Food Business News - Mar 17, 2009 - (Page 1)

FoodBusinessNews ® NEWS, MARKETS AND ANALYSIS FOR THE FOOD PROCESSING INDUSTRY Food F safety reform r on the t horizon March 17, 2009 A natural mess Consensus on definition for term 'all natural' appears more elusive than ever 30 I Weight management and calories 35 More M omega-3 please p 47 MARKET RKET WATCH Honey in million lbs 250 200 cents per lb 250 Production 200 150 150 100 50 f you ask prominent nutrition experts, she said, the appeal of organic foods is no the term "natural" has no clear defini- longer growing. tion when it comes to food products. "If you look what's going on right Continued on Page 41 What's more, several scientists would prefer the word was dropped altogether. That's unlikely any time soon. "Because it sells, food companies are slapping it on anything," said Julie Miller Jones, a food safety and nutrition professor at College of St. Catherine in St. Paul, Minn. "And consumers believe natural equals nutritious. Actually, it's a bit like Alice in Wonderland. It means what I want it to mean." Increasingly to consumers, the term natural means organic, said A. Elizabeth Sloan, president of Sloan Trends, Inc., Escondido, Calif. Partly as a result of this confusion, Are raisins unnatural? Price '99 '00 '01 '02 '03 '04 '05 '06 '07 '08 100 50 Dodging the 'Hall of Shame' Food processing lightly represented in Moody's new Bottom Rung Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture All honey price was record high at $1.41 a lb in 2008 (see Page 10). NEW YORK - While the number of U.S. companies facing a high risk of credit default is rising rapidly, food processors appear largely to be sidestepping the difficulties. Moody's Investors Service attracted considerable media attention March 10 when it issued The Bottom Rung, a new database and quarterly publication listing and analyzing trends among U.S. companies with high default risk and weak liquidity. While 283 companies (excluding financial companies) were listed by Moody's as "qualifying" for the bottom rung, only two were packaged foods companies - Dole Food Co. (placed by Moody's in the Natural Food Processor category) and Best Brands, part of Value Creation Partners (in the Moody's Consumer Products: Packaged Foods group). Several restaurant companies were included. Companies on the Bottom Rung carry a Continued on Page 24

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food Business News - Mar 17, 2009


Food Business News - Mar 17, 2009