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Today in Food Manufacturing

Daily news and top headlines for food manufacturing professionals

Corn Harvest Speeds Ahead Of Schedule

September 5, 2012 12:33 pm

The U.S. corn harvest continues ahead of schedule with some states nearly half-finished at a time when they usually are just getting started. The USDA said Tuesday in its weekly crop update that little has changed in the condition of drought-damaged corn and soybeans. That's because the plants are too far along for recent rain to make a difference.

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Japan To Relax Controls On Beef Imports

September 5, 2012 12:32 pm

Japan is moving toward relaxing restrictions on American beef imports, which had been limited because of fears about mad-cow disease. A panel of experts recommended Wednesday that imports of beef from cows up to 30 months old be allowed, up from the current 20 month age limit.

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Corn Processors Sue Sugar Group Over HFCS

September 5, 2012 12:30 pm | by CANDICE CHOI,AP Food Industry Writer

The battle of the sweeteners keeps getting stickier. The nation's biggest producers of high-fructose corn syrup are countersuing the Sugar Association, saying the group misleads consumers by suggesting its sweetener is to blame for obesity and other health issues.

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Consumer Trends: Wine Has A Great Year

September 5, 2012 12:26 pm

The wine industry outperformed spirits and beer with a 4.6 percent rate of volume growth in 2011, the largest percent gain achieved in adult beverage, and projects another industry-leading year in 2012. In total, the wine industry expanded in 2011 to reach 329.2 million 9-liter cases, according to data released in Technomic's 2012 WineTAB (Trends in Adult Beverage) report.

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Campari Moves Into Rum Market

September 5, 2012 9:58 am

Campari Group, the maker of the bright red Italian aperitif, says it has acquired a controlling stake in Jamaican rum maker Lascelles deMercado from the troubled Caribbean conglomerate CL Financial Ltd. Campari said Monday it had agreed to buy CL Financial's 81.4 percent stake and would offer to buy the rest of Lascelles' shares.

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‘Food Hubs’ Connect Schools With Farmers

September 5, 2012 9:57 am | by GOSIA WOZNIACKA,Associated Press

California-based Ag Link allows school districts to communicate with nearby farmers and buy their produce with the click of a mouse. It's helping the Turlock district and others meet new federal rules requiring more fruits and vegetables in school cafeterias to help prevent childhood obesity.

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McDonald’s To Open Vegetarian Restaurants In India

September 5, 2012 9:54 am | by CANDICE CHOI,AP Food Industry Writer

McDonald's Corp., the fast food chain that brought the hamburger to the world, is opening what may be its first vegetarian-only restaurants. The world's biggest hamburger chain said Tuesday that the locations in India will serve only vegetarian food because of customer preferences in the region. The company could not immediately say when the restaurants would open or how many there would be.

Smithfield Foods 1Q Net Falls On Lower Margins

September 5, 2012 9:51 am | by MICHAEL FELBERBAUM,AP Business Writer

Smithfield Foods Inc. said Tuesday that lower profit margins on fresh pork and higher selling costs drove the world's biggest pork producer's first-quarter net income down about 25 percent, despite gains in its packaged meats business. Pork producers like Smithfield are caught in a tug of war with consumers.

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Beverage Company To Pay Worker Forced Into Prostitute Parties

September 5, 2012 9:49 am

Latin America's biggest beverage company Ambev must pay $25,000 to a worker who was forced to attend prostitute parties as part of a manager's incentive program, Brazil's top labor court ruled. Anheuser Busch InBev's Brazilian unit AmBev must pay because of the embarrassment and bullying the employee suffered, the court stated in a release on its website.

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Photo Of The Day: Meatless McDonald's

September 5, 2012 9:47 am

McDonald's Corp., the fast food chain that brought the hamburger to the world, is opening what may be its first vegetarian-only restaurants. The world's biggest hamburger chain said Tuesday that the locations in India will serve only vegetarian food because of customer preferences in the region. The company could not immediately say when the restaurants would open or how many there would be.

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Nilfisk-Advance U.S. Names New President

September 5, 2012 9:44 am

Nilfisk-Advance Group, one of the world’s leading manufacturers and distributors of professional floor cleaning equipment, announced today that Jeff Barna has joined the company as President & General Manager of Nilfisk-Advance U.S., the company’s American headquarters located in Plymouth, Minnesota.

Isaac Gives Farmers A Brief Break

September 4, 2012 12:24 pm | by JASON KEYSER and JEANNIE NUSS, Associated Press

Several days of rain have given farmers in the nation's midsection a welcome break from irrigating and hauling water for livestock as they contend with the worst drought in the U.S. in decades. The remnants of Hurricane Isaac dropped several inches of rain on wide areas of Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana and Missouri as the storm trudged north. Some spots got more than a half-foot of rain.

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U.S. Soup Sales Boost Campbell’s 4Q

September 4, 2012 12:17 pm | by CANDICE CHOI and MICHELLE CHAPMAN,AP Business Writers

Campbell Soup on Tuesday reported a stronger-than-expected profit for its fiscal fourth quarter as retailers ran promotions to warm up soup sales and stocked up on inventories. The Camden, N.J., company also issued a rosier outlook for its fiscal 2013. Its stock edged up in morning trading after briefly touching its highest level in almost two years earlier in the session.

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U.N. Urges Action To Avoid Food Crisis

September 4, 2012 12:14 pm

The three U.N. food agencies urged governments Tuesday to take quick action to curb rising prices of corn, wheat and soybeans and avoid a repeat of the 2007-2008 food crises. The sharp rise in food prices in recent months threatens to make life even more difficult for tens of millions of people, particularly in poor countries.

Hardy Plant May Produce The Next ‘Super Berry’

September 4, 2012 12:12 pm | by DAN SCHWARTZ,Peninsula Clarion

The berry grows from the Japanese haskap plant, and because of its resiliency, grower Brian Olson said it will be a significant contribution in Alaska, a state that is not predominately known for its crop productions. The berries are "hardy, the fruit's great and I'm really excited for it because I think it can be a new commercial crop in this state that people can actually commercially grow," he said.

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Weight Loss Groups Back NYC Sugary Drink Plan

September 4, 2012 12:09 pm | by JENNIFER PELTZ,Associated Press

Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig and other diet groups said Tuesday they are supporting the city's proposed crackdown on super-sized, sugary drinks, adding prominent weight loss groups' influence to the campaign ahead of a vote next week. Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Weight Watchers North America President David Burwick announced the groups join a list of physicians, elected officials and others who have come out in support of the plan.

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Consumer Trends: Low-Sodium Claims Decline Despite Health Concerns

September 4, 2012 12:06 pm

Despite increased awareness about the risks of too much sodium in consumers' diets and pledges from governments around the world to reduce salt levels in food, products with low/no/reduced sodium claims have seen some decline over the past years according to new findings from Mintel.

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New Jersey Company Recalls Mango Products

September 4, 2012 10:06 am

A New Jersey produce company recalled a number of products distributed in the Northeast that contained fresh-cut mangoes Saturday because of potential salmonella contamination. The products in question have an expiration date of Aug. 28, but the company, F&S Produce Co. Inc., working with the Food and Drug Administration, issued the voluntary recall regardless.

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Mountain Dew For Breakfast

September 4, 2012 10:04 am | by CANDICE CHOI,AP Food Industry Writer

Taco Bell said Friday that it's adding Mtn Dew A.M — a mix of Mountain Dew soda and Tropicana orange juice — to its breakfast menu, which was rolled out earlier this year at select locations. Separately, the industry tracker Beverage Digest said that PepsiCo Inc. next year plans to introduce a drink made with juice, Mountain Dew Kickstart.

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White House Releases Beer Recipe

September 4, 2012 10:02 am | by MATTHEW DALY,Associated Press

The White House has made public the recipe for two homemade beers that have become an object of fascination for beer drinkers everywhere. White House Honey Brown Ale, believed to be the first beer brewed on the White House grounds, includes light malt extract, amber crystal malt, honey, gypsum, yeast and corn sugar.

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