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Coke’s Brand Incubator To Undergo Major Restructuring

December 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Scott Uzzell, president of Coca-Cola’s Venturing and Emerging Brands (VEB) business, outlined in a December 4 memo several organizational changes to take effect in January. The changes, including some staff shifts, will “sharpen our focus” related to the current marketing strategy and accelerate the growth of its beverage portfolio. VEB’s role – “futurist, investor, incubator and integrator“ – is to spot the right trends, invest in them, incubate them “and, finally, help integrate them into our broad business system.” With that in mind, VEB will create several new business units that will nurture acquired brands: imported mineral water brand Topo Chico and coconut water maker Zico will move into the Still Business Unit; Hansen’s and Blue Sky Beverage Company will move to the Sparkling Business Unit; and Hubert’s Lemonade and VEB’s Natural Channel Sales Team will be folded into the Minute Maid Business Unit based in Texas. Other brands – Fairlife, Suja, and BodyArmor – will not be affected.
Martín Caballero, "Coca-Cola VEB Set to ‘Sharpen Focus’ on Incubation in 2019", BevNET.com, December 07, 2018, © BevNET.com
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Retiring Coke Chairman Kent Lists Challenges For Global CEOs

December 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Outgoing Coca-Cola Chairman Muhtar Kent – he’s retiring in April 2019 – says running a global business is tougher than ever because of the competition, of course, but also because of “sociopolitical dynamics,” more unknowns – like Brexit, U.S. trade wars, and currency fluctuations – and “more volatility, constant volatility." But that’s not all that gives CEOs anxiety. Also at work are a “global war for talent” and “digitization," he told CNBC. Kent, a 40-year veteran of Coca-Cola, will be replaced as chairman by CEO James Quincey.
Amelia Lucas , "Coca-Cola chairman: 'More unknowns, more volatility' are making running a global business tougher", CNBC.com , December 07, 2018, © CNBC LLC
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Corn Flakes To Beer: Kellogg U.K. Program Cuts Food Waste 12.5 Percent

December 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
The U.K. unit of breakfast food company Kellogg is brewing a new business: beer. The company has launched a program, “Throw Away IPA,” that turns rejected corn flakes – too small, too big, undercooked – into beer, the revenues from which are partially donated to Fareshare, a food poverty charity. The English beer, made by Seven Bro7hers Brewery, tastes sweeter than the usual IPA, and has the iconic golden color of its breakfast cereal ingredients. Each Throw Away IPA brew uses roughly 132 pounds (60 kilograms) of rejected cornflakes. Since the program was launched, Kellogg says it has reduced its U.K.-based food waste by 12.5 percent.[Image Credit: © Seven Bro7hers Brewery]
McKinley Corbley, "In Bid to Cut Food Waste, Kellogg’s is Using Their Rejected Cornflakes to Make Beer ", Good News Network, December 07, 2018, © GNN, LLC
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Unilever Invests €100,000 To Solve Single-Use Plastic Sachet Problem

December 6, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Unilever has set its sights on eliminating single-use plastic sachets for laundry products, piloting a technology in which it is investing €100,000. The crowd-sourced plastic-free tablet, which uses a plant-based coating, emerged from the company’s “Rethink Plastic” Hackathon. Other ideas from the event included a subscription model for detergent in ceramic or glass bottles, and soluble sheets of detergent, or ‘Laundry on a roll’. Teams from Unilever will look at some of these other ideas. [Image Credit: © Unilever]
"Unilever to invest €100,000 in a crowdsourced solution as part of its drive to rethink plastic packaging", Unilever, December 06, 2018, © Unilever
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Major Drinks Companies, Retailers And Green Groups Seek To Improve Plastic Recycling In Hong Kong

December 6, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Beverage companies, green campaigners and others are joining forces to tackle the issue of poor recycling rates in Hong Kong. The voluntary Drink Without Waste initiative was announced by the Single-use Beverage Packaging Working Group, a coalition of charities, drink producers and bottlers, recycling companies, environmental groups and retailers. They are looking at a range of possible initiatives, including installing water dispensers around the city and a “cash on return” scheme for plastic bottles. Manufacturers are also encouraged to look at their packaging to improve recycling rates. In 2017, Hong Kong dumped some 1.7 billion empty drinks containers in landfill or as litter. Two-thirds were plastic bottles. Less than 10 percent of the single-use plastic bottles sent to rubbish tips are recovered and recycled. [Image Credit: © Drink Without Waste]
Ernest Kao, "Major Hong Kong drinks manufacturers join forces with green groups for initiative aimed at increasing city’s dismal recycling rate", South China Morning Post, December 06, 2018, © South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd
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Starbucks Says Plastic-Lined Coffee Cups Can Be Converted Into New Cups

December 6, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Coffee chain Starbucks says it has converted 25 million of its coffee cups into new cups as part of a pilot scheme introduced earlier in 2018, overturning conventional wisdom that the plastic lining means they couldn’t be recycled. Mike Mueller of WestRock, the company that recycled the cups, said the company is aiming to raise awareness about how it can be achieved and scaled. Other initiatives used by Starbucks include charging a small fee to its London customers for single-use cups, and it is working on a cup that can be easily recycled and composted. Customers in most stores can expect a discount if they bring their own reusable cup.[Image Credit: © Starbucks Corporation]
Kat Smith, "Starbucks Proves That Single-Use Coffee Cups Can Be Recycled", LIVEKINDLY , December 06, 2018, © LIVEKINDLY Media Inc.
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Sale Of Cannery SPC Would Free Coca-Cola Amatil To Focus On Beverage Growth

December 5, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Australian bottler Coca-Cola Amatil (CCA) has decided to divest the loss-making SPC fruit and vegetable cannery it purchased in 2005 after years of struggling to make it profitable. Analysts believe the sale would give CCA the cash it needs to invest in new business areas, such as acquisition of some parts of Lion Dairy & Drinks, and right itself after some setbacks. Earnings for 2018 are likely to be hurt by weaker beverage sales in Australia, soft demand in Indonesia, and the impact of container deposit schemes that have forced the price hikes in several states and Canberra. The company is expected to concentrate on growing categories like energy drinks and flavored milk and smoothies, increasing marketing efforts for what he called “sleeping beauties and blockbuster” lines, and introducing more enhanced and premium options.
Richard Whitehead , "SPC sale could provide much-needed impetus for Coca-Cola Amatil", Beverage Daily, December 05, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Gluten-Free Fans Should Consider Flours Made With Cassava, Teff

December 5, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Consumers with celiac disease who need to avoid gluten and others who are trying to eliminate gluten from their diet should look into using flour made from the root vegetable cassava or the African grain teff.  As consumers explore regional African and Latin American cuisines in the upcoming year, they may begin experimenting with cassava and teff flours.  A gluten-free eatery in Chicago bakes cheese into cassava flour, a staple in Ecuador, to make a cheese bread that is served at the restaurant. And the owner of an Ethiopian restaurant in Falls Church, Va., says that naturally gluten-free teff is a staple in her country. Meaza Zemedu says that in Ethiopia, they use teff to bake muffins, cakes, and bread.[Image Credit: © Brett Hondow from Pixabay]
Rasha Ali, "African, S. American foods go against grain", USA TODAY, December 05, 2018, © USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Satellite Information Network, LLC.
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Kellogg Europe Executive Outlines Bio-Based Cereal Pouches Goal

December 4, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
According to Rupert Maitland-Titterton, Kellogg Europe’s senior director of sustainability and corporate communications, the company is working towards its pledge to ensure 100 percent of its packaging is recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025. An interim goal is to develop bio-based cereal pouches, recyclable in all Kellogg’s markets, to replace oil-based pouches by the end of next year. Although it’s up to consumers to contribute to the recycling process, he says, food companies must work with stakeholders, including suppliers and waste management companies, to design packaging that can be recycled and to improve the infrastructure. Kellogg Europe has started an audit of recycling structures in its largest 25 markets. Kellogg is one of the 250-plus signatories to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, which aims to eliminate single-use plastic. Maitland-Titterton believes this scale of collaboration is crucial and that the food industry can’t solve it alone.[Image Credit: © KELLOGG Company]
"How Kellogg Europe is targeting a sector-wide shift to sustainable packaging", edie.net, December 04, 2018, © edie.net
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Supermarkets In Australia Seeing Up To 90 Percent Reduction In Single-Use Plastic Bag Use

December 4, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Since July, 1.5 billion fewer single-use plastic bags have been used by large Australian supermarkets. A ban by Coles and Woolworths were added to a total ban across the state of Queensland. Reusable options have helped bring about an 80 percent drop in plastic bag use, and some retailers have reported a 90 percent reduction. The supermarkets have donated profits from the sale of reusable bags to community organizations, including Clean Up Australia, Little Athletics Australia and Guide Dog.[Image Credit: © Woolworths Group Limited]
"Australian supermarkets eliminate 1.5 billion single-use plastic bags", Packaging Gateway, December 04, 2018, © Verdict Media Limited
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Food Companies Finding Ways To Upcycle, Recycle For Profits, Sustainability

December 4, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
The packaged-food industry, both CPG giants and start-ups concerned about sustainability, along with foodservice chains and providers of plastic packaging, are seeing the benefits of the so-called “circular economy.” By recycling and upcycling as much as they can, they are benefiting their bottom line and helping preserve the planet. Many companies are engaged in efforts to try to reduce food waste. About two dozen CPG manufacturers and food retailers are working with the EPA as U.S. Food and Waste 2030 Champions, setting a target to cut food waste in half by 2030. An increasing number of start-up manufacturers are using food-waste reduction as a primary platform. Barnanas, for example, has become a $15 million company in six years, selling banana “bites” in several varieties made from bananas that were a bit ripe.[Image Credit: © Barnana]
Dale Buss, "Food Waste Has Manufacturers Engaging The Circular Economy", Chief Executive , December 04, 2018, © Chief Executive Group, LLC
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Collaboration Results In Creation Of “Solid Beer”

December 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Both beer and bread rely on similar grains – barley, rye, wheat – along with yeast to come up with related flavors. A California bakery is now ratcheting up the relationship with the help of a brewery to create bread that could be called “solid beer.” Butcher’s Daughter bread and pastry chef Perry Ledesma worked with Lars Larson, brewmaster at Berkeley brewery Trumer Pils, to come up with a bread that even includes a hint of hops, the aromatic flower that gives beer its distinctive bitterness but can overwhelm a loaf of bread. Trial and error, however, led to the successful creation of Toasted Barley Honey, along with sourdough with Hops Fleur (brushed with toasted barley brown butter), and a whole wheat with Hops Levain. The brewmaster and the baker expect this marriage baked in heaven to someday become a national phenomenon.[Image Credit: © The Butcher’s Daughter]
Brad Japhe, "This California Bakery Is Making Bread Out Of Beer", Forbes, December 03, 2018, © Forbes Media LLC
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Campbell To Sell Bolthouse Farms, Continue Exit From Fresh Foods Business

December 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Campbell Soup is casting its net wide for potential buyers of its money-losing carrot, smoothie and fruit beverage company Bolthouse Farms, continuing its withdrawal from the fresh food industry that proved to be a poor fit.  The company distributed the financial books for Bolthouse, and has begun the process of divesting its Garden Fresh Gourmet business, purchased in 2015 for $231 million. Among the potential buyers for Bolthouse is former Bolthouse CEO Jeffrey Dunn, who has talked to private equity funds to help raise money to fund a bid. Campbell paid $1.55 billion for Bolthouse Farms in 2012, when the brand had more than $100 million in earnings before interest depreciation and amortization.
Lauren Hirsch , "Campbell launches sale of Bolthouse Farms business", CNBC.com, December 03, 2018, © CNBC LLC
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House Lawmakers Urge FDA To Clearly Label Foods Containing Allergen Sesame

December 3, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH) has sent a letter signed by a bipartisan group of colleagues to FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb urging the agency to require the clear labeling of sesame products because of the prevalence and severity of sesame allergies, and the risk of accidental exposure and allergic reactions under current regulations. According to Shea-Porter, sesame is the ninth most common food allergy among American adults and children, ranking just behind milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soybeans. However, allergic reactions to sesame can be even more severe than reactions to these eight allergens, the letter stated. Shea-Porter is the founder of the House of Representatives Asthma and Allergy Caucus.[Image Credit: © US Govt.]
"Shea-Porter Urges FDA to Label Sesame Products", Rep. Carol Shea-Porter (D-N.H.), December 03, 2018, © US Govt.
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N.J. Lawmakers Tackle Food Waste Problem With Package Of Bills

November 30, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A N.J. Assembly committee has approved a package of bills aimed at reducing hunger statewide. Assembly Bill 4705 would create a 12-member New Jersey Food Waste Task Force whose purpose would be to devise ways to reduce wasteful food consumption in the state 50 percent by 2030. Assembly Joint Resolution 174, meanwhile, would urge retailers and consumers to find and adopt ways to reduce food waste. Suggestions outlined in the legislation for retailers include lowering “unreasonably high cosmetic standards” for their products, urging food manufacturers to drop “best by” labels and establishing systems for donating surplus foods to charities. To curb food waste among consumers, the resolution suggests retailers could provide food reduction tips and recipes to use leftovers and organize “waste less” campaigns.[Image Credit: © Community FoodBank of New Jersey]
Daniel J. Munoz, "Lawmakers eye ways to reduce food waste among restaurants, stores", NJBIZ, November 30, 2018, © BridgeTower Media
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Once Considered Only Fit For Animals, Sorghum Makes Its Way Into The U.S. Diet

November 29, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Gluten-free fans take note: sorghum, a whole grain commonly used for animal feed and ethanol production, is starting to make its way into the human diet.  An abundant crop in the U.S. – the largest producer in the world – sorghum is known for its natural drought tolerance and versatility but is also nutritious and gluten-free. It has been introduced into a variety of popular American foods, including Kind bars, Kellogg's cereals, and Ronzoni pastas as an “ancient grain.” Research has shown that some types of sorghum are rich in antioxidants that may help lower the risk of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and some neurological diseases.[Image Credit: © Vijaya narasimha from Pixabay]
Kristen Hicks-Roof and Diannette Osorio, "Sorghum finding its way into U.S. diet", Florida Times-Union (Jacksonville), November 29, 2018, © GateHouse Media, LLC
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USDA Awards Grant To Fund Development Of a Kelp Additive For Bread

November 29, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

The USDA has awarded $600,000 to Maine-based company VitaminSea to help develop a kelp-based additive for bread. The company received a grant last year to prove the feasibility of adding kelp to bread; the new funding will finance development of a prototype through partnerships with bakeries that will develop recipes and work on market testing. According to a project summary, commercialization of the kelp additive has the potential to "provide the nutritional benefits of consuming seaweed to a large population." [Image Credit: © VitaminSea Seaweed]
"Want some kelp with your bread? Seaweed firm says you might", Associated Press State & Local, November 29, 2018, © The Associated Press
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Lawsuits Claim AriZona Ice Tea Misleads Consumers About Ingredients, Labeling

November 29, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
AriZona Ice Tea’s parent company is being challenged in two federal lawsuits filed in New York courts that could achieve class-action status over issues related to ingredients and labeling. One suit accuses the company of “deceptively” labeling its drinks as having no preservative, despite containing the preservatives citric or ascorbic acids. The second suit accuses AriZona Beverages USA LLC and affiliate Beverage Marketing USA Inc. of misleading consumers about the amount of sugar and number of calories in their beverages by using a serving size of eight fluid ounces on its labels instead of the actual 16-ounce container size. Both lawsuits seek jury trials, unspecified monetary damages, legal costs, and court orders demanding that the company change its practices. AriZona Beverages did not respond to requests for comment.[Image Credit: © AriZona Beverages USA LLC]
Ken Schachter, "2 lawsuits over labels; AriZona Beverages is being challenged on 'no preservatives' and serving size", Newsday (New York), November 29, 2018, © Newsday
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Pakistan Expects Another $1.4 Billion In investment From PepsiCo, Coca-Cola

November 28, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
The office of Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan issued a statement saying that PepsiCo and Coca-Cola have committed to investing an additional $1.4 billion in the coming years. The country is beset with economic and financial problems, especially a swelling current account deficit that has pushed it to seek loans from China and Saudi Arabia and a bailout from the International Monetary Fund. According to the prime minister’s office, PepsiCo will invest another $1.2 billion over the next five years, while Coca-Cola will invest $200 million on top of the current $500 million. Despite Pakistan’s economic woes, consumer goods companies see the world’s sixth most populous country (208 million people) as a promising market.
Asif Shahzad, "Pepsi and Coca Cola pouring $1.4 bln into Pakistan - government", Reuters, November 28, 2018, © The Thomson Reuters
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Bakeries See Upsurge In Instagram-Ready, Alcohol-Infused Desserts

November 24, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
The Millennial fondness for unusual flavors and exotic cocktails – coupled with Instagram mania – have produced a wave of new and photogenic baked goods laced with alcohol. A baking industry website says bakeries are seeing increased demand for premium desserts “inspired by alcoholic beverages.” Cakes may be drizzled with sweet liqueurs and their fillings spiked with alcoholic beverages. Manhattan’s Doughnut Project sells handcrafted doughnuts infused with booze. Another spiked treat is the “Instagram-ready” Chandonut Rosé, featuring a Chandon sparkling rosé glaze covering a Bourbon Eggnog doughnut.[Image Credit: © The Doughnut Project]
Sarah Berger , "People are going crazy for these boozy baked goods", CNBC, November 24, 2018, © CNBC LLC
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Nashville Mayor Challenges Local Businesses To Cut Holiday Season Food Waste

November 23, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
The mayor of Nashville, Tenn., has partnered with local organizations to challenge restaurants, hotels, and event venues to slash food waste. According to Mayor David Brinley, as many as 100,000 Davidson County residents, including more than 25,000 children, are food-insecure. By responding to the challenge, businesses could have a “meaningful impact” on the lives of many of our residents during the holiday season. Businesses that participate are being asked to select and implement practices from a menu of options to prevent food waste, to donate food and recycle food scraps, and to report on their progress. Organizations joing in the challenge include the Nashville Food Waste Initiative, the Greater Nashville Hospitality Association, and Nashville Originals.[Image Credit: © Natural Resources Defense Council]
"Mayor David Briley issues food saver challenge to prevent food waste this holiday season", Nashville Pride (Tennessee) | Black Press USA, November 23, 2018, © National Newspaper Publishers Association
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Protein-Based Beverages From Foundation Fitness Now On Walmart Store Shelves

November 22, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Foundation Fitness’s four newly-launched brands of canned protein beverages are now available in 2,500 Walmart stores. Each line – protein water, protein nutritional shake (made of whey), plant protein shake, and coldbrew with collagen – comes in a variety of flavors. Minimum amount of protein is 20 g per serving (in the collagen coldbrew), with the highest at 30 g per serving (the nutritional shake). The company debuted the brands earlier this month at the National Association of Convenience Stores (or NACS) show, an indication of its strategy to focus on convenience stores and gas station retailers as well as mass grocery retailers.
Adi Menayang , "Protein drink newcomer Foundation Fitness launches at Walmart nationwide", Beverage Daily, November 22, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Pastry Chefs, A Dying Breed, Battle Headwinds With Creativity, Innovation

November 22, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A post-recession return to homier desserts coupled with rising restaurant labor and operating costs have been rough on the nation’s pastry chefs. In fact, pastry chefs appear to be a dying breed at today’s upscale restaurants. To fight the trend, survivors have re-imagined old-fashioned, all-American pies and layer cakes, using alternative grains and sweeteners, imported herbs, and forms that give the desserts a new look. To save money, however, today’s desserts tend to be large-format and therefore more economical than complexly plated individual ones. Today’s dwindling community of pastry chefs knows that they have to make dessert seem essential by rethinking comfort and indulgence while still offering a taste of nostalgia.[Image Credit: © Milktooth]
"As Pastry Chefs Decline in Ranks, a Revolution in Cakes and Pies", The New York Times , November 22, 2018, © The New York Times Company
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Scientists Develop Probiotic Drink By Fermenting Coconut Water

November 20, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Researchers at universities in India and South Korea have developed a functional fermented coconut water beverage with probiotic benefits. The beverage was produced using the bacterial strain Lactobacillus casei L4. The scientists reported that the fermentation of coconut water with probiotic lactobacilli increased the cell viability count, with vitamin B12 production being the highest in the extracellular environment after 48 hours. The total phenolic content was also much higher than at other time points, and the fermented materials demonstrated the most prominent radical-scavenging activities. Twenty taste testers tried three recipes for the beverage, showing preference for fermented coconut water with 15 percent honey and artificial coconut flavor, probably because of the decreased acidity and increased sweetness and aroma of the beverage.
Cheryl Tay , "Indian and Korean researchers develop functional probiotic beverage from fermented coconut water", Nutraingredients USA, November 20, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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International Distributors Show Interest In Detox Beverage Company

November 20, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
London-based Sober Up, an alcohol detoxification drink company, says it has received international distribution interest from 17 countries due to the online awareness and success of their current Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign. A resurgence of backers has led to the extension of the campaign through November 27, after which Sober Up will be available on their new website for retail purchase with various retail location announcements coming as each location is finalized. According to the company, Sober Up is a detox shot made from naturally sourced ingredients that detoxes the body, supports liver health and helps prevent hangovers.
"Sober Up Detox Shot Set For International Market Distribution", BevNET.com, November 20, 2018, © BevNET.com®, Inc.
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82 Labs Expands To Store Shelves While Extending Product Focus Beyond Hangover Recovery

November 19, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Los Angeles-based start-up 82 Labs is preparing to rebrand itself as a functional beverage platform in December with the launch of a holistic suite of products aimed at promoting productivity. The company, which works closely with a research team at USC, closed an $8 million funding round six months ago and launched Morning Recovery, a 3.4 oz. shot designed to ease the effects of alcohol consumption. Consumer research, however, has convinced the company to expand its horizons. Morning Recovery will be one of a variety of products aimed at providing different functional benefits, including anxiety relief, improved sleep quality, optimal hydration, and mental acuity. It will debut new flavors and packaging next month while transitioning from online-only sales to brick-and-mortar retail. Its products are being tested at 7-Eleven locations in Chicago, and in stores in San Francisco and Los Angeles. The company plans to expand eventually to mass and conventional grocery channels. 
Martín Caballero, "The Morning After: 82 Labs Evolves Amid Retail Push", BevNET.com, November 19, 2018, © BevNET.com
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Coca-Cola Drops Out Of Competition For GlaxoSmithKline’s Nutrition Business

November 19, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Nestlé India and Unilever are the only companies vying for GlaxoSmithKline’s consumer nutrition business in India now that Coca-Cola is said to have backed out of the lengthy due diligence process. Bids for GSK’s Indian nutrition business, which includes the popular Horlicks malted milk beverage, are believed to be in the $3.1-3.5 billion range. Earlier this year, GSK launched a strategic review of its nutrition business globally. The review is expected to be concluded in December.
Ratna Bhushan, Arijit Barman, "Nestlé seeks to pip Unilever to grab GSK’s consumer nutrition business as Coca-Cola opts out", The Economic Times, November 19, 2018, © Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd.
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Report Covers Novel Food And Beverage Packaging Solutions That Cut Food Waste

November 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A report by Chicago-based research company PreScouter covering food and beverage packaging innovations highlights nine shelf-life extension solutions that could go a long way toward reducing the 1.3 billion tons of food wasted globally each year. The solutions, in various stages of development, include the move toward more natural food- and plant-based additives and packaging. Other solutions feature superior coating materials, novel additives, and putting a new spin on older technologies. Six of the nine solutions have been approved for food use[Image Credit: © PreScouter]
"Extending the Shelf Life of Food and Beverages", PreScouter, November 18, 2018, © PreScouter
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Dietitians Help Company Educate Consumers On Benefits Of Prebiotic Foods

November 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
California-based Freedom Foods has boosted the marketing of its nutritional bars and cereals by working with registered dietitians in retail stores and in communities. Freedom’s products, sold in more than 2,000 U.S., feature BarleyMax. a grain packed with prebiotic-resistant starch and fiber. The company realized early that selling a prebiotic food requires consumer education. Working with dietitians, Freedom Food is spreading the word about the benefits of Barley+ products through 28-day gut reboot camps, first tested at 12 ShopRite stores in New Jersey. The camps are basically health and lifestyle programs that advocate consumption of Barley+ products as a way to eat more whole grains. The company says RDs are also “relatable and approachable practitioners,” have strong relationships with local television news and talk shows, and contribute to the company’s social media programs.[Image Credit: © https://freedomfoodsus.com/]
"Freedom Foods taps RDs to spread the word about prebiotics", FoodNavigator-USA.com, November 18, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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The Science Of Tasty Whole Wheat Bread Marches On

November 18, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
The mission of wheat geneticists and other grain professionals at the Washington State University Bread Lab is to breed wheat for whole wheat flour that actually tastes good and that people would actually want to eat, not just satisfy a dietary recommendation. Breeding wheat for flavor is something of a new concept. Wheat breeders usually aim for traits like right height for mechanized harvesting, right texture for mechanized baking, and high yield. In their search for flavor, the Bread Lab researchers have identified one new wheat – Skagit 1109 – that makes a reliably tasty whole wheat bread called the “Approachable Loaf.” A group of 40 bakers, millers, breeders, and others met this summer to test-bake the loaf they've been discussing and fine-tuning for the last two years – with satisfying results.[Image Credit: © Pezibear from Pixabay]
Veronique Greenwood, "Science Makes Bread Taste Better", The Boston Globe, November 18, 2018, © skagit1109
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As Legality Spreads, Cannabis-Based Cooking, Baking Is On The Rise

November 15, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
According to a report from Seattle-based marijuana research firm Headset Inc., one of the fastest-growing ways consumers use marijuana is to infuse into meals and baked goods at home. In Washington and California, as many as 15-25 percent of cannabis users incorporated the plant into home-cooked meals: double the percentage reported in 2015. Cooking with cannabis at home can be fun, but it requires meticulous attention to detail because marijuana can’t be infused into food from its raw, flowery form. The cannabinoids and terpenes must be activated via a heating process called decarboxylation. A key skill for marijuana chefs and bakers to learn is preparation of a key cooking ingredient:  cannabutter, whose butter to decarboxylated cannabis ratio is 16:1. [Image Credit: © Headset Inc. Cannabis Intelligence]
Chris Kudialis, "Cooking with cannabis: Bake, baste and blend your way to marijuana eats", Las Vegas Weekly, November 15, 2018, © Las Vegas Weekly
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Coca-Cola Switches Emphasis From Marketing To “Growth”

November 14, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Coca-Cola’s head of creative Rodolfo Echeverria has broadened the vision of the marketing department from product awareness and award-winning advertising to growth – by better satisfying consumer beverage needs. In March 2017 the company replaced the chief marketing officer position with the chief growth officer position to execute the basic strategy of becoming a “total beverage company.” The idea is to launch and acquired beverage products that consumers around the globe really want. Diversification has been a challenge, Echevarria admits, mainly because it is necessary to preserve a strong identity for each product, “an edge, a differentiating point that is relevant to the people or relates to that brand.” Meeting the challenge has benefited marketing, however, by “forcing” employees to be more curious.
Molly Fleming , "How getting rid of the CMO ‘broadened’ Coca-Cola’s marketing approach", Marketing Week, November 14, 2018, © Centaur Communications Ltd (a member of the Centaur Media plc group)
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Coca-Cola Resets Social Media Platforms With Happier, More Positive Content

November 14, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Coca-Cola recently relaunched its Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts after deleting all content in favor of a more unified voice, point of view, and attitude – namely, greater optimism. The “holistic reset,” which took place on World Kindness Day (November 18), “an appropriate day and moment to kick off messages of positivity, but also when you look at Coke and what Coke stands for,” according to social media chief Sarah Traverso. For example, the company uploaded 99 posts on Instagram with the intention of flooding people’s feeds with happy, positive messages.
Katie Richards, "Coca-Cola Wiped Its Social Media Accounts, Then Relaunched With a Positive, Happy New Look", Adweek, November 14, 2018, © Adweek
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Start-Ups Targeting Food Waste Get $125M So Far In 2018

November 14, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
ReFED, a nonprofit organization devoted to solving food waste problems, has issued a report revealing that $125 million has been invested by the private sector in food waste start-ups since the beginning of 2018. Investment firms like Andreessen Horowitz, S2G Ventures, Cultivian Sandbox Ventures, and DBL Partners obviously see great potential in the fact that an estimated $218 billion of food is wasted annually. Apeel Sciences ($70 million) produces a natural second skin to extend the shelf life of produce; Food Maven and Full Harvest ($8.5 million each) create B2B marketplaces for excess or wonky food; Spoiler Alert helps businesses better manage unsold food; ReGrained makes a flour out of spent distiller grains; and Goodr offers an on-demand food rescue service. [Image Credit: © ReFED]
Dana Gunders, "More Than $125 Million Poured Into Food Waste Startups In 2018", Forbes.com, November 14, 2018, © Forbes Media LLC
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Kellogg Plans To Back Out Of The Cookie Business

November 13, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Kellogg Company plans to sell its cookie and snack fruit businesses to concentrate on its core product lines. On the auction block will be Keebler, Famous Amos, and Mother's and Murray cookie brands along with the Stretch Island fruit snack brand. In January 2019, the company will begin to revamp its organizational structure to improve core product market share. Kellogg hopes the move will provide “top-line growth” for the company. The structural changes will include consolidation of its morning foods, snacks, and frozen food businesses – representing about 80 percent of U.S. revenue – into single product categories. The company is also: placing a new emphasis on e-commerce; reorganizing its sales teams and making changes in its supply chain.[Image Credit: © Kellogg NA Co]
Dawn Geske, "Kellogg Company Looks To Sell Keebler, Famous Amos Cookie Brands", International Business Times News, November 13, 2018, © IBT Media Inc.
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Waitrose Has Accelerated Its Work To Eradicate Single-Use Plastic In Own-Label Packaging

November 13, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

Upmarket UK grocery retailer Waitrose has accelerated its commitment to making own-brand packaging more recyclable, reusable or compostable, bringing forward its 100 per cent target from 2015 to 2023. It has hit the 70 per cent level already and expects to reach 80 per cent by 2020. It says it is also close to taking all its own-label fruit, vegetables, meat and fish out of black plastic by the end of 2018, and will stop selling its own-label products in black plastic after the end of next year. [Image Credit: © Waitrose]
Marianne Calnan , "Waitrose brings recyclable packaging commitment forward", The Grocer UK, November 13, 2018, © William Reed Business Media
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Some Very Popular Breads Feature Candy-Like Levels Of Added Sugar

November 9, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Added sugars should account for no more than ten percent of the average daily calorie count – about 2,000 – for Americans. It’s easy to consume those 200 sugar calories, however, if you eat bread made by companies like Martin’s, Dave’s Killer Bread, Vermont Bread, Wonder Bread, the Cheesecake Factory, Udi, Pepperidge Farm, Arnold, and others. Two slices of Martin’s Potato Bread, for example, deliver more sugar (six grams versus 4.7 grams) than a Twizzler. A slice of Dave's Killer Bread’s Raisin' the Roof has six grams of sugar. The Cheesecake Factory's "Famous 'Brown Bread” has about the same amount of sugar as a nibble of its cheesecake. A sandwich made with Freihofer's 100 percent Whole Wheat Bread has the same amount of sugar as a Jolly Rancher. And so on. [Image Credit: © Sornram Srithong]
Allie Lembo , "12 breads that have more sugar than candy", Business Insider, November 09, 2018, © Insider Inc.
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Common Farm Insecticides Increase Risk For Neurodevelopment Disorders

November 9, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
A scientific review of earlier studies has found sufficient evidence that prenatal exposure to widely used insecticides known as organophosphates puts children at risk for neurodevelopmental disorders. Published in the journal PLoS Medicine, the study by public health experts urges governments to ban the chemicals from the food chain. Organophosphates, used to control insects at farms, golf courses, shopping malls, and schools, kill pests by blocking nerve signaling. In addition to recommending that the pesticides be removed from agricultural and non-agricultural uses and products, the researchers urged greater medical and nursing education on organophosphates to improve treatment for and patient education on avoiding exposures.[Image Credit: © Milesl from Pixabay]
Irva Hertz-Picciotto, et al, "Leading researchers call for a ban on widely used insecticides", Science Daily, November 09, 2018, © Irva Hertz-Picciotto, et al
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“Clean Label” Appearing More And More On Foods, Despite Lack Of Standard

November 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Though there is still no firm definition of the term, the “clean label” claim is joining other food marketing words and phrases like “natural” and “artisanal” on packaging. As the phenomenon grows, organizations have appeared claiming to test and certify food products and award a "clean label" seal of approval. The Denver-based Clean Label Project, for example, tests products for 130 harmful environmental and industrial contaminants and toxins, including heavy metals, pesticides, BPA, BPS, acrylamide, and melamine and its analogs. But “clean label” can mean other things as well – no artificial flavors, no artificial colors, no preservatives, and no high-fructose corn syrup – depending on the product. What may be needed is for regulators to nail down the definition of clean label so it can have some universal application.[Image Credit: © Clean Label Project]
Khalil Akhtar, "'Clean label' joins 'all natural' and 'artisanal' as the next big food marketing claim", CBC News, November 08, 2018, © CBC/Radio-Canada
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Nonprofit Certifies Food Trucks For Green Disposal Practices

November 8, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
North Carolina-based nonprofit Don’t Waste Durham has developed a green food truck certification program to help vendors – who crank out hundreds to a thousand or so meals a day and mega volumes of wasted food and packaging – reduce their carbon footprint. Businesses are checked on use of reusable service ware or compostable materials, and serving on recyclable supplies when reusable and compostable are not options. Vendors learn of local foodservice suppliers, are hooked up with compost haulers and taught how to cut costs and waste. They get discounts for supplies, affordable pickup service and priority bookings at venues.[Image Credit: © Don't Waste Durham]
Arlene Karidis , "Small Wave of Food Trucks Go Green", Waste360, November 08, 2018, © Informa USA, Inc.
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Bunge Debuts High-Protein, Clean Label Lentil Flour As Starch Substitute

November 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Food ingredient company Bunge North America (Chesterfield, Mo.) has added a non-GMO lentil flour to its portfolio that manufacturers can use as a functional “clean label” substitute for modified starches in ingredient lists. Bunge’s lentil flour is made using non-GMO lentils, water, and heat. Unlike modified starches, Bunge’s lentil flour boosts protein content. It also offers the nutrition of other pulse-based flours, including fiber, vitamins, and minerals, with a more neutral flavor profile suitable for both sweet and savory applications. [Image Credit: © Bunge North America, Inc.]
Mary Ellen Shoup , "Bunge unveils functional lentil flour for clean label formulations", FoodNavigator-USA.com, November 07, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Lonza Now Offers Clean-Label Colors For Its Vegetarian Supplement Capsules

November 7, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Greenwood, S.C.-based pharmaceutical and biotech ingredient supplier Lonza is now offering diet supplement manufacturers its plant-based Capsugel Vcaps Plus in a range of clean label colors. The vegetarian capsules have been around for a while, but coloring the shell has previously required an E-number. The new food-colored capsules, labeled as natural colorants in the U.S., allow manufacturers to create bright-colored supplements that also appeal to consumers looking for supply chain transparency and a “natural” claim. The capsule shell is made using plant-based hypromellose (HPMC) and water only, without any preservatives. The first of Lonza’s clean label solutions is the Vcaps Plus Purple Carrot capsule, following the successful introduction of the Vcaps Plus Blue Spirulina capsule in Europe earlier this year. [Image Credit: © Lonza]
"Lonza Adds Color to the Clean-Label Experience ", Lonza, November 07, 2018, © Lonza
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Healthy – And Delicious – Coffee Is Key Marketing Proposition of Pop & Bottle

November 6, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
San Francisco’s Pop & Bottle, launched as an organic latte business, capitalizes on three trends: health, convenience, and America’s love of coffee. According to its transplanted Londoner founders, the company helps coffee lovers “replace their dirty coffee habit with a drink that’s healthy, clean, convenient and – most importantly – really delicious.” They realized that drinking coffee and coffee products everyday “wasn’t doing wonders for our health,” thanks mainly to added sugars. They used the $20,000 they raised to pay for use of a commercial kitchen, ingredients, packaging, and a website. Launched with three flavors – cacao, vanilla bean, and classic coffee – the line delivers 120 mg of coffee, and 130 to 150 calories per 11-ounce bottle. Pop & Bottle is now available in 1,000 stores including select Whole Foods and Target stores across the country and on Amazon. The company has seen double digit growth since launch.
Jeanette Settembre, "This plant-based latte is the new frapuccino", Moneyish, November 06, 2018, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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Blockchain Technology Improves Walmart’s Food Safety, Reduces Food Loss

November 6, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart is using blockchain technology to help track and manage the chaotic and decentralized food supply system comprising producers, suppliers, and intermediaries such as processors that change constantly. Blockchain technology, like the food system, is based on a decentralized and distributed model that fits the modern food system perfectly. Each player in the network can update data, but also stops them from entering false data or making false changes. The speed with which blockchain enables companies to trace products and problems back to the source means improved food safety and less economic loss, and reduced food waste. It quickly and accurately identifies the source of a problem so that only impacted products are recalled or removed, rather than everything in the category.[Image Credit: © Tumisu from Pixabay]
Elizabeth Crawford , "From 7 days to 2 seconds: Blockchain can help speed trace-back, improve food safety & reduce waste", FoodNavigator-USA.com, November 06, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Consumer Food Choices Change As Perceptions Of What’s Healthful Change

November 1, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Technomic’s 2018 Healthy Eating Consumer Trend Report finds that consumers are increasingly taking on a more personalized, holistic view of health, making food and beverage choices – e.g., natural, organic, high-protein, functional – based on their personal definition of health. But they may still reconsider restaurant orders if they think an item has too many calories. These views have implications for restaurants, especially as some are now required to post calorie counts and consumers increasingly rely on foodservice for meals. Other key findings: 40 percent of consumers say their definition of health has changed over the past two years; 66 percent look for calorie counts on restaurant menus; and 34 percent are likely to order dishes made with vegetables instead of carb-rich items.[Image Credit: © Winsight, LLC.]
"Consumers increasingly making food choices based on personal definition of health ", PRNewswire, November 01, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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Celebrity Chef Teaches Whirlpool Employees How To Cut Down On Food Waste

November 1, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Joel Gamoran, a national chef with Sur La Table and the host of a cooking show called "Scraps," recently gave a cooking demonstration for employees at the global headquarters of Whirlpool Corp. Michigan. His mission was to show his audience how common household foods normally tossed in a garbage disposal can be used to create nutritious meals. He pointed out that Americans waste $319 billion worth of food every year while one out of eight people go to bed hungry. For his TV shows he partners with food waste champions around the U.S. to celebrate the local cuisine and create a delicious meal with food items many consider to be waste, like banana peels, shrimp shells, chicken bones, and carrot stems. The program is sponsored by Whirlpool’s KitchenAid brand, so he uses the brand's stand mixers, food processors, and blenders throughout his travels.[Image Credit: © Whirlpool Corporation]
Tony Wittkowski , "Eliminating food waste: Whirlpool hosts celebrity chef for cooking demo", The Herald-Palladium (St. Joseph, Michigan), November 01, 2018, © The Herald-Palladium
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Does A Sandwich Have To Include Bread? Jimmy Dean Says, “Heck No”

November 1, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Breakfast sausage and sandwich maker Jimmy Dean (Tyson Foods) is intrigued by America’s growing tendency to eat sandwiches without bread. A third of Americans are swearing off bread in the coming year, and half have eaten breadless sandwiches. To celebrate National Sandwich Day earlier this month, as well as the debut of its Jimmy Dean Delights Egg'wich sandwich, the brand is asking Americans, probably tongue-in-cheek, to sign a petition to change the Merriam-Webster dictionary definition of a sandwich to include those made with – and without – bread. Why must a sandwich, the company asks, be defined by bread? So it’s not too surprising that the new Egg’wich is made with sausage and cheese packed between two egg frittatas rather than bread slices. The sandwich contains 13-14 g of protein per serving with no artificial colors or flavors.[Image Credit: © Tyson Foods, Inc.]
"Jimmy Dean Brand Petitions Merriam-Webster To Change The Definition Of Sandwich", PR Newswire, November 01, 2018, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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Frozen Meal Maker In The UK Shifts To Cardboard Trays

October 31, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Cook, a UK manufacturer of frozen ready meals, is to start transitioning its products away from black plastic and into cardboard-based recyclable trays. Its aim is to use more sustainable packaging for the entire range by end-2020. It is beginning the move with its kids range, because those products are best-suited to the new tray, and because it will be kids that will be most affected by the plastics issue. The board in the new trays comes from sustainable sources.[Image Credit: © COOK Trading Ltd]
Andrew Don , "Cook to switch frozen meal plastic to recyclable trays", The Grocer, October 31, 2018, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Coca-Cola’s Top “People Officer” Dons Global Ventures Hat

October 31, 2018: 12:00 AM EST
Coca-Cola’s recent acquisition spree led to the creation last month of the Global Ventures group to make sure acquisitions, investments, and partnerships are connected and globally scaled. Heading up the new unit is Jennifer Mann, the company’s “chief people officer,” who has been vice-president and general manager of Coca-Cola Freestyle and chief of staff. In announcing the change, CEO James Quincey said Mann’s unit “will focus on ensuring we get the maximum value from acquisitions and investments” and will also “partner with colleagues around the world to identify and nurture the next series of fast-growing opportunities.”
Jeff Gelski, "Coke creates Global Ventures group to handle recent acquisitions", Food Business News, October 31, 2018, © Sosland Publishing Company
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Food Distributor’s Program Moves Ugly Produce To Restaurants Rather Than Landfills

October 31, 2018: 12:00 AM EST

One of America’s largest fresh food distributors is showing chefs and restaurants that “imperfect” produce – fruits and vegetables that don’t meet aesthetics and size requirements – has real value. Baldor Specialty Foods’ Imperfect Produce program allows farmers sell these commodities to chefs, and directly to the public through community-supported agriculture (CSA) models. An estimated 24.7 percent of on-farm produce waste occurs because of disposal of imperfect produce.[Image Credit: © Baldor Specialty Foods]
Arlene Karidis, "Imperfect Produce Gets a Market Boost", waste360.com, October 31, 2018, © Informa USA, Inc.
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