Frozen Express
Sep. 4, 2013

Starboard lines up rival buyers for Smithfield Foods
Activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP said it is working with investors interested in paying "substantially" more for Smithfield Foods Inc. than the price China's Shuanghui International Holdings Ltd had agreed to pay.

Related: Opinion: Protect American food innovation (Politico)More

GAO to USDA: Not so fast on chicken processing changes
The Department of Agriculture needs to hit the brakes on its plan to allow poultry plants to speed production lines by 25 percent while replacing government inspectors with plant employees, a congressional report advises.More

Good news for food folks in US manufacturing
Food Production Daily
August was a good month for U.S. food manufacturers, with the sector growing even as many others slowed, according to the Institute for Supply Management's latest report.More

Obama's summer slump
President Barack Obama has just ended a summer shadowed by weakness: A convergence of external events and what even some Democrats are calling self-inflicted setbacks have cast a harsh light on a so-far anemic second term. More

Compromise IS a dirty word
The Washington Post
"Compromise" stinks. Not as a concept, but as a word. "Voters do not respond well to it, nor do they side with a candidate who is defined by it," according to a memo by Democratic pollster Jef Pollock off of a new nationwide poll conducted by his firm, Global Strategy Group.More

Democrats' Kentucky 'closer' jabs in early rounds of fight with McConnell
The Hill
Alison Lundergan Grimes, fighting to topple Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, is pressing her opponent to get specific on major issues, including U.S. military action in Syria — but she is studiously vague on her own views.More

COOL too cumbersome for meat labeling?
For several years now, there's been a battle brewing over how much U.S. consumers need to know about where their meat comes from. A USDA proposal known as COOL is drawing fire from some who believe the rule would be cumbersome for the food industry to implement.

Related: New WTO panel sought for COOL as lawsuit proceeds (Capital Press)More

California immigrant worker bill opens door to more wage fights
Law360 (subscription required)
A bill seeking to impose stiff penalties on employers that retaliate against immigrant workers for complaining about nonpayment of wages and other labor violations cleared a California Senate committee on Friday, and lawyers say that if it's enacted, it could fuel more wage litigation in California and encourage other states to float similar legislation.

Related: Alison Lundergan Grimes repeats call for higher minimum wage (The AP via WUKY)More

Farmers await specifics on FDA rule rewrite
Capital Press
The Food and Drug Administration visited farms and packing sheds throughout the Pacific Northwest in August to get a firsthand idea of how proposed food safety rules might impact fruit and vegetable growers. At the end of their tour FDA officials said they will make changes to rules many growers say could either put them out of business or drastically change the nature of their farming operations.More

Opinion: Don't trust a chicken nugget that's visited China
Would you willingly eat a chicken nuggets processed in a country that has no intention of meeting U.S. food safety standards? Most Americans likely wouldn't. That may explain why the U.S. Department of Agriculture waited until the day before a long holiday weekend to announce it has ended a ban on Chinese chicken imports.More

AFFI Government Action Summit: Register today!
AFFI's annual Government Action Summit, Sept. 10-12, offers you a voice with policy makers. Register today and advocate for the industry!More

Fast food strikers may get an unexpected result
Supermarket Guru
The sooner fast food workers earn higher salaries, the more compelled franchisees will be to replace them with technology in the kitchen and at the front end.More

Judge refuses to refer GMO-natural issue to FDA
Bakery & Snacks
In a major development in the debate over whether foods made with GMOs can be labeled "natural," a New York judge handling a lawsuit against Frito-Lay will not refer it to the FDA.More

The Greek yogurt culture war
The Wall Street Journal
Over a third of the yogurt in a typical grocery store is now Greek, in varieties from low-fat to fruit-on-the-bottom to tubes for kids. Because shelf space is limited, the Greek squeeze means consumers have had to say goodbye to some varieties of traditional-style yogurt and more obscure flavors.More

US trade deficit widens in July as imports rebound
The U.S. trade deficit widened slightly more than expected in July as exports dipped, but a rebound in imports pointed to some firming in underlying domestic demand early in the third quarter, the Commerce Department reported Wednesday.More

From shelf to storefront: Brand-building via retail
Consumer product manufacturers have historically focused on just one type of "real estate" — namely, that relatively small amount of shelf space where their brands jockey for attention in the store. But during the past few years, a few manufacturers have been doing deals with landlords to launch spacious retail stores.More

GIA: Growing preference for functional foods fuels nanoencapsulation
GIA has released a comprehensive global report on nanoencapsulation for food products. The global market is projected to reach $7 billion by 2018, driven by increasing demand for functional foods, better food packaging and technological developments in nanoencapsulation techniques.More

Groceries drive up Dollar General's quarterly profit
Dollar General Corp. reported a 15 percent rise in second-quarter profit as efforts such as selling more groceries and brand-name products attracted customers to its stores.More

General Mills sees tasty international prospects for snack bars
Bakery & Snacks
Broad popularity of grain snack bars on an international scale will underpin prospects for the future, says the CFO of General Mills.More

Campbell Soup carves out new category sections in center store
The time constraints and limited cooking skills of many consumers have prompted them to find meal solutions via foodservice, whether in the grocery store or from restaurant take-out. Now Campbell Soup Co. is fighting back to regain those sales in the center store of supermarkets. More

Food Lion parent gets new CEO
Delhaize Group, the owner of the Food Lion supermarkets, named former Metro AG manager Frans Muller as chief executive officer. Muller will join the Belgian retailer Oct. 14 and become CEO Nov. 8, Brussels-based Delhaize said Wednesday in a statement.More

PepsiCo: Currencies will hurt revenue this year
PepsiCo Inc., the soft-drink maker that makes half of its sales outside of the U.S., said currency fluctuations will cut revenue growth by about 2 percentage points this year, more than previously forecast.More

Million-dollar burger: The most lucrative fast food restaurants
New data on the top fast food chains reveals the best opportunities for franchise restaurant owners to bring in the most revenue in a single store. More

TruTag launches incredible, edible food tracing
Food Production Daily
TruTag Technologies has launched tiny sensors that let food firms add security features to food packaging, and to the food itself, helping to reduce food fraud.More

PepsiCo tests bananas, plantains as broad-ranging subsitute
Bakery & Snacks
PepsiCo has been experimenting with ingredients from unpeeled heat-treated green bananas and plantains to serve as everything from a gluten substitute to a sugar replacement in products from oatmeal to smoothies, crackers, bars and cookies, a recent patent application reveals.More