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Nestlé Survey Asks Australians To Rate How Happy And Healthy They Feel

September 9, 2011: 07:28 PM EST
Nestlé has partnered with Sydney University to develop a ten-minute online survey of 500,000 Australians seeking information on the key factors that contribute to health and happiness, and the complex relationship between the two. The interactive Happily Healthy Project will also give people ideas about how to change their lifestyles to make them happier and healthier, according to the company. The survey was developed with the help of Dr. Anthony Grant, an author and motivational psychologist. A key component of Nestlé’s Happily Healthy Project is the Happily Healthy Quotient (HHQ) which scores people on their level of fulfillment with life, both physically and emotionally. The company says 30,000 people have already completed the survey.
"Nestlé leads new interactive study on health and happiness in Australia", Press release, Nestlé, September 09, 2011, © Nestlé
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FOOD COMPANIES
Nestle
Geographies
Worldwide
Asia-Pacific
Australia

Stop And Shop, Unilever Partner To Battle Hunger

September 8, 2011: 07:38 PM EST
East Coast grocery retailer Stop & Shop has partnered with Unilever to donate $150,000 to Feeding America and member food banks during September to feed local children and families. The money will buy more than one million meals through hunger relief organizations such as regional food banks and pantries. Every dollar donated buys eight meals from Feeding America. Stop & Shop is conducting special promotional events in September in conjunction with the initiative, including Popsicle Parties and Stuff-A-Truck days. According to the companies, 25 percent of American children face hunger every day.
"Stop & Shop and Unilever to Provide More than 1 Million Meals for Local Families", News release, Stop & Shop , September 08, 2011
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FOOD COMPANIES
Unilever
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Worldwide
North America
United States of America

Unilever Becomes “Zero To Landfill” Manufacturer In The U.K.

September 8, 2011: 02:59 AM EST
Fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) supplier Unilever says it has achieved its goal of becoming a "zero to landfill" manufacturer in the U.K. because none of its factories send non-hazardous waste to landfills. The company achieved its target by contracting with waste supplier Veolia to recycle 97 percent of its waste. The remaining three percent will be converted into usable energy.  The arrangement also helps Unilever meet its waste-to-landfill targets beyond the U.K., because the company’s 11 manufacturing sites produce about 25 per cent of its overall European waste. The company says it has reduced its total waste in manufacturing per ton of production by 77 percent since 1995.
"Unilever Achieves Zero-To-Landfill Manufacturing Commitment In The UK", News release, Unilever, September 08, 2011, © Unilever
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Unilever
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Worldwide
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Unilever Installs Manufacturing Intelligence Software In All Plants Across The Americas

September 6, 2011: 12:51 AM EST
Software and IT services firm Solarsoft Business Systems announced that Unilever is extending implementation of Solarsoft’s manufacturing intelligence solutions to all Unilever manufacturing sites in the Americas. Informance software tracks real-time performance in manufacturing environments. Unilever says it has been using the solutions to accelerate and enhance its total productive maintenance (TPM) program in ten ice cream plants in North America and will install the software in 35 additional factories in 13 countries in 2011. The company says the software installed at the ten ice cream plants where it was tested brought “real-time actionable insights.”
"Unilever Extends Manufacturing Intelligence across the Americas with Solarsoft", Solarsoft, September 06, 2011, © Solarsoft Business Systems
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FOOD COMPANIES
Unilever
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Worldwide
North America
United States of America

Danone Hopes New Yogurt Product Will Boost Market Share In India

September 3, 2011: 09:44 PM EST
Seeking to boost market presence in the fast-growing Indian market, French food and beverage firm Danone is introducing a creamy yogurt in the country. The new product follows other product introductions over the past two years, including smoothies, flavored yogurts and dahi. Danone’s joint venture with Japan’s Yakult Honsha, dubbed Yakult Danone, produces and markets probiotic drinks in India. Yakult Danone and Danone India distribute products in different states and cities. Danone is also trying to figure out a way to market healthy dairy products to consumers at the lower end of India’s economic spectrum.
Viveat Susan Pinto, "Danone eyes bigger slice of dairy pie, may look at buys", Business Standard, September 03, 2011, © Business Standard Ltd
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Danone
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India
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Tomato-Based Ingredient Being Marketed As Blood Clot Preventer

September 1, 2011: 11:54 PM EST
A new nutritional ingredient developed by British food technology company Provexis and made from ripe tomato extract will be exhibited at a Hong Kong trade show this month. Fruitflow is being touted as a way to prevent unwanted blood clots that cause heart attacks, stroke and venous thrombosis. The syrupy extract prevents blood platelets from clumping and aggregating, which often happens as the results of smoking, obesity and other factors. Fruitflow, whose  health claim has been approved by the European Food Safety Authority, is water soluble, fat and protein-free, easy to mask in foods and beverages, has a long shelf life and can be added to a variety of foods, beverages and dietary supplements.
"Tomato extract promotes healthy heart", Independent, UK, September 01, 2011, via AFP, © AFP/Independent
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PureBrands CEO Expects Dissolvable Tongue Strips To Become A Billion-Dollar Business

August 31, 2011: 09:04 PM EST
Warren Struhl, CEO of a company marketing dissolvable tongue strips that deliver a fast jolt of caffeine and B vitamins, tells FoodNavigator-USA that his product and others like it could become a $1 billion market within three years. Sheets Energy Strips from PureBrands have already won the backing of NBA star LeBron James and other celebrities, while response from retailers (Walmart, CircleK, GNC) has been “overwhelmingly positive.” Struhl expects to launch a family of similar dissolvable strip products next year. The energy delivery version costs much less than energy shot drinks while delivering 200 percent of daily value of vitamin B6 and B12, 100 percent of vitamin B5, and 100 mg of caffeine per two-sheet serving.
Elaine Watson, "Entrepreneur: Energy strips could be worth $1bn in 3-5 years", Food Navigator, August 31, 2011, © William Reed Business Media SAS
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German Organic Baby Food Firm Has High Hopes For Russian Venture

August 31, 2011: 10:36 PM EST
Despite an underwhelming Russian interest in organic foods, German baby food maker HiPP has opened a factory in Kaliningrad to manufacture its all-organic products. Organic foods account for less than one percent of the total food market in Russia. Nevertheless, the Hipp family continues to search for land close to fresh water and away from highways and conventional farms to avoid contaminating their crops. The annual baby food market for Russian children up to three years old is about $2.2 million, and growing at about eight percent a year, according to 2010 data from Nielsen. HiPP says its local market share is five percent. The company’s market share in Germany is 50 percent.
Olga Razumovskaya, "torks Herald Organic Food for Russian Babies", Moscow Times, August 31, 2011, © The Moscow Times
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FOOD COMPANIES
Other
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Worldwide
EMEA
Europe
Russia

Malt-O-Meal Partners With Terracycle In Cereal Bag Recycling Program

September 1, 2011: 01:34 AM EST
The Malt-O-Meal Company, maker of ready-to-eat and cooked breakfast cereals, has partnered with Terracycle in a program to reduce waste created by box packaging. The company offers its cereal products in plastic bags that result in 75 percent less consumer waste and save energy and fuel in the process. Its recycling initiative with Terracycle is designed to keep the cereal bags out of landfills. Terracycle collects hard-to-recycle materials and transforms them into usable products like messenger bags, fencing, coasters, stationery products and trash cans. For the program, consumers join the Cereal Bag Brigade and ship used bags to TerraCycle. Shipments from schools earn points that can be redeemed for $0.02 per bag.
Megan Dobransky, "Should We Bag the Cereal Box?", Earth911, September 01, 2011, © Earth911.com
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Other
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Dean Foods Rolls Out Brand Of Chocolate Milk With Less Added Sugar, No Corn Syrup

August 30, 2011: 11:08 PM EST
Food and beverage company Dean Foods has launched a better-for-you chocolate milk made with white milk, but containing 20 percent less sugar, 40 more calories than regular milk per serving, and no high fructose corn syrup. Fat-free TruMoo contains 130 calories per serving and 10 grams of added sugar. Previous chocolate milk formulas made with high fructose corn syrup contained up to 180 calories and 16 grams of added sugar. Dean Foods said the nationwide launch follows successful retail and school testing in the Northeast and Pacific Coast regions. According to the company, Fairfax County Public Schools in Northern Virginia reversed a chocolate milk ban to bring TruMoo chocolate milk into school cafeterias. Wendy's restaurants also offer TruMoo coast to coast.
"Dean Foods Launches TruMoo® Chocolate Milk Nationwide With Lower Sugar, Fewer Calories, No High Fructose Corn Syrup", Press release, Dean Foods, August 30, 2011, © Dean Foods
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FOOD COMPANIES
Other
Retailers & Private Label
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Worldwide
North America
United States of America

Taura To Exhibit New Line Of Vegetable-Derived Ingredients For Snack Makers

August 31, 2011: 01:18 AM EST
Taura Natural Ingredients announced it will be exhibiting innovative snack food ingredients that incorporate fruits and – for the first time – vegetables at the Food Ingredients Europe (FiE) conference in Paris in November-December. Processed using the URC (ultra rapid concentration) technology, the ingredients are formulated from 100 percent fruits and vegetables. The product line includes purees and non-deionised juices that allow snack manufacturers to create a range of nutrient-rich, clean label composite products such as fruit pieces, flakes and pastes for use in applications such as muesli, cereal or snack bars, baked goods, cereals and confectionery.
"Taura to highlight opportunities for combining fruit and vegetables at FIE 2011", Press Release, Taura Natural Ingredients, August 31, 2011, © Taura Natural Ingredients
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New Zealand
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Lawsuit Against Kashi/Kellogg Says Products Are Anything But “All Natural”

August 30, 2011: 10:21 PM EST
A group of disgruntled consumers has filed a class action lawsuit in a California federal court seeking compensatory and punitive damages against “all natural” foods maker Kashi Co., a subsidiary of Kellogg, for false advertising, violation of California’s Consumer Legal Remedies Act, and other alleged transgressions. The plaintiffs argue that despite the “all natural” claims made by Kashi, its cereals and other products are “composed almost entirely of synthetic and unnaturally processed ingredients," such as sodium molybdate, phytonadione, sodium selenite, magnesium phosphate, niacinamide, etc. The attorney representing the lead plaintiff in the case said "in some cases" substances in Kashi products are "hazardous" and violate "both Kashi's and the FDA's definition of the term 'natural.'" 
Matt Reynolds, "All Natural' My Foot, Class Tells Kellogg", Courthouse News, August 30, 2011, © CourtHouse News Service
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Kellogg
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Unilever Aids Relief Efforts In Drought-Stricken East Africa

August 30, 2011: 12:43 AM EST
With the U.N. declaring countries in the so-called Horn of Africa (Somalia, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya, etc.) in a state of crisis or emergency because of severe drought and famine, Unilever says it is working with disaster and emergency relief partners to determine how to boost relief efforts. East African countries are enduring the worst drought in six decades, according to the U.N. About 2.8 million people need immediate life-saving assistance; 450,000 are affected by the famine. The company says its local businesses in Kenya and South Africa have been donating cash and food products; the Unilever global business has pledged €500,000 in cash and food products through UNICEF, Save the Children, Oxfam, Population Services International (PSI) and WFP.
"Unilever responds to East Africa crisis", Unilever, August 30, 2011, © Unilever
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Unilever
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Worldwide
EMEA
Middle East- Africa
Djibouti
Ethiopia
Kenya
Somalia

Nonprobiotic Digestive Heath Products Benefit From Dannon’s Ad Campaign For Activia

August 29, 2011: 09:36 AM EST
Products in the digestive health category are selling well, thanks at least in part to Dannon’s aggressive marketing campaign for its Activia yogurt. Ads featuring actress Jamie Lee Curtis have made countless people aware of the importance of digestive health, says Danielle Harrison of National Enzyme Co. And probiotics aren’t the only beneficiary of the campaign. Nonprobiotic ingredients that have experienced an uptick in sales include aloe vera, fiber and enzymes. The business development manager at Xsto Solutions says his company’s products, including a Japanese chelated zinc and L-carnosine ingredient, is experiencing double-digit growth. PepZin GI, supports a healthy mucosal lining in the digestive system.
Vicky Uhland, "Despite rumblings, probiotics are still the gods of the gut", Functional Ingredients/Newhope, August 29, 2011, © Penton Media Inc
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Danone
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Nestlé To Spend $114 M To Expand Manufacturing Capacity In Thailand

August 29, 2011: 09:48 AM EST
Expanding its commitment to Thailand, Nestlé announced it will invest more than CHF 98 million ($114 million) over the next two years to expand its factories and boost manufacturing of products such as coffee and ice cream. The money will also pay for construction of a new Nestlé Quality Assurance Centre. CEO Paul Bulcke said the company’s business in Thailand grew by more than 10 percent in 2010, thanks to domestic sales and the export of Thai-produced products to more than 44 countries around the world. Thailand also benefits from the Nescafé Plan, a CHF 500 million initiative unveiled last year addressing responsible farming, sourcing and consumption across its coffee supply chain.
"Nestlé invests CHF 98 million to increase production in Thailand", Press release, Nestlé, August 29, 2011, © Nestlé
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Nestle
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Thailand

Nestlé Chairman Says Organic Farming Not The Solution To Global Food Supply Problem

August 21, 2011: 10:07 PM EST
Although Nestlé board chairman Peter Brabeck-Letmathe believes organic farmers and farming should be supported, they are ultimately not the answer to the world food supply problem and are not a priority for Nestlé, Fast Company reports. "There's no way you can support life on earth if you go straight from farm to table," Brabeck-Letmathe says, calling organic farming “a privilege” supported by wealthy people in Europe and the U.S. who can pay the higher prices. Organic farming is a "romantic" notion that is not scalable. Moreover, organic farming does not lead to more nutritious foods, he says, and can be dangerous because of the use of manure-based fertilizers.
Paul Glader, "Nestlé Chairman Skeptical Of Growth In Organic Food Market", Fast Company, August 21, 2011, © Mansueto Ventures LLC
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Nestle
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Austria

Coca-Cola And Partners Invest US$4 Billion More In China

August 18, 2011: 07:21 PM EST
Coca-Cola Company and bottling partners Swire Beverages Ltd. and COFCO Coca-Cola Beverage Co., Ltd. plan to invest US$4 billion in China over the next three years from 2012. The companies aim to enhance the sustainability of their operations in China and will have invested more than $3 billion in the country for the last three years, by the end of 2011, with total investments reaching $7 billion in 2009-2014. Coca-Cola's sales grew 6 percent worldwide, according to its second quarter 2011 financial results. China accounts for 7 percent of the global volume of Coca-Cola, which now operates more than 40 plants in the largest and fastest-growing consumer market.
"Coca-Cola Invests US$4 Billion for Long-Term Sustainable Growth in China", Coca-Cola, August 18, 2011, © The Coca-Cola Company
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Coca-Cola Company
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Walgreens Introduces New In-House Brand

August 18, 2011: 10:45 PM EST
Walgreens has introduced its Nice! store brand in retail stores across the United States. The brand will include more than 400 grocery and household products, which the company claims will come 30 percent cheaper than other national brands. Walgreens plans to place Nice! products on its shelves by early 2012 and will keep adding to the brand products other than soups, sauces, and bakery items. Consumer response to the more than 20 products added to the brand has been positive, the company claims.
"Walgreens Launches Nice!™ Store Brand Chainwide, Continues Building Value and Loyalty with its Private Brands", Walgreens, August 18, 2011, © Walgreen Co.
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Retailers & Private Label
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Worldwide
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United States of America

Nestlé Enhances Its “Nutrition Compass” Food Labeling System

August 18, 2011: 12:32 PM EST
Nestlé announced that it has revised its Nutritional Compass food label imprint, found on 97 percent of its products globally, to help consumers “make more informed choices about a healthy balanced diet and lifestyle.” The Compass comprises four information boxes that form a circle around the corporate logo. The company has added a “Good Question” box with product specific queries that are answered in a “Good to Know” box. A “Good to Remember” box offering supporting information has been merged with a “Good to Talk” box providing company contact details. Lastly, a Nutritional Information box states nutrient content, such as amounts of protein, carbohydrate, fat and sugar.
"Nestlé Nutritional Compass points consumers in healthy direction", News release, Nestlé, August 18, 2011, © Nestlé
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Nestle
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Latin America
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Middle East- Africa
Switzerland

Snack Factory's Online Marketing Efforts Drive Snack Brand's Facebook Presence And Sampling Rate

August 16, 2011: 07:11 PM EST
Social coupons and viral marketing enabled Snack Factory to grow its snack brand Pretzel Crisps' Facebook fan base from 14,000 to 62,437. The online marketing campaign aimed to attract more customers and encourage them to try the snack brand. A $1 off coupon campaign developed by Buddy Media for the brand increased the number of Facebook fans from 6,800 to 13,700 in February. Pretzel Crisps then launched a buy one, get one free promotion, but relied only on viral marketing instead of announcing it, which led to further growth and a 95% redemption rate.
"Case Study: Snack Brand Doubles Facebook ‘Likes’ Through Social Coupon", eMarketer, August 16, 2011, © eMarketer Inc.
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CHEP Renews Pallet Contract With P&G

August 16, 2011: 12:35 AM EST
Pallet and container pooling solutions provider CHEP says it has renewed a contract – and 15-year relationship – with Procter & Gamble. The company said it works closely with P&G to support retail supply chain activities like sustainability and standardization. CHEP’s returnable and reusable pallets are used to transfer numerous consumer goods, fresh produce, beverages and automotive products. Customers besides P&G include Sysco, Kellogg's, Kraft, Nestlé, Ford and GM.
"CHEP Extends Strategic Relationship With P&G", Press release, CHEP, August 16, 2011, © Business Wire
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Kellogg
Kraft Foods
Nestle
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Worldwide
North America
United States of America

Bloomberg Businessweek's Popular List Presents America's Leading Brands And More

August 15, 2011: 01:02 AM EST
"The Popularity Issue" list published by Bloomberg Businessweek presents the bestselling, as well as the fastest-selling, brands and products, and includes lots of trivia. For example, Nescafe is the most popular brand of coffee in the world, with about 3,000 cups consumed every second, Microsoft sold more than 8 million Xbox Kinect units in 60 days after the videogame motion control system was released; the Nissan Leaf can go 73 miles before the battery needs recharging; and Levi's 501 is the most popular jeans.
Anna Rudenko, "Bloomberg Businessweek: America’s Most Popular Brands in Numbers", Popsop, August 15, 2011, © Popsop Ltd.
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Coca-Cola Company
Kraft Foods
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Worldwide
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United States of America

CEO Aims For A Stronger, More Competitive Unilever

August 15, 2011: 12:58 AM EST
Unilever PLC CEO Paul Polman has overhauled his company's management structure, reorganized the "innovation team" that develops new products and production processes, and implemented a major cost-cutting campaign as he seeks to double sales and reduce Unilever's environmental footprint. The economic slowdown that began in 2008 helped Polman in implementing changes at Unilever, which is forecast to grow its sales from €39.8 billion in 2009 to more than €45 billion in 2011. Polman has continued his predecessor Patrick Cescau's "One Unilever" campaign to unify and rationalize the company's workforce and address issues created by Unilever's history as a collection of merged companies, particularly the lack of centralized management. Polman aims to enhance Unilever's ability to compete with rival Procter & Gamble, his former employer.
PAUL SONNE, "Rebuilding a Greener Unilever", Wall Street Journal, August 15, 2011, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc
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Unilever
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Nestlé Looking To Boost Share Of China’s Infant Nutrition Market Through Acquisitions

August 9, 2011: 08:03 AM EST
Bloomberg News reports that Nestlé SA may be looking to significantly increase its share of  China’s infant nutrition market by acquiring U.K. infant formula maker SMA Nutrition. Citing market analysts, Bloomberg says a purchase of SMA would boost the Swiss company to No. 3 from No. 6 in the market, and would result in cost savings of as much as 10 percent of the unit’s sales. Analysts say Nestlé may be preparing a bid for the baby food unit of Pfizer Inc., which last month said it was considering selling or spinning off its nutrition business. “China is the single most attractive baby food market and [Nestlé] has been losing share there,” a Euromonitor analyst said. “It’s a priority for them.”
Dermot Doherty, "Nestlé May Aim to Rebuild in Chinese Baby Food With Pfizer Unit", Bloomberg News, August 09, 2011, © Bloomberg LP
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Danone
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China
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Switzerland

SunOpta Subsidiary Acquires Citrus-Based Juice Company Lorton’s

August 8, 2011: 07:24 PM EST
SunOpta Inc. announced that its subsidiary SunOpta Global Organic Ingredients has acquired the assets and business of Lorton's Fresh Squeezed Juices, a vertically integrated California producer of citrus-based products in both industrial and packaged formats. The company said the acquisition expands its operations into the extracting, processing and packaging of citrus-based ingredients through consumer packaged products. The purchase price for the assets and business was $2.5 million. Lorton’s annual revenues are approximately $10 million. SunOpta Global Organic Ingredients provides natural and organic consumer products solutions to the retail and foodservice markets.
"SunOpta Acquires Assets of Lorton's Fresh Squeezed Juices, Inc - Expands Vertically Integrated Citrus Capabilities", Press release, SunOpta Inc, August 08, 2011, © SunOpta
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Natural Orange Juice Not As Natural As Large Manufacturers Say

August 4, 2011: 07:13 PM EST
Major manufacturers of orange juice use flavor packs made from orange oil and other parts of the orange, according to Alissa Hamilton, author of the book, "Squeezed: What You Don't Know About Orange Juice," raising questions about their advertising and labeling that claims that their products are "not-from-concentrate.” The use of flavor packs is driven by the removal of oxygen from orange juice to preserve it, a process that also removes the natural orange flavor; flavor packs are used to add the flavor back. Hamilton said manufacturers use natural orange flavors synthesized in the laboratory, and not artificial flavors, to reconstruct orange juice. 
Louis Bedigian , "Orange Juice a Luxury Item? REAL OJ Already Is", Forbes.com, August 04, 2011, © Forbes.com LLC
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Other
PepsiCo
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Nestlé Targets Small Ethnic Stores, Consumers In Europe

August 5, 2011: 10:10 AM EST
Nestlé launched Taste of Home, a marketing campaign that targets ethnic mom-and-pop stores in Europe by providing them with Nestlé products imported from markets served by the company worldwide. Nestrade launched the Retailer Development Programme as part of the campaign and the company's efforts to reach out to small retail outlets in Austria, Belgium, and other parts of Europe. Nestlé hopes to enlist some 2,000 stores under the program that also aims to meet demand for ethnic foods and flavors, as well as for halal foods, among ethnic populations and other consumers in Europe.
Press Release, Nestlé , "Nestlé reaches out to small business entrepreneurs in Europe", Nestlé , August 05, 2011, © Nestlé
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Kraft Foods Splits, Aims For Better Performance And Shareholder Value

August 4, 2011: 12:05 PM EST
Kraft Foods Inc.'s board of directors plans to divide the company into two independent public companies through a tax-free divestiture of the North American business to company shareholders. A $32 billion company will take care of Kraft Foods' faster growing global snacks business, while the second company, with $16 billion in revenue, will take control of the North American grocery business. The food company has expanded its global snacks business by acquiring some of the biggest companies in the market, notably Cadbury,  while its North American grocery business focused more on increasing its revenue through innovations in product development and marketing and aiming for higher margins. The spinoff highlights the company's efforts to improve performance and shareholder value.
KRAFT FOODS, "KRAFT FOODS ANNOUNCES INTENT TO CREATE TWO INDEPENDENT, PUBLICLY TRADED COMPANIES", Kraft Foods press release, August 04, 2011, © Kraft Foods Inc.
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Asia-Pacific
Latin America
Middle East- Africa

American Fast Food Restaurants Find Booming Market In Russia

August 3, 2011: 07:28 PM EST
US fast food chains are expanding rapidly in Russia, a market that some analysts say is similar to the United States half a century ago.  Russians have lower annual income ($7,276 compared to $43,539 in the United States) but a bigger portion of their salaries is disposable and demand for fast food is rising strongly. After opening the first American fast-food restaurant in 1990, McDonald’s now has 279 restaurants in Russia; Burger King opened 22 restaurants in the last two years and Yum Brands (owner of KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell) is a partner in some 350 co-branded restaurants. Demand looks set to rise; while Manhattan has 4,000 pizza restaurants for its population of 1.6 million, Moscow has just 300 for its population of 13 million.
ANDREW E. KRAMER, "Russia Becomes a Magnet for U.S. Fast-Food Chains", New York Times, August 03, 2011, © The New York Times Company
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Smart Balance Acquires Gluten-Free Foods Maker Glutino

August 3, 2011: 08:19 PM EST
Heart-healthy food products maker Smart Balance has acquired Importations DE-RO-MA, which owns Canada’s Glutino Food Group, for $66.3 million, from Claridge, a Montreal-based investment firm. Glutino makes premium-priced gluten-free foods sold in North America under the Glutino and Gluten Free Pantry brands. Glutino’s shelf-stable and frozen gluten-free product line includes snack foods, frozen baked goods, frozen entrees and baking mixes. Annual sales were $53.9 million during the fiscal year ended in March. According to Smart Balance executives, Glutino has increased its sales approximately 30 percent a year over the past three years because of the high demand for gluten-free products, a $2 billion global retail market.
"Smart Balance Acquires Glutino Food Group", Press release, Smart Balance, August 03, 2011, © Smart Balance
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Canada

Herbalife To Build Production Plants, Manufacture Products In-House

August 3, 2011: 08:32 PM EST
Herbalife plans to increase its manufacturing operations in order to make more products in-house and also either boost margins or reduce prices. The company is looking at Brazil, India, and Eastern Europe have emerged as possible sites for the planned factories which forms part of its effort to produce 80% of its products in-house by the end of the decade. Herbalife is doing well direct-selling its supplements: revenue grew 27.7 percent to $879.65 million in the quarter ending June 30. and it aims to triple sales by 2020 by expanding its presence in emerging markets and enhancing distribution in mature markets. Sales dropped slightly in China as it transitioned to a daily consumption model, but surged 121 percent in India, while Mexico and Asia Pacific saw double-digit growth rates. 
Elaine Watson, "Herbalife to expand manufacturing footprint", NutraIngredientsUSA, August 03, 2011, © William Reed Business Media SAS
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Other
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China
India

Consumer Research And Targeted Marketing Help Western Consumer Goods Companies Flourish In Russia

August 3, 2011: 12:08 AM EST
Western consumer packaged goods companies are investing in consumer research to adapt their marketing campaigns to local conditions in Russia. Reckitt Benckiser spends around 12 percent of its $440 million revenue from the former Soviet countries on consumer research and marketing, an investment that helped the company launch a successful advertising campaign for its Calgonit dishwasher tablets after research found that Russian women spend inordinate amounts of time on washing dishes because dishwashers are not common in Russian homes. The company also found success in marketing its Clearasil anti-acne treatment although Russian teenagers had been using soap and water until ten years ago. Unilever signed up Russian celebrity Vera Brezhneva to endorse its Rexona deodorant after research showed majority of Russian women viewed her as their ideal of a perfect woman.
Khristina Narizhnaya, "Consumer Companies Teach Western Ways to Russians", The St. Petersburg Times, August 03, 2011, © The St. Petersburg Times
Domains
FOOD COMPANIES
Kraft Foods
Nestle
Unilever
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Worldwide
EMEA
Europe
Russia

Marketers Rely On Online Advertising To Help Consumers Find Them On Facebook And Twitter

August 3, 2011: 01:48 AM EST
Consumer packaged goods companies are learning that promoting their Facebook and Twitter accounts in online ads, especially within the ad so users do not need to click away from the site they are on, leads to higher response rates. For example, Mrs. Meyers recently ran an online ad that posted consumer-interaction data much better than the industry's average figures, with 35 of every 1,000 online users clicking the ad's Learn More button, which leads to the brand's Web site, about 35x the average rate. Hyperlink seller Kontera designed an online ad for Kraft that highlights the food company's promotion deal with the TV program "Glee." Adding Facebook and Twitter content transforms online ads into something more alive, according to marketing expert and author Andy Smith.
ANDREW ADAM NEWMAN, "Brands Now Direct Their Followers to Social Media", New York Times, August 03, 2011, © The New York Times Company
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Unilever To Exit Food Market, Buy Home Care Company, Reports Say

August 2, 2011: 03:06 AM EST
Analysts believe that Unilever plans to sell its food division to finance reported plans to acquire a home and personal care company. Such an acquisition would help improve the company's performance in the stock market, where concerns about skyrocketing materials costs and declining consumer spending have hammered Unilever shares recently. Letting go of its food unit will enhance the company's growth potential, while an acquisition in the home care segment will strengthen the company's profile in that category. Some investment analysts advise clients to buy shares of Unilever, which is reportedly looking at Reckitt Benckiser as a potential takeover target.
Nick Fletcher , "Unilever tipped for possible €14bn sale of its food business to fund home and personal care deal", Guardian.co.uk, August 02, 2011, © Guardian News and Media Limited
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Campbell's Canned Soups Return To UK

August 2, 2011: 07:36 PM EST
Campbell Soup Company and Symington plan to re-launch the Condensed Soups brand of canned soups in the UK after an absence that began in March 2008 when Premier Foods declined to relicense the brand. The soup range will include flavors from the original lineup and will add Low Fat Chicken and Low Fat Mushroom. Campbell developed the soup varieties for the UK market and promotion and marketing will play to the insight that some 70% of the use of condensed soups was as a cooking ingredient.
"CAMPBELLS CONDENSED SOUPS RETURN TO UK SHELVES", Food and Drink Innovation Network, August 02, 2011, © Food & Drink Innovation Network.
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FDA Tells HBB It Is Breaking The Law With Its Melatonin-Laced Brownies

August 2, 2011: 08:05 PM EST
The FDA has warned HBB, L.L.C. that the agency can confiscate the melatonin-flavored brownies the company sells under the Lazy Larry brand. HBB has marketed the brownies as a dietary supplement, but the FDA letter says the product is promoted for use as a conventional food. The FDA argues the product is marketed together with snack foods; the company's web site claims the product has "the same ingredients your mother uses to make brownies;" and the product is packaged as a brownie. HBB has 15 days from receipt of the FDA warning letter to correct the situation.
Eric Schroeder, "F.D.A. warns Lazy Larry brownies are unsafe", BakingBusiness.com, August 02, 2011, © Sosland Publishing Ltd
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Big Grocery Retailers Jump On The “Locally Grown” Bandwagon

August 1, 2011: 07:11 PM EST
Walmart Stores, like other large grocery retailers, has found significant benefits in sourcing its produce from farmers close to its stores: it attracts customers and it’s cost-effective. A growing  trend among fruit and vegetable shoppers is “freshness,” and the best way to ensure freshness is to buy locally, a fact that Whole Foods Market pioneered. Now Walmart, Supervalu, Kroger and Safeway are hurrying to expand the array of locally grown food offered in their stores, and they are working hard to get that message across to consumers. But small farmers and organic advocates say the big chains are misleading shoppers. There is no clear definition of “local,” so  “fruits and vegetables harvested hundreds of miles away can be touted as locally grown,” The Wall Street Journal reports.
Miguel Bustillo And David Kesmodel, "'Local' Grows on Wal-Mart", Wall Street Journal, August 01, 2011, © Dow Jones & Company, Inc
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PepsiCo Extends National Recycling Program To El/Sec Schools

August 1, 2011: 01:26 PM EST
PepsiCo has extended its national program to raise awareness of the importance of recycling into elementary and high schools. The Dream Machine Recycle Rally for the 2011/2012 school year also gives participating schools a chance to earn rewards and compete for prizes. The company says the program is part of its broader Dream Machine recycling initiative to help boost the U.S. beverage container recycling rate to 50 percent by 2018. Participating schools earn points for every non-alcoholic aluminum can or plastic bottle collected through the program year-round. Schools can redeem those points with local businesses and major retailers for rewards such as sporting goods, electronics, etc.
"PepsiCo Supports Beverage Container Recycling with Launch of 2011/2012 Dream Machine Recycle Rally", Press release, PepsiCo, August 01, 2011, © PepsiCo
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PepsiCo
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Studies Show National Brands Continue To Outshine Private Labels In Retail

August 1, 2011: 02:08 AM EST
Private labels are growing but consumers are returning to their favorite brands, according to SymphonyIRI Group's MarketPulse survey which found that while 46% of consumers were giving up their favorite brand to save money in 2010, that figure is down to 38% today. Also, results of the 2011 Harris Poll EquiTrend reveal that consumer perceptions of CPG brands recovered following a decline in 2009. National brands have been helped by innovation and efforts to keep their products fresh and relevant. For example, ConAgra’s introduction of Marie Callender’s Bakes brought 12% more buyers to the frozen multi-serve category and increased the buy rate by 18%.
Craig Levitt, "The power of brands", Grocery Headquarters Magazine, August 01, 2011, © Grocery Headquarters Magazine
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ConAgra
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Hindustan Unilever Posts Strong Quarterly Financial Performance

July 28, 2011: 02:00 AM EST
Noting that it continued to focus on buying efficiencies, cost savings and return on marketing investments in the quarter ended in June,  Hindustan Unilever Limited reported that profit before interest and tax grew by 11.3 percent. Net profit was Rs. 6.27 billion ($142 million), an increase of 18 percent. The domestic consumer business grew by 15 percent, driven by 8.3 percent growth in underlying volume growth. The home and personal care business grew by 15.4 percent, with soaps and detergents delivering strong growth, ahead of the market. Growth in personal products reached 19.4 percent, underpinned by strong volumes. And the foods business grew 14.9 percent with strong performance in both beverages and packaged foods.
"Hindustan Unilever Limited – Results for June Quarter 2011", Press release, Unilever, July 28, 2011, © Unilever
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Unilever
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India

Groupon Partners With Unilever To Offer Discounts On Ice Cream Products

July 28, 2011: 02:37 AM EST
Groupon and Incentive Targeting are partnering with SuperValu and Unilever to bring social buying to grocery shopping in Chicago, Ill. Unilever becomes the first consumer packaged goods company to allow consumers to buy certain ice cream products through Groupon at a 40 percent discount and pick them up at a neighborhood grocery store. For the Unilever "Summer of Ice Cream" program offer, a shopper purchases the deal on Groupon.com and enters a Jewel-Osco Preferred Customer Card number. Once the Groupon purchase is complete, the deal value is digitally loaded onto the shopper's loyalty card. When the shopper purchases ice cream at a Jewel-Osco store and scans the Preferred Customer Card at check-out, the deal is automatically credited on the bill.
"Groupon and Incentive Targeting Launch Groupons for Grocery in Chicago", News release, Groupon, July 28, 2011, © Groupon
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Nestlé Launches “Cocoa Plan” In Indonesia

July 27, 2011: 04:20 AM EST
Nestlé has launched its “Cocoa Plan” to create a sustainable supply chain for the cocoa industry in Indonesia, the third largest cocoa producing country in the world after Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana. Launched in 2009, the Cocoa Plan is designed to improve the quality and quantity of cocoa yields, and in turn better quality cocoa. According to Nestlé, the plan also benefits cocoa farmers by providing them with long-term security and training expertise. Nestlé will invest more than $4 million over four years in Indonesia to train farmers, provide plant expertise, and support supply chain transparency. The plan will also focus on projects related to nutrition education, water, and rural development, while protecting the environment.
"Nestlé’s Cocoa Plan extends to Indonesia", Press release, Nestlé, July 27, 2011, © Nestlé
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Nestle
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Middle East- Africa
Indonesia
Switzerland
Ghana
Ivory Coast

McDonald's Makes Its Menu Lineup Healthier And More Nutritious

July 26, 2011: 08:12 AM EST
McDonald's announced plans to revise its menu to include more options for families and children who want more nutritious food servings from the country's leading fast-food chain. The company's "Commitments to Offer Improved Nutrition Choices" program won praise from US First Lady Michelle Obama and includes promotion of children's well-being and expansion of nutritionally balanced menu options. It also aims to expand customer access to nutrition information, while seeking to reduce sodium content of McDonald's menu offerings. McDonald's will introduce a revised, healthier version of the Happy Meal, as the food chain continues its support for the Children's Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative of the Council of Better Business Bureaus. A proposed "listening tour" will help McDonald's hear inputs from parents and nutrition experts, while third-party evaluators will help assess the program's performance and impact.
McDonald’s, "McDonald’s® Announces Commitments to Offer Improved Nutrition Choices", McDonald’s press release, July 26, 2011, © McDonald’s
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GLG Launches Subsidiary To Exploit International Stevia Market Opportunities

July 26, 2011: 12:07 AM EST
Stevia developer GLG Life Tech Corporation has created a subsidiary to provide naturally sweetened zero and reduced calorie food and beverage formulations to customers outside mainland China. AN0C Stevia Solutions Company’s product lines will include natural sweeteners, natural flavors and natural colors in zero or low calorie beverage and food products. AN0C Stevia Solutions will focus on customer opportunities internationally; AN0C Anhui will focus on opportunities in China, Taiwan and Hong Kong. AN0C Stevia Solutions is also developing customer opportunities in the Middle East and India.
"GLG Launches Subsidiary To Exploit International Stevia Market Opportunities", Press release, GLG Life Tech Corp, July 26, 2011, © GLG Life Tech Corp
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Japan

Subway Fortifies Its Bread With Calcium And Vitamin D

July 26, 2011: 04:30 AM EST
Subway has added bread with enhanced calcium and vitamin D content to its menu lineup and claims that each 6-inch serving of Subway sandwiches provides 30 percent of the recommended daily value of calcium and 20 percent of vitamin D. Subway  move plays to concerns about average poor nutrition: the Centers for Disease Control and the Institute of Medicine have both warned  about Americans' failure to consume sufficient nutrients, saying, for example, that less than 33 per cent of older people get the recommended intake for Vitamin D.
Press Release, SUBWAY, "SUBWAY® Chain Introduces Calcium and Vitamin D Fortified Bread to National Menu", PRNewswire, July 26, 2011, © PRNewswire
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Prebiotic Products Specialist NuMe Health Raises $675 K

July 26, 2011: 04:40 AM EST
Biotech start-up NuMe Health, which is developing prebiotic products targeting specific health conditions, said it has raised $675,000 from a series A-1 financing round led by BVM Capital LLC. The company said the funds from the financing will be used primarily to support corporate and product development. NuMe Health is preparing to commercialize its first prebiotic products for the dietary supplement and health food markets. The company also said it hired Dean P. Stull, Ph.D. as CEO. Stull said NuMe intends to be a leader in developing novel evidence-based prebiotic products to help prevent and manage common diseases, initially targeting conditions involving metabolism and the maintenance of healthy body weight.
"Nume Health Announces Closing Of Series A-1 Financing Round", Press release, NuMe Health, July 26, 2011, © NuMe Health
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Israeli Company Debuts Tomato-Derived Flavor Enhancer For Multiple Applications

July 25, 2011: 11:46 PM EST
Tomato products specialist LycoRed of Israel has introduced a natural tomato concentrate that enhances the flavor of foods and can replace expensive artificial flavor components and can be used for salt taste enhancement. LycoRed SANTE is the result of an effort by company scientists to separate out and concentrate the taste enhancing components of the tomato, resulting in a natural flavor enhancer suitable for a wide range of applications. The company said that in some cases food companies can save up to 10-20 percent of product cost by replacing expensive ingredients, reduce sodium content “and enable a clean label.” LycoRed SANTE is available as a  liquid or a free-flowing powder, is heat resistant, stable at almost all pH’s and is suitable for ambient, frozen, baked, cooked and fried products.
"LycoRed Boosts Health & Flavor with Natural Salt-Enhancement Ingredient", Press release, LycoRed, July 25, 2011, © LycoRed
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Other
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Israel

Kraft Foods Joins Group Building Enval's Recycling Plant In UK

July 22, 2011: 07:05 PM EST
Kraft Foods is supporting a UK-based consortium to build a large recycling plant incorporating Enval's patented materials recovery technology as part of an effort to develop industry best practice.  The recycling technology will enable manufacturers and their suppliers to recycle materials used in their products and packaging, including those that were previously unrecyclable, such as plastic aluminium-foil flexible packaging laminates. This has encouraged several commercial goods and packaging companies to join the consortium that will finance the recycling plant's construction. Enval plans to ultimately sell its recycling technology to waste-handling service providers.
"Kraft Foods backs Enval recycling plant", Business Weekly, July 22, 2011, © Business Weekly
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Kraft Foods
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Europe
United Kingdom

Biggest Grocery Retailers Join The Partnership For A Healthier America's Efforts To Bring Inexpensive, Healthy Foods To Americans

July 20, 2011: 12:06 PM EST
Some of the largest grocery retailers in the US have agreed to join the Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA) to bring access to healthy and affordable food to about 10 million Americans in the next five years. Brown's Super Stores, Calhoun Enterprises, Klein's Family Markets, SUPERVALU, Walgreens, and Walmart have agreed to build or expand more than 1,500 stores in economically depressed areas currently not served by retailers that sell inexpensive and nutritious foods, and where about 23.5 million Americans live. Walmart plans to build or enlarge up to 300 new stores as part of its partnership with the PHA, while Calhouns Grocery will build 10 new stores in Alabama and Tennessee. SUPERVALU will build 250 new stores, while Brown's Super Stores and Klein's Family Markets have committed to open one new store each.
Partnership for a Healthier America (PHA), "Leading Grocery Retailers Commit to Fight Childhood Obesity by Increasing Access to Healthy, Affordable Food for 10 Million Americans", Partnership For A Healthier America press release, July 20, 2011, © Partnership For A Healthier America
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Retailers & Private Label
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United States of America

Recession, Better Quality Helped Boost Sales Of U.S. Private Label Brands

July 20, 2011: 02:52 AM EST
Sales of private label brands in the U.S. grew 1.8 share points from end of 2007 to account for 22.3 percent of the retail market by end of 2008. Store brands benefited from better quality and reputation and from consumers' search for ways to save as they deal with the effects of the Great Recession of 2008–2009. Nielsen research reveals 75 percent of consumers see store brands as a good substitute for national brands. Since the end of 2008, however, growth in market shares of food, drug, and mass store brands has remained flat, with national brands accounting for a commanding 78 percent of consumer packaged goods sales. To further grow their store brands, retailers need to increase their product variety, maintain the affordability of their products, emphasize quality, and develop robust brand equity. They should also connect with younger consumers without losing their appeal to older customers.
Todd Hale, "U.S. Store Brands Have Room to Grow", Nielsenwire, July 20, 2011, © The Nielsen Company
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Retailers & Private Label
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