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Today in Food Manufacturing

Daily news and top headlines for food manufacturing professionals

Judge Blocks University from Releasing ‘Pink Slime’ Data

April 11, 2013 9:34 am | by RYAN J. FOLEY,Associated Press

A judge has blocked Iowa State University from releasing documents about food safety research conducted for the beef-processing company that makes the product dubbed "pink slime" by critics. District Judge Dale Ruigh ruled last month that releasing the records would damage Beef Products, Inc. by revealing information about its proprietary food-processing techniques.

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Vermont Breweries Gain Fame

April 11, 2013 9:31 am | by LISA RATHKE,Associated Press

Everyone expects Vermonters to wow the world with their maple syrup and cheeses. But lately the buzz has been about the brews. Not that the craft beer movement is anything new to this tiny New England state, which sports the highest number of brewers per capita — roughly 25,030 people per brewery.

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Bird Flu Found on Ostrich Farm in South Africa

April 11, 2013 9:30 am

South African officials say they have detected bird flu on an ostrich farm but that it is unrelated to the strain that has killed eight people in China. Still, the discovery is another blow for an industry that has lost 40 percent of its 50,000 farmers since the European Union imposed a ban on imports of South African ostrich meat after a 2011 outbreak.

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Photo of the Day: Judge Shields 'Pink Slime' Studies

April 11, 2013 9:28 am

An attorney for Beef Products Inc. on Tuesday, April 9, 2013, praised an Iowa judge's ruling that blocked the release of documents on food safety testing conducted for the Sioux Falls, S.D.-based company. Judge Dale Ruigh ruled last month that releasing the information would cause "irreparable harm" to BPI by revealing information about proprietary food-processing techniques.

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Daily Sound Bite: Guest Worker Plan Proposed for Dairies

April 10, 2013 12:37 pm

Congressmen from Vermont and New York are proposing legislation in the U.S. House that would expand the nation's guest worker program to immigrant workers who are currently working illegally in dairies. Dairy farmers have expressed difficulty finding U.S. workers willing to work on farms.

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Companies Post More Jobs But Fill Them Slowly

April 10, 2013 12:29 pm | by CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER,AP Economics Writer

U.S. employers advertised the most job openings in nearly five years in February, but they boosted hiring at a much slower pace. The figures suggest that companies remain too cautious about the economy to quickly fill open jobs. The number of openings rose 8.7 percent in February from January to a seasonally adjusted 3.93 million, the Labor Department said Tuesday.

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Wis. Farmers, Grocers Oppose Junk Food Bill

April 10, 2013 12:28 pm | by KEVIN WANG,Associated Press

The state should not tell people who receive food stamps what they can or can't eat, representatives from food companies, grocery stores and food banks told Wisconsin lawmakers during a Tuesday hearing at the Capitol. They spoke in response to legislation introduced last month by Rep. Dean Kaufert, R-Neenah, to reduce the amount of food stamps spent on junk food.

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Recall: UK Corned Beef Contains Vet Drug

April 10, 2013 12:26 pm

British supermarket chain Asda says it is recalling all corned beef from its budget range after traces of a veterinary drug were found in some batches. The Food Standards Agency says "very low levels" of a painkiller called phenylbutazone, known as "bute," were detected in the products.

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Congressmen Propose Dairy Worker Plan

April 10, 2013 12:25 pm | by LISA RATHKE,Associated Press

With immigration reform heating up in Congress, one congressman from Vermont and two from New York plan to introduce legislation in the U.S. House to expand a guest worker program to thousands of immigrants working illegally on the states' dairy farms.

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Dutch Pull 50K Tons of Meat Across Europe

April 10, 2013 12:23 pm | by MIKE CORDER,Associated Press

Dutch authorities are recalling 50,000 tons of meat sold as beef across Europe because its exact source cannot be established and it may contain horse meat, a spokeswoman said Wednesday. The announcement was the latest development in a far-reaching scandal that saw horse meat mixed in with other meats and sold as beef across the continent without informing consumers.

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Consumer Trends: Americans Cut Back on Dining Out

April 10, 2013 12:00 pm

Americans appear to be cutting back in how often they eat out; when asked whether they have eaten out more or less frequently at the same list of restaurant types over the past six months, "less frequently" responses consistently outpace "more frequently" ones.

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Small Business Optimism Falls in March

April 10, 2013 9:41 am

Optimism among small business owners took a dive last month as expectations for their companies' sales and the economy fell, according to a survey released Tuesday. The National Federation of Independent Business said its index of small business optimism, compiled from a survey of its members, fell 1.3 points to 89.5 after three months of modest gains.

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USDA Commits To Improving School Meals

April 10, 2013 9:39 am

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack discussed USDA efforts to improve school meals and outlined the need for a renewed commitment to improve childhood nutrition, which will lead to a healthier generation of Americans. Vilsack noted that America's students now have healthier and more nutritious school meals due to improved nutrition standards implemented as a result of the historic Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.

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Food Security a Key Issue in Venezuela

April 10, 2013 9:37 am | by JAMES ANDERSON,Associated Press

Venezuelans complain that what goes into their Sunday dinner plate comes from abroad. It's a complaint heard often these days as Hugo Chavez's hand-picked successor, Nicolas Maduro, seeks election against opposition candidate Henrique Capriles. Under the socialist government, shoppers cannot count on finding sugar, cornmeal for Venezuela's beloved arepas and other goods when they go to market.

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Cargill 3Q Falls on Higher Costs

April 10, 2013 9:34 am

Cargill said Tuesday that its fiscal third-quarter net income fell 42 percent, hurt by higher costs at its meat processing businesses. For the quarter ended Feb. 28, the privately held agribusiness company earned $445 million, down from $766 million in the same period a year ago. Revenue edged up 1 percent to $32.2 billion.

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Court Approves Sale of Hostess’ Last Core Assets

April 10, 2013 9:33 am

Hostess Brands Inc. won approval Tuesday to sell off the last of its major cake and bread brands, bringing the total proceeds from its liquidation to about $860 million. A U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge in New York approved the two deals, said Hostess spokeswoman Anita-Marie Laurie.

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Photo of the Day: Venezuela's Foreign Food

April 10, 2013 9:31 am

Venezuelans complain that what goes into their Sunday dinner plate comes from abroad: Steak, from Brazil; plantains, the Dominican Republic; rice, South Africa; Parmesan cheese, Uruguay; oats, Chile. Even coffee, in a country famed for it, often is Colombian.

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The Challenges of Food Safety Training

April 9, 2013 12:24 pm

A new survey questioned 649 food and drink manufacturers and processors worldwide to identify the needs, effectiveness and challenges of food safety training in the industry. While companies recognized improved product quality and higher employee morale as the greatest benefits of effective food safety training, over 70 percent of those surveyed said finding the time for training was the greatest challenge.

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West Coast Fisheries To See Ecosystem Approach

April 9, 2013 12:21 pm | by JEFF BARNARD,AP Environmental Writer

Federal fisheries managers for the West Coast are poised for a major change in the way they make sure that plenty of fish remain in the sea. The Pacific Fishery Management Council is meeting in Portland this week. On Tuesday, it's expected to adopt a new ecosystem management approach to managing the catch off Oregon, Washington and California.

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USDA Partners with FDA on Egg Export Program

April 9, 2013 12:19 pm

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), in collaboration with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has developed a program to certify processed eggs and egg products for export, providing new opportunities for U.S. food exporters. "This is one more step the Obama Administration has taken to expand exports of high quality U.S. agricultural products," said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack.

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