Food Business News - Oct 27, 2009 - (Page 1)

October 27, 2009 FOODBUSINESS NEWS NEWS, MARKETS AND ANALYSIS FOR THE FOOD PROCESSING INDUSTRY Food prices continue to fall KANSAS CITY - The aggregate value of the American Farm Bureau Federation's third-quarter 16-item retail market basket survey declined for the fourth consecutive quarter, with prices for all comparable items below yearago levels. The decline reflects the retreat of most commodity values and food ingredient prices from early and mid-2008 highs. "Consumers continue to benefit from modest, steady declines in retail food prices at the grocery store," said Jim Sartwelle, A.F.B.F. economist. "Again this quarter and compared to one year ago, the foods that declined the most in average retail price are among the Continued on Page 32 Digestive health Ending hunger seen as shared responsibility WASHINGTON - The need for collaborative public and private sector approaches to ending hunger was a theme of World Food Day 2009 addressed by food industry executives and senior officials of the Obama administration. World Food Day 2009, Oct. 15, was marked in Des Moines, Iowa, with the presentation of the World Food Prize to Gebisa Ejeta of Ethiopia, whose sorghum varieties resistant to drought and the devastating Striga weed have increased the production and availability of sorghum, which is a principal food grain for millions of people. At the 2009 World Food Prize Borlaug Continued on Page 30 Story on Page 35 F.D.A. scrutinizing front-of-package labels WASHINGTON - In a letter to industry on Oct. 20, the Food and Drug Administration outlined its guidance on the plethora of front-of-package symbols and nutrition scores being used by food processors and retailers to communicate the nutritional quality of foods and beverages. Noting that the F.D.A.'s research shows that with the front-of-package labeling consumers are less likely to check the Nutrition Facts Panel, the agency said it is "essential both the criteria and symbols used in the front-of-package and shelflabeling systems be nutritionally sound, well-designed and help consumers make informed, healthy food choices." "Some are questioning whether they (front-of-package symbols) are marketing or health-oriented," said Margaret Hamburg, commissioner of the F.D.A. The agency is analyzing front-of-package labels that appear to be misleading and also Continued on Page 20

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Food Business News - Oct 27, 2009