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Daily news and top headlines for food manufacturing professionals

McDonald’s to Expand 'Build-Your-Own Burger' Test

February 27, 2014 12:46 pm | by CANDICE CHOI, AP Food Industry Writer | News | Comments

McDonald's began testing the waters of personalized orders last year with a "build-your-own burger" concept at a location in California. In addition to its traditional menu, the restaurant in Laguna Niguel offers tablets on which people can tap out the bun, patty, cheese and toppings they want on their burgers.

Widespread Drought Blamed for Soaring Beef Prices

February 27, 2014 8:00 am | by CBS News | Videos | Comments

Low production combined with consistent demand have resulted in record high prices of beef, according to experts. CBS News' Anna Werner reports on how the nation's extreme drought is impacting beef prices for producers, restaurants and consumers.

Japanese Trading House to Acquire U.S. Seafood Firm

February 26, 2014 12:31 pm | News | Comments

Japanese trading house Marubeni Corp. said Wednesday it has agreed to acquire Eastern Fish Co., one of the largest shrimp importers in the United States, so it can enhance its ties with shrimp producers in the world and secure a stable supply.

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Record Pink Salmon Harvest May Drive Down Prices

February 26, 2014 12:26 pm | News | Comments

State officials say Alaska's record pink salmon harvest in 2013 could create a market glut that will drive prices down for several years. The state Division of Economic Development sees a glut in supply after the 2013 harvest, bringing downward pressure on prices.

Indiana Fish Farm Expansion Faces Opposition

February 26, 2014 10:05 am | News | Comments

An eastern Indiana fish farm that produces nearly 3 million pounds of fish a year is facing opposition to its proposed $30 million expansion that would include adding a feed mill. Some neighbors are against the project, saying the odor from the farm's manure lagoon is disruptive.

Fed Launch Criminal Probe of Calif. Slaughterhouse

February 26, 2014 10:01 am | News | Comments

A congressman says federal officials have launched a criminal probe of a Northern California slaughterhouse that recently recalled more than 8.7 million pounds of beef. U.S. Rep. Jared Huffman said he was told by investigators that the suspected misconduct was grave.

Photo of the Day: Taco Bell Takes on McDonald's with Breakfast

February 25, 2014 9:31 am | News | Comments

Taco Bell is readying for the launch of its national breakfast menu on March 27, with items such as the A.M. Crunchwrap designed to appeal to its fan base of younger men. And the chain says breakfast will be available until 11 a.m. — a half-hour later than McDonald's.

Taco Bell Bets on Waffle Taco, Other Breakfast Items

February 25, 2014 9:28 am | by CANDICE CHOI, AP Food Industry Writer | News | Comments

Taco Bell is readying for the launch of its national breakfast menu on March 27, with items such as the A.M. Crunchwrap designed to appeal to its fan base of younger men. And the chain says breakfast will be available until 11 a.m. — a half-hour later than McDonald's.

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Calif. Producers Won’t Get Federal Water

February 24, 2014 10:07 am | by SCOTT SMITH, Associated Press | News | Comments

Without a lot more rain and snow, many California farmers caught in the state's drought can expect to receive no irrigation water this year from a vast system of rivers, canals and reservoirs interlacing the state, federal officials announced Friday.

RI Designates $200K for Seafood, Farm Marketing

February 21, 2014 12:50 pm | News | Comments

Rhode Island wants to help local farmers and fishermen market their products. Gov. Lincoln Chafee announced Thursday that the state plans to award $200,000 in grants to farmers and seafood businesses to help them promote their products.

Calif. Farmers Brace for Little or No Water

February 21, 2014 12:48 pm | by SCOTT SMITH, Associated Press | News | Comments

Federal officials plan to announce Friday how much water they can release this year through a vast system of rivers, canals and reservoirs, but Central Valley farmers on the front lines of California's historic drought expect to get little, if anything.

Farm Sales Boom Even as U.S. Farmland Declines

February 21, 2014 12:38 pm | by MARY CLARE JALONICK, Associated Press | News | Comments

American agriculture has experienced a boom, with market values of crops, livestock and total agricultural products reaching record highs even as the amount of U.S. farmland declined, according to a new government survey released Thursday.

USDA: Slaughterhouse Circumvented Inspection Rules

February 21, 2014 10:00 am | News | Comments

The USDA is alleging that California-based Rancho Feeding Corp. engaged in "circumvention" of federal inspection rules — a charge strongly denied by one of the facility's owners. The company is accused of processing diseased and unhealthy animals without a full federal inspection.

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Bottom-Injection Chilling System

February 21, 2014 1:00 am | by Lindsey Jahn, Associate Editor | Product Releases | Comments

Designed for ground meat, poultry or seafood, the ACCU-CHILL® Bottom-Injection Chilling System chills proteins from the bottom of mixers and blenders with cryogenic effiency and precision.

Hormel 1Q Profit Jumps on Skippy Acquisition, Bacon Demand

February 20, 2014 12:34 pm | News | Comments

Hormel's first-quarter earnings climbed about 18 percent, thanks in part to its acquisition of Skippy peanut butter, as well as a widespread hankering for bacon. The profit from the company's refrigerated foods product segment jumped 59 percent.

Central Valley Meat Reopens

February 20, 2014 9:44 am | News | Comments

Central Valley Meat Co., which was shuttered by federal inspectors Monday because of unsanitary conditions, has reopened. Company officials said they took immediate action to fix the cleanliness problems. Neither the company nor federal officials discussed the problems in detail.

Lawsuits May Lead to Changes at Fish Hatcheries

February 19, 2014 12:39 pm | by GOSIA WOZNIACKA, Associated Press | News | Comments

The practice of populating rivers with hatchery fish rather than making greater efforts to restore wild runs is facing a battery of court challenges in Oregon, California and Washington state. The disputes illustrate a crucial tension in the Pacific Northwest, where salmon and steelhead are iconic fish.

Feds Shut Down Central Valley Meat Co.

February 19, 2014 9:43 am | News | Comments

Federal inspectors shut down Central Valley Meat Co., which supplies beef to the National School Lunch Program, because of unsanitary conditions. In September 2013, Central Valley recalled 58,000 pounds of beef for the school lunch program after federal officials said the meat possibly contained pieces of plastic.

Nestle Recalls Hot Pockets

February 19, 2014 9:39 am | News | Comments

Nestle is voluntarily recalling two of its Hot Pockets products as part of a larger meat recall. The food maker is recalling an unspecified number of "Philly Steak" and its "Croissant Crust Philly Steak and Cheese" Hot Pockets in certain sizes.

Romanian Sausage Saved Under New EU Rules

February 18, 2014 12:19 pm | by ALISON MUTLER, Associated Press | News | Comments

Romania's national dish looks like it will be granted a European Union reprieve. The Romanian Meat Association says officials have agreed that bicarbonate of soda, which gives spicy "mici" bullet-shaped grilled meat its springy texture, will be permitted by the EU.

Wash. Company Recalls Dried Eggs

February 18, 2014 12:14 pm | News | Comments

A Washington state company is recalling more than 100 tons of dried egg products over concerns about salmonella contamination. The USDA says the products from Nutriom LLC of Lacey, Wash., were shipped nationwide and to American military bases abroad as well as to Canada.

Calif. Officials Seize Illegal Shark Fins in San Fran

February 18, 2014 10:13 am | News | Comments

More than a ton of illegal shark fins were seized from a vendor in San Francisco, state wildlife officials said. Michael Kwong, 42, of Kwong Yip Inc. was cited for having 2,138 pounds of the fins, which violates California's ban that went into effect in July.

Disputed ‘Ag Gag’ Bill Advances in Idaho

February 18, 2014 10:09 am | by JOHN MILLER, Associated Press | News | Comments

Dairy farmers enraged by animal-rights activists trying to root out cruelty and abuse got a boost when Idaho senators voted 23-10 to intensify punishments for those who trespass to film their operations without permission. The measure would put offenders in jail for up to a year and fine them $5,000.

China City Closes Poultry Markets to Combat Bird Flu

February 18, 2014 9:59 am | News | Comments

The major city of Guangzhou in southern China closed its live poultry markets on Saturday for two weeks to halt the spread of the H7N9 strain of bird flu. The closure lasts through Feb. 28 "to strengthen work to control the spread of the H7N9 flu," the city government said.

Obama Turns Focus to California Drought

February 14, 2014 12:44 pm | by DARLENE SUPERVILLE, Associated Press | News | Comments

California is in the midst of its worst drought in more than 100 years. Obama will meet with farmers in the Fresno area, where he'll announce more than $160 million in federal financial aid, including $100 million in the farm bill he signed into law last week for programs that cover the loss of livestock.

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