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Weekly comment

Death by food support

If the EU keeps hiding its agriculture sector behind huge pay cheques instead of devoting more time to food research funding, the bloc's whimpering and wailing will only get worse.

EU sugar reform: producers cautious, users frustrated

The EU is confident that the sugar reforms announced last week give producers a long-term competitive future, though firms such as Tate & Lyle remain cautious.

Irish campaign to curb excessive snacking

Safefood, the food safety promotion board of Ireland, has launched a campaign aimed at encouraging parents to allow their children to eat snack foods as treats only, and not as...

Sugar: supplies down, prices up, imports called for

Manufacturers of food and beverage products that contain sugar are calling on the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to allow for more sugar imports in order to top up the...

New waxy wheat presents innovation opportunities

Wheat breeders in recent years have been increasingly working on the development of waxy wheat varieties. Yet the commodity has not yet hit the mainstream market as no one seems...

Folic acid should be added to UK flour, expert report

All flour in the UK should be fortified with folic acid, according to a panel of experts advising the government.

Marks & Spencer bans hydrogenated fats

Marks & Spencer's commitment to remove all hydrogenated fats from its entire food range by mid 2006 suggests that awareness of trans fats has now fully hit Europe.

Durum wheat, corn output down, indicating supply shortfall

Estimates for world durum wheat and corn output are down sharply from last year's record harvests, indicating processors might face a price hike for the commodities depending on the demand.

McCain halts chip production in Harbin

Chip maker McCain has shut down its recently opened plant in Harbin, northeast China, after authorities cut off the water supply due to fears of contamination.

Snacks for occasions could help tap into market growth

Snack companies that market the indulgent aspects of their products and relate them to particular occasions, such as relaxing after a stressful day, will cash in on an expanding premium...

Weekly Comment

Time for Japan to act on agriculture

Strong rhetoric at last weekend's Apec summit on the abolition of agricultural subsidies could not drown out the scraping sound of Japanese heels.

Texture analyser gets the measure on soft foods

A gel analyser can help food companies and laboratories measure the texture of butter and cheese products, sauces, doughs and baked goods, vegetables, meat products, candies, yogurts and puddings.

FSA traffic lights system signals labelling dispute

The FSA's backing of a 'multiple traffic light' (MTL) labelling initiative comes a day after the UK food industry promised a voluntary guideline on daily amounts (GDA).

Selenium - slow start in functional foods

Emerging research suggests that selenium, a trace mineral, may have numerous health benefits but no-one is educating consumers about them.

New UK nutrition guidelines target obesity crisis

New guideline daily amounts (GDAs) on food packaging in the UK will empower consumers with vital nutritional knowledge and help cut rocketing obesity rates.

Cracking the corn code could unlock nutritional value

Plans to unlock the genetic code of the corn plant could help lead to higher yields and better quality ingredients.

Safety alerts indicate continuing problems in EU countries

A total of 66 alerts and information notices on contaminated and unsafe food or feed within the EU's borders were sent out to the various member regulators last week, marking...

Sugar demand rising at expense of sweeteners, claims sugar industry

Demand for natural sugar is on the rise, as consumers start to turn away from 'unnatural' sweetener products, according to the nation's Sugar Association, an industry body concerned with the...

APV dough moulding head improves quality, cuts costs

Bakers can significantly improve bread quality and volume and also reduce levels of bread improver ingredients by fitting a special moulding head onto their existing dough moulders, say manufacturers APV...

High fat-low carb diet reduces heart's energy stores

High fat-low carb diets, such as the once-trendy Atkins diet, appear to negatively impact the heart's energy stores, shows new research presented in the US this week.

Weekly Comment

Food safety for all

After all the increased safety procedures put in place over the past decade, one might have been lulled into thinking that poisonings and deaths from food contamination would be rarer...

Not enough safety data on chia, says EFSA

European food safety experts are calling for further safety studies on the omega-3 rich seed chia, before it can be introduced onto the European market.

ISO food safety certification underway in EU

SGS says it has issued the first ISO 22000 certification to a food processor in Spain, marking one of the first general uses of the supply chain standard in the EU.

Nut allergies may not last, says study

As Europe prepares for tougher rules on allergen labeling, a new study has found that allergies to almonds, pecans, cashews and other tree nuts may not be lifelong.

Galactic announces lactic acid price increases

Lactic acid giant Galactic is the latest ingredients firm to announced substantial price increases on the back of rocketing energy costs.

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