojito ($18) infused with cannabidiol (CBD), a nonintoxicating cannabis compound whose relaxation effect is “even more profound” than a traditional mojito. The Spa Solage resort in Napa Valley offers a massage, facial and body scrub ($160 to $420), all of which feature CBD oil, a purported anti-inflammatory agent that is supposed to help with insomnia, pain relief, anxiety, and eczema. Lastly, The Thompson Seattle hotel sponsored two dinners where different strains of marijuana (this time with psychoactive THC) were paired with beets with herring, scallops with apples and anise, and veal cheeks with cauliflower and pecans.[Image Credit: © maroonedonisland from Pixabay]
Shivani Vora, "Cannabis on the Menu at Your Next Hotel Restaurant or Spa?", The New York Times - International Edition, September 17, 2018, © The New York Times Company
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Soylent Plans U.K. Launch

September 17, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Los Angeles-based meal replacement company Soylent is expanding to the U.K. after market research found that skipping meals is becoming more commonplace there. Launched in the U.S. in 2014 after a crowdfunding campaign raised $1.5 million, Soylent has developed a significant following for its RTD beverages and powders among athletes and gym rats who use it as a high-protein workout supplement. It was the top grocery product on Amazon in the U.S. beginning in January 2018. The company is planning a soft launch because of the novelty of the meal replacement concept in the U.K. The strategy is to drive word of mouth, awareness and advocacy to educate consumers. Marketing will target gamers, urban Millennial achievers and busy students.
Beth Newhart, "Soylent ‘cult following’ in the U.S. leads to U.K. launch", beveragedaily.com, September 17, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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