|Dec. 17, 2013|
Congress wrestles with laws on GMO labeling
While federal lawmakers haven't demonstrated an appetite for acting on GMO labels, at least one food industry group that fought the Washington state proposition has begun talking to members. At the same time, some labeling efforts have gained traction in Congress.
10 food industry predictions for 2014
Supermarket News (subscriber story)
Online grocery retailing will increase as a percentage of sales in 2014 — no surprise to many. Bill Bishop, chief architect of Brick Meets Click, provides some insights about just how that growth might occur, as other experts weigh in on the top trends for the coming year.More
Campbell seen as next Buffett target, post-Heinz
Campbell Soup Co., the maker of Goldfish crackers and chicken noodle soup, may be next on acquirers' grocery lists after the $29 billion takeover of H.J. Heinz Co. this year.More
Obama suffers most from year of turmoil, poll finds
The Washington Post
President Barack Obama is ending his fifth year in office matching the worst public approval ratings of his presidency, with record numbers of Americans saying they disapprove of his job performance and his once-hefty advantages over Republicans in Congress eroded in many areas, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.More
Haters gonna hate — but they plan to vote Republican
The Washington Post
Meet the haters, the voters who've had it with all Washington politicians: President Barack Obama, congressional Republicans and congressional Democrats. Despite their distaste for, well, everyone, when push comes to shove, these voters are lining up squarely behind GOP candidates for Congress.More
Senate poised to approve budget
The Senate is poised to approve the two-year budget deal on Tuesday, but the tally is not expected to match the landslide in the House. The bill, which sets top-line spending levels for 2014 and 2015, is on track to just barely get the 60 votes it needs to clear the upper chamber.
Related: House could use budget agreement as tax code reform blueprint (Law360)More
Opinion: Why do we even need a farm bill?
The Washington Post
House and Senate conferees are reportedly close to agreement on a five-year farm bill to replace the one that expired Sept. 30, 2012. According to much conventional wisdom, this is cause for celebration. But the farm bill long has been an irrational, subsidy-laden monstrosity.
Related: A look at regulation in 2014: Farm bill, sugar labels and biotech (Food Navigator-USA)More
Immigration's next hurdle: Obamacare
The flawed rollout of the Affordable Care Act is forcing the White House and its allies to confront a basic, but politically potent, criticism: If the government can't build a website, how can it be trusted to correctly process millions of undocumented immigrants and require every employer to verify the status of their workers?More
Senators urge action on new poultry inspection rule
A bipartisan group of 13 U.S. senators sent a letter last week to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack urging him to move forward with a proposal to modernize the department's poultry inspection system. House agriculture committee leaders sent a similar letter last month.More
GM corn, feta cheese: hurdles for EU-US trade talks
Genetically modified crops, chlorine-washed chicken, beef quotas and a fight over who can call Greek-style cheese "feta" all block the way towards the world's largest free-trade deal.
Related: US urges timely action by China on GMO corn approvals (Reuters)More
Are traditional foods under threat from traffic light labeling?
The U.K.'s traffic light nutrition labeling system is unfair on Italian foods and could harm EU trade in traditional goods, according to the Italian delegation at the EU Council of Ministers.More
Opinion: The minimum wage and McDonald's welfare
McDonald's and Wal-Mart are the beneficiaries of a surprising amount of federal aid: Their employees receive an inordinate amount of Medicaid, food stamps and other public assistance. But digging deeper into the minimum wage conundrum turned up some surprises.More
Study: Pay kids to eat fruits, veggies with school lunch
The good news: Research suggests that a new federal rule has prompted the nation's schools to serve an extra $5.4 million worth of fruits and vegetables each day. The bad news: The nation's children throw about $3.8 million of that in the garbage each day. Strange as it sounds, directly paying students to eat a fruit or vegetable is less expensive and gets better results.
Related: Best ideas for a healthy school lunch (How To Learn) More
E-ZPass being used as drive-thru payment
Too bothered to dig in your wallet when paying for food at your favorite drive-thru? Why not use your E-ZPass, the electronic toll-collecting tag system, to pay for those burgers and fries?More
Tsunami of food regulations will hit in 2014
The coming year will be pivotal for food safety issues, as the Obama administration works on a host of regulations to shore up a system seen as exposing the American public to too many health risks.More
FSIS clarifies rules on E. coli sampling
After the Office of the Inspector General evaluated the sampling programs for Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, FSIS has canceled an earlier memo and reissued its policy, effective Jan. 5.More
ABC News hopes court will toss pink slime defamation case today
The fate of a $1.2 billion lawsuit accusing ABC News of damaging a beef producer's profits and reputation through its reports about a controversial product dubbed by critics as "pink slime" might be determined this week.More
Organic food market growing strong in US
Food Production Daily
Increased consumer interest in eating well and supporting sustainability is fueling continued growth in the market for organic foods.More
Are more Dorito-flavored foods on the way?
The Associated Press via The Republican
PepsiCo Inc., which owns Cheetos, Fritos, Tostitos and other snacks, found success last year after teaming up with Taco Bell to create Dorito-flavored taco shells. And it has since been dreaming up other restaurant dishes featuring its popular snacks.More
Target walks fine line on stocking stores; some shoppers frustrated
Some consumers and analysts say Target's ambition has at times outpaced its supply chain, especially as the retailer expands into food and groceries, opens new international stores and faces brutal price wars during the holiday shopping season.More
Pioneer Food appoints new CFO designate
Pioneer Food Group Ltd. is appointing Cindy Hess as chief financial officer designate. The company says current CFO Leon Cronje will step down on March 1, 2015.More
Carrefour again becoming Wal-Mart's chief rival
The Street via Philly.com
The Wal-Mart strategy of expanding overseas has a cautionary tale in Carrefour, the French-based discounter that has often gone where Wal-Mart feared to tread.More
Rapid pathogen identification system evaluated for food industry testing
PathoGenetix Inc., a developer of an automated system for bacterial strain typing, and Marshfield Food Safety LLC, a microbiology and chemistry contract testing laboratory, have signed an agreement to evaluate PathoGenetix's RESOLUTION™ Microbial Genotyping System.More
Lightweighting leads food packaging trends
Food Production Daily
Consumer demand for sustainability and a desire to conserve cost is helping drive the food industry's ever-increasing interest in lightening up its packaging.More