Walmart to Test-Drive Autonomous Grocery Deliveries with Nuro

Today, Walmart is announcing a new pilot with autonomous vehicle company, Nuro. Nuro’s vision of using robotics to improve lives runs parallel with Walmart’s mission of helping customers live better. Through the Houston-based pilot, Walmart aims to develop, refine and continue learning how to offer the best end-to-end customer experience.

Walmart is committed to delivering groceries – with a side of time-saving convenience – through an ever-expanding Grocery Pickup and Delivery service. As we near the end of 2019, Walmart has grown our online grocery footprint to nearly 3,100 pickup locations with deliveries coming from more than...

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McDonald’s Names Ian Borden as President, International

McDonald's Corporation today announced that Ian Borden, most recently President, International Developmental Licensed (IDL) Markets, has been appointed to President, International, effective immediately. Borden will continue reporting to Chris Kempczinski, McDonald’s President and Chief Executive Officer. This announcement follows the appointment of Joe Erlinger to President, McDonald's USA.

In his new role, Borden will assume oversight for all international markets, including International Operated Markets (IOM) which include all wholly-owned markets outside of the U.S., in addition to the more than 80 markets in the IDL segment that he oversees in his current role.

“Ian has a proven record of focusing on the customer to deliver profitable business growth while strengthening collaboration with our global franchisee community,” said Chris Kempczinski, McDonald’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “His deep experiences leading...

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Dec 10 11:40 AM, General News



Secretary Perdue Statement on USMCA Agreement

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue issued the following statement after United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi announced agreement on the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA): 

“USMCA is a big win for American workers and the economy, especially for our farmers and ranchers. The agreement improves virtually every component of the old NAFTA, and the agriculture industry stands to gain significantly,” said Secretary Perdue. “President Trump and Ambassador Lighthizer are laying the foundation for a stronger farm economy through USMCA and I thank them for all their hard work and perseverance to get the agreement across the finish line. While I am very encouraged by today’s breakthrough...

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Dec 10 11:33 AM, General News


Walmart to Test-Drive Autonomous Grocery Deliveries with Nuro

Today, Walmart is announcing a new pilot with autonomous vehicle company, Nuro. Nuro’s vision of using robotics to improve lives runs parallel with Walmart’s mission of helping customers live better. Through the Houston-based pilot, Walmart aims to develop, refine and continue learning how to offer the best end-to-end customer experience.

Walmart is committed to delivering groceries – with a side of time-saving convenience – through an ever-expanding Grocery Pickup and Delivery service. As we near the end of 2019, Walmart has grown our online grocery footprint to nearly 3,100 pickup locations with deliveries coming from more than...

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Dec 10 9:13 AM, General News


Cargill Survey Reveals Consumers Believe Technology Will Feed the World More Sustainably

Technology in agriculture (ag-tech) is how we’ll feed a growing population, make farming more sustainable and improve the lives of farm animals, say 85% of the 3,000 participants in Cargill’s new three-continent consumer survey. At the same time, only about half of those surveyed want their food to come from a technologically advanced (versus traditional) farm. Industries like medicine and education are where respondents most want to see technology used. Farming ranks third—above defense, manufacturing, retail and food.

“We know that new technologies are allowing farmers to make better, faster, more informed decisions to feed a hungry world while protecting the planet,” said Sri Raj Kantamneni, managing director of Cargill’s digital business. “We also know that agriculture is still the least digitalized industry sector in the world. That means...

 

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Dec 10 9:08 AM, General News


Tyson Looks to Expand Beef Operations Internationally

Tyson Fresh Meats, Inc., the beef and pork subsidiary of Tyson Foods, Inc., today signed an agreement with the Republic of Kazakhstan and private holding company Kusto Group to collaborate on a project that, in its initial phase could lead to the construction of a modern beef processing plant in Kazakhstan, with an anticipated harvest capacity of 2,000 head per day. As presently conceived, the investment is projected to help provide an annual agricultural economic benefit to the country well in excess of one billion dollars (USD).

Kazakhstan is the ninth largest country in the world by geographic area and has identified the livestock and the multi-protein export industry as a key growth market. The country has an established beef industry which serves the domestic population with exports to the region. The agreement...

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Dec 10 8:55 AM, General News


Retail Imports Surged in November Ahead of December Tariffs

Volume at the nation’s major container ports bumped up significantly in November as retailers imported merchandise ahead of new tariffs set to take effect this month, according to the Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.

“At this point, holiday merchandise is already in the country, so the direct impact of new tariffs won’t be seen until the season is over,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said. “Nonetheless, tariffs are bad for both consumer and business confidence, and we hope that the December tariffs will be canceled or postponed as a sign of good faith. We need a deal with China as soon as possible so we can...

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Dec 10 8:14 AM, General News


Dec 10 7:41 AM, Urner Barry Video

Pork and Beef Exports for October; Analysis: Relief in Sight for Live Lobster?; Sponsored by The Meat Buyer's Guide Online
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CHART: Industry Expectations for Weekly Cattle Slaughter

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Dec 9 3:23 PM, Urner Barry


Elevation Burger Debuts Impossible Burger and Dairy-Free Daiya Cheddar Style Slices Nationwide

FAT (Fresh. Authentic. Tasty.) Brands Inc., parent company of Elevation Burger, known for serving 100% organic, grass-fed, free-range beef burgers and fresh fries cooked in heart-healthy olive oil, is pleased to announce all domestic locations across America will now carry the plant-based Impossible™ Burger as well as dairy-free Daiya Cheddar Style Slices.

Elevation Burger’s nationwide launch of the Impossible Burger and dairy-free Daiya Cheddar Style Slices demonstrates the brand's commitment to serving customers of all dietary preferences. The Impossible™ Burger handles, cooks and tastes like ground beef — but is made entirely from plants — while each Daiya Cheddar Style Slice delivers the same incredible melt and slight sharpness as dairy-based cheese that pairs perfectly with...

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Dec 9 9:52 AM, General News


China Fuels October Pork Exports; Beef Exports Down from Last Year

Strong demand from China bolstered U.S. pork exports in October, according to data released by USDA and compiled by the U.S. Export Federation (USMEF), while October beef exports were below the very high totals posted a year ago.

October pork exports increased 8.5% year-over-year to 225,376 metric tons (mt), while export value climbed 10% to $592 million. January-October export volume was 5% ahead of last year’s pace at 2.13 million mt, while value increased 3% to $5.48 billion.

Pork export value averaged $48.13 per head slaughtered in October, up 4% from a year ago. For January through October, the per-head average was...

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Dec 9 8:38 AM, General News


NPPC, AFBF File Legal Challenge to California's Proposition 12

The National Pork Producers Council and the American Farm Bureau Federation have filed a legal challenge to California’s Proposition 12, which imposes animal housing standards that reach outside of California’s borders to farms across the United States and beyond.

“Proposition 12 revolves around a set of arbitrary standards that lack any scientific, technical or agricultural basis, and will only serve to inflict further harm on U.S. hog farmers,” said Jen Sorenson, NPPC vice president. “California represents approximately 15% of the U.S. pork market, and Proposition 12 will force hog farmers who want to sell pork into the populous state to switch to alternative housing systems, at a significant cost to their business. U.S. pork producers are already...

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Dec 9 8:19 AM, General News


USDA Proposes Updates to National Poultry Improvement Plan

The United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is proposing updates to the National Poultry Improvement Plan (NPIP) to align with changes in the poultry industry, as well as to incorporate new scientific information and technologies into the NPIP. These updates are consistent with the recommendations approved by representatives from across the poultry industry at the 2018 NPIP Biennial Conference.

As part of the proposal, APHIS would...

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Dec 9 8:19 AM, General News


Dec 9 7:47 AM, Urner Barry Video

Rabobank Global Beef Trade Report; HRI Movers of the Week; Sponsored by Obsono's Market Insight
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With Record Low Unemployment, USDA Finalizes Rule to Promote Work

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue released the following statement regarding the latest jobs report released today by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). The jobs report shows the economy added 266,000 new jobs in November with an unemployment rate of 3.5%, which remains at a record 50 year low. Earlier this week, at the direction of President Donald J. Trump, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a rule to help move more able-bodied recipients of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) towards self-sufficiency and into employment. The rule restores the system to what Congress intended: assistance through difficult times, not a way of life.

“Today’s jobs report is further proof that now in the midst of the strongest economy in a generation, we need everyone who can work, to work. To that end, USDA is...

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Dec 6 2:03 PM, General News


Rabobank: Global Beef Trade Into the 2020s

Global Beef Trade Continues to Grow

Global beef trade has continued to grow over the last five years, fueled by growing import demand, and supported by trade agreements and improved access to new and existing markets. This growing demand, seen predominantly in Asian markets, is illustrated in the latest Rabobank World Beef Map, which shows a heavy concentration of trade flows into Asia.

Rabobank believes that beef trade will continue to rise over the next five years, supported by strong importer demand. African swine fever (ASF) will provide a short-term, intense increase in demand, but strong fundamentals of increasing wealth and changing diets in Asian countries support ongoing demand for protein. To meet this growth in demand, we believe production and beef exports will also...

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Dec 6 9:46 AM, General News


ANALYSIS: Digging into 2019’s YTD Production Stats

With 2020 just around the corner, chicken market participants take some time to reflect on how this year has played out, so far...

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Dec 6 8:17 AM, Urner Barry


Costco Reports November and First Quarter Fiscal Year 2020 Sales Results 

Costco Wholesale Corporation reported net sales of $13.62 billion for the retail month of November, the four weeks ended December 1, 2019, an increase of 6.7 percent from $12.77 billion last year.

For the twelve-week first quarter ended November 24, 2019, the Company reported net sales of $36.24 billion, an increase of 5.6 percent from $34.31 billion last year.

For the thirteen weeks ended December 1, 2019, the Company reported net sales of $39.95 billion, an increase of 6.3 percent from...

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Dec 6 8:15 AM, General News


Dec 6 7:50 AM, Urner Barry Video

U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement Approval; Digging into 2019’s YTD Chicken Production Stats; Sponsored by Urner Barry's Prospector
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Burger King Announces Plan to Develop More Than 100 New Restaurants in Canada 

Burger King is announcing plans to open more than 100 restaurants in Ontario and Manitoba over the next five years. To drive growth in the underpenetrated burger market of Canada, Burger King Canada has inked a new five-year expansion deal with long-time partner, Redberry Restaurants ("Redberry"), to grow the number of Burger King restaurants in Canada by 25% so even more guests can enjoy the iconic flame-grilled Whopper sandwich, chicken fries and other Burger King favourites.

"For far too long, Canadian burger lovers have not had enough flame grilled options to choose from," said Matt Wright, General Manager, Burger King Canada. "Premium ingredients and signature recipes have defined Burger King for 50 successful years in Canada. We're excited that even more Canadians will be introduced to...

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Dec 5 10:04 AM, General News


Kroger Reports Third Quarter 2019 Results

The Kroger Co. today reported its third quarter 2019 results and provided a Restock Kroger progress update on the company's three-year transformation plan.

Comments from Chairman and CEO Rodney McMullen

"Kroger's customer obsession and focus on operational excellence continued to generate positive results in the third quarter. Identical sales were the strongest since we started Restock Kroger and gross margin rate, excluding fuel and pharmacy, improved slightly in the quarter. At the same time, we continued to reduce costs as a percentage of sales.

We are using the power of Kroger's stable and growing supermarket business to create meaningful incremental operating profit through the alternative profit stream businesses, which adds...

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Dec 5 9:33 AM, General News


Digiorno and Stouffer's Launch New Products with Plant-Based Innovations 

Two of America's beloved brands are getting even more awesome. Nestlé is launching new meatless Digiorno and Stouffer's offerings made with Sweet Earth Awesome Grounds, a plant-based ground beef alternative.

Digiorno Rising Crust Meatless Supreme with Sweet Earth Awesome Grounds and Stouffer's Meatless Lasagna with Sweet Earth Awesome Grounds will help satisfy consumers looking for convenient and meat-free options from brands they know and trust. Similar to the original offerings with real meat, these new recipes have the same high product quality, taste and texture.

Consumers are increasingly showing interest in adopting a 'flexitarian' lifestyle — making an active choice to incorporate more...

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Dec 5 9:22 AM, General News


World Food Prices Jump in November

World food prices rose significantly in November, reaching their highest point in more than two years, driven by jumps in the international prices of meat products and vegetable oils.

The FAO Food Price Index, which tracks monthly changes in the international prices of commonly-traded food commodities, averaged 177.2 points over the month, up 2.7 percent from October and 9.5 percent from the same period a year earlier.

The FAO Vegetable Oil Price Index rose by 10.4 percent in November, as palm oil price quotations rose amid robust global import demand, increased use for the production of biodiesels and expectations of possible...

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Dec 5 8:43 AM, General News


Dec 5 8:31 AM, Urner Barry Video

Restaurant Gift Card Purchases Up Three Percentage Points; Evaluating the Post-Thanksgiving Turkey Trend; Sponsored by COMTELL's Phone App
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ANALYSIS: Evaluating the Post-Thanksgiving Turkey Trade Environment

With the Thanksgiving dust starting to settle, turkey market participants have begun to shift their attention toward the road ahead as they ponder...

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Dec 5 8:19 AM, Urner Barry


Grubhub Launches Annual "Year In Food" Report Highlighting the Top Trends in 2019

Grubhub, the nation's leading online and mobile food-ordering and delivery marketplace, today released findings from its annual "Year in Food" report. To find out what food trends shaped the year (or didn't), Grubhub analyzed tens of millions of orders placed by more than 21 million diners on its platform to uncover the flavors and tastes rising up the ranks among today's diners. Additionally, diners will receive their personalized "Taste of 2019" to get a glimpse of their favorite cuisines, menu items, and ordering habits throughout the year.

Key takeaways from the 2019 "Year in Food" report includes...

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Dec 5 8:18 AM, UB Newswires


USMEF Statement on Approval of U.S.-Japan Trade Agreement

On Dec. 4, the Upper House of the Japanese Parliament approved the U.S.-Japan trade agreement, which will greatly improve access for U.S. red meat in Japan. Key provisions of the agreement, which was approved by Japan’s Lower House on Nov. 19, were released in October by the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR).

USMEF President and CEO Dan Halstrom issued this statement:

With the U.S.-Japan trade agreement now approved by the Japanese Parliament, the U.S. beef and pork industries look forward to expanded opportunities in Japan, which is already the largest value destination for U.S. pork and beef exports (combined export value in 2018 was $3.7 billion). This agreement is one of the...

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Dec 5 8:17 AM, General News


Postmates And TGI Fridays Announce On-Demand Delivery Partnership

Postmates, the leader in delivering nearly anything on-demand, and TGI Fridays™ announced a partnership to deliver the world-famous restaurant brand's menu on-demand. Now, Postmates customers can enjoy the iconic taste of their favorite TGI Fridays dishes, like potato skins, whisky glaze, sizzling skillets, and more - brought right to their doorsteps, every day and night.

"Third-party delivery is one more way we're bringing the TGI Fridays experience to People of All Stripes," explained the brand's CEO, Ray Blanchette. "Now, everyone can enjoy the tastes that have always made Fridays famous, brought right to their doorsteps. We are pleased to be working with Postmates on this new offering. Their large national presence and reputation for reliable service made them an ideal partner for serving as many TGI Fridays fans as possible with on-demand delivery."

"TGI Fridays was formed to bring people together over the things that everyone can enjoy – like classic food favorites and innovative new culinary creations. We are proud to bring that experience...

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Dec 5 8:17 AM, General News


Certified Angus Podcast: Consumer Demand, Specialty Products, CAB in 2020
 
 

This week Laura speaks with Clint Walenciak, Director of Packing at Certified Angus Beef. They touch on high quality beef, consumer demand, specialty product, CAB in 2020, and much more...

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Dec 4 10:15 AM, Urner Barry


Restaurant Gift Card Use Trends Up

Gift card season is officially upon us. And though the majority of Winter holiday shoppers are focused on gift cards for top retailers, it’s important not to overlook the growing use of gift cards to popular restaurants and coffeehouses.

In the recent report Eating Trends: Restaurant Use, Packaged Facts states that between 2011 and 2019, the share of adults who buy gift cards overall has declined by five percentage points, to 39%. However, purchase of gift cards specifically for restaurants or coffeehouses is up by three percentage points, to 20%. Usage has steadily increased each year since 2011. As a result, growth in use of restaurant gift cards, much like growth in the use of restaurant coupons, is...

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Dec 4 9:31 AM, General News


Retailers Say Extending Trade War Past 2020 Elections Would Be ‘Bad Deal’ for U.S. Economy

The National Retail Federation today issued the following statement from Senior Vice President for Government Relations David French in response to President Trump’s comments that he might wait until after the 2020 elections to reach a trade agreement with China:

“We want and need to see a deal as soon as possible. The tariffs continue to hurt U.S. businesses, workers and consumers and are a substantial drag on the U.S. economy. Waiting another year to resolve the cost and uncertainty of the trade war is a bad deal not just for retailers and their customers but every segment of the economy from farmers who export their crops to...

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Dec 4 9:09 AM, General News


Thanksgiving Weekend Draws Nearly 190 Million Shoppers, Spending Up 16 Percent

A record 189.6 million U.S. consumers shopped from Thanksgiving Day through Cyber Monday this year, an increase of 14 percent over last year’s 165.8 million, the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights & Analytics said today.

“Americans continue to start their holiday shopping earlier in the year, and Thanksgiving is still a critical weekend for millions,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “Whether they’re looking for something unique on Main Street, making a trip to the store or searching for the best deals from their mobile device, this is when shoppers shift into high gear. With the condensed holiday season, consumers are feeling the pressure to get their shopping done in time. Even those who typically wait until...

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Dec 4 8:19 AM, General News


CFIA Cancels Three Safe Food for Canadians Licences

After a thorough and comprehensive review, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) cancelled three Safe Food for Canadian licences. The decision was made after the Agency identified during a food safety investigation that they had received false or misleading information from the licence holders concerning E. coli lab results.

Effective immediately, Ryding-Regency Meat Packers LTD., Canadian Select Meats Inc. (operating under St. Ann's Foods Inc) and The Beef Boutique LTD. (operating under St. Ann's Foods Inc) are no longer able to slaughter food animals or prepare meat products for export or to be sent from one province or territory to another.

CFIA initiated a food safety investigation into the three companies in September 2019, as soon as it was...

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Dec 4 8:18 AM, General News


NCBA Seeks Clarity and Consistency in Beef Origin Labeling Practices

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), the nation's oldest and largest national organization representing American cattle producers, today reaffirmed its policy supporting voluntary country-of-origin labeling (COOL). Because the association takes the concerns of its members and stakeholders seriously, its Executive Committee has unanimously approved efforts to work with the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety Inspection Service (USDA FSIS) to address the Agency’s longstanding policy on geographic origin statements.

Specifically, NCBA is seeking solutions to the labeling requirements and verification procedures in place for beef products labeled as “Product of the U.S.A,” “Made in the U.S.A.,” or similar origin claims, which will resolve the concerns of beef producers, work at the speed of commerce, meet America's trade obligations and...

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Dec 4 8:17 AM, General News


Dec 4 8:04 AM, Urner Barry Video

OpenTable Reveals Dining Trends for 2019; Atlantic Halibut Along the East Coast Study; Sponsored by Obsono’s Market Insight Report
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JBS USA Intends to Purchase Pipestone Facility from J&B Group

JBS USA today announced an agreement with J&B Group, Inc., to lease J&B’s value-added meat processing facility in Pipestone, Minn., with the intent to acquire this facility in the upcoming months for an undisclosed amount. The facility was destined for imminent closure.

The pending acquisition means the facility will join JBS USA, a leading U.S.-based food company with proven expertise and a strong track record of success, protecting more than 130 jobs and ensuring the facility remains a significant economic contributor to the Pipestone community for years to come.

“We are excited to welcome the Pipestone team members to JBS USA,” said Bob Krebs, COO, JBS USA Pork. “We have worked with the J&B team under the common goals of preserving jobs and creating a sustainable future for the facility. We believe...

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Dec 3 11:46 AM, General News


Cargill Expands Climate Change Commitments

With a global footprint and presence in major food and ag supply chains around the globe, Cargill is committed to protecting the earth’s vital natural resources and reducing its environmental impact. In alignment with its climate commitment, Cargill has adopted a Scope 3 target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in its global supply chains by 30% per ton of product by 2030.

This goal aligns with many of Cargill’s customers, who are driving toward similar climate goals. Cargill has also reinforced its intent to prioritize climate through three recent activities aligned with companies around the globe, including pledging to the CEO climate statement, signing on to the We Are Still In coalition to continue supporting the Paris Climate Accord and...

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Dec 3 9:25 AM, General News


Women in Food and Agriculture Survey Results: Are Women Fairly Represented in the Industry?

AgriBriefing’s Women in Food and Agriculture initiative, launched earlier this year to promote the role of women across the agribusiness supply chain, has today announced the results of an industry-wide survey, conducted with Alltech.

With the global population projected to rise to more than 9 billion by 2050 and the demand for food expected to jump sharply, the need for value gained through accessing all available talent assumes greater urgency than before.

The aim throughout the initiative has been to highlight the current state of our industry. This is not about giving women special treatment or an unfair advantage, but about ensuring we have the facts and skills required to...

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Dec 3 8:42 AM, General News


Kroger Launches Dark Kitchen Partnership with ClusterTruck

The Kroger Co., and ClusterTruck, a software platform that powers profitable, vertically integrated delivery-only kitchens, today launched a partnership that will change the way Americans access freshly prepared meals. By offering multiple menus from one central scratch kitchen, Kroger Delivery Kitchen will deliver fresh and delicious meals on-demand without service or delivery fees.

For the initial rollout, Kroger Delivery Kitchen Powered by ClusterTruck is launching in Carmel, Indiana – where Kroger and ClusterTruck are jointly opening a fourth kitchen – and Indianapolis and Columbus, Ohio. Additionally, King Soopers Delivery Kitchen Powered by ClusterTruck will serve customers in Denver.

"The way our customers order and receive meals is evolving, and ClusterTruck's innovative culinary and...

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Dec 3 8:24 AM, General News


Dec 3 8:24 AM, Urner Barry Video

Continuation of Strong Beef Import Demand from China in 2020; Key Area for Salmon Migration May Cause Some Populations to Vanish; Sponsored by The Meat Buyer's Guide Online
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Taco Del Mar Takes Beyond Meat Taco Chain-wide

Following a successful test earlier this year, Taco Del Mar has announced that it is rolling out its new Beyond Meat Taco across all locations starting December 3, 2019. The fast-casual restaurant chain is excited to introduce a delicious, new plant-based protein to its current vegetarian and vegan menu as a limited time offering with the possibility of extending product availability into the future.

Taco Del Mar guests can enjoy the new Beyond Meat Taco, which features plant-based Beyond Beef Feisty Crumbles sautéed with medium chipotle salsa, diced onions and minced serrano peppers, topped with...

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Dec 3 8:24 AM, General News


OpenTable Reveals Dining Trends for 2019

Before closing the menu on 2019, OpenTable released a retrospective look back at this year's most popular dining trends. From trending reviews to dining behavior across the country, this year's diners are looking to have their cake and eat it too.

"We hit a major milestone this year - 10 billion diners seated, using our software. To put that in perspective, that's more than the world's population," said Andrea Johnston, COO at OpenTable. "This year alone, we sat over 283 million diners who gave more than 13 million reviews. This uncovered a treasure trove of food trends and shifts in behavior to provide insightful context as to how people are eating in 2019."

On OpenTable's plate in 2019, diners moved towards more health-conscious dining preferences. Alternative diets are...

Full Story »
Dec 3 8:22 AM, General News




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