Breaking Off
One of the classic complaints consumers have about breakfast is the lack of time to prepare it. A recent launch has sought to curtail that concern.

Breakfast Breaks are described as the “first grab ‘n go solution for school breakfast.” One portion-controlled package features three packs: a cereal, snack and 100% fruit juice, while the four-pack version features cereal, a snack, 100% fruit juice and milk.

The former packs feature such cereal options as Coco Roos, Lucky Charms, Honey Nut Cheerios, Frosted Flakes, Trix Reduced Sugar, Honey Graham Squares, Fruity Cheerios and other options.

The latter feature these same varieties, as well as other options, including Kix or a chocolate chip muffin, as well as a shelf-stable milk and all the accoutrements needed for a quick breakfast on the run, including plastic ware.

Weight and See
With the summer in full swing, television stations feature as many commercials promoting weight-loss plans, diets and products as the average beach has sunbathers, if not more so. Whether it is Valerie Bertinelli, Marie Osmond, George Costanza (err, Jason Alexander) or Sara Rue, all seem to have benefited greatly from their respective programs. Less is heard about the actual foods they are consuming, however, which is where Medifast Inc. recently distinguished itself.

The company, purporting itself as “a portion-controlled weight-loss program,” has introduced original and chocolate chip Medifast Pancakes and a variety of ice cream flavors, including such favorites as chocolate mint, coffee, mango and peanut butter.

Further setting the ice cream apart is that it is soft-serve, “like ice cream parlor favorites,” notes the company.

Way to Recovery
The term “recovery” may inspire any number of thoughts: be it the long-awaited economic recovery from the recession, efforts to cap the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico or even the ongoing efforts in recovering from the earthquakes in Haiti and Chile. For its latest introduction, however, POM Wonderful is adding the term to a beverage.

POMx Antioxidant Recovery blends POM Wonderful 100% Pomegranate Juice with POMx and features “naturally occurring polyphenol antioxidants from...the pomegranate, which research has shown can help speed muscle recovery and reduce muscle soreness following strenuous exercise.”

A placebo-controlled, double-blind crossover study supports the benefit, claims the company. The study, published in the March 2010 issue of Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, found a daily dose of POMx (equivalent to a 2oz serving of POMx Antioxidant Recovery) led to 30% less strength loss in subjects, as well as 28% less muscle soreness, compared with the placebo.

Ads and Children
A new study has found American children now see fewer TV commercials for confectionery products, though more for fast food. The study, published in the Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, recommends continued monitoring of company marketing practices and pledges.

The TV Bureau of Advertising estimates children and teens viewed roughly 3 hours, 20 minutes of television per day. Exposure to ads promoting confectionery products fell across all age groups between 2003-2007. Soft drink ads fell 27-30% across all age groups.  Increases were found in advertisements for fast food restaurants.

The data in the study are for time periods before the self-regulating Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative was established in 2008.

Calorie Conscious? Not Really
Recent research finds Americans are ill-informed about the amount of calories they do and, more importantly, should consume. A nationally representative online survey of 1,024 consumers by the International Food Information Council (IFIC) found 63% could not accurately estimate the amount of calories they should consume in a day to maintain their current weight.

Only 12% picked the right amount, and 25% would not even dare to venture a guess.

“People need to know their numbers,” explains registered dietitian Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak of IFIC, which paid for the survey.

Some frame of reference could be an important first step in tackling weight-loss efforts, she believes. “There is confusion on all sides of the calorie equation. People don’t know how many calories they should consume in a day and are even more are unclear about how many they burn.”

Why are consumers so confused? Calorie requirements are unique to each person and vary with gender, age, height and level of physical activity. A small, sedentary woman may only need 1,400-1,600 calories per day, while a highly trained endurance athlete could require 4,000 or more calories in a day. What is more troubling for a nation struggling with its collective waistlines is that 58% of respondents note they do not try to balance the calories they consume with the calories they burn.

* Blue Diamond Growers is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year and, in honor of its centennial, will be introducing a comprehensive resource center. Its new historical website,, features thousands of archived photos; historical stories and books; classic Blue Diamond recipes; almond processing and nutrition dating back to the beginning of the 20th century; and more.
* Long-time Ocean Nutrition Canada Ltd. president and CEO Robert Orr will make way for a new CEO to lead the company’s next growth phase, with particular focus on international expansion efforts and the food sector. Martin Jamieson, a 30-year international food industry veteran, has been appointed as the new president and CEO.
* The Really Cool Food Company LLC named Donald S. Gillum as chief operating officer.  
* Cargill’s U.S. beef business and Meyer Natural Foods have entered into a multi-year agreement which creates a joint “go-to-market” approach. This collaborative effort will focus on expanding sales of Meyer Natural Angus and Laura’s Lean Beef to Cargill’s retail and foodservice customers that wish to offer consumers natural and organic beef products.  
* BASF plans to strengthen its support services for the food and beverage industry and has established a new Nutrition Ingredients Innovation Laboratory at its technical center in Tarrytown, N.Y.
* Takasago Americas announced new technical applications and customer service appointments: Ongkar Pershad was hired as senior confectionery technologist, a title now shared by John Cahill, also. Nancy Mahnken steps up to senior customer service representative.
* Redpoint Bio Corporation entered into a license and commercialization agreement with International Flavors & Fragrances Inc., covering the commercialization of RP44, Redpoint’s all-natural sweetness enhancer.
* Multipower and Lonza signed a multi-year, supply agreement for Carnipure, Lonza’s pure, crystalline L-Carnitine.
* Newly Weds Foods Inc. acquired UK-based food ingredients manufacturer and coating specialist Witwood Food Products Ltd. for an undisclosed sum.
* Grain Processing Corporation (GPC) and ENRECO Inc. announced a strategic alliance in which GPC becomes the exclusive U.S. marketer of ENRECO’s Sterling Choice brand of flaxseed ingredients to the food industry.
* Ann Garner Riddle has been named president and chief executive officer of TW Garner Food Company.
* CreAgr Inc. announced the U.S. Patent Office has granted it a fundamental patent on the manufacturing of hydroxytyrosol from the juice of olives.
*  National Starch is to be sold to U.S.-based Corn Products International for $1.3