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Montana:For third session in a row, Senate kills bill to allow sale of raw milk

The Missoulian | Posted on April 13, 2017

The Montana Senate killed a measure to allow the sale of raw milk within the state. After more than two hours of debate Tuesday, senators voted down HB 325 by a 28-22 vote. It had passed the House last month with a 69-30 vote. The bill would have allowed cattle, goat or sheep ranchers to sell raw milk and related products directly to consumers or through agricultural shares where people pay an upfront cost in exchange for regular deliveries of goods. Rep. Nancy Ballance, R-Hamilton, carried the bill this year and in 2015.The debate largely focused on concerns about the safety of drinking unpasteurized milk that state and federal health officials have long said can cause illness or death, particularly among children, pregnant women or the elderly because of weak immune systems. Federal law bans the sale of raw milk across state borders, but a little over a two dozen states have legalized the sale in some form.

Social responsibility to go, please

Feedstuffs | Posted on April 11, 2017

However, as consumers continue to demand more value from their food, many fast food companies have been trying to meet expectations for social responsibility in the products they offer. McDonald’s, for example, now aims to “make sustainability the new normal” for their business practices. As an industry giant, the corporation is consistently at risk of criticism for contributing to human health problems, such as obesity because of their menu offerings. The company has also recently experienced the fallout of criticism over animal treatment at farms that supply to them and over worker wages.  Of the restaurants studied, Panera Bread was ranked as most socially responsible, followed by Subway and Chick-fil-A. Over 60% of people participating ate fast food one or more times per month. McDonald’s, KFC, and Taco Bell were perceived to be the least socially responsible of the fast food restaurants studied. Surprisingly, there were few significant correlations between how frequently people visited fast food chains and their social responsibility rankings. While it might seem counterintuitive to study public perceptions of social responsibility in relation to consumption of fast food, this research underscores that even when it might seem minimally relevant, people are evaluating the value and merits of companies involved in food production and distribution. It also suggests the benefits of marketing geared toward educating consumers as a way of both informing consumer decision-making and potentially creating public goodwill towards a brand.

Glyphosate-free label unveiled in U.S.

The Western Producer | Posted on April 10, 2017

Food label claims have become about as rare as air molecules. Seemingly, every food item in the grocery store is either free range, free run, humanely raised, organic, GMO-free and of course, gluten-free. But a label officially launched in March and now on the market might generate more controversy than any of the previous claims.Yesterday, Leaf & Love Lemonade, made by a California company, became the first product in America to be certified as “Glyphosate Residue Free.”

Brazil finds contamination in 8 meat samples, will close other plants

Meatingplace (free registration required) | Posted on April 10, 2017

Contamination by bacteria capable of affecting public health was found in eight meat samples from two processing facilities investigated in Brazil's corruption probe “Operation Weak Flesh,” the country's Ministry of Agriculture said Thursday. Other unrelated problems found in two meat processing facilities owned by Peccin, and in a third plant by Central de Carnes Paranaense, located in Colombo (Paraná state), led the government to order the cancellation of their Federal Inspection Service (SIF) registrations, closing them permanently. The Brazilian government didn't give details about the reasons to close those plants

Lab-Grown Meat May Save a Lot More than Farm Animals’ Lives | Posted on April 10, 2017

Imagine a backyard barbecue where the parents grill burgers and chicken kebabs they've grown from single cells using a home meat-making machine.  Meat is essentially muscle tissue, so if it grows naturally from a just few cells into a thick chunk, why can't the same process happen in the lab? Over the past few years, scientists have made progress in figuring out how to use self-renewing cells to grow this tissue outside the body, and some hope to scale it up for mass production soon. You can call it lab-grown, clean, or cultured meat — we have yet to settle on a term — but there's a good chance these products will replace conventional meat because of their potential for reducing environmental cost, increasing health benefits for humans, and protecting the welfare of the animals.

Meal kits resonating with consumers: Harris Poll study

Meatingplace (free registration required) | Posted on April 5, 2017

One in four adults bought a meal kit in 2016 and 70 percent of meal kit purchasers are still actively buying meal kits, according to a new Harris Poll.

Hey, You! Stop Eating My Yard!

Wall Street Journal | Posted on April 5, 2017

The rise in popularity of wild vegetation like fiddleheads, mushrooms and seaweed is causing friction between foragers and landowners; ‘fry it up and eat it.’ Such tensions are becoming more common in Maine, where the rise in popularity of wild vegetation like fiddleheads, ramps, mushrooms and seaweed for uses from gourmet cooking to nutritional supplements is causing friction between foragers and landowners. It is also threatening the state’s unusual and centuries-old tradition of allowing public access to private property.

Study: Grocery shoppers 'not informed at all' by labels

Food Dive | Posted on April 5, 2017

Label Insight surveyed more than 1,000 consumers about their dietary preferences and how they use labels to make informed purchasing decisions, according to Label Insight. Of those, 67% said it was challenging to learn whether a food product meets their needs by simply reviewing the package label, and nearly half said they were "not informed at all" about a product even after reading the label. The survey found 98% of consumers believe it’s important to consider the ingredients in the food products in their carts. The report also showed about 50% of consumers are currently following a diet program.

Danone will sell Stonyfield to win federal OK for WhiteWave buyout

Chicago Tribune | Posted on April 5, 2017

French yogurt maker Danone will sell its Stonyfield Farms business to gain approval from U.S. regulators for a $12.5 billion buyout of Denver's WhiteWave Foods. The Justice Department made the deal, first announced last summer, contingent on the sale, citing the potential for reduced competition in the organic milk market if Stonyfield were owned by Danone.

New scandal ensnares JBS

Meat + Poultry | Posted on April 5, 2017

JBS SA, the world’s largest meatpacker, has been named in a new federal investigation into purchases of cattle that were grazed on illegally deforested land. JBS has denied any wrongdoing.  IBAMA, the Brazilian environmental protection agency, released the results of Operation “Carne Fria” which is a three-year probe of more than a dozen meat packers and at least 20 farms that sold cattle raised in Para, which occupies a large swath of the Amazon Rainforest. The state capital is Belem, which is located near the mouth of the Amazon River. In a statement, Cameron Bruett, JBS spokesperson, said, “JBS facilities are not subject to the embargo related to illegal deforestation, pursuant to a preliminary injunction issued by the Brazilian Federal Justice.