Volume 19 – Issue 10
CFEA & Partner News
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April 2022 – August 2022 US ECRM Virtual B2B Programs (new sessions added)
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April 28, 2022 1pm ET Digital transformation: Your key to export success (EDC)
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FDA Issues Draft Guidance on Evaluating the Public Health Importance of Food Allergens Other Than the Major Food Allergens
Update: USDA APHIS Rule on Small Ruminants / Mise à jour : Règlement de l’USDA APHIS sur les petits reminants
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India: E-grocer BigBasket scoops up $131m in fresh funds
Innovative Retail Concepts, the Tata Group-owned company that runs online grocery startup BigBasket, has received a capital infusion of 10 billion rupees (US$131.2 million) from holding firm Supermarket Grocery Supplies, according to financial data accessed by business intelligence platform Tofler. Learn more at Tech in Asia (April 13).
Canada: Walmart Canada opens high-tech distribution centre in BC
Walmart Canada opened a state-of-the-art distribution centre in Surrey, BC recently. With a $175-million price tag, the 300,000-sq.-ft. facility is, according to Walmart, its “most advanced grocery distribution centre,” to date. The state-of-the-art warehouse boasts leading-edge technologies with a focus on sustainability. Full story at Canadian Grocer (April 14).
US: Analyzing Whole Foods foot traffic
A new report from Placer.ai takes a closer look at Whole Foods foot traffic data over the past several years. Full story at The Food Institute (April 15).
US: Asian grocery chain 99 Ranch expands into New York
California-based Asian grocery chain 99 Ranch Market has expanded into New York with a store on Long Island. In addition to typical grocery, seafood, deli and bakery offerings, the store plans to add an “Eat Up” food court featuring Asian cuisine from other businesses in the Westbury, N.Y., shopping center where 99 Ranch is an anchor tenant. Full story at Supermarket News (free registration) (April 15).
France: Carrefour uses blockchain to offer consumers greater supply chain transparency
French grocer Carrefour has become the first retailer to use blockchain technology with its own branded organic products. The distributed ledger technology behind bitcoin enables consumers to scan the QR code on a label to access information about the life cycle of a product. Full story at RetailWire (April 18).
Canada: What’s the status of the grocery code?
The key stakeholders leading the process to draft a new Grocery Industry Code of Practice say progress has been made in recent months, but more discussion with a larger group of industry players is needed to “refine the broad direction we now have into a specific set of proposals.” Full story at Canadian Grocer (April 19).
US: Sam’s Club private label gets sustainability-minded rebrand
Sam’s Club will roll out a new look for products under private label Member’s Mark during the next 18 months to draw attention to the company’s increasing focus on sustainability. The retailer has set a number of sustainability goals for 2025, including sustainable seafood sourcing, fair trade certification for coffee and tea, and removal of ingredients including high-fructose corn syrup and artificial flavors. Full story at Supermarket News (free registration) (April 19).
US: Chicago’s Tony’s Fresh Market sold to New York investment firm
Affiliates of New York-based investment firm Apollo Global Management have acquired Tony’s Fresh Market — a family-owned grocer with 19 locations in the Chicago area. The family of the chain’s Italian immigrant founders, Tony Ingraffia and Domenico Gambino, who opened the first location 43 years ago, will continue to be partners in the business. Full story at Supermarket News (free registration) (April 20).
US: Amazon Fresh adds 3 stores in Southern California
Amazon Fresh is expanding in Southern California, with three stores opening by May 5 in Mission Viejo, La Verne and Murrieta. The stores give Amazon Fresh 14 locations in Southern California and bring the nationwide total to 30, after recent openings in Virginia, Illinois and Washington state. Full story at Progressive Grocer (April 21).
US: David Chang: Experience will drive restaurant innovation
The pandemic has brought challenges including supply chain delays, labor shortages and a shift to off-premises dining and digital tools — all factors that forced eateries to rethink their menus and the way they create new dishes, according to executives at a recent conference. Now that in-person dining is back, barbecue joints and high-end sushi spots that offer a return to fun restaurant experiences are likely to grow in popularity, chef and restaurateur David Chang said. Full story at Restaurant Business (April 14).
US: Crisp & Green outlines aggressive growth plans
Fast-casual salad concept Crisp & Green is growing so fast it can’t say exactly how many units it has opened to date, putting the number at “30-ish” with a total of 195 locations built or in the pipeline. Founder and CEO Steele Smiley says paying workers more than $15 per hour and offering six-figure salaries to some general managers have helped the chain staff up while rapidly opening new units. Full story at Restaurant Business (April 15).
North America: Popeyes plans to open more than 200 new restaurants
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen will open a flagship location in New York City’s Times Square in June, one of more than 200 new units planned to debut in the US and Canada in 2022, the company said. More than half of the new locations will feature the chain’s new double drive-thru format. Full story at Restaurant Business (April 19).
US: Global street foods, shareable dips top NYC menu trends
Dishes inspired by international street foods such as Mediterranean pita pockets, Korean corn dogs and Indian dosas emerged as a top trend in a survey of 38 new New York City restaurants conducted by Gordon Food Service. Shareable dips and spreads showcasing North African and Levantine flavors also proved popular, as did drinks and desserts inspired by Korean dalgona candy. Full story at Flavor & The Menu (April 19).
US: Georgia chef Mashama Bailey dishes on new Texas eateries
Chef Mashama Bailey and business partner Johno Morisano are expanding on the success of their Savannah, Ga., restaurant The Grey with the opening of the Diner Bar and Grey Market in Austin, Texas. With the help of local chef de cuisine Kristine Kittrell, the restaurants will focus on using regional ingredients such as redfish from the Gulf of Mexico to offer a spin on some of the same Southern dishes that made The Grey a success. Full story at Austin American-Statesman (April 19).
US: NYC chef brings his expertise to Maine’s White Barn Inn
Mathew Woolf, who was previously a chef at the Rainbow Room at Rockefeller Plaza in New York City, has been named executive chef at The White Barn Inn in Kennebunk, Maine, where his approach to the menu blends “modern American cuisine with coastal luxury,” he says. The chef will team up this weekend with Ryan Hardy, founder of New York City’s Delicious Hospitality Group, for a collaboration that will include dinners, a pasta-making demonstration and a wine class with flavors influenced by the Maine coastline. Full story at SeacoastOnline (April 21).
Canada: Has COVID really changed the food industry?
The Agri-food Analytical Sciences Laboratory at Dalhousie University, with the help of Caddle Insights, has published new data concerning the Canadian food market. If we are to believe the forecasts, by 2025 the food market in Canada will be more home-based, more virtual, and influenced by the greater curiosity of consumers who now have higher food literacy. Learn more at Canadian Grocer (April 14).
China: Middle class increasingly choosing seafood as pork consumption declines
A structural decline in China’s pork consumption, being driven by the country’s changing demographics as well as health concerns and rising incomes, will benefit the seafood industry, according to Bu Rui Ke (which also trades as China Brick), a research consultancy focused on agricultural commodities and publicly listed agricultural and food firms. Learn more at SeafoodSource (April 18).
US: Sales of snacks with natural sugar alternatives boom
Consumer interest in lowering sugar intake via better-for-you, natural sugar alternatives is driving dollar sales growth for candy, baked goods and meat snacks that contain these sweeteners to significantly outpace sales of traditional products, according to SPINS data. Monk fruit lead sales growth at 20% for the one-year period that ended Jan. 31, followed by Stevia and sugar alcohols. Full story at BeverageDaily (April 18).
US: Why non-traditional flours are trending as snack ingredient
Growing interest in clean-label and gluten-free diets is driving increased use of alternative flours, such as almond or coconut flours, in snacks and baked goods. Acorn nut flour is gaining traction due to a protein- and fiber-rich content, while flours based on spent grains and even watermelon seeds are benefiting from the upcycled food trend. Full story at Food Business News (free registration) (April 19).
Canada: Three big insights on how people are approaching healthy eating
Canadians’ focus on healthy eating has been a top priority for years and consumers have capitalized on the wealth of available health information. Today, consumers often view their health choices as an extension of their values and beliefs. To better understand consumers’ approaches to healthy eating, Canadian Grocer provides three big health insights from this year’s Trends Report. Read the insights at Canadian Grocer (April 20).
US: Early morning and late night snacking rise as traditional breakfast, lunch dip
As Americans who have worked from home since the pandemic begin to return to their offices and become more comfortable socializing in the evenings, when and what they eat is shifting earlier and later – at the expense of more traditional meals – creating opportunities and challenges, according to research from The Hartman Group. Learn more at FoodNavigator (April 21).
Canada: The untapped boomer opportunity
The boomer cohort in Canada is large, affluent and willing to spend their dollars – ignore them at your peril. Boomers are still viewed as one of the more affluent generations and they’re also one of the most under-targeted cohorts, says Nourish Food Marketing president Jo-Ann McArthur. But, there are ways for grocers to tap into this “massive marketing opportunity.” Learn more at Canadian Grocer (April 21).
US: Scientists identify a significant association between cereal fibre and low inflammation
Cereal fibre is consistently associated with lower inflammation compared with vegetable and fruit fibre, according to a recent US study assessing the relationship between dietary fibre, inflammation, and CVD incidence. Learn more at BakeryandSnacks (April 15).
US: Study explores what food sector needs to know about how to reduce sodium
More than 90% of Americans consume too much sodium, which can lead to hypertension, high blood pressure, and increased risk of heart disease and stroke. Most of the excess sodium comes from processed and packaged foods, so the food industry and food scientists continuously look for ways to reduce sodium. A new paper from the University of Illinois provides a comprehensive review of scientific literature on sodium reduction strategies in food production. Learn more at MedicalXpress (April 15).
UK: Majority of Brits believe HFSS restrictions will be ineffective in fighting obesity
A new report reveals the majority of Brits do not consider the soon-to-be implemented ‘tobacco-style’ controls of high fat, sugar and salt (HFSS) products will help in the fight against obesity. Learn more at BakeryandSnacks (April 19).
North America: Consumer knowledge about glyphosate-tainted foods still ‘dangerously’ lacking
A survey of US and Canadian adults reveals a significant gap in consumer awareness regarding the world’s most widely used pesticide, even among those trying to limit their pesticide exposure. Learn more at BakeryandSnacks (April 20).
UK: Beer, spirits have more detrimental effects on the waistline and on cardiovascular disease risk than red or white wine
Drinking beer and spirits is linked to elevated levels of visceral fat—the harmful type of fat that is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome, and other health complications—whereas drinking wine shows no such association with levels of this harmful fat and may even be protective against it, depending on the type of wine consumed. Learn more at MedicalXpress (April 20).
US: Intense exercise while dieting may reduce cravings for fatty food
In a study that offers hope for human dieters, rats on a 30-day diet who exercised intensely resisted cues for favored, high-fat food pellets. While more research needs to be done, the study may indicate that exercise can shore up restraint when it comes to certain foods, said Travis Brown, a Washington State University physiology and neuroscience researcher. Full story at MedicalXpress (April 21).
UK: Stop the clocks: Brisk walking may slow biological aging process
A new study of genetic data published Wednesday April 20 of more than 400,000 UK adults has revealed a clear link between walking pace and a genetic marker of biological age. Learn more at MedicalXpress (April 21).
China/US: Year-long study shows time restricted diets offer no benefit
In their paper the group describes their year-long study that involved monitoring obese volunteers observing two versions of the same diet and what it showed about the benefits of time restrictions. At the end of the year, the researchers found that while the volunteers in the eating-window did lose more weight on average than the other group, it was not statistically large enough to be meaningful. Full story at MedicalXpress (April 21).
Food Safety Watch
Canada: Various poppy seeds recalled over Salmonella concerns
Industry is recalling various poppy seeds from the marketplace because of possible Salmonella contamination. This recall was triggered by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s inspection activities. The recalled products have been sold across Canada. Full story at Food Safety News (April 15). More poppy seeds recalled over Salmonella concerns. Full story at Food Safety News (April 21).
Hong Kong: Surveillance system detects 2,000 incidents in 2021
About 2,200 food incidents were detected in 2021 in a system used to monitor issues outside Hong Kong. The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) uses the Food Incident Surveillance System (FISS) to record events and examine the potential domestic impact on the local community. More than 2,000 incidents were identified in 2020. Full story at Food Safety News (April 17).
US: Kosher is going mainstream; food safety an important issue
According the JIFA, the Jewish Initiative for Animals 74 percent of Americans choose kosher based on concerns for food safety. In fact, of the people who buy kosher products, the majority point to food safety as their key concern. And previous research has shown that American shoppers believe that kosher food is safer. Full story at Food Safety News (April 19).
Various: Countries raise 10 new concerns at WTO meeting
Almost 50 specific trade concerns (STC) were discussed at the WTO Committee on Sanitary and Phytosanitary (SPS) Measures meeting in March. Issues included pesticide maximum residue limits (MRLs), animal diseases, and COVID-19 related measures. Learn more at Food Safety News (April 20).
South Korea: Microplastic pollution fears: Authorities seeks to allay consumers’ food concerns with new data
The South Korean government has sought to quell rising consumer concerns over microplastic pollution rates in food, citing new data showing that it falls below toxic levels. Learn more at FoodNavigator (April 21).
EU: WHO and FAO call for experts and data on pathogens in poultry
The World Health Organization and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) are looking for data and experts on Salmonella and Campylobacter in poultry meat. Learn more at Food Safety News (April 22).
US: TTB warns brands over use of ‘clean’ descriptor with alcohol beverages
The US Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau has weighed in on the use of the word ‘clean’ with alcohol beverages. Learn more at BeverageDaily (April 18).
Denmark: ‘First country in the world’ to develop its own climate label for food
Denmark is investing DKK 9m (€1.2m) in the development of a government-run climate label for food. Learn more at FoodNavigator (April 19).
EU: EFSA opinion on nutrient profiling spotlights fat, sodium and sugar
The European Food Safety Authority has issued scientific advice on nutrient profiling that will help inform the Commission’s future plans for front-of-pack labelling. Learn more at ConfectioneryNews (April 19).
Scotland: Health warnings on alcohol labels make drinking unappealing, says study
Millennials are more likely to perceive alcohol as ‘unappealing’ and ‘socially unacceptable’ if they display prominent health warnings, according to a new study. Full story at BeverageDaily (April 20).
New Zealand: ‘Health benefit claims don’t go far enough’: NZ industry body urges govt to emulate Australia and Canada
Trade body Natural Health Products New Zealand (NHPNZ) said that being permitted to make health benefit claims “does not go far enough” to put locally produced natural health products (NHPs) on par with overseas competitors. Learn more at NutraIngredients (registration required) (April 21).
Trade and Regulatory News
Canada: Beer Canada welcomes elimination of Canadian excise duties on non-alcoholic beer
Beer Canada welcomes the elimination of all federal alcohol excise duties on non-alcoholic beer, as announced in the federal budget last week. Learn more at BeverageDaily (April 18).
US: Rising food prices are not caused only by inflation
The consumer price index has grown by more than 10% since March of last year with grocery prices experiencing their highest rate of growth in 41 years, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Inflationary pressures on prices are exacerbated by the labor shortage, rising transportation prices and climate change’s effect on crop production, writes Phil Lempert. Full story at Forbes (April 18).
China: Global supply chain disruptions may dwarf 2020
Logistics experts are predicting that China’s expanding COVID-19 lockdowns and ensuing disruptions throughout manufacturing, warehousing, trucking and port and air cargo operations will dwarf those seen during the initial 2020 outbreak in Wuhan. Meanwhile, China is attempting to alleviate supply chain disruptions by drafting “white lists” of business sectors that can start planning to resume production and officials are urging local governments to ease some restrictions for logistics staffers, according to the Xinhua News Agency. Full story at BNN Bloomberg (April 18).
India: New nutra regulations expand scope for NPD and imports
A set of new nutraceutical regulations operationalised by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) this month will make it easier for companies to innovate and import a broader range of supplements, although there are still some ‘bottlenecks’ to overcome, according to a former director at the statutory board. Learn more at NutraIngredients (registration required) (April 20).