February 12, 2013
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NYC mayor touts sodium-reduction success
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg said 21 companies have voluntarily reduced sodium levels in their products as a response to his push for healthier eating. The companies, including Heinz, Butterball and Starbucks, "demonstrated their commitment to removing excess sodium from their products and to working with public health authorities toward a shared goal -- helping their customers lead longer, healthier lives," he said. CBS News/The Associated Press (2/11)
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Restaurant News
Olive Garden gives staffers a new look
Olive Garden's 50,000 servers got new uniforms this week, with modern black outfits replacing the familiar white shirt and tie. The change came after the lion's share of workers surveyed by the company expressed support for revamping the uniform. It is the first major uniform update since the eatery opened its first location in 1982. Orlando Sentinel (Fla.) (2/11), Bloomberg Businessweek (2/11)
Other News
Your Take
Is your restaurant offering a special menu for Valentine's Day? 
VoteYes, we will offer specials or a prix fixe menu on Thursday only
VoteYes, we will offer specials or a prix fixe menu multiple days this week
VoteNo, we will not offer any specials for Valentine's Day
Leading Voices
Commentary: Minn. minimum-wage bill may hurt restaurants
Minnesota lawmakers may consider a bill to raise the state's minimum wage 30%, a move that could produce dire consequences for some of the state's restaurants, writes Employment Policies Institute research director Michael Saltsman. Employers in Minnesota, one of seven states where restaurants aren't allowed to count workers' tips as income, already pay tipped employees about 240% of the federal minimum wage. Minnesota Public Radio (2/11)
How to make your restaurant's ads pay off
Your restaurant's advertising will only succeed if it runs in a place where it will be seen by prospective customers, contains a call to action that tells readers or viewers exactly what to do next and includes a way to measure success, writes restaurant owner and marketer Amy Foxwell. She shares her list of nine tips for creating effective restaurant ads. Restaurant-Hospitality.com (2/6)
Can you do better with busy-season hiring?
Snagajob took a learn-as-you-go approach to building its toolbox to help companies gear up for high-volume hiring, an annual exercise for many restaurants that see seasonal business spikes, writes marketing VP Jason Hamilton. He shares his advice for restaurateurs to ensure successful staffing this season. FastCasual.com (2/8)
Culinary Spotlight
Valentine's Day brings sweet indulgences
Chocolate shoots to No. 1 on the list of most-popular snacks this week, as everyone from doughnut chains to fancy fondue eateries offers their take on sweet Valentine's Day indulgences. Not to be outdone, some wine-makers are finding ways to combine the confection and the grape in the same bottle. SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Food & Beverage (2/12)
Jake's Wayback looks forward with new menu
Jake's Wayback Burgers will launch a new menu March 1 at its 62 locations, with new boards that boast big pictures of the chain's signature beefy sandwiches along with new veggie, chicken and other non-beef options. "What we've found is that not a lot of customers are very aware that we have options other than our burgers," said marketing director Gillian Maffeo. BurgerBusiness.com (2/11)
Featured Press Releases
Food for Thought
Do not teach your children never to be angry; teach them how to be angry.
Lyman Abbott,
American theologian, author and editor

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