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Chiquita Asks Court To Toss Colombia Terror Payments Case

April 24, 2014 | by CURT ANDERSON, AP Legal Affairs Writer | Comments

Chiquita Brands International says the U.S. is the wrong place for lawsuits to be pursued against it by Colombians whose relatives were killed in a bloody civil war. Chiquita once had huge banana operations in Colombia and paid $1.7 million to a paramilitary group responsible for the deaths.

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Today in Food Manufacturing

Daily news and top headlines for food manufacturing professionals

Citrus Disease Quarantine Expanded in Texas

April 24, 2014 12:43 pm

The Texas Department of Agriculture has expanded a quarantine area to slow the spread of the citrus greening disease for Cameron and Hidalgo counties. The agency this week advised the counties that the movement of citrus plants and plant materials will be restricted.

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Consumer Trends: Health Concerns Drive Flavored, Functional Water Market

April 24, 2014 12:00 pm

An increasing obesity rate, a rising aging population and changing consumer preferences are the major growth drivers for the global flavored and functional water market. Growing health concerns are compelling consumers to opt for flavored and functional water.

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Heineken Returns to Growth in Western Europe

April 24, 2014 10:23 am

Heineken NV says it has returned to growth in its crucial Western Europe market in the first quarter, after a long period of stagnation. Organic sales — a figure which strips out the effects of currencies and acquisitions — grew by 3.4 percent.

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Warren Buffett Deems Coca-Cola Pay Plan ‘Excessive’

April 24, 2014 10:21 am | by CANDICE CHOI and JOSH FUNK, AP Business Writers

Warren Buffett criticized Coca-Cola's pay plan for its executives on Wednesday. Buffett, whose company is Coca-Cola's largest shareholder, called the plan "excessive" in an interview on CNBC after it was approved at the beverage maker's annual meeting.

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Chobani Secures $750M from Investment Firm

April 24, 2014 10:17 am

Greek yogurt maker Chobani has secured a $750 million investment from investment firm TPG Capital to help fund its growth. The food maker said Wednesday that as part of the deal, TPG will have representation on the the company's board.

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Vt. Lawmakers Pass First State Bill Requiring GMO Labeling

April 24, 2014 10:14 am | by DAVE GRAM and LISA RATHKE, Associated Press

Vermont lawmakers have passed the country's first state bill to require the labeling of genetically modified foods. The Vermont House approved the measure Wednesday evening, about a week after the state Senate, and Gov. Peter Shumlin said he plans to sign it.

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Photos of the Day: Irwindale Delays Decision on Sriracha Plant

April 24, 2014 10:11 am

A cooling-off period has been called in the fight between Huy Fong Foods and the Southern California city that says its air is too spicy. The Irwindale City Council delayed a decision for two weeks Wednesday night on declaring the Sriracha plant a public nuisance.

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Irwindale Calls a Two-Week Truce with Sriracha Maker

April 24, 2014 10:05 am

A cooling-off period has been called in the fight between Huy Fong Foods and the Southern California city that says its air is too spicy. The Irwindale City Council delayed a decision for two weeks Wednesday night on declaring the Sriracha plant a public nuisance.

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Report: Organic Companies Make Supply Chains Greener

April 23, 2014 12:54 pm

According to the Sustainable Food Trade Association’s second annual Member Sustainability Progress Report, the organic food industry is taking significant strides to reduce its footprint in 11 areas throughout the entire supply chain. 

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Yum’s Profit Climbs as KFC Sales in China Rebound

April 23, 2014 12:48 pm

Yum Brands reported a higher-than-expected profit for its first quarter highlighted by a rebound in KFC sales in China, where concerns about the safety of the chain's chicken supply eased. Sales at established locations in China rose 9 percent for the period.

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Budget Cuts Could Decrease Food Safety in Vancouver

April 23, 2014 12:44 pm

The Public Service Alliance of Canda says Metro Vancouver became the only major metropolitan center in the country without food inspectors dedicated to consumer protection when the team was disbanded in January. Planned spending on the food safety program will drop by $35 million.

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PepsiCo to Bottle Taco Bell Baja Blast Drinks

April 23, 2014 12:41 pm

PepsiCo is again mining its partnership with Taco Bell, with plans to start selling the Mexican chain's popular Mountain Dew Baja Blast drinks in bottles and cans for the first time next month. The drink will be available for a limited time starting May 5.

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Hickory Farms Recalls Chipotle Ranch Sauce

April 23, 2014 12:38 pm

Hickory Farms has voluntarily recalled its Chipotle Ranch Sauce due to an undeclared allergen on its label. The sauce contains buttermilk powder, but some of the product was mistakenly released with a label that does not list the ingredient.

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Consumer Trends: Plain Vodka Takes the Cake

April 23, 2014 12:00 pm

While the global spirits market continues to be saturated with flavored vodkas, a study of the 2013 distilled spirits sector by the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States shows consumers still prefer the pure, unadulterated quality offered by unflavored vodkas.

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Sugar, Water Companies Settle Maui Water Dispute

April 23, 2014 10:14 am | by AUDREY McAVOY, Associated Press

Native Hawaiian and environmental groups have settled a dispute with Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar and Wailuku Water Co. over the diversion of water from four Maui streams. Sugar plantations have been irrigating their fields with water diverted from the streams for more than a century.

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McDonald’s CEO Doesn’t Flinch Under New Breakfast Pressure

April 23, 2014 10:12 am | by CANDICE CHOI, AP Food Industry Writer

Without specifying names, McDonald's CEO Don Thompson said the company hasn't seen any impact from the "most recent competitor" in the breakfast space. The comments came after Taco Bell's launch of its national breakfast menu late last month.

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Dr Pepper Snapple 1Q Profit Beats Expectations

April 23, 2014 10:08 am

Dr Pepper Snapple on Wednesday reported a higher first-quarter profit that beat Wall Street expectations, as reduced costs offset weak sales growth. The company said lower costs for ingredients and productivity improvements helped boost operating profit.

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Mexico Food Labeling Rules May Cause High Sugar Intake

April 23, 2014 10:06 am | by MARK STEVENSON, Associated Press

Mexico's new food labeling rules were supposed to help fight an obesity epidemic, but they may actually encourage the public to consume high levels of sugar. The labels assume an average acceptable daily consumption of sugar is about 360 calories, equivalent to about 90 grams of sugar.

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Baby Lobster Decline in Maine Worries Producers

April 23, 2014 10:01 am | by PATRICK WHITTLE, Associated Press

The number of baby lobsters settling off the rocky coast of Maine continues to steadily decline. The downward trend has lobstermen, retailers, state officials and ocean scientists concerned that the impact could soon be felt on dinner tables nationwide.

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Photos of the Day: 'Modern Family' Star Opens Beer Eatery

April 23, 2014 9:55 am

He plays a bumbling dad on ABC's "Modern Family," but in Salt Lake City, Ty Burrell is trying out for a role as restaurateur. Burrell has just opened Beer Bar, a beer garden-like eatery that serves 150 beers paired up with an array of house-made bratwursts, local breads and Belgian fries.

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