Consumer concerns about a synthetic growth hormone used in milk production have prompted two leading food producers in the United States – General Mills and Dannon – to reformulate their dairy product lines. It is a decision that will have immediate implications...
The GM debate at times seems much like the Hokey Cokey (or Pokey, if you’re US-based). There’s been a lot of putting in, some putting out, and quite a lot of shaking things all about, but as of yet, there hasn’t really been a turnaround and definitely...
Last week’s withdrawal of a high-profile functional food in France is disappointing for the company concerned and maybe for the healthy/functional foods industry, but you may be led to think differently if you happen to be a reader of the UK broadsheet,...
E. coli in ground beef, melamine in infant formula, and salmonella in peanut butter - what is next? Isn’t it about time the slices of the US food safety pie were taken back from the multiple federal agencies involved and surveillance placed under one...
Everyone from government to grocers seems to have their own idea of how best to inform consumers about foods’ nutritional content, but a labeling free-for-all has resulted in a clamor of nutrition labels which are actually getting in the way of comprehension.
Who likes pesticides? Misunderstood by consumers and misrepresented by pressure groups, pesticides are a soft target for legislators. The latest blow to that soft target could have hard consequences for the European food industry and for developing countries.
There are fears that in the economic crisis consumers will put on “recession pounds” by eating unhealthily. Rightly or wrongly, food manufacturers may suffer the blame but “unhealthy” and “recession proof” do not necessarily go hand-in-hand.
The news that all-American brewer Anheuser-Busch is to be sold to Belgium’s InBev for $52bn has made sports bar patrons across the US weep into their Budweisers. But the idea that an American firm must remain American for all time runs counter to the...
Food industry voices are joining those of politicians in the GM debate, hailing the controversial technology as the answer to the food supply crisis. But the hearts and minds of consumers must still be won.
For too long, the developed world has taken food for granted. For
years, ample food stocks, a well-supplied export trade and rapidly
rising agricultural productivity have confined food fears, in the
west at least, to history and the...
GlaxoSmithKline's petition to the Food and Drug Administration
(FDA) to ban dietary supplements from making weight loss claims,
has opened a cupboard and only the deluded would deny the presence
of one or two skeletons rattling...
The war between the GM and organic movements has been bitterly fought. However in the midst of a global food crisis the time has come for these old enemies to bury their differences and concentrate on the benefits an alliance may bring.
While in the Hollywood stratosphere, it seems that you are not
anyone these days unless you're a duo, in the glamorous world of
food manufacture, the team-up route to success may not be quite as
The food crisis is neither new nor sudden. The several underlying
causes have been independently, steadily gathering speed and have
collided in a perfect storm not seen for generations. It is going
to take a coordinated, long-term...
It is hard for food companies not to get drawn into the temptation of using attractive label claims that may be shrouded by a veil of doubt. But the real risk comes when the 'if you don't know, don't ask' question is finally answered.
As ever more food companies find themselves in the position of
having employed migrants who were mistreated by illegal labour
providers, it may be time for firms to start taking more
responsibility for the temporary workers many of...
Claiming 'free from' is not a light statement to make. Lives depend
on it. As scientific progress questions the validity of such
claims, it is time to establish exact guidelines and communicate
these to people for whom ingredients...
While the world's media is bemoaning rising food prices, the French
government is sniffing around the food industry for signs of
gleeful profiteering. If it is right, the long-term losses of the
nouveau cher will be far greater...
The food industry across Europe needs to make a big effort to
reduce saturated fat in food regardless of whether national
agencies set targets - and it should not wait around for
governments to do all the awareness-raising with its...
As consumer demand for exotic superfruits increases, so will the
impact of transport on the environment. But as policy makers and
green campaigners devise more ways of monitoring greenhouse gases,
who will win the environmental tug...
It looks set to be a vintage year ahead for Chateau Eau De Source
Public - or as it is more humbly known, tap water - as consumers
find themselves encouraged to shun the mineral variety of the
product to reduce packaging waste.
Over the past half year, stevia has been the focus of attention as
the search for a perfect natural sweetener continues. But why
are the birds circling when the ingredient has not been approved in
the two major Western markets -...
The new crop of business cards yielded by another trade show season
have been duly filed away. But the big question remains. Were the
three days at FIE followed, for many, by another three at
SupplySide West, really worth the blisters,...
With all the threats facing food and beverage production -- from
contamination in the food chain, to rising input prices --
there appears to be one menace that towers above the rest, namely
Food companies have been focussing on value-added products in a bid
to reduce their reliance on commodities, which can fluctuate wildly
and deliver slim margins. But now that prices of basic foods are at
an all-time high, can value-added...
Consumer demand - the holy grail of any industry - is a fragile and
easily manipulated treasure. But influencing consumers for
anything other than their own benefit will, more often than not,
carry unintended consequences.
This comment was amended to correct a statement about bans
of additives in other countries. Some of the chemicals were
previously banned by Norway, Austria and Australia but those bans
have since been removed. Allura red AC, tartrazine...
Last week saw a string of communications about food price rises:
first warnings were aired about wheat, then meat, then dairy. It's
a vertiginous view from the heights of the commodity markets, and
it's clearer than ever...