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Today in Food Manufacturing

Daily news and top headlines for food manufacturing professionals

ConAgra Raises Profit Forecast

February 20, 2013 12:14 pm

ConAgra Foods is raising its earnings forecast to account for its $5 billion acquisition of food maker Ralcorp and better-than-expected results from its consumer foods and commercial foods segments. The food company, whose brands include Banquet and Chef Boyardee, said Tuesday that it now foresees adjusted earnings of about $2.15 per share for fiscal 2013.


Wholesale Prices Rise on More Expensive Food

February 20, 2013 12:13 pm | by CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER,AP Economics Writer

More expensive food and soda helped drive up a measure of U.S. wholesale prices in January, though overall, inflation stayed tame. The producer price index increased 0.2 percent last month, the first increase since September, the Labor Department said Wednesday. Food prices jumped 0.7 percent, after a steep decline in December. Gasoline and other energy prices fell.


Supreme Court Seems to Favor Monsanto in Patent Case

February 20, 2013 12:11 pm | by MARK SHERMAN,Associated Press

The Supreme Court appeared likely Tuesday to side with Monsanto Co. in its claim that an Indiana farmer violated the company's patents on soybean seeds that are resistant to its weed-killer. None of the justices in arguments at the high court seemed ready to endorse farmer Vernon Hugh Bowman's argument that cheap soybeans he bought from a grain elevator are not covered by the Monsanto patents.


Ex-Hostess Workers Eligible for Federal Aid

February 20, 2013 12:08 pm

Iowa workers who lost jobs when Hostess Brands went out of business are eligible for federal income, training and job search benefits. The maker of Twinkies and other snacks ceased operations in November, laying off dozens of workers at a Waterloo bakery and distribution center, as well as truck drivers and local retail employees in Iowa.


Serbia Withdraws Suspected Toxic Milk

February 20, 2013 12:07 pm | by DUSAN STOJANOVIC and JOVANA GEC,Associated Press

Serbian officials ordered some brands of milk taken off store shelves on Wednesday despite earlier claims that they were safe and not dangerously contaminated with a potentially cancer-causing toxin. The order came after widespread public outrage over allegations that health authorities have for weeks been hiding the results of lab tests which reportedly show that much of the milk sold in Serbia contains high levels of aflatoxins.


Consumer Trends: Consumers Love Canned Food

February 20, 2013 12:00 pm

The Can Manufacturers Institute (CMI) launched Cans Get You Cooking, a multi-year, fully-integrated campaign launching nationwide during National Canned Food Month this February. The campaign kicks off with an integration with ABC's The CHEW, as well as a robust consumer-facing public relations program, partnerships with in-store registered dieticians and a trade media advertising campaign.


Daily Sound Bite: Stronger Meat Regulations Coming in Germany

February 20, 2013 11:44 am

In the wake of the horsemeat scandal that is shaking consumer confidence in Europe, German officials announced earlier this week that they will seek tighter controls over meat products and inspection in addition to stiffer penalties for those who operate outside the law.


Smucker Cuts Coffee Prices

February 20, 2013 9:36 am

J.M. Smucker Co. is lowering the price for most of its packaged coffee products sold in the U.S. an average of 6 percent, as the price of unroasted coffee beans continues to drop. The food producer said Tuesday that the reduced prices are mostly for items sold under the Folgers and Dunkin' Donuts brands.


Germany: Tighter Controls Needed for Meat Products

February 20, 2013 9:34 am | by DAVID RISING,Associated Press

German officials on Monday vowed tighter controls on meat products and stronger penalties for companies that violate food-labeling rules as more items marketed as "all beef" were pulled from supermarket shelves after testing positive for horse meat.


Fewer Bees in U.S. Threaten Almond Supply

February 20, 2013 9:30 am | by GOSIA WOZNIACKA,Associated Press

In an almond orchard in California's Central Valley, bee inspector Neil Trent pried open a buzzing hive and pulled out a frame to see if it was at least two-thirds covered with bees. Trent has hopped from orchard to orchard this month, making sure enough bees were in each hive provided by beekeepers.


Grey Poupon to Air Famous Ad After 16 Years

February 20, 2013 9:27 am | by CANDICE CHOI,AP Food Industry Writer

Grey Poupon's famous "Pardon Me" TV commercial is returning for a moment of Oscar glory. After a 16-year hiatus, the mustard that mocked its own stuffy image in one of TV's most famous commercials will once again take to the airwaves during the Academy Awards show on Feb. 24.


1 Dead After Filipino Rebels Storm Pineapple Plantation

February 20, 2013 9:25 am | by JIM GOMEZ,Associated Press

More than 100 communist guerrillas stormed one of the world's largest pineapple plantations in the southern Philippines, killing a guard and torching farm equipment in their biggest attack this year. At least two other guards and a villager were shot and wounded by the New People's Army guerrillas, who barged into a residential, recreational and office complex on the vast plantation of Del Monte Philippines Inc.


Photo of the Day: Going Nuts for Bees

February 20, 2013 9:23 am

Bee inspector Neil Trent of Scientific Ag Co., inspects a frame of bees to assess the colony strength Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2013, near Turlock, Calif. Trent says some bee hives in the state have weak colonies of bees, spelling a bee shortage in time for almond bloom.

Daily Sound Bite: Monsanto Goes to Court Over a Hill of Beans

February 19, 2013 12:52 pm

Vernon Hugh Bowman, a 75-year-old Indiana farmer, planted Monsanto's Roundup Ready seeds legally, but he also planted late-season seeds purchased from a grain elevator. Monsanto sued him claiming his practice violated the company's seed patent.


Dutch Officials Raid Butcher in Horsemeat Probe

February 19, 2013 12:27 pm

Dutch prosecutors say food safety experts have raided a meat processing plant as part of a criminal investigation into horsemeat fraud. Prosecutors said Friday the company in North Brabant province is believed to have processed horsemeat from the Netherlands and Ireland, and mixed it with beef before selling the mixture as "pure" beef.


Fishing’s Decline Looms; Will Fish Eaters Notice?

February 19, 2013 12:25 pm | by JAY LINDSAY,Associated Press

In May, New England's fishermen will again see a cut to the number of fish they can catch, this time so deeply that the historic industry's existence is threatened from Rhode Island to Maine. But as hard as the cuts are likely to hit fishing communities, local seafood eaters may not notice at all. In the region's markets, grocery stores and restaurants, imported fish dominate, and the cuts make that less likely to change.


Maker’s Mark to Restore Alcohol Content of Whiskey

February 19, 2013 12:21 pm | by BRETT BARROUQUERE,Associated Press

After backlash from customers, the producer of Maker's Mark bourbon is reversing a decision to cut the amount of alcohol in bottles of its famous whiskey. Rob Samuels, Maker's Mark's chief operating officer, said Sunday that it is restoring the alcohol volume of its product to its historic level of 45 percent, or 90 proof. Last week, it said it was lowering the amount to 42 percent, or 84 proof, because of a supply shortage.


Supreme Court Hears High-Stakes Soybean Case

February 19, 2013 12:17 pm | by MARK SHERMAN,Associated Press

Vernon Hugh Bowman figured out a way to benefit from a high-technology product — soybeans that are resistant to weed-killers — without always paying the high price that such genetically engineered seeds typically bring. In so doing, he ignited a legal fight with seed-giant Monsanto Co. that has now come before the Supreme Court, with arguments taking place Tuesday.


Nestle Finds Horsemeat in Pasta Meals

February 19, 2013 12:12 pm

The world's biggest food and drinks maker Nestle SA has become the latest company to pull some of its products off European shelves after they were found to contain undeclared horse meat. The company, based in Vevey, Switzerland, said in a statement late Monday that it withdrew some of its beef pasta ready meals from sale after tests conducted two days earlier detected horse DNA.


Consumer Trends: Online Grocery Shopping

February 19, 2013 12:00 pm

As the popularity of online shopping grows, consumers are beginning to explore new digital shopping categories, including groceries. A new survey from finds that 15 percent of U.S. adults have shopped for groceries online. An additional 19 percent said they don't currently, but plan to in the future.



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