The Batch is Back
Product recalls are fairly, if unfortunately, common among food and beverage products. It is always a challenge in communicating the problem to the consumers and in assuring them the food is safe, if and when it is reintroduced.

That is the problem facing Nestle as it returns Toll House refrigerated cookie dough to the U.S. marketplace after a two-month hiatus, due to E.coliconcerns. Rather than quietly reintroducing the line, however, Nestle is attempting to tackle the issue head-on.

A blue “New Batch” label is appearing on all of the reintroduced Nestle cookie dough products, and to strengthen the message further, boldly on the front of the package is a new statement in large lettering: “Do not consume raw cookie dough.”

Nestle notes the new labeling results from “helpful discussions” between FDA officials and the company.

Low-carb Baking
Consumers following a high-protein/low-carbohydrate diet have been relatively ignored since the low-carb boom of a few years ago. The trend may not be what it once was, but some consumers remain dedicated to the lifestyle.

For them, Atkins Nutritionals has introduced what it regards as breakthrough products. An all-purpose baking mix and penne pasta join its range of weight-management shakes and snack bars. The baking mix can be used for pancakes, waffles, muffins or breads and boasts 20g of protein, 6g of fiber, 150 calories and 5 net carbs.

The penne pasta product, meanwhile, promises half the carbs of regular pasta, 19g, and only 1g of sugar. It is made with enriched semolina wheat and has 11g of protein and 18g of fiber per 140-calorie serving.

As Colette Heimowitz, vice president of nutrition and education at Atkins Nutritionals Inc., notes, the product is not just for low-carb fans. “From a health standpoint, Atkins All Purpose Baking Mix and lower-carb Penne Pasta are great for people who need to better control their blood sugar, such as those following low-glycemic diets.”

Fuel to Burn
Nitrous oxide is used as an anesthetic, commonly known as laughing gas, and sometimes used in surgery and dentistry. It is also used as an oxidizer in rocketry and motor racing, to increase the power output of engines.

Presumably, it is the latter use that has prompted Monster Energy’s latest introduction to the energy drink category. Nitrous Monster, the company claims, is the “first and only energy drink to feature nitrous oxide gas technology.”

To be honest, it is a bit tough to tell which usage of nitrous oxide Monster is attempting to capitalize upon, at least judging by two of the three varieties. Killer-B contains honey and provides a shot of B vitamins and an “exotic dose” of bee pollen and royal jelly. Super Dry promises a “lighter, dry texture similar to fine champagne.” The final variety offers a description that clearly positions the range as energy-enhancing: “Anti-Gravity is so potent that drinkers will feel like they can defy gravity.” 

The Cost of Organic
A Pavone survey of 353 consumers (78% of them female) who identify themselves as the household’s primary shopper, finds consumers would prefer to opt for all-natural and organic foods.

What is more, the survey found, “Consumers are well aware of the differences between the two food categories and can accurately define process-based organic foods...and ingredients-based, all-natural products.” Furthermore, 79% said organics are “better for my health,” compared with 71% sharing that opinion of all-natural foods.

More than 75%, in fact, said they would prefer to purchase organic and all-natural goods, if comparably priced with other brands.

More information about the survey may be found atwww.pavone.net.pf

THE IN?BOX:
For daily industry news updates, see the homepage ofwww.PreparedFoods.comandwww.NutraSolutions.com.

* TIC Gums is offering a new, enhanced level of technical assistance: live chat, available during regular business hours, M-F 8:00 am-5:00 pm (EST).
* Ajinomoto Food Ingredients LLC expanded its North America headquarters in Chicago, by adding food product development capabilities. The company has applied to the FDA for approval of Advantame, a sweetener for use in foods and beverages.
* David Michael & Co. added Don Finch to its strategic alliance advisory board.
* Advanced Food Systems launched a new website--www.afsnj.com.
* Nikken Foods USA Inc. hired Lori J. Hamilton as national sales manager.
* DSM Food Specialties and Sanovo Engineering A/S announced a partnership in egg processing, a partnership which also contains a joint development agreement.
* The American Oil Chemists Society awarded Solbar first place in two categories of analysis: Oilseed meal 100% Nitrogen (method Ba 4d-90) and Oilseed meal 100% Moisture in soybean samples.
* Aker BioMarine has signed an agreement to be the exclusive supplier of Superba Krill Oil dietary supplement to Schiff Nutrition International.
* Lipid Nutrition named Candace Reed to its customer service team.
* Cargill has entered into an agreement with the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) to license WARF’s patented canola breeding technology. Cargill has also completed a move to a new canola seed facility on the south side of Idaho Falls, Idaho.pf