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Today in Food Manufacturing

Daily news and top headlines for food manufacturing professionals

NM Faces Tough Choices as Drought Persists

April 25, 2013 12:21 pm | by SUSAN MONTOYA BRYAN,Associated Press

In southern New Mexico, the mighty Rio Grande has gone dry — reduced to a sandy wash winding from this chile farming community to the nation's leading pecan-producing county. Across the state's eastern plains, wells stand empty and ranchers are selling their cattle. In the north, urbanites face watering restrictions while rural residents see the levels of their springs dropping more every day.

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Hershey Reshuffles Management

April 25, 2013 12:19 pm

The Hershey Co. said Wednesday that it has made a number of management changes to help position the candy company for better global growth. The company, based in Hershey, Pa., is the largest chocolate maker in North America, but it faces tough competition globally from companies such as Mondelez International Inc., which now owns Cadbury and is focused on growth in international markets.

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Kan. Committee Considers Bonds for Biosecurity Lab

April 25, 2013 12:18 pm | by JOHN MILBURN,Associated Press

A Kansas Senate committee introduced a bill on Thursday authorizing an additional $202 million in bonds to help finance construction of a federal biosecurity lab in Manhattan. The Senate Ways and Means Committee scheduled a hearing later Thursday to hear from officials with Gov. Sam Brownback's administration about the funding request.

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Consumer Trends: Flavor Trends on the Grill

April 25, 2013 12:00 pm

This grilling report identifies the top tastes, trends and techniques that will be inspiring backyard cooks all season long. Smoke & spice pairings, grilled fruit drinks and DIY condiments are among the list of trends that will be sizzling on barbeques across the country.

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Vt. Bill Would OK Direct Shipment of Craft Brews

April 25, 2013 9:33 am | by LISA RATHKE,Associated Press

In Vermont, a hotbed of craft beer brewing, lawmakers are considering a bill that would allow brewers to ship their beer directly to consumers to expand their markets and reach their niche customers nationwide. The state already allows wineries to ship wine directly to consumers after changing the law, but beer shipments are illegal.

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Yum: China Sales Should Recover by Year-End

April 25, 2013 9:31 am

The parent company of KFC is hoping to shake fallout from the avian flu by the end of the year. Yum Brands Inc., which also owns Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, said Wednesday that it expects sales at established restaurants for its China division to turn positive by the fourth quarter.

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7 Charged with Smuggling Fish Bladders to China

April 25, 2013 9:30 am | by ELLIOT SPAGAT,Associated Press

Seven people have been charged with smuggling bladders from an endangered fish in what authorities said Wednesday may be a growing international practice in which the bladders are sold for up to $20,000 each to be used in a highly desired soup.

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Zimbabwe Faces Food Insecurity Crisis

April 25, 2013 9:29 am | by ANGUS SHAW,Associated Press

Zimbabwe's grain reserves are running dangerously low ahead of new but poor harvests caused by erratic rain, an independent continent-wide development bank said Wednesday. The African Development Bank said the strategic reserves have become so depleted that commercial millers have been stopped from buying supplies from the state.

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China: Chef Added Pesticide, Not Sauce, to Lunch

April 25, 2013 9:27 am

China's state news agency says one person died and 20 others were sickened after a chef mistakenly added pesticide instead of a sauce as he was making lunch. Xinhua News Agency said in a brief dispatch Thursday that the chef was among those who fell ill after eating the lunch at a construction site in northern China's Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region.

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Photo of the Day: A Fishy Situation

April 25, 2013 9:26 am

This March 2013 image provided by the U.S. attorney's Office shows Totoaba bladders displayed at a U.S. border crossing in downtown Calexico, Mexico. Seven people have been charged in a scheme to sell the bladders of an endangered Mexican fish considered a delicacy for use in Chinese soup, U.S. prosecutors said Wednesday.

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Dr Pepper Shares Soar

April 24, 2013 12:42 pm

Higher prices helped Dr Pepper Snapple Group's net income edge up 4 percent in the first quarter. Prices and productivity improvements helped offset the company selling less of its drinks. Its results beat Wall Street expectations, and the company's shares jumped in morning trading.

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More Private-Company Execs Optimistic About Economy

April 24, 2013 12:40 pm

In the first quarter of 2013, private-company executives' optimism about the 12-month prospects for the US economy rose eight points, according to PwC US's Private Company Trendsetter Barometer . Fifty percent of executives expressed optimism, while only 11 percent were pessimistic, down from 18 percent the prior quarter.

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Yum Warns of Bird Flu Impact

April 24, 2013 12:38 pm | by CANDICE CHOI,AP Food Industry Writer

A new strain of bird flu in China is sabotaging Yum's efforts to rebuild trust with KFC customers following an earlier controversy over its chicken supply. Yum Brands Inc., which owns KFC, Pizza Hut and Taco Bell, on Tuesday reported a steep decline in its net income as sales in China took a big hit. But the results weren't as bad as analysts feared and its shares gained in aftermarket trading.

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Hostess To Reopen Ga. Baking Facility

April 24, 2013 12:37 pm

Hostess Brands LLC has announced plans to re-launch its bakery in Columbus, Ga. and plans to add about 300 jobs in the area over the next several years. The Georgia Department of Economic Development Tuesday announced the company plans to resume operations this summer and will produce a full assortment of iconic Hostess snack products — including Twinkies.

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Daily Sound Bite: Beef Group Balks at Greenhouse Gas Regs

April 24, 2013 12:36 pm

The National Cattleman's Beef Association has filed a petition with the U.S. Supreme Court challenging an EPA finding that greenhouse gasses are a threat to public health and welfare. The EPA has proposed a ruling to limit greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles.

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BPI To Pay $450K for Waterloo Accident

April 24, 2013 12:35 pm

Beef Products Inc. has agreed to pay a $450,000 civil penalty to settle alleged violations of Clean Air Act regulations from a 2007 incident at a now-closed Waterloo packing plant which killed a worker and injured another. In the accident more than 1,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia was released into an area occupied by workers and two became trapped.

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Consumer Trends: Revolutionizing the American Breakfast

April 24, 2013 12:00 pm

Rabobank has published a new report on the U.S. morning eating occasion, particularly the breakfast cereal market, examining factors that are contributing to a decline in breakfast cereal consumption, and leading consumers to turn away from the cereal bowl in favor of other breakfast options. Rabobank also explores various strategies by breakfast cereal companies to inject new growth into the category.

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Heineken: Full Year Sales Growth Not As Strong

April 24, 2013 9:38 am

Heineken NV says its sales and profits rose in the first quarter, due to recent acquisitions. The Dutch brewer blamed austerity policies for weak European markets, and said growth in revenues for the full year would not be quite as strong as it hoped. It has not set any specific target.

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New Beef Ads Ask ‘What’s Your Dinner Made Of?’

April 24, 2013 9:35 am

The new "Beef. It's What's For Dinner." consumer advertising campaign is premiering this month, bringing the recognizable tagline to older millennials and Gen-Xers. The new campaign, funded by the beef checkoff, will feature sizzling beef recipes, juicy details about essential nutrients and the voice of one of Hollywood's most promising new talents. 

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EEOC: Disabled Workers Were Exploited, Abused

April 24, 2013 9:33 am | by RYAN J. FOLEY,Associated Press

A Texas company profited from dozens of mentally disabled men working at a turkey processing plant in rural Iowa where they were physically and verbally abused and forced to live in filthy, rodent-infested conditions, a government attorney told jurors on Tuesday.

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