Most Clicked PMA SmartBrief Stories

1. Coles adds first new produce item, kalettes, in 10 years

PMA SmartBrief | May 21, 2015

Kalettes are the latest hybrid vegetables to hit supermarket shelves in Australia. A cross between kale and Brussels sprouts, kalettes are the first new vegetable to be added to the produce section at Australia's Coles supermarkets in about a decade, said Brad Gorman, general manager for fresh produce. Herald Sun (Melbourne, Australia) (tiered subscription model) (05/20)

2. Growers agree to 25% water reduction in Calif.

PMA SmartBrief | May 26, 2015

California farmers have agreed in principle with state regulators to a 25% reduction in water use, and they reportedly have until June 1 to submit plans on how they'll reach that goal. Mandatory cuts would have been imposed if the voluntary agreement hadn't been reached. Fresh Fruit Portal (Chile) (05/26) ABC News (05/22)

3. New French law bans stores from tossing edible food

PMA SmartBrief | May 22, 2015

French food stores can no longer destroy edible food, under a new law that requires merchants to donate the unsold food to a charity or for use as animal feed. The measure is part of the country's commitment to cut its food waste in half by 2025. (U.K.) (05/22) The Guardian (London) (05/21)

4. USDA announces $21M fund for drought-stricken growers

PMA SmartBrief | May 20, 2015

The Agriculture Department's National Resources Conservation Service has allocated $21 million to help growers in eight drought-stricken states. "Today's investment will provide additional resources in drought-stricken areas to help farmers and ranchers implement solutions to mitigate the impacts of sustained drought," said USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack. Growing Produce (05/18)

5. Port delays take a bite out of record Wash. apple crop

PMA SmartBrief | May 26, 2015

A record Washington apple crop coupled with labor-related delays at West Coast ports led to an estimated $95 million in lost sales from fruit that couldn't ship this season, according to the Washington State Tree Fruit Association. Growers wound up dumping millions of pounds of apples that couldn't be sold. KING-TV (Seattle) (05/22) The News Tribune (Tacoma, Wash.) (05/25)

6. CPG companies shift strategy as more consumers shop the perimeter

PMA SmartBrief | May 26, 2015

Consumer packaged goods companies are aiming to increase their presence in the perimeter of the store with new products and acquisitions of smaller brands to appeal to health-focused shoppers. Companies such as Kraft Foods and General Mills have removed artificial ingredients from their products, and Campbell has shifted its focus from soup to fruit and vegetable drinks and fresh carrots with its acquisition of Bolthouse Farms. Fortune (05/21)

7. Kings Food Markets to bring back local produce campaign

PMA SmartBrief | May 20, 2015

New Jersey-based Kings Food Markets will reprise its 24 Hour Just Picked Promise on Friday, a summer promotion launched four years ago in partnership with nonprofit Red Tomato. The seasonal campaign promotes hand-picked fresh fruits, vegetables and herbs from more than 25 local growers. Progressive Grocer (05/18)

8. Food companies catch onto "enlightened eating"

PMA SmartBrief | May 20, 2015

Local and ethical eating trends come under the umbrella of "enlightened eating," a megatrend that's moving from the East and West coasts toward the middle of the country, said Dave Sheluga of Denver-based flour-milling company Ardent Mills. Companies representing the trend were on display at NRA's annual show in Chicago this week, including Food and Beverage Award winners Cheatin' Wheat pancake mix and Dawn Food Products' cookies and muffins. (05/19)

9. "Flexitarians" create new market for food manufacturers

PMA SmartBrief | May 21, 2015

A group of consumers identifying themselves as "flexitarians" -- people who replace meat with plant-based proteins on a regular basis for environmental or ethical reasons but still enjoy the taste of meat -- are expanding a market for food manufacturers previously limited by strict vegetarians, according to Mintel. Manufacturers are now developing ways to make foods that imitate the taste and texture of meat, such as The Vegetarian Butcher, which uses soy and lupine protein, spices and yeast to create meat-like products. FoodNavigator (05/19)

10. Canadian produce player cuts plastic from tomato packages

PMA SmartBrief | May 21, 2015

Kingsville, Ontario-based Red Sun Farms has worked with paper plate producer CKF to create new organic containers that will allow the company to use 90% less plastic in its organic grape tomato packaging. The new packages are being tested now and slated to hit the market in August, the company said. The Packer (Lenexa, Kan.) (05/20)

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