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Eco-Products’ ZERO Line of Hot, Cold Cups Reduces Carbon Impact

Eco-Products, which makes foodservice products from renewable resources and recycled content, offers ZERO by Eco-Products, a line of hot cups and cold cups whose carbon impacts have been measured and fully offset through a partnership with leading carbon offset provider Renewable Choice Energy.

The carbon offsets for the ZERO line are informed by two years of product life cycle analysis work done by Eco-Products in an effort to better understand the cradle-to-grave environmental impacts associated with their complete product portfolio.

“As for many companies that undertake LCA work, it has been eye-opening to see where in the supply chain our carbon impacts are the largest,” said Claudia Capitini, Sustainability Maven for Eco-Products. “Now the really exciting work begins as we search for creative ways to reduce our carbon footprint across the entire business and empower our customers to use this information in their own efforts to quantify the impact their businesses have on the planet.”

“Eco-Products has long been a national leader in sustainability,” said Quayle Hodek, CEO of Renewable Choice Energy. “By measuring and offsetting the carbon impacts of their new Zero line of cups, Eco-Products is setting an even higher bar for environmental responsibility.”

Eco-Products is now offering customers the ability to receive customized reports detailing the life cycle impacts of their purchases, enabling universities, hospitals, corporate campuses and others to understand the true environmental impacts associated with their foodservice packaging. For more information on these reports and all things related to the impact assessment at Eco-Products, please visit:http://www.ecoproducts.com/impact_assessment.html

The Zero Line is another addition to the company’s GreenStripe family of products made from 100 renewable resources; both the hot cup and cold cup meet ASTM standards for compostability.

Ricky’s Lucky Nuts: A Nut Like No Other

Ricky’s Lucky Nuts is all about creating a unique snacking experience and they don’t do just any nut. They do peanuts because they think they do peanuts better than anybody.

Most people think that gourmet nuts don’t include peanuts. They think of cashews and almonds as gourmet, but peanuts are the most popular nut in America.

Ricky’s has a nut like no other because their process is truly unique. They take the world’s best flavors: chipotle, coffee, curry, chai and coarse black pepper, the sweet, salty and spicy tastes that people love, and dry roast them in their own secret way. The flavors bind directly onto the nut. Instead of candied or dusty, the roasted-on process creates an amazing little, flavor packed Lucky Nugget. The taste sensation is a bang, not a whimper.

These roasted nuts are all natural and healthy with no artificial ingredients of any kind and create a memorable taste experience from honest, unadulterated ingredients. Plus, the sweet and salty nuts are GMO free. Ricky’s Lucky Nuts work with local and regional businesses to source many of their goods and services. That supports local economics and reduces their carbon foot print through reduced transportation cost. Ricky’s nuts are grown in Texas and all the packaging is made in the USA and is recyclable.

Ricky’s Lucky Nuts flavors include Black Pepper and Sea Salt that has a little bit of heat with a satisfying taste. Real Coffee will perk up your senses and is made with real coffee. Thai Red Curry is all natural red curry that features a bold and exotic flavor. It is the perfect afternoon and late night snack. Sweet Chai has a hint of cane sugar with a whole lot of flavor. Other favorites include Sweet and Smoky BBQ, a sweet smoky nut with a tangy taste of BBQ. Spicy Chile Chipotle has a touch of chipotle seasoning and a bold flavor of delicious heat.

Ricky’s Lucky Nuts make the ideal individual or corporate gift box. They are available at grocery and convenience stores, gift and gift basket companies, food catalogs, gourmet and specialty retailers or online at www.rickysluckynuts.com.

Sabra Dipping Company Campaign Features Singing Farmers

Salsa_16oz_LABEL_Homestyle Medium_AngleIf you don’t already sing to tomatoes, you may soon find yourself rethinking your salsa. Known for its freshly flavorful dips and spreads, Sabra® Dipping Company has relaunched its eight refrigerated salsas to the sweet sound of farmer serenades. To underscore the loving process with which Sabra prepares its line of salsas, the brand is featuring in-field farmers singing to vine-ripening tomatoes in its first salsa advertising campaign. Salsa fans are invited to join the fun by sending sweet nothings by way of social media with the hashtag #SalsaLove

Farmers 1“The commercials are a fun take on nurturing growing tomatoes for a delicious product that is filled with love,” said Eric Greifenberger, Director of Marketing at Sabra. “From our ripe red tomatoes to our crisp onions and peppers, our farmers and chefs are meticulous in their care and selection of vegetables for a fresher-tasting salsa. Believe it or not, research has shown singing to plants makes them grow better. We certainly don’t see any harm in that.”

Sabra’s line of refrigerated salsas includes Homestyle Medium, Homestyle Mild, Mango Peach, Restaurant Style, Roasted Garlic, Pico de Gallo, Southwestern and Garden Style. The newly relaunched recipes feature more crisp vegetables for a fresher, chunkier salsa bursting with flavor. The company uses only vine-ripened tomatoes, handpicked by Sabra’s farmers. The nature of the process inspired Sabra’s campaign theme of “Made with Love” developed with creative agency strawberryfrog.

“Sabra goes over and above to create a better tasting salsa. We were inspired by the passion Sabra has for their salsa,” said Ant White, strawberryfrog’s creative director on Sabra. “Known as the brand behind America’s favorite hummus, we wanted to help Sabra share its salsa story in an engaging way. Getting farmers to sing REO Speedwagon’s I’m Gonna Keep on Loving You is just the beginning.”

Sabra Salsa’s integrated campaign kicked off on June 23. It will run in the Northeast and include ads on Hulu and other video-hosting sites as well as radio ads, banner ads, social media and in-store activities. Sabra will also have four trucks crisscrossing the Northeast to share the Salsa Love with free samples.

The entire campaign directs consumer to the microsite SabraSalsaLove.com. Consumers can share their own love by posting on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Vine pages with the hashtag #SalsaLove. The best fan submissions will be shared on the site and may even make it into the next Sabra Salsa ad.

SabraSalsaLove.com is also the host to a summer sweepstakes. One winner will receive a four-day beachside culinary getaway in Southern California, and ten winners each week will receive other great prizes. On Pinterest, fans pinning their favorite recipes featuring salsa will be entered to win additional prizes.

 

Victoria Amory Condiment Line Expands Reach

Since its launch in January 2014, the Victoria Amory Collection is rapidly expanding its reach and is now carried in 15 states and over 150 stores across the United States. The condiment collection features three creative ketchups, including the Smokey BBQ Ketchup, chosen from over 180,000 products as one of the Smokin’ Innovations at this year’s Summer Fancy Food Show. Inspired by the flavors and aromas of Spain’s ancient and rugged La Mancha region the Smokey BBQ Ketchup includes ingredients such as smoked paprika, brown sugar, red and white wine vinegar and olive oil.

VA CollectionThe collection which also includes three delicate mayonnaises, two peppery piri piris, and one classic romesco sauce, is designed, like all of the items in Amory’s line of sophisticated comfort foods, to make elegant entertaining a no-brainer. The collection includes nine specialty condiments: Green Chili Piri Piri, Red Chili Piri Piri, Almond and Garlic Romesco Sauce, Roasted Garlic Mayonnaise, Fine Herb Mayonnaise, Classic Lemon Mayonnaise, Sherry Ketchup, Champagne Ketchup, and Smokey BBQ Ketchup, transforming the everyday meal into an effortless feast.

 

Litehouse Foods Introduces Line of Handcrafted Cheeses

Litehouse® Foods has long been known for its nationally acclaimed blue cheese as well as its dips and salad dressings and is now announcing the launch of a new line of handcrafted cheese into retail deli. The Simply Artisan Reserve™ Line features ten ready-to-serve products, from Crumbles to Crafted Wheels.

“Our company has a long, proud history of crafting outstanding cheese products and we are eager to share our latest artisanal creations that we are confident consumers will value for taste, quality and convenience,” said Margi Gunter, Litehouse Foods Brand Manager.  “Our master cheesemakers have created a gourmet product line for deli cheese lovers in easy-to-serve packages.”

LitehouseThe Simply Artisan Reserve cheeses are prepared in open air vats in small batches and are handcrafted and hand-salted for a gourmet taste. All of the Simply Artisan Reserve products are rBST and gluten-free and use single source milk.  The line includes:

  • Blue, Feta and Gorgonzola Crumbles: easy-to-serve cheese crumbles enhance any salad, cheese plate or recipe
  • Gorgonzola  and Blue Cheese Packs: cheese lovers will rejoice when they see these new pouch sizes with more cheese and greater value
  • Blue Cheese Center Cut: the center cut is the most flavorful, making it the premium part of the wheel.  The center cut’s packaging is also a convenient serving tray making it easy for consumers to purchase and serve at their next gathering
  • Blue Cheese and Gorgonzola Crafted Wheel: the new wheels are aged at least 100 days to develop the full flavor

Initial product sell-through has been excellent since the products’ initial rollout in June,” said Gunter. The company is anticipating introducing additional SKUs and flavors as demand continues to increase.

La Tourangelle Introduces Artisan Spray Oils

Adding to its repertoire of much loved gourmet oils, La Tourangelle is debuting its Spray Oils set on July 15.

Finding a gap in the market for a healthy, propellant-free, all-natural spray oil product, CEO of La Tourangelle Matthieu Kohlmeyer decided it was time for the brand to introduce its wildly successful oils in a new design. Kohlmeyer notes, “We have loved spray oils for many years, but we had a problem with the propellant loaded traditional sprays available on shelves. We really did not feel like selling our artisan oils blended with 11 percent petroleum product in an aerosol spray can.”

La Tourangelle’s idea is simple: keep the oil, lose the chemicals. The spray oils series will feature the brand’s favorite nut oils in a can that uses compressed air to propel 100 percent oil, enabling users to uniformly spray the product on all of their favorite dishes. While existing cooking oil sprays are renowned for using harmful chemicals as propellant (such as petroleum, propane and isobutene), La Tourangelle’s mission to offer an alternative to at-home cooks who value great-tasting food and don’t want to see “propane” listed in their ingredients is now a reality. Soon to hit shelves will be the Spray Oil Series in the following La Tourangelle flavors: Roasted Walnut, 100% Organic Extra Virgin Olive, Grapeseed, Organic Canola, Thai Wok, and Roasted Pistachio. Suggested retail prices range from $6.99 to $9.99.

Industry Forecast for Natural Products Released

New Hope Natural Media and Sterling-Rice Group have released the 2015 version of NEXT: The Natural Products Industry Forecast 2015, which identifies and details the macro forces, trends, opportunities, companies, brands, products and people defining the natural marketplace today and helping to shape the future of this growing consumer products landscape. With all new content and growth projections built out through 2019, this report builds off the insights featured in previous NEXT Forecast reports and serves as a guide to where the natural, organic and healthy products market is now and where it is headed.

As is detailed in the NEXT Forecast 2015, continued strong growth is expected for natural products, as the natural industry moves to claim a larger piece of the overall consumer packaged goods pie. According to NEXT Forecast estimates, U.S. consumer sales of natural, organic and healthy products are forecasted to expand 64 percent from $153B in 2013 to $252 billion by 2019. This is a compound average growth rate (CAGR) of 8.6 percent, which is more than double the projected growth rate of mainstream consumer packaged goods.

“The natural products market is a true bright spot in the world of consumer packaged goods,” said Carlotta Mast, Senior Director of Content & Insights and Chief Author of the NEXT Forecast 2015.

A convergence of forces is helping to propel natural products industry growth. Following are the top three macro forces shaping the future of natural food and beverage; dietary supplements and ingredients; and natural beauty, personal care, household and pet products, as identified in the NEXT Forecast 2015.

Innovation at the Edges: The dramatic success story of Suja, the two-year-old cold-pressed juice company poised to make $50 million in 2014, is emblematic of where innovation can be found in today’s food and beverage world. For the most part, the true innovation that will fuel future growth is flowing from the “little guys” such as Suja versus the large, traditional CPG players.

Ancient Wisdom: Consumer hunger for nutrient-dense ingredients is growing, even as new markets develop along the fringes of this motif. The proliferation of “ancient wisdom,” coupled with new beliefs about what constitutes good food and how it is made available to more people, is creating new opportunities for everything from bug protein-packed nutrition bars to plant-based egg alternatives that cost a fraction of their conventional counterparts.

Technology to the Rescue: We’ve entered the era of “food tech,” and with it, the prospect of bringing the best of culture and science together in closer harmony with consumer packaged goods. The influence of Silicon Valley on natural products will be direct and dramatic in the coming years. In addition, social media and mobile technologies continue to play central roles in the wave of transparency washing over our food system.

 

Apple & Eve to be Acquired by Lassonde Industries

Apple & Eve LLC, together with its private equity investor ClearLight Partners, has agreed that the company will be acquired by Lassonde Industries Inc.

Apple & Eve LLC, based in Port Washington, New York, was founded by the Crane family 40 years ago with a focus on delivering healthy, natural juice products. The company offers more than 100 different juice products sold under its iconic flagship brand name, Apple & Eve, and includes a portfolio of sub brands including Organics, Fruitables, Quenchers, Waterfruits and Sesame Street. Additionally, it owns and markets juices under Northland, Seneca and The Switch brands.

Apple & Eve, a pioneer in the juice industry, has grown over the decades by anticipating consumer trends. Among its many innovations, the company introduced the first unfiltered, natural-sttyle apple juice in grocery stores in 1975; the first line of 100 percent juice cranberry blends in 1978; the first 100 percent juice box in 1982; and, Fruitables, the first fruit and vegetable juice box for kids, in 2009.

Gordon Crane, the Founder, President, and CEO of Apple & Eve, commented, “I am so proud of what we have built at Apple & Eve over the last 40 years, and as CEO I look forward to entering a new exciting chapter in our company’s history. By joining Lassonde Industries, I am confident that our combined entities will deliver strong growth behind the brands we have built. We will remain highly focused on creating innovative, on-trend products under the widely recognized Apple & Eve brand and our other strong brands. I have thoroughly enjoyed working with ClearLight over the past seven years.They proved to be a value-added partner in growing and improving our business.”

Michael Kaye, Founder and Managing Partner of ClearLight Partners, further noted, “Apple & Eve’s strong track record reflects the strength of the company’s brands, commitment to innovation, and quality of management and employees. We wish Gordon Crane and the entire Apple & Eve management and employees much continued success.”

Houlihan Lokey Capital, Inc. acted as financial advisor to Apple & Eve and ClearLight Partners, and Armstrong Teasdale served as company counsel on the transaction. The transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions.

Veggie Patch Launches Two New Vegetable Products

Veggie Patch, which makes vegetable-based foods, announced today the debut of two new unique creations: Roasted Red Pepper Falafel and Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes.

Veggie Patch’s new Roasted Red Pepper Falafel offers a tasty twist on one of the brand’s top sellers, its Classic Falafel.  Combining the palate-pleasing tastes of red pepper and hearty chickpeas with the brand’s unique blend of falafel spices, the new Roasted Red Pepper Falafel’s outstanding flavor profile allows it to be served on its own or incorporated into another dish.

The new Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes are a delectable and healthy snack made from 70 percent vegetables.  A blend of red lentils, carrots and zesty spices, the tasty cakes deliver a mouthful of flavor, while also providing an excellent source of protein (8 grams per serving).

Veggie Patch’s new Roasted Red Pepper Falafel and Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes have a suggested retail price of $4.49 and are rolling out this month in the produce section of grocery stores nationwide.

The two new vegetable products debut as attention increases on the benefits of vegetables. From the First Lady’s healthy school lunch initiative and revisions set forth by the U.S. Department of Agriculture stating that half of one’s plated meal should consist of vegetables, to recent obesity studies that have brought healthy eating to the forefront, increasing attention has been paid to adding more vegetables to American diets. Vegetable purchases have grown by 14 percent over the past five years and are expected to experience a double-digit increase over the next five years.

“These mouth-watering new products are as flavorful as they are exotic, and as healthy as they are convenient,” said Adam Carr, CEO of Veggie Patch.  “We’re proud to lead the way in introducing unique and great tasting items that excite and appeal to our consumers.”

Prior to these new product launches, Veggie Patch most recently introduced its Mediterranean Patties this past December.  The unique patties contain an exotic blend of Mediterranean spices combined with spinach and chickpeas.

In addition to its new products, Veggie Patch is also debuting a new look, including a modernized logo and updated package complete with mouth-watering photography and suggested preparations for the items. Each product now features a more descriptive name that better speaks to the item’s flavor profile, such as the full-bodied sweetness of the Roasted Red Pepper Falafel and the unique spices of the Moroccan Red Lentil Cakes.

“We know a lot of people eat with their eyes and for a product as distinctive and delicious as Veggie Patch, it starts with the product photography,” continued Carr. “We’re especially proud of our new look because it undoubtedly gets consumers excited about our products, both new and current.”

The complete Veggie Patch line consists of eleven products, including its well-known Savory Spinach Bites and Garden Broccoli Bites, which are two of the brand’s more kid-friendly products. All items are nutrient rich, non-GMO and contain 0 trans fat.

Irish Chocolatier Draws Attention to African Fairtrade Chocolate

A Canadian chocolatier has made a big splash in Ireland and Ghana in recent months with her plans to open the first Fairtrade bean-to-bar factory in Ireland.

Allison Roberts, now a resident in Clonakilty, Ireland, started her first chocolate business at age 12 in King City, Ontario, Canada.  In 2014 she was awarded a trip to Ghana as a Fairtrade representative and has since been on a mission to draw attention to, and create more business for Fairtrade cooperative farmers in GhanaWest Africa.

”The impact of Fairtrade in these rural communities is remarkable, we’re talking about the basics – introduction of water facilities, toilet blocks and schools,” Roberts explains. ”Fairtrade also provides education for farmers around crop rotation and safety and the Fairtrade premium nurtures the development of other industries such as batik or palm oil production in these areas of high unemployment.  One of the major problems with the chocolate industry is widespread child-slavery,” she continues. ”Fairtrade means farmers get a fair price for their crops, ensuring no child is ever taken from their family or forced to give up education.”

Roberts has been running her business, Clonakilty Chocolate, for six years and is now the process of buying her first set of manufacturing machines with the ultimate goal to reproduce her Irish factory in Ghana so that Ghanian farmers are able to add value to their products.  ”This is all part of a much bigger issue; there is an urgent need for a greater understanding around the impacts of food choices in the West. Large corporate control in the industry means we’re often not shown the reality behind the products we consume,” she said.

For more information and to watch videos from Ireland and Ghana visit www.clonakiltychocolate.com.

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