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Dean Foods Revenue Declines Amid Milk Glut

Dean Food Co. struggled with a glut of milk in the second quarter, obliging the dairy giant to cut prices on the private-label products that make up much of its milk and ice-cream sales. Even though consumers are paying less, they didn’t buy more milk, contributing to what Dean Foods said on Monday was an 8.2% drop in second-quarter revenue to $1.85 billion. Analysts expected profit to fall, but Dean Foods’ earnings announcement still sent shares down as much as 8% in early trading. They regained some ground to close Monday’s session at $18.16, a drop of 3.5%.

U.S.: GM Fuji apple edges closer to regulatory approval

Following breakthroughs the Arctic Golden and Granny, Canada-based Okanagan Specialty Fruits (OSF) is one step closer to having another genetically modified apple cultivated in the U.S.  The U.S. Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) publicly shared OSF’s final version of a petition seeking regulatory approval for non-browning Arctic Fuji apples. APHIS said it had reached a preliminary decision to extend its determination of non-regulated status to the variety.

 

China money, market spur Canadian blueberry deluge

An aging mansion sits vacant on an estate outside Vancouver, the garage overtaken by a blueberry sorter and a walk-in cooler packed with the fruit. The owner, an investor from mainland China, leases the estate to Fred Liu at such a bargain the farmer grows blueberries in its fields even though the bottom has fallen out of the market.  As it turns out, the same wave of Chinese wealth that has fueled real estate booms in cities like New York, Sydney and San Francisco and stoked the art market worldwide also has contributed to an unexpected glut of blueberries.

Hampton Creek Ran Undercover Project to Buy Up Its Own Vegan Mayo

In late 2014, fledgling entrepreneur Josh Tetrick persuaded investors to plow $90 million into his vegan food startup Hampton Creek Inc. Tetrick had impressed leading Silicon Valley venture capital firms by getting his eggless Just Mayo product into Walmart, Kroger, Safeway, and other top U.S. supermarkets within about three years of starting his company.  What Tetrick and his team neglected to mention is that the startup undertook a large-scale operation to buy back its own mayo, which made the product appear more popular than it really was.

Sugar beet growers don't understand GMO worries

Nearly two-thirds of domestic sugar production comes from sugar beets, which are grown with genetically modified seeds.  A few big food manufacturers, including Hershey’s, are now saying they will use non-GMO cane sugar instead of beet sugar in products. The moves come as firms await the specifics of a new law requiring that they make clear the presence of genetically modified ingredients. Congress recently passed a compromise bill giving firms a host of options as to how they would do so, with options including a barcode that consumers would scan.

Vermont Attorney General Will Not Enforce GE Food Labeling Law

The Vermont Attorney General will no longer be enforcing Act 120, Vermont’s first-in-the-nation law requiring the labeling of food produced with genetic engineering. “We successfully defended our law for two years, and as a result many companies are now disclosing that their products are produced with genetic engineering,” said Attorney General William H. Sorrell. “We hope they will continue to do so going forward, not because our law requires it, but because it is the right thing to do,” he continued.

Jeffrey Smith: “Our ultimate goal, to eliminate GMOs”

A post on the Food Science Institute blog details how anti-GMO activist Jeffrey Smith admits that his goal was never to give consumers more information about GMOs through a mandatory labeling program. Smith says "although this is clearly a defeat in our campaign to get mandatory labeling in the United States, we are still winning the bigger, more important effort to eliminate gmos from the market all together."

 

Exclusive: Tyson Foods runs high-revenue, low-cost business

Tyson Foods is being transformed into a multi-protein consumer brands company that is defying earnings growth expectations. It’s on its way to eliminating perhaps a billion dollars in costs in three years and giving earning per share guidance of $4.20 to $4.30 in 2017. The catalyst for Tyson’s transformation from a commodity products company to consumer brands protein powerhouse is, of course, its acquisition of Hillshire Brands in 2014.

All 'milk' products not the same

While plant-based “milk” products, such as beverages made from almonds and soybeans, have some nutritional promise, they have a difficult time replacing milk from a cow, J.M. Madigan of North Carolina State University-Raleigh reported. To examine whether plant-based beverages hold the same nutritional aspects as cow’s milk and are overall better for the consumer, Madigan studied multiple research papers on cow-based milk and plant-based "milk" products and analyzed the potential benefits and limitations of each.

Michael Pollan, Ten Years After The Omnivore’s Dilemma

‘Ethical eating’ has taken the food world by storm, but the farms that produce most of our food have changed very little. Thank goodness. Ten years on, it is hard to think of a book that has influenced the public conversation on food more, and Pollan in his foreword is too modest about the impact of his masterpiece.

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