Marketwatch - April 2007
Buy the HundredsWith more studies drawing a link between portion size and the obesity crisis, manufacturers continue their efforts to diminish portions in packages.
Oberto Sausage Company has launched its first forays into the 100-calorie pack collection with 100 Calorie Original Beef Jerky Bites and 100 Calorie Teriyaki Turkey Jerky Bites, both of which carry PepsiCo’s Smart Spot symbol. (The snacks are distributed nationally by PepsiCo.) In addition to the small amounts of calories, the products pack a protein punch with 13g and 12g per 100 calories in the beef and turkey varieties, respectively.
However, many consumers simply want a calorie-conscious indulgence, and manufacturers likewise are responding. Interstate Bakeries Corp.’s Hostess brand is endeavoring to capitalize on the 100-calorie trend with packs of chocolate cake with chocolate icing, golden cake with chocolate icing and carrot cake with cream cheese icing, all with a creamy filling.
Drink and Be MerryThe adult beverage segment was at one time the very definition of indulgence, with hardly a nutritional benefit to be found. Oh, how times have changed.
Now, a couple of glasses of wine are considered healthy, and while energy drinks may not be the epitome of nutrition in the minds of many, their ingredients can be found in an increasing number of brewers’ offerings. However, nothing yet battles post-drinking blues—until now.
Gemini Alliance has launched what it terms is a “restorative” beverage as an “all-natural way to restore lost nutrients due to lifestyle activities.” (Two other varieties promise to help recovery after smoking and flying, respectively.) Mr.Re Restorative Beverages, described as “The Drink You Drink After You Drink,” have a Russian recipe as their base, no preservatives, caffeine, sodium or high-fructose corn syrup and a low caloric content.
Have FaithRarely does a brand make the leap from one category to another. Rarer still will a brand leap from being a foodstuff into another consumer product; the reverse of that (from consumer products into foods) is almost unheard of.
The small, “faith-inspired” company 1in3Trinity is best known for its signature, branded line of Christian clothing and accessories. However, the company has its eyes on the burgeoning energy drink segment.
The manufacturer claims 1in3Trinity Energy Drink is made of a “special blend from the flourishing vines and trees of the Holy Land mixed with B-vitamins, vitamin C, herbs and antioxidants.” Each can has 10 calories and 3g of sugar, and the beverage promises to taste of pomegranate and grape.
Company president and co-founder Paula Masters notes, “We have an opportunity to reach one of the largest generations to hit the marketplace since the Baby Boomers—Gen X and Y—with dynamic products and a value-added message.”
Tears of a CloneDean Foods Company announced it will not purchase milk from cloned cows, and the decision may have widespread ramifications.
The FDA has issued a “draft risk assessment,” which noted cloned stock were safe, and the agency is seeking comments from the public before making a final policy. However, the company was clear: FDA approval does not matter.
“If the FDA does approve the sale of milk from cloned cows,” Dean’s statement noted, “we will work with our dairy farmers to implement protocols to ensure that the milk they supply to Dean Foods does not come from cloned cows.”
THE IN BOX:For daily industry news updates, see the homepage of www.PreparedFoods.com and www.NutraSolutions.com.
Donut WholeWhole grains continue to permeate the aisles of the grocery store, and the trend’s influence is extending even further. The Whole Grains Council’s Whole Grain Stamp (designed to help consumers easily locate whole-grain products) can now be found on more than 1,000 food packages.
Three products tied to become the 1,000th product: Annie’s Whole Wheat Shells and Cheddar, Thomas’ Whole Wheat Mini Square Bagelbread and Multigrain Lightly Salted Tortilla Chips from Snyder’s of Hanover. As Jeff Dahlberg, chairman of the Whole Grains Council, notes, “These three products—an entrée, a bread and a snack—illustrate the huge diversity of the 1,000 products bearing the stamp.”
The stamp details the food’s whole-grain content, and the product must contain a half serving (8oz) or more of whole grains per serving to qualify. Some 76% of the products currently bearing the stamp contain a full serving (16oz) or more of wholegrain. (Dietary Guidelines recommend three or more servings of whole grains each day.)
The desire for whole grains is not limited to the retail side of the industry, however. Krispy Kreme, the “overnight” success story of a few years ago which faded during the carb-cutting fad, has joined the whole-grain bandwagon. The company has introduced a whole-wheat glazed doughnut, made with 100% whole wheat and boasting a sweet caramel flavoring covered in Krispy Kreme’s original glaze. The chain boasts the product has 180 calories per doughnut though-upon closer inspection, this is a not-so earth-shattering 20-calorie reduction. Likewise the fat content is hardly reduced at all (12g in the original, 11g in the whole-wheat version), nor is trans fat content, which drops from the original’s 4g to 3.5g in the whole-wheat variety.