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Sustainable Palm Oil Sourcing Presents Challenges

More and more major companies are turning away from palm oil as a bid to attract consumers concerned about environmental damage. McDonald’s made the announcement in April, joining Dunkin’ Brands and Yum! Brands Inc. in …

Bojangles’ IPO to Fuel Aggressive Growth

Bojangles’ Inc., the Charlotte-based chicken chain with a loyal following in the South, plans to offer 6.25 million shares in its initial public offering. Some analysts believe it could generate more than $106 million with …

Avian Flu Continues to Spread

The recent H5N2 avian influenza virus may affect the poultry industry for years to come, according to USDA’s chief veterinary officer Dr. John Clifford. Although Dr. Clifford said new cases should drop to close to …

Removal of GMOs, Antibiotics From Supply Increasing

Consumer demand for healthier and more transparent products is shaking up the entire supply chain, from producers through retailers and foodservice outlets. Sales of Non-GMO Project Verified products topped $11 billion in 2014, while Chipotle …

Sweet Corn IMEX Up While Peas Decline

The import and export of sweet corn increased while peas decreased in certain sectors in a year-to-date comparison ending Feb. 28. Imports for frozen sweet corn jumped 29% in volume to 9.2 million-lbs. and 18% …

GrubHub Data Analysis Reveals Urban Dining Trends

Even with restaurant chains offering the same meals across the country, certain foods are more popular in some areas than other. Spread Sheet took a look at meal-ordering patterns on GrubHub across the country, analyzing …

As Bees Disappear, So Too Does Our Choice of Foods

The news hasn’t been very good for bees in recent years. Colony collapse disorder, an epidemic that some have argued is curtailing as of late, alarmed bee keepers who found loss rates above 19% more …

Fast Food Chains Use Heat to Win Over Millennials

The fast-food landscape in America has changed. Powerhouses like McDonald’s are losing their market share as younger consumers begin to demand food products beyond the traditional fare that their parents ate. Struggling operations have been …

Rise of Nutraceuticals May Lead to More Mergers

The continued merging of food and health could lead to an increase in merger activity as both food and drug companies jump on board the trend to take advantage of the booming market. The market …

California Almond Industry Defends Water Usage

The almond industry is fighting back against the notion that it is a major user of water in drought-stricken California. Entering its fourth year of drought, the state recently imposed for mandatory statewide water cutbacks …

Restaurant Sales Are Making Inroads

While sales of food for at-home consumption at $147.3 billion totaled over 50% more than eating and drinking place sales in the first two months of 2015 according to The Food Institute, eating and drinking …

Changes in Fish Choices Coming To Your Local Store

What type of fish that U.S. consumers eat and where it is caught will be changing in the near future. USDA plans to propose standards for the sale of U.S.-raised organic fish and shellfish later …

Vegetables, Seafood Gain as Meat Consumption Falters

Traditional sources of beef and protein such as beef, pork, chicken and turkey are losing ground as consumers more regularly eat meals without them. Sixty-two percent of consumers eat a meatless meal at least once …

Whole Foods Distances Itself from Chicago Competitors

When Whole Foods Market opened its first Chicago shop in 1993, direct competition was minimal. Jewel-Osco, Dominick’s and some natural-food stores sold organic fare, but none of them could offer the wide range of organic …

Grocery Sales Trump Restaurants As Landscape Changes

Americans are not spending more dining out than for groceries, contrary to a report by Bloomberg. They are, however, not always doing so at their local supermarket. The 87-year old Food Institute has been tracking retail …

Florida’s Grapefruit Crop to Be Lowest in 79 Years

The projected crop for Florida grapefruits was dropped by over 10% in USDA’s March estimate. USDA reduced the 2014-15 projected Florida grapefruit crop by 2 million boxes to 13 million boxes, a 13% drop from …

Harsh Winter Takes Toll on Dunkin’ Donuts in NE Cities

Last winter’s snowfall in the Northeast was bad enough that it could hurt more than regional chains, with Dunkin’ Brands Group Inc. expecting its same-store sales down by 1 to 1.6 percentage points thanks to …

Events Important in Building Millennial Loyalty

Millennials are more likely to spend their money on intangible goods, such as fun experiences, than previous generations. This trend carries over to the food world, where a study by Eventbrite found three out of …

How Algae Could Curb Prophylactic Antibiotic Use

Beta glucan, a protein that can be derived from algae and yeast, could become the replacement product for a substantial portion of agricultural antibiotics, according to Geoff Horst from Algal Scientific. He admits that it …

Avian Flu Affecting a Fraction of U.S. Turkey Crop

The effects of avian bird flu that have hit turkey farmers in North America are not expected to have an adverse effect on the supply chain. The H5N2 avian influenza strain has been reported at …

Membership Dues: A Great Business Model

How would you like to know that 2.2% of your annual revenue was going to come from fees people pay to just to buy your products or services? There might be some administrative costs incurred …

What’s the Buzz About Drones?

Drones have been the topic of a lot of buzz the past few months, and rightfully so: the mechanical devices have the ability to improve efficiency in a seemingly endless number of ways for all …

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Citrus Value Up 7% in the U.S.

While overall production was down for U.S. citrus farmers, value increased by 7% to $3.39 billion, according to the recently released 2013-2014 Florida Citrus Statistics from the Florida Agricultural Statistics Service. Driving the value up …

Venture Capitalists Investing in Food Technology

The kinds of venture capital investments that made Silicon Valley into a tech powerhouse are becoming involved with agriculture and food, which saw investments increase by 54% to $486 million last year, according to Dow …

Walmart Pressures Suppliers, Produce Sales to Improve

Facing pressure from dollar stores and other deep discounters, Walmart is working to hold onto its title as the country’s low-price leader. One of its biggest initiatives is pressuring suppliers to cut costs on their …

American Consumers Warming Up to Ugly Produce

American consumers have always demanded perfection. We want the best product available for the lowest possible price. Our entire economic system is fashioned so that we reward products with beautiful form and efficient function by …

AK Salmon Harvest 40% Higher than 2014

The 2015 salmon harvest is projected to be 40% larger than last year. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game forecast released March 30 predicts the 2015 total commercial salmon catch at 220.9 million. That …

Heinz Acquisition Sets Stage for Organic Mergers

Larger food companies may increase acquisitions of smaller organic producers in the wake of Kraft Foods Group and H.J. Heinz Co.’s merger, according to analysts. The two companies could be busy dealing with the merger …

Does Navajo Nation Junk Food Tax Signal a Shift?

It’s no secret that Americans are dealing with health issues stemming from their food choices. Nearly two-thirds of people over 20 years of age are overweight, and a third of Americans over age 20 are …

Gasoline Savings Fuel Foodservice Expenditures

Looking at the latest personal expenditure data from the government, in 2014’s final quarter, consumers spent 9% less than the prior year on gasoline for their vehicles than the year before – or about $33 …

Gulf of Mexico Shrimp Landings Up

February shrimp landings in the Gulf of Mexico are up from a year ago. For the entire Gulf of Mexico, 2.9 million-lbs. of shrimp were landed according to data from NOAA. Looking across count sizes, …

When Visiting Stadiums, Ask: Where’s the Produce?

As the winter snows thaw and spring makes its way out of hibernation, U.S. fruit and vegetable production will begin to prop up, offering relief to anyone who has been awaiting the joy of eating …

Overall Liquid Beverage Sales Increase in 2014

The overall liquid refreshment beverage sector grew 2.2% in 2014 even as soda sales declined for the tenth straight year. Overall soda volume fell 0.9%, with Coke as the biggest seller and Pepsi overtaking Diet …

Cold Storage Down in February

According to a Food Institute analysis of the USDA Cold Storage monthly report, frozen vegetables and fruits both saw declines for February. For frozen vegetables, cold storage declined 2% to 2.0 billion-lbs. overall with potatoes …