RIKUZENTAKATA, Japan (AP) — Yasuhiko Konno stands next to a pile of debris that reaches over two stories high. He bows his head for a moment and takes a deep breath. This was his sake brewery, one of the best in Japan, with a history that goes back hundreds of years. A week after he barely escaped a tsunami that flattened it and nearly everything else in sight, he's come back for the first time, and it takes him a second to collect his thoughts.
NEWTON, Kan. (AP) — After months of enduring detours, demolition and construction, residents of Newton have had a chance to see what the work was all about — the upgrade of the central Kansas town's old flour mill into a state-of-the art operation. Horizon Milling held an open house last week to show off the new packing and shipping facility, complete with robotic arms that do the loading and lifting of sacks of flour.
(AP) — Chiyoko Kaizuka, 83-year old farmer, weeds a spinach field Sunday, March 20, 2011 in Moriya, Ibaragi Prefecture, Japan. Japan announced the first signs that contamination from its tsunami-crippled nuclear complex has seeped into the food chain, saying that radiation levels in spinach and milk from farms near the facility exceeded government safety limits.
WASHINGTON (AP) — Americans are noticing higher prices at the grocery store, and it's about to get worse. Food prices at the wholesale level rose last month by the most in 36 years. Cold weather accounted for most of it, forcing stores and restaurants to pay more for green peppers, lettuce and other vegetables, but meat and dairy prices surged, too.
Coca-Cola is winning the fight for America's soda drinkers. Diet Coke bubbled up into the second spot in the U.S. soft drink market, ending Pepsi's decades-long run as the perennial runner-up to regular Coca-Cola. Coca-Cola sold nearly 927 million cases of its diet soda in 2010, to Pepsi's 892 million, a report by trade publication Beverage Digest released Thursday said.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A woman who served in the Croatian army faces extradition from a small Kentucky town to face charges that she forced prisoners to drink human blood and gasoline during the bloody aftermath of the breakup of Yugoslavia. U.S. Marshals arrested 52-year-old Azra Basic (BOS-ICH) on Tuesday in Stanton, about 45 miles east of Lexington, where she lives and works at a nearby food processing plant.
NEW YORK (AP) — General Mills said Friday that it has entered into exclusive negotiations to buy a majority stake in French yogurt company Yoplait. The binding offer with PAI Partner and Sodiaal, the owners of Yoplait S.A.S., would beat out rivals bidding for the company. General Mills' offer includes a 50 percent interest and a controlling role in the company, the food company said.
BEIJING (AP) — Three senior officials in central China have been suspended and more than two dozen others punished after pigs in farms there tested positive for a banned chemical that can be dangerous to humans, state media said Friday. Tainted pork has become the latest food safety scandal to shock China after state broadcaster CCTV ran an expose earlier this week showing that several farms in Henan province were using the fat-burning drug, clenbuterol, in pig feed.
TOKYO, March 17 (Kyodo) — The Salt Industry Association of Japan will release 900 tons of edible salt from its reserves to cover supply shortages after one of Japan's six salt plants suspended production due to last Friday's catastrophic earthquake in northeastern and eastern Japan, the Finance Ministry said Thursday.
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana work-safety officials are investigating the death of a forklift operator at an Indianapolis food plant. A spokeswoman for the Indiana Occupational Safety and Health Administration told The Indianapolis Star for a story Thursday that the agency will investigate why the concrete floor collapsed beneath the machine, killing 50-year-old Alan Beaty of Hendricks County.
NORTHFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Kraft Foods Inc. says that its Chief Financial Officer Timothy McLevish is leaving the company in mid-2011 to "pursue opportunities in general management." McLevish, 55, has worked for Kraft since 2007. David Brearton, 50, Kraft's executive vice president of operations, will take over as CFO after the company files its first-quarter financial statements.
STILLWATER, Okla. (AP) — An Oklahoma State University professor says she's found a way to turn byproducts from the production of soda pop into ethanol. Biosystems and agricultural engineering associate professor Danielle Bellmer said that by adjusting the pH levels she has found that the leftover materials from soda manufacturing can be converted into ethanol.
EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — Two Oregon fishermen from Brookings and an antitrust lawyer from Portland have filed a class-action lawsuit in federal court in Medford in an effort to break up a giant seafood company. Lloyd Whaley and his son Todd, along with attorney Michael Haglund, seek up to $520 million in damages and a slew of injunctions that would effectively end Pacific Seafood Group's dominant role in the West Coast fish business, The Register-Guard newspaper in Eugene reported.
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indianapolis fire officials say a forklift operator was killed when a floor collapsed beneath the machine at a food manufacturing plant. Capt. Rita Burris says the accident occurred at Royal Food Products about 7 a.m. Wednesday on Indianapolis' southeast side. Burris says the worker apparently drove onto a section of concrete floor that wasn't reinforced and it collapsed beneath the forklift, sending it plunging 14 feet into the basement.
Seventy-four percent of CFOs feel more optimistic about the economy (up from 67 percent in 2010) Sixty-seven percent are more optimistic about their companies’ financial prospects in 2011 (up from 64 percent in 2010) Nearly all respondents are planning significant capital expenditures in 2011, with 88 percent indicating they will buy manufacturing equipment and 56 percent planning to buy computer hardware.
This product image provided by PepsiCo., shows the company's new beverage bottle made entirely of plant material. The bottle is made from switch grass, pine bark, corn husks and other materials. Ultimately, Pepsi plans to also use orange peels, oat hulls, potato scraps and other leftovers from its food business.
Oshkosh , Wis. – Nercon has joined the Rockwell Automation Machine Builder Program, part of Rockwell Automation PartnerNetwork framework which includes business enterprise, sales and solutions, and product technology partners. To become a member of the program, Nercon demonstrated innovation and market leadership with conveyors and equipment that incorporate Rockwell Automation solutions.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Angered by repeated releases of secretly filmed videos claiming to show the mistreatment of farm animals, Iowa's agriculture industry is pushing legislation that would make it illegal for animal rights activists to produce and distribute such images. Agriculture committees in the Iowa House and Senate have approved a bill that would prohibit such recordings and punish people who take agriculture jobs only to gain access to animals to record their treatment.
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — A criminal case against a poultry processor accused of intentionally dumping untreated turkey remains into waterways is advancing unless the U.S. Supreme Court steps in. A 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals order issued Friday clears the way for federal prosecutors to proceed with their case against House of Raeford Farms.