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Today in Food Manufacturing

Daily news and top headlines for food manufacturing professionals

Arctic Blast Saves Czech Ice Wine

February 6, 2012 10:05 am | by KAREL JANICEK,Associated Press

In a vineyard in Moravia, the Arctic chill striking Europe at least has some people jumping with joy. Winemakers in southeast Czech Republic, waiting for a dip in temperatures during an unusually warm winter, finally got the deep chill they needed to harvest grapes for the most prestigious part of their business — ice wine. 

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Vt. Considers IDs For Farm Workers

February 6, 2012 10:03 am | by LISA RATHKE,Associated Press

As some states crack down on illegal immigrants, Vermont lawmakers are discussing creating a guest worker program that would include state IDs for the estimated 1,500 to 2,000 immigrants who work on Vermont dairy farms and who officials say have become critical to the struggling industry.

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Latest Outbreak Highlights Raw Milk's Popularity

February 6, 2012 10:00 am | by MARY CLARE JALONICK,Associated Press

An outbreak of bacterial infections on the East Coast illustrates the popularity of raw, unpasteurized milk despite strong warnings from public health officials about the potential danger. Even presidential candidate Ron Paul has joined the cause of consumers looking to buy unprocessed "real foods" straight from the farm, saying government shouldn't deny them that choice. 

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Photo Of The Day: Deep Freeze Saves Ice Wine

February 6, 2012 9:54 am

In this picture taken on Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2012, man picks grapes of Pinot Noir from a vineyard near the village of Stosikovice na Louce, Czech Republic. Following an unusually warm winter Czech wine makers finally got the deep chill needed to reap grapes for Ice Wine.

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Colo. Lawmakers Delay Hearing On Trans Fat Ban

February 3, 2012 12:41 pm | by KRISTEN WYATT,Associated Press

The nation's leanest state is taking its sweet time as it considers a proposal aimed at getting junk food out of schools. A Colorado House committee was expected to discuss a bill that represents the nation's toughest regulations meant to keep trans fat away from students, but lawmakers Thursday delayed the hearing without explanation. 

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Hormel Phasing Out Pregnant Pig Confinement

February 3, 2012 12:38 pm | by STEVE KARNOWSKI,Associated Press

Hormel Foods Corp.'s company-owned farms are phasing out the use of small metal crates for confining pregnant hogs by the end of 2017 — a move welcomed Thursday by the Humane Society of the United States, which had pushed for the change.

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35 Illnesses Now Linked To Pa. Dairy

February 3, 2012 12:36 pm

Pennsylvania health officials say the number of people stricken with illness after consuming raw milk from the same dairy has risen to 35 in four states. The confirmed cases of campylobacter bacterial infection include 28 people in Pennsylvania, four in Maryland, two in West Virginia, and one in New Jersey.

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Eggs Recalled In 34 States

February 3, 2012 12:33 pm

A Minnesota company is recalling cooked eggs distributed in 34 states because of possible listeria contamination. Michael Foods, of Minnetonka, is recalling eggs in brine sold in 10- and 25-pound pails for institutional use under the brand names: Columbia Valley Farms; GFS; Glenview Farms; Papetti's; Silverbrook; and Wholesome Farms.

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Candy Factory Fire Not As Severe As First Feared

February 3, 2012 12:31 pm

A landmark candy factory in southwestern Pennsylvania caught fire, but the owner and fire officials said damage was not as severe as first feared and that the business will likely reopen sometime next week. The fire at Sarris Candies in Canonsburg was reported about 7 a.m. Friday.

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Consumer Trends: Americans View Prepackaged Diet Meals As Unhealthy

February 3, 2012 12:27 pm

Many Americans have seen commercials or advertisements for low carb, low fat, prepackaged diet meals that are available in grocery stores or for delivery to their home to help them lose weight. Poll Position wanted to know if consumers thought these diet programs were healthy and sustainable.

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Green Mountain Coffee Brews 1Q Success

February 3, 2012 9:54 am

The company that aims to get people brewing their coffee one cup at a time said late Wednesday that fiscal first-quarter revenue more than doubled to $1.16 billion, and net income surged to $104 million from $2.4 million.

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Indiana Liquor Law Could Crimp Super Bowl Parties

February 3, 2012 9:51 am | by JIM SUHR,Associated Press

Indiana is among a handful that ban carryout liquor sales on Sundays, even with the NFL's most-celebrated spectacle on the schedule. The nation's few remaining blue laws are mostly in the South and Midwest and tend to limit liquor or car sales on Sundays. The name is believed to have derived either from 18th century usage of the word "blue" to disparage those with puritanical beliefs or from an early set of rules in New Haven, Conn., that were printed on blue paper.

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Mild Weather Helps Storm-Battered Farms Recover

February 3, 2012 9:46 am | by GEORGE M. WALSH,Associated Press

After being battered by flooding last year, farmers across the Northeast and Midwest can at least be thankful that a relatively warm and largely snowless winter has made it easier to get started healing their rutted and debris-strewn lands.

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American Crystal Union To Fight U.S. Sugar Program

February 3, 2012 9:44 am

The union representing locked-out employees at American Crystal Sugar. Co. plans to lobby against the federal sugar program in Congress, breaking a tradition of fighting for the program alongside farmers and the company.

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FDA Finds Fungicide In Domestic Orange Juice

February 3, 2012 9:41 am | by MARY CLARE JALONICK,Associated Press

The Food and Drug Administration says it has confirmed low levels of an illegal fungicide in orange juice samples taken from Florida manufacturers. The FDA says the fungicide is far below dangerous levels, the juice is safe to drink and the orange juice won't be recalled from stores or destroyed. The juice tested was mixed with product from Brazil, where the fungicide carbendazim is used. 

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Photo Of The Day: Storm-Ravaged Farms Find Relief In Mild Winter

February 3, 2012 9:37 am

After being battered by flooding last year, farmers across the Northeast and Midwest can at least be thankful that a relatively warm and largely snowless winter has made it easier to get started healing their rutted and debris-strewn lands.

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Worker Productivity Growth Slowed In 4Q

February 2, 2012 1:09 pm | by CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER,AP Economics Writer

Workers were more efficient in the final three months of last year, although their gains in productivity slowed from the previous quarter. Slower productivity growth can be a good sign for hiring if economic growth picks up. The Labor Department said Thursday that worker productivity rose at a 0.7 percent annual rate in the October-December quarter. That's below a downwardly revised 1.9 percent in the previous quarter.

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Napa Winemakers Campaign For Truthful Labeling

February 2, 2012 1:03 pm | by MICHELLE LOCKE,For The Associated Press

Napa Valley wine producers will go a long way to protect their good name, all the way to Thailand if necessary. That's the latest country which has awarded Geographic Indication status to Napa wine, which means they've agreed not to allow sales of wine labeled "Napa" if the grapes inside aren't from that California region. 

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23 Sick From Raw Milk

February 2, 2012 1:00 pm

The number of people in Pennsylvania and Maryland stricken with illness after consuming raw milk from the same farm has risen to 23, health officials in the two states said Wednesday. Maryland health officials also said laboratory tests have confirmed the presence of the bacteria, Campylobacter jejuni, that causes the illness in two unopened samples purchased from the Family Cow farm in Chambersburg. Pennsylvania officials said their tests had not yet yielded results.

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Vending Company CFO Accused Of $3M Pepsi Fraud

February 2, 2012 12:55 pm

The chief financial officer of a vending company was a key player in a conspiracy to defraud Pepsi Bottling Group of nearly $3 million over a 10-year period, according to a federal indictment unsealed Thursday. Joseph Belasco was indicted on one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud, five counts of mail fraud and one count of money laundering. If he's convicted, he could be sentenced to 20 years in prison for each count and ordered to pay fines totaling $1.75 million and to forfeit an additional $4 million.

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