February 6, 2013
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On the Front Burner
Calif. considers food-benefit restriction
California Sen. Michael Rubio, a Democrat, has proposed legislation that would bar many sugar-sweetened drinks from the state's food-assistance program, CalFresh. "With the diabetes and obesity epidemic in the Central Valley and throughout California, [Senate Bill] 134 is simply the first step in trying to reverse this alarming trend, particularly among children," he said. Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model)/PolitiCal blog (2/4)
Restaurant News
Fast-casual chains feel optimistic about 2013
Chipotle and Panera are feeling confident about their prospects for this year, even as some of their quickservice counterparts struggle. Both fast-casual chains indicated when they released earnings on Tuesday that they expect traffic and same-store sales to grow in 2013. The Wall Street Journal (2/5)
Judge rules delivery workers can sue over tips
Former delivery workers can proceed with their lawsuit against New York City restaurant Indus Valley, a federal judge has ruled. At issue: whether the restaurant was entitled to withhold up to 15% of workers' tips on orders placed through online sites such as Seamless and GrubHub, to offset costs associated with using the service. The New York Times (tiered subscription model) (2/5)
Other News
Leading Voices
Q-and-A: Bad Daddy's Burger Bar founder Frank Scibelli
Charlotte, N.C., restaurateur Frank Scibelli launched the first Bad Daddy's Burger Bar in 2009 and has since expanded the concept to five locations, with more planned. The casual concept stands out among the growing number of burger chains with table service and a diverse menu that runs the gamut from a vegetarian Edamame Cashew Burger to decadent double-beef sandwiches Scibelli can't finish in a sitting. "If we execute, we feel we can compete just fine." BurgerBusiness.com (2/4)
Study: Diet drinks amp alcohol potency
Researchers say alcohol mixed with a diet drink is more potent than alcohol mixed with a sugar-sweetened drink because the sugar absorbs some of the alcohol. "Alcohol, consumed with a diet mixer, results in higher (BrAC) Breath Alcohol Concentrations as compared to the same amount of alcohol consumed with a sugar-sweetened mixer," explained lead author Cecile Marczinski. National Public Radio/The Salt blog (2/5)
6 tips to make the most of Instagram marketing
The photo-driven nature of Instagram makes it an effective marketing tool for restaurants. These tips from online marketer Constant Contact aim to help eateries make the most of it, starting with using your photos to tell people stories rather than making the brand the star. Restaurant-Hospitality.com (1/30)
Other News
Culinary Spotlight
McMuffins get new life in global markets
McDonald's push to try out new items in international markets has grown to include the McMuffin. In Japan, the Mega McMuffin comes with double sausage plus bacon, while barbecued pork has been added to the iconic morning sandwich in Germany. BurgerBusiness.com (2/5)
Movers & Shakers
Food for Thought
We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men.
Herman Melville,
American writer and poet

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