Food Business News - Jul 24, 2007 - (Page 1)

FoodBusinessNews ® July 24, 2007 NEWS, MARKETS AND ANALYSIS FOR THE FOOD PROCESSING INDUSTRY Import safety gets president's attention Food remains Wal-Mart's fuel 11 Health and decadence spur dairy category 45 Market volatility alters strategies 53 MARKET WATCH s its sales and profit growth have slowed, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. certainly has not stood still. In the midst of a three-year strategic restructuring, the company earlier in the summer announced plans to significantly rethink its longstanding single-minded focus on directing its capital toward opening as many stores as possible as quickly as possible. Even as management makes significant breaks from the past in its strategic approach, it is apparent grocery products continue to have a bright future at the Bentonville, Ark.based company. The outperformance of groceries versus other Wal-Mart categories has been a steady theme over an extended period of time. In the most recent sales update, for the five weeks ended July 6, Wal-Mart Stores comparable store sales were up 1.6% from the same period a year earlier. Commenting July 12 on the results, Carol Schumacher, vice-president of investor relations, acknowledged continued softness in the Continued on Page 58 A U.S. apricot production in thousand tons $2.04 86.6 2007 2006 44.5 $1.08 $0.88 2005 81.7 Soaring commodity prices just beginning to impact retail But some ingredient prices show moderating trend at midyear $1.95 Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture The U.S. apricot crop is forecast to be up 95% from last year. KANSAS CITY - Soaring ingredient prices that have affected food manufacturers for several months are beginning to reach the consumer level, although some commodity prices are showing indications of a moderating trend at midyear. The All Farm Products Index of prices paid to farmers in June was 141% of its 1990-92 base of 100, up 2% from May, up 14% from January and up 19% from a year ago, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said in its latest Agricultural Prices report. Many indexes for prices paid to farmers were well above year-ago levels in June. The U.S.D.A. index for poultry and eggs was up 30%, food grains was up 31%, oilbearing crops was up 35% and dairy products was up 68%. Gains in milk and dry dairy products have been some of the most spectacular among the raw commodities and ingredients. At mid-July, nonfat dried milk (N.D.M.) was quoted at $2.03@2.65 a lb for high-heat Continued on Page 39

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food Business News - Jul 24, 2007


Food Business News - Jul 24, 2007