Sweet Earth Foods Debuts New Plant-Based Burgers 

Sweet Earth Foods announced the release of its Awesome Bacon Burger. The new burger extends the plant-based food makers' portfolio just in time for grilling season, as nearly 40 percent of Americans are trying to eat more plant-based foods, according to Nielsen.

The Sweet Earth Awesome Bacon Burger is a smoky plant-based burger infused with vegan bacon bits. Made of textured pea protein, this plant-based burger contains 26g of protein per serving (27% DV) and is non-GMO project certified. The burger will be hitting shelves of HEB starting this week with nationwide distribution increasing over the coming weeks.

"We are so excited to announce the release of the Awesome Bacon Burger as the first-ever vegan bacon burger, proving eating plant-based can be...

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Wed. Jun 24, 2020

Broiler Hatchery
















U.S., Japan Expand Organic Trade Opportunities; Livestock Added to Trade Arrangement

The United States and Japan announced the expansion of their organic equivalence arrangement to include livestock products. The arrangement goes into effect July 16, 2020 and reduces costs and streamlines the process for anyone involved in the organic livestock supply chain by requiring only one organic certification.

“Opening new markets for America’s organic farmers and ranchers continues to be a priority for USDA,” said the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Marketing and Regulatory Programs Under Secretary Greg Ibach. “Japan is already one of the top export markets for U.S. organic products. This agreement opens additional opportunities for everyone involved in the international supply chain for...

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Jul 14 2:23 PM, General News



U.S. Quick Service Restaurant Chains Fuel Improvement in Customer Transaction Declines

Customer transactions at major U.S. restaurant chains declined by 10% in the week ending July 5 compared to same period year ago, an improvement over last week’s decline of 14%, reports The NPD Group. All of the improvement in the week sources to major quick service restaurant chains (QSRs) where customer transaction declines improved by 4-points from the prior week’s decline of 13% versus year ago.

Full service restaurants (FSRs) continued to struggle in the week with customer transactions down 30% compared to year ago, a 5-point decline from the prior week, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for...

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Jul 14 1:50 PM, General News


Vital Farms Announces Filing of Registration Statement for Proposed Initial Public Offering

Vital Farms, Inc., a Certified B Corporation that offers a range of ethically produced pasture-raised foods nationwide, announced that it has filed a registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) relating to the proposed initial public offering of its common stock. Vital Farms has applied to list its common stock on The Nasdaq Stock Market under the ticker symbol "VITL."

The number of shares to be offered and the price range for the proposed offering have not yet been determined. The offering is subject to market conditions, and there can be no assurance as to whether or when the offering may be completed, or as to...

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Jul 14 8:22 AM, General News


Sweet Earth Foods Debuts New Plant-Based Burgers 

Sweet Earth Foods announced the release of its Awesome Bacon Burger. The new burger extends the plant-based food makers' portfolio just in time for grilling season, as nearly 40 percent of Americans are trying to eat more plant-based foods, according to Nielsen.

The Sweet Earth Awesome Bacon Burger is a smoky plant-based burger infused with vegan bacon bits. Made of textured pea protein, this plant-based burger contains 26g of protein per serving (27% DV) and is non-GMO project certified. The burger will be hitting shelves of HEB starting this week with nationwide distribution increasing over the coming weeks.

"We are so excited to announce the release of the Awesome Bacon Burger as the first-ever vegan bacon burger, proving eating plant-based can be...

Full Story »
Jul 14 2:15 PM, General News


Leadership Transition Announced for National Institute of Food and Agriculture

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced today that Dr. Parag Chitnis will serve as Acting Director of the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) upon the departure of Dr. Scott Angle.

“Dr. Chitnis brings more than 31 years of scientific research and experience to the Director’s office. He has been instrumental in providing steady leadership and support to NIFA during its transition to Kansas City last fall, in addition to playing a lead role on NIFA’s Project CAFÉ (Collaboratively Achieving Functional Excellence) initiative which aims to help NIFA maximize business operations to...

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Jul 14 8:21 AM, General News


Maggie Ernst, Longtime National Chicken Council Employee, to Retire

After 34 years at the National Chicken Council, most recently as senior director of meetings and member services, Maggie Ernst has announced her retirement from NCC.

Maggie on-boarded with the council in 1986, under the leadership of then-NCC President George Watts. During her decades of service to the industry, she managed NCC’s meetings and special events planning, program development and operations, as well as overseeing member relations and services, and served as the long-time editor of NCC’s weekly newsletter, The Washington Report.

“Maggie loved her colleagues, some of whom she worked alongside for decades and considered family,” said NCC President Mike Brown. “But above all, she was loved by our members who always...

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Jul 14 8:21 AM, General News


Carando Introduces New Calzone Products 

Carando, a brand of Smithfield Foods, is venturing further into the deli section with the addition of handheld, fully-cooked calzones. The new line features three mouth-watering flavors to tantalize every palate, including Pepperoni, Meatball, and Chicken Parmesan. Known for its authentic Italian flavors, the calzones offer consumers a simple, no-prep meal without skimping on taste.

"As a leader in Italian meats, we are excited to expand our portfolio and bring more of the traditional taste of Carando to consumers," said Diane Purnell, brand manager for Carando at Smithfield Foods. "Our new fully-cooked calzones offer convenient, on-the-go options for...

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Jul 14 1:34 PM, General News


Chipotle to Test New Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice in Select Markets

Chipotle Mexican Grill announced it will test Cilantro-Lime Cauliflower Rice at 55 restaurants in Denver and throughout Wisconsin starting July 15. Chipotle's latest plant-based option is made with real, grilled cauliflower, seasoned with fresh-chopped cilantro, lime juice and salt, prepared fresh in-restaurant every day. As many brands look to limit menu offerings amid the COVID-19 pandemic, Chipotle is continuing to explore menu innovations that align with its Food with Integrity standards.

"To date, one out of three new menu item requests from Chipotle customers is for Cauliflower Rice," said Chris Brandt, Chief Marketing Officer. "We've answered the call from fans and created a better-for-you option that puts a delicious twist on our classic white rice recipe by using the same fresh cilantro and lime ingredients and...

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Jul 14 8:21 AM, Urner Barry


Urner Barry's Weekly Insider's Turkey Hatch Report

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Jul 14 3:32 PM, UB Newswires

Tim Hortons U.S. Partners with Grubhub for Delivery in Select Markets

Tim Hortons U.S. is partnering with Grubhub, a leading online and mobile food-ordering and delivery marketplace, to offer delivery in select regional markets, including Grand Rapids, Michigan, Detroit, Michigan, Rochester, New York, and Columbus, Ohio. For a limited time, Tim Hortons guests can receive free delivery and a free 10-pack of Timbits on orders of $10 or more exclusively through Grubhub.

From bakery favorites, including the new line of Dream Donuts, to Tim Hortons signature coffee, it has never been easier to get Tim Hortons delivered. Guests in select markets can now easily order all their Tim Hortons favorites through...

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Jul 13 8:21 AM, General News


Animal Welfare Audits Across Tyson Foods’ Poultry Business are Now Certified

Tyson Foods announced it is the first company to receive audit certification for all poultry across its supply chain after its FarmCheck Animal Welfare Program completed the certification of company-wide poultry audits from the Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO).

PAACO recently certified FarmCheck audits for both breeders and turkeys, bringing the company’s total certified poultry audits to three, following broiler chicken certification by PAACO in 2019.

The FarmCheck program is a third-party animal welfare auditing program that ensures livestock and poultry suppliers for Tyson Foods are evaluated and monitored for important animal welfare criteria including...

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Jul 13 8:20 AM, General News


Fire at Tyson Foods Plant, Some Injuries Reported 

According to the Nashville Fire Department, a fire broke out at a Tyson Foods chicken plant in Nashville, Arkansas, located in Howard County. Firefighters arrived just after 2 a.m., where they found a fire located in a building separate from the main processing plant. Local reports claim that the employees were at the plant when the fire started, and two employees were injured and are receiving medical attention.

Worth Sparkman, a spokesperson for Tyson Foods, stated that company officials and firefighters are determining the cause of the fire, and operations at the plant on July 9 are limited to harvesting and deboning with further processing at the plant temporarily suspended as the investigation continues.

“Unfortunately, two of our team members have been injured and are receiving medical attention. We appreciate the quick response of...

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Jul 10 9:03 AM, Urner Barry


ANALYSIS: The Growing Price Gap Between Jumbo and Select Sized Boneless

Last year, we published an article titled, “Boneless Chicken Breasts and the New Norm” which shed light on...

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Jul 10 8:23 AM, Urner Barry


Grubhub Releases Second Annual State of the Plate Report

We're officially in the second half of 2020, and it's time to turn the dial back to take a look at how we ate our way through the beginning of a year unlike any other we've seen before. Grubhub, a leading online and mobile food-ordering and delivery marketplace, launched its latest report, "State of the Plate", looking at trends across the more than half a million orders placed a day. Grubhub's mid-year report checks in on the popular food trends to date and what quarantined Americans ordered through contact-free delivery, and predicts what we can expect to see more of in the second half of the year.

From grabbing a chorizo burrito (270% more popular) for breakfast, a cheesy breadstick snack (412% more popular), a plant-based burger (291% more popular), or a fit-for-quarantine meal kit (orders of meal kits rose 55%), below are the trends loved so far this year...

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Jul 10 8:22 AM, General News


Conagra Brands Launches More Than Two Dozen New Products, Hitting Shelves This Summer

Conagra Brands, Inc. is celebrating the summer with the debut of more than two dozen new products. More people are cooking and eating at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and Birds Eye, Marie Callender's, Healthy Choice and Snack Pack are among the brands bringing new items to market to satisfy evolving consumer needs. The new items from Conagra Brands will be hitting store shelves this summer.

New Plant-Based Meal and Snack Options

Plant-based products continue to rise in popularity, and not just for vegetarians and vegans, but for flexitarians too. Nearly 40% of Americans are attempting to incorporate more plant-based options into their diets. To answer the increased demand, brands including Birds Eye, Gardein, Healthy Choice and Marie Callender's have developed new items including...

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Jul 10 8:22 AM, General News


Retail Imports Improving Slightly, but Still Far Below Last Year

Imports at major U.S. retail container ports are expected to remain significantly below last year’s levels into this fall as the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues, according to the monthly Global Port Tracker report released today by the National Retail Federation and Hackett Associates.

“Economic indicators show that the recession brought on by the pandemic may be easing, but retailers are being conservative with the amount of merchandise they import this year,” NRF Vice President for Supply Chain and Customs Policy Jonathan Gold said. “The outlook for imports is slowly improving, but these are still some of the lowest numbers we’ve seen in years.”

“U.S. imports are performing like a yo-yo, up one month and down the next with no apparent cause that can realistically point to either...

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Jul 10 8:21 AM, General News


Urner Barry's Reporter Summer 2020 Issue Released; Read It Online For Free Now

A brand-new issue of Urner Barry's Reporter is out now!

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Jul 10 8:20 AM, Urner Barry

Target Enhances Online Grocery Pickup Service

Target’s making it easier than ever for consumers to get what they need to enjoy the season. Starting this week, consumers can shop fresh and frozen grocery items via Target's Order Pickup and Drive Up services at more than 400 stores.

“When it comes to safe, fast and easy shopping, Target leads the way,” says Dawn Block, senior vice president, digital, Target. “By expanding our Order Pickup and Drive Up assortment to include fresh and frozen grocery items, we’re making the Target Run even easier—ensuring that guests can get everything they need, using the fast, convenient services they already love.”

Select stores in Illinois, Ohio, Colorado, Utah, Michigan, Wisconsin, Iowa, Indiana, Kentucky and Kansas now offer the enhanced service, where guests can shop 750 items across...

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Jul 9 9:20 AM, General News


Joint Statement Between the United States and Kenya on the Launch of Trade Negotiations

United States Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and Kenya Cabinet Secretary for Industrialization, Trade, and Enterprise Development Betty Maina formally launched trade agreement negotiations between the United States and the Republic of Kenya.

“Kenya is a recognized leader across the continent, an important strategic partner of the United States, and there is enormous potential for us to deepen our economic and commercial ties,” said Ambassador Lighthizer. “Under President Trump’s leadership, we look forward to negotiating and concluding a comprehensive, high-standard agreement with Kenya that can serve as a model for...

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Jul 9 8:19 AM, General News


ANALYSIS: A Tenuous Year for Turkey Trade

Closely coinciding with the real-world trade experiences of market participants, the latest export figures bring with them no surprises as they continue to...

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Jul 9 8:19 AM, Urner Barry


Kroger Announces Leadership Changes

The Kroger Co. announced the retirement of Joe Grieshaber, senior vice president and chief merchant, after more than 37 years of distinguished service, effective August 15. Grieshaber will be succeeded by Stuart W. Aitken, currently senior vice president of alternative business and CEO of 84.51˚, Kroger's data analytics subsidiary. Yael Cosset, senior vice president and chief information officer, will assume responsibility for alternative business and 84.51˚.

"Today's leadership announcements are consistent with our positive track record of strong succession planning and will help us to continue to drive transformation of our business and culture, focusing on speed, action and agility to...

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Jul 9 8:18 AM, General News


Maple Leaf Foods Releases 2019 Sustainability Report

Maple Leaf Foods, Inc., announced the release of its 2019 Sustainability Report, outlining the company's key programs and achievements during the past year, as well as future initiatives and priorities supporting Maple Leaf Foods' purposeful journey to be the most sustainable protein company on earth.

In 2019, Maple Leaf Foods continued its commitment to sustainability and made meaningful progress, including becoming the first major carbon neutral food company in the world and setting science-based greenhouse gas emissions targets. Maple Leaf Foods' commitment to the environment comes from a recognition that producing nutrient-dense protein takes...

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Jul 9 8:18 AM, General News


Applebee's Brings Back Irresist-A-Bowls

Applebee’s is reintroducing Applebee’s Irresist-A-Bowls as the official entrée to welcome guests back into dining rooms across the country.

Each Irresist-A-Bowl comes overflowing with mouthwatering flavor, including the Southwest Chicken Bowl, with the option to upgrade to steak, featuring mixed greens and cilantro rice, topped high with house-made pico de gallo, black bean corn salsa and guacamole. The return of the Tex-Mex Shrimp Bowl is also featured on the menu, as well as the Homestyle Chicken Bowl which is now served with breaded pieces of tender boneless chicken.

“We are excited to ‘Welcome Back’ guests with three great new Irresist-A-Bowls all featured at $7.99. Whether in our restaurants, through Applebee’s To Go or by Delivery, all of our guests can enjoy these...

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Jul 8 8:22 AM, General News


Uber Unveils Grocery Delivery

Uber Technologies, Inc. announced that users in select Latin American and Canadian cities can now order groceries through the Uber and Uber Eats apps, in partnership with Cornershop, the popular grocery delivery startup based in Santiago, Chile. This follows the companies’ 2019 agreement for Uber to acquire a majority stake in Cornershop, which is expected to close in the coming days. Today’s news marks Uber and Cornershop’s first integrated grocery delivery experience.

Uber connects people and communities with the tap of a button, including rides, prepared food, retail goods—and now groceries. Starting today, shoppers in select cities in Latin America, Canada and coming later this month, the United States, can find grocery delivery opportunities through both Uber and Uber Eats apps, furthering Uber’s vision of bringing people closer to...

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Jul 8 8:22 AM, General News


Shake Shack Provides Business Update

Shake Shack Inc. provided a business update given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. With gradual sales recovery progressing and a strong balance sheet, the Company has restarted new Shack development both domestically and internationally as it looks forward to long-term growth.

“As always, and especially during this recovery period, our priority remains the safety of our team and our communities. Amidst our gradual sales recovery, we've started to open new Shacks again and are looking to the significant growth opportunity that we believe lies ahead for Shake Shack. I am so proud of the resilience of our teams in the Shacks, the innovation across our operating model and our relentless efforts to continue to...

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Jul 8 8:21 AM, General News


COVID-19 Case Spikes Continue to Hinder U.S. Restaurant Recovery in Week Ending June 28

The recovery of U.S. restaurant customer transactions has stalled for the second week in a row as COVID-19 cases continue to increase in a number of states, reports The NPD Group. For the week ending June 28, total customer transactions at major U.S. restaurant chains are down 14% versus the same week a year ago.

Last week, week ending June 21, total transactions were down 13% versus year ago, according to NPD’s CREST Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 72 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains.

The rise in COVID-19 case counts is causing local and state authorities to delay reopening, and in some cases, reinstating on-premise restaurant dining restrictions. In Texas, for example, restaurants may continue to...

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Jul 8 8:20 AM, General News


Ghost Kitchens on the Rise in a Post-COVID World

The coronavirus pandemic has hit the restaurant industry hard, with the Independent Restaurant Coalition reporting that 85% of independent restaurants may go out of business by the end of the end of the year. While some restaurants were forced to temporarily close, others focused on making sales through delivery and takeout. And with COVID-19 changing the way that some people eat out, some restaurants, like Pokeworks, are looking to the future.

Pokeworks launched in 2015 and has grown to over 50 locations all over the country...

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Jul 7 12:16 PM, Urner Barry


Uber to Acquire Postmates; Will Keep Consumer-Facing App Running Separately 

Uber announced on Tuesday that they have reached a definitive agreement to acquire Postmates for approximately $2.65 billion in an all-stock transaction. The deal, once completed, will keep the consumer-facing Postmates app running separately.

As we reported last week, Uber was said to be in talks to buy Postmates after their deal with Grubhub fell apart in June. The New York Times reported that Uber made an offer of about $2.6 billion, however, their offer came at the same time that Postmates reportedly decided to...

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Jul 7 8:19 AM, Urner Barry


Fast Casual Restaurant Market to Reach $209.1 Billion by 2027 

According to Allied Market Research, the global fast casual restaurant market garnered $125.6 billion in 2019, and is estimated to reach $209.1 billion by 2027, registering a CAGR of 10.6% from 2021 to 2027.

Drivers, Restraints, and Opportunities:

Increase in popularity of fast casual restaurants, low entry barriers, and high profits resulting drive the growth of the global fast casual restaurant market. However, high cost compared to quick service restaurants hinders the market growth. On the other hand, early adoption of technologies and hygienic cooking environment are anticipated to offer...

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Jul 7 8:19 AM, General News


Senators Coons, Wicker Request Financial Assistance for Chicken Farmers Impacted by COVID-19

Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.) and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) led a letter signed by 17 other senators requesting direct financial assistance for chicken farmers that have been financially impacted by COVID-19.

“As the chicken industry in Delaware and across the country continues to cope with reduced demand and processing capacity, chicken farmers have experienced a big hit to their bottom lines. In many instances, farmers are receiving fewer birds on a less frequent basis, and in some cases, they have been forced to depopulate millions of healthy birds.

Although other farmers have benefited from the United States Department of Agriculture’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program, chicken farmers have not received any assistance and...

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Jul 7 8:18 AM, General News


Rabobank Poultry Quarterly Q3 2020: Fragile Recovery After COVID-19 Storm

The global poultry industry is recovering from a storm that hit in 1H 2020, and the outlook is gradually improving. Poultry demand will be more bullish in 2H, as COVID-19 containment measurements are eased, lifting demand through foodservice.

Poultry demand is expected to improve in 2H. The biggest market driver will be the economic downturn, making global markets more volatile and price driven. Such conditions are generally positive for poultry, being the cheapest meat protein with a short and flexible production cycle.

Prices will see some recovery after historic lows in 1H. Breast meat should benefit from the reopening of foodservice, although...

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Jul 7 8:18 AM, General News


Bloomin’ Brands Announces Board of Directors Changes

Bloomin’ Brands, Inc. and JANA Partners LLC announced the addition of John P. Gainor, Jr. and Lawrence V. Jackson to the Bloomin’ Brands Board of Directors. In April, the two companies announced an agreement that included an increase to the size of the Board to ten members. The new positions filled by Gainor and Jackson became effective July 1, 2020.

Gainor served as the President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of International Dairy Queen, a franchisor of quick service restaurants, and a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway from 2008 until he retired in 2017. He joined Dairy Queen in 2003 and served as the Chief Supply Chain Officer prior to his role as CEO. Gainor is also a member of the Board of Directors for Jack in the Box, Inc. and Saia, Inc.

Jackson served as President and CEO of Global Procurement and Executive Vice President and Chief People Officer at Walmart, and in various executive roles at...

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Jul 6 8:20 AM, General News


Wingstop Opens First Ghost Kitchen in U.S.

Wingstop has announced the opening of its first domestic ghost kitchen located in the brand’s hometown of Dallas.

At the onset of COVID-19 in March 2020, Wingstop moved quickly to close its dining rooms and shift to 100% off-premise. Wingstop was well-positioned based on its pre-COVID investments in digital and technology platforms, allowing for the brand to seamlessly shift from 80% off-premise and adapt to the change in consumers’ dining behaviors. The resiliency of Wingstop was demonstrated in its April 2020 same-store sales growth of 33.4% and 65% digital sales, which included a delivery sales mix of more than 30% of total sales.

“We have a goal to digitize 100% of transactions as we drive to become a top 10 global restaurant brand and we believe ghost kitchens are a great step for the brand as...

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Jul 6 8:20 AM, General News


Global Food Commodity Prices Rebound in June

In June, global food commodity prices rose for the first time since the beginning of the year driven by a rebound in vegetable oils, sugar and dairy quotations. However, in the cereals and meat markets, most prices remained under downward pressure amid market uncertainties posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The FAO Food Price Index, which tracks international prices of the most traded food commodities, averaged 93.2 points in June, some 2.4 percent higher than the previous month.

The FAO Vegetable Oil Price Index gained 11.3 percent in June, after declining for four consecutive months. The rebound mainly reflects a sharp rise in palm oil prices due to recovering global import demand, following...

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Jul 6 8:19 AM, General News


Denny's Corporation and its Franchisees Hiring 10,000 Restaurant Employees Nationwide

Denny's announced its plans to hire 10,000 restaurant-level employees at both company and franchise operated restaurants across the United States by the end of 2020. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused unemployment to rise, impacting countless Americans, and Denny's is committed to helping people get back to work. Denny's Corporation and its franchisees are helping to jumpstart hiring across the U.S., by providing job opportunities to future employees.

With dine-in restrictions lifting and guests returning to restaurants as well as taking advantage of takeout and delivery options, Denny's is encouraging people, especially those in the severely impacted restaurant industry, to apply for a position at one of its franchises or company-owned restaurants around the country. As demand for dine-in service grows, Denny's hopes to employ jobseekers from a variety of diverse backgrounds, boost morale in local communities and play a part in the nationwide effort to...

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Jul 6 8:19 AM, General News


NRF Chief Economist Says Pandemic Recession Could Already be Easing but 'No One Has a Crystal Ball'

The economic downturn brought on by the coronavirus pandemic has officially been declared a recession, but National Retail Federation Chief Economist Jack Kleinhenz said today the key question is how long it will last.

“Will this recession be briefer than earlier recessions?” Kleinhenz said. “No one has a crystal ball. And just as it can take months to be certain a recession has begun, it can take time to declare when one is over.”

“While it would be unusual for a recession to last less than six months, it is possible that the current one could have already ended with May’s rebound,” Kleinhenz said. “The good news is that the recession may have...

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Jul 2 11:26 AM, General News


Industry Reacts to Implementation of USMCA 

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement has officially entered into force, replacing NAFTA. The USDA stated that this improved agreement is a better deal for America's farmers, consumers, and workers that will set them up for success for decades to come.

Sonny Perdue, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, said, "USMCA creates more market access for farmers from across our nation to sell their wholesome and nutritious products to our closest neighbors. This is a better deal for America that will grow our economy and put more money in the pockets of American families.”

Robert Lighthizer, United States Trade Representative, stated, "This marks the beginning of a new and better chapter for trade between the United States, Mexico and Canada, just as President Trump promised he would deliver for the American people." Lighthizer added that the USMCA contains significant improvements and...

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Jul 2 10:50 AM, Urner Barry


ANALYSIS: Chiming in on the Mid-Year Turkey Market

As we usher in Q3, and in the absence of any major deviations in this week’s overall market environment, we thought it would be a great opportunity to break away from...

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Jul 2 8:22 AM, Urner Barry


General Mills Reports Results for Fiscal 2020 and Outlines Fiscal 2021 Priorities

General Mills reported results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended May 31, 2020. Fiscal 2020 was a 53-week year, with the extra week falling in the fourth quarter.

“I’m proud of the way our organization has remained focused on serving the needs of our consumers and communities while protecting the health and safety of our employees throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” said General Mills Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jeff Harmening. “Amid significant challenge and change in the world around us, General Mills adapted and executed in fiscal 2020 to deliver outstanding financial results while fulfilling our purpose of making food the world loves. We’ve demonstrated extraordinary agility to meet the unprecedented increase in demand for food at home and to win across our categories.

“As we turn to fiscal 2021, we’ll maintain a sharp focus on the near-term opportunity to meet continued elevated demand while continuing to advance our long-term strategies by...

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Jul 2 8:21 AM, General News


After Two Months of Steady Improvements, Restaurant Recovery Hits a Bump as COVID-19 Cases Surge

Customer transactions at major U.S. restaurant chains declined by 13% in the week ending June 21 versus the same week a year ago, which is slightly softer than the 12% decline in the previous week, reports The NPD Group. This is the first time since the week ending April 12 there has not been an improvement in the year-over-year trend. COVID-19 case surges in a number of states contributed to the backtrack in decline improvements. The current period also included Father’s Day, which unlike Mother’s Day, is more of a backyard BBQ occasion than a restaurant dining event.

With new COVID-19 cases suddenly surging across multiple states, some of the states that have been reporting the highest number of new cases experienced steeper declines in major restaurant chain customer transactions in week ending June 21. Arizona, with a well-publicized surge in cases, saw a 5-point decline in...

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Jul 2 8:21 AM, General News


Seven Lessons Foodservice Can Learn from a Pandemic 

As states begin to reopen, restaurants are adapting to a new normal to welcome diners back. These adaptions include providing outdoor seating, incorporating stricter sanitary procedures, and paperless menus. According to a recent report by Datassential, there are seven lessons foodservice operators can learn from the COVID-19 pandemic that will benefit their business going forward. 

The first lesson is goodbye fear, hello caution. As more places begin to ease coronavirus restrictions, consumers are feeling more comfortable returning to public spaces if certain safety measures are met. After restrictions are lifted, about 63% of those surveyed feel safe eating at a restaurant with outdoor dining. Around 54% feel safe returning to a convenience store, and the same percentage feel comfortable with...

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Jul 2 8:20 AM, Urner Barry


More Food Delivery Consolidation? Uber in Talks to Buy Postmates

Another major acquisition in the food delivery world could potentially be in the works. Uber is reportedly in talks to buy Postmates after their deal with Grubhub fell apart a few weeks ago.

While Uber and Postmates have declined to comment, The New York Times reported on Monday that Uber made an offer to acquire Postmates for about $2.6 billion. However, their offer comes at the same time that Postmates has reportedly decided to revive their plan for an initial public offering. Postmates, which is considered the fourth largest...

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Jul 2 8:19 AM, Urner Barry


ANALYSIS: U.S. Protein Inventories Drawn Down During Plant Closures

U.S. cold storage stocks declined across the beef, pork, chicken, and egg categories in May as product was needed to...

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Jul 1 8:26 AM, Urner Barry


Taco Bell Amps Up Digital Experience with New Loyalty Program

Taco Bell is now expanding its digital experience for customers to make it even more rewarding.

“We’re excited to elevate our digital ecosystem and bring our biggest fans an even more convenient, safe, and rewarding experience at Taco Bell,” said Taco Bell’s Vice President of Digital, Zipporah Allen. “Exclusive experiences in our app - like a free Chalupa Cravings Box and earning points towards free food with Taco Bell Rewards - are just the start of the many digital initiatives that we plan to bring fans throughout the year.”

The brand is also launching a beta version of Taco Bell Rewards, a way for fans to earn free tacos (and more) for eating tacos. The loyalty program begins to rollout via the Taco Bell app nationwide in...

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Jul 1 8:26 AM, General News


The Consumer Confidence Index Increased in June

The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index increased in June, after virtually no change in May. The Index now stands at 98.1 (1985=100), up from 85.9 in May. The Present Situation Index – based on consumers’ assessment of current business and labor market conditions – improved from 68.4 to 86.2. The Expectations Index – based on consumers’ short-term outlook for income, business, and labor market conditions – increased from 97.6 in May to 106.0 this month.

The monthly Consumer Confidence Survey, based on a probability-design random sample, is conducted for The Conference Board by Nielsen, a leading global provider of information and analytics around what consumers buy and watch. The cutoff date for the preliminary results was...

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Jul 1 8:25 AM, General News


Papa John’s Provides Business Update on Ongoing Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic

Papa John’s International, Inc. provided an additional update on the ongoing business impact of the global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, including preliminary estimated comparable sales information for the June month and second quarter fiscal periods. In light of the uncertainty and volatility related to the pandemic, the company has continued to provide this information on a monthly basis.

Rob Lynch, President & CEO said, “In June Papa John’s delivered a third consecutive month of double-digit sales growth in North America and strong growth internationally. Continued strong results reflect both the hard work of our team members and local franchisees, as well as the trust that we have earned from millions of customers who have...

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Jul 1 8:25 AM, General News


Shake Shack Plans to Expand in China

Shake Shack Inc. and licensee Maxim’s Caterers Limited announced an expanded partnership, with plans to open a minimum of 15 Shacks in South China by 2030, including locations in Shenzhen, Guangzhou, Fuzhou and Xiamen.

Together, Shake Shack and Maxim's Caterers Limited plan to operate 55 Shacks in mainland China by 2030. Maxim’s currently operates Shake Shack locations in Shanghai and Hong Kong, with Beijing and Macau in development with goals to open later in 2020. As a well-respected and proven operator in Asia, Maxim's has more than 60 years of experience in the food, beverage and retail sectors, and its diversified operations include...

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Jul 1 8:24 AM, General News


PODCAST: A Triumphant Return - UB Consulting with Angel Rubio

Former Market Reporter Angel Rubio returns to Urner Barry to start our new venture, Urner Barry Consulting. Providing custom white papers, presentations, targeted research reports, and much more, Urner Barry Consulting is here to provide unique solutions for your business...

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Jun 30 10:53 AM, Urner Barry


Restaurant Brands International Provides Business Update 

The following letter was provided by Jose Cil, Chief Executive Officer of Restaurant Brands International:

"This week marked 100 days since COVID-19 turned business in our home markets upside down.

In March, April and May, we shared an update on how we've been managing the crisis and driving substantial change at Restaurant Brands International . As we finish the last week of our second quarter, I wanted to share one more update on the recovery of our business, a return to growth in certain parts of our business and some reflection on long-term priorities; including...

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Jun 30 8:09 AM, General News


Papa John’s and Shaquille O’Neal Launch New Shaq-a-Roni Pizza

Papa John’s announced today the launch of the new Shaq-a-Roni pizza in collaboration with board member and restaurant owner Shaquille O’Neal. Designed to deliver a bigger pizza experience, Papa John’s will donate one dollar from every Shaq-a-Roni sold through August 23, 2020 to The Papa John’s Foundation for Building Community, which supports communities as they work together for equality, fairness, respect and opportunity for all.

“It was important to me for the Shaq-a-Roni to be bigger than just pizza. By giving my new pie a try, one dollar will be donated to The Papa John’s Foundation for Building Community to support COVID-19 relief...

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Jun 30 8:08 AM, General News


Domino's Introduces Carside Delivery 

Domino's Pizza is offering customers of the brand yet another way to carry out their favorite pizza: via Domino's Carside Delivery. Domino's Carside Delivery is a new contactless carryout option that customers can choose when placing a prepaid online order, and it is now available in stores across the U.S.

"Domino's is all about providing a delicious, hot meal, the way customers want it – whether via carryout or delivery," said Dennis Maloney, Domino's senior vice president-chief innovation officer. "Domino's Carside Delivery gives customers the option to stay in their vehicle while...

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Jun 30 8:08 AM, General News


Lloyd's Barbeque Introduces Pulled Pork and Chicken Products 

The makers of Lloyd’s barbeque products announced its pecanwood smoked pulled pork and hardwood smoked chicken made with 2-time world barbeque sauce champion Pig Beach Mustard BBQ Sauce.

Winner of the 2014 and 2016 Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest, Pig Beach Mustard BBQ Sauce is a perfect match for Lloyd’s lightly seasoned hardwood smoked pulled meats. Recognized by USA Today as the “Most Prestigious Barbecue Contest,” the Memphis in May World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest is a four-day competition held in Memphis, Tenn., that draws nearly 250 teams competing from around the world.

“Barbeque is all about bringing families and friends together,” said Eric Jacobson, Lloyd’s barbeque brand manager. “Our new hardwood smoked pulled meats made with...

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Jun 30 8:07 AM, General News


Chipotle Announces Partnership with Grubhub to Expand Delivery Footprint

Chipotle Mexican Grill announced that it is partnering with Grubhub, the nation's leading pickup and delivery marketplace with the largest network of restaurant partners, to expand its delivery footprint in the U.S. Chipotle and Grubhub have established a fully-integrated partnership to provide efficient operations and a seamless diner experience, ensuring food arrives as fresh and fast as possible. Available now, customers can order from Chipotle locations through the Grubhub app or Grubhub.com.

Digital orders from Chipotle are customized via the brand's Digital Kitchens, which are comprised of a dedicated ingredient station and operated by a special team in nearly all Chipotle locations. Chipotle deliveries also feature a tamper evident packaging seal to help ensure food is untouched during delivery. Grubhub users will also...

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Jun 30 8:07 AM, General News


New Jersey Postpones Indoor Dining Indefinitely as Other States Pause Reopening

Just days before New Jersey restaurants were set to reopen indoor dining at 25% capacity, Governor Phil Murphy announced that the state would be postponing indoor dining indefinitely. 

“UPDATE: INDOOR DINING WILL NO LONGER RESUME ON THURSDAY,” Murphy posted in a series of messages on social media Monday afternoon. “We had planned to loosen restrictions this week. However, after COVID19 spikes in other states driven by, in part, the return of indoor dining, we have decided to postpone indoor dining indefinitely...

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Jun 30 8:06 AM, SeafoodNews


Urner Barry's Coronavirus Special Report - Volume III

The global COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted consumer behavior, distribution, production, and market prices in a way we have never seen before. From stay-at-home directives that spurred a run on retail while foodservice operations were limited or halted all-together, to production cutbacks caused by labor shortages at the plant level, the industry has had much to contend with over the past several months.

Now, as many states have begun reopening phases, the industry is making strides in returning to a more “normal” business environment—however the face of this new normal will likely look a bit different...

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Jun 30 8:06 AM, Urner Barry


Pilgrim's Pride Corporation Recalls Chicken Breast Nugget Products

Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation, a Waco, Texas establishment, is recalling approximately 59,800 pounds of fully cooked chicken breast nugget products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials, specifically flexible rubber material, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.

The frozen ready-to-eat (RTE) chicken breast nugget items were produced on May 6, 2020. The following products are subject to recall...

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Jun 29 9:00 AM, General News


Church's Chicken Rallies in Q2, Sets Sights on Continued Growth and Positive Momentum

Just six months ago, Church's Chicken turned in its best performance in ten years for comparable same-store sales, and made 2020 the launch date for the brand's five-year strategic plan. Then, like all restaurants and businesses, plans were set back due to COVID-19 and the brand enacted a refocused action plan in response. Overall, the COVID-19 sales challenges were only temporary for Church's, as it reports that domestic sales have returned to pre-pandemic positive trends the past two months.

"Without question, our ability to weather this crisis is due to our entire franchise community, corporate and restaurant team members coming together to quickly and effectively adapt to a changing market and continue to...

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Jun 29 8:15 AM, General News


USDA, FDA Says Food Export Restrictions Not Consistent with COVID-19 Science

In a joint statement, the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D., said that countries currently restricting global food exports over worries related to COVID-19 transmission are not consistent with science.

“The United States understands the concerns of consumers here domestically and around the world who want to know that producers, processors and regulators are taking every necessary precaution to prioritize food safety especially during these challenging times. However, efforts by some countries to restrict global food exports related to..."

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Jun 26 12:03 PM, General News


ANALYSIS: Hatchery figures: Filling a Need but Which One?

By almost every measure, 2020 has been an historic year and one which has rocked the chicken industry to its core...

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Jun 26 8:13 AM, Urner Barry


Darden Restaurants Reports Financial Results and Provides 2021 First Quarter Outlook

Darden Restaurants, Inc., reported its financial results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended May 31, 2020, which included a 53rd week of operations compared to 52 weeks last year.

Statement from Gene Lee, CEO:

"The strategy we put in place five years ago helped us successfully navigate one of the most challenging periods in our Company's history. When our dining rooms closed, our operators did an amazing job of reimagining the guest experience by staying true to our back-to-basics operating philosophy.

We benefited greatly from our competitive advantages that form the foundation of our strategy, especially our scale and our culture. Our scale allowed us to quickly react to...

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Jun 26 8:12 AM, General News


Joint Statement from USDA and FDA on Food Export Restrictions Pertaining to COVID-19

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and FDA Commissioner Stephen M. Hahn, M.D., issued the following statement regarding food export restrictions pertaining to COVID-19:

“The United States understands the concerns of consumers here domestically and around the world who want to know that producers, processors and regulators are taking every necessary precaution to prioritize food safety especially during these challenging times. However, efforts by some countries to restrict global food exports related to COVID-19 transmission are not consistent with the known science of transmission.”

“There is no evidence that people can contract COVID-19 from...

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Jun 25 8:42 AM, General News


ANALYSIS: Turkey Cold Storage: Standing Resolute

Monday’s release of the USDA’s Cold Storage Report helps support the current standing of most major lines, and also reflects...

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Jun 25 8:24 AM, Urner Barry


Dine Brands Global Announces International President; Chief Information Officer Appointments

Dine Brands, the parent company of Applebee's Neighborhood Grill & Bar and IHOP restaurants, announces the appointment of Tony Moralejo as President, International and Global Development; and Justin Skelton, Chief Information Officer. Moralejo and Skelton are both experienced leaders who will make an immediate impact in the recovery and acceleration of the business post crisis. They will report to Thomas Song, Chief Financial Officer, and join the Dine Brands Executive Team.

Moralejo joins Dine from Church's/Texas Chicken, an international quick service restaurant company. Moralejo’s prior experience spans over two decades, leading global teams in various operations, franchise development and...

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Jun 25 8:23 AM, General News


Reopening Regulations Lead to New Formats and Menu Innovations

China has put several parts of Beijing under lockdown following a spike in recent virus infections. The second wave prevention measures include the closure of some bars and the sanitization of restaurants.

South Africa is now allowing restaurants to offer dine-in service after having been under one of the world’s tightest lockdowns since late March.

Wisconsin’s Supreme Court ruled that prohibitions on business reopenings are unconstitutional, opening the door for restaurant dining rooms and bars to welcome guests again.

Governors in both Texas and Florida announced that restaurant dining rooms can reopen at 25% capacity. However, in Florida, stay-at-home orders remain in place for the more...

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Jun 25 8:22 AM, General News


Tyson Foods Names Johanna Söderström Chief Human Resources Officer

Tyson Foods, Inc. named Johanna Söderström as Executive Vice President & Chief Human Resources Officer, effective July 6, 2020. Söderström will report to Chief Executive Officer Noel White and will lead all aspects of the company’s global people strategy to enable its overall growth, innovation and transformation agenda. Söderström also will focus on continuing to build the company’s culture, talent and capabilities for the future. She succeeds Mary Oleksiuk, who is retiring after a 35-year career.

Söderström, who will join the Enterprise Leadership Team at Tyson Foods, brings more than two decades of experience in global people solutions, employee engagement and talent development to her new role. She most recently served as Senior Vice President, Chief Human Resources Officer at The Dow Chemical Company and oversaw the company’s cultural and organizational transformation through the DowDuPont merger and...

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Jun 25 8:22 AM, General News


WFA Webcast: How Have Different Food and Agribusiness Leaders Addressed COVID-19 Challenges?

AgriBriefing's series of videos and webcasts give you the chance to get views and insight from leading voices from the sector discussing hot topics impacting the Women in Food and Agriculture community.

AgriBriefing will host its webcast about how food and agribusiness leaders have addressed COVID-19 challenges on Thursday June 25th, at 9:00 CT. Themes addressed will include: What have been the biggest challenges for businesses and wider value chains during this time? – How do we think supply chains will change following the pandemic? – What will businesses do...

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Jun 24 11:25 AM, Urner Barry


U.S.-China Trade Deal Remains Intact Despite Recent Comments from Trump Administration

Recent comments from both President Trump and officials in his administration led to volatile markets on Tuesday as industries reacted to White House trade adviser Peter Navarro’s comments during a recent Fox News interview.

During the interview, Fox News host Martha MacCallum, asked Navarro, “"Do you think that the president -- he obviously really wanted to hang on to this trade deal as much as possible and he wanted them [China] to make good on the promises because there had been progress made on that trade deal," MacCallum told Navarro. "But given everything that's happened ... is that over?"

"It's over," Navarro responded...

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Jun 24 10:39 AM, General News


Spikes in COVID-19 Cases in Open States are Not Yet Impacting Restaurant Recovery

The spikes in COVID-19 cases in states that have reopened restaurant dine-in services haven’t yet impacted the continuing improvement in major restaurant chain transaction declines as more states reopen, reports The NPD Group. Arizona, California, and Florida, three states that reported an uptick in COVID-19 cases, showed several points of improvement in restaurant chain customer transaction declines at full service restaurants — the restaurant segment most affected by dine-in closures — in week ending June 14 compared to the previous week, according to...

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Jun 24 8:19 AM, General News


Albertsons Companies Announces Launch of Initial Public Offering

Albertsons Companies, Inc. announced the commencement of an initial public offering of 65,800,000 shares of its common stock to be sold by certain of its stockholders, at an anticipated initial public offering price between $18 and $20 per share, pursuant to a registration statement on Form S-1 previously filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC").

The Company is not selling any shares pursuant to the common stock offering. In connection with the offering, certain of the selling stockholders expect to grant the underwriters a 30-day option to purchase an aggregate of...

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Jun 23 8:14 AM, General News


Subway Restaurants to Add 50,000 Jobs

With record unemployment levels across the country, Subway Restaurants announced its local Franchise Owners seek to hire approximately 50,000 jobs in North American restaurants. This effort further deepens the brand's community connections as Subway can be found in almost every community across the U.S. and Canada, and directly addresses some of the devastating effects of the COVID-19 crisis.

Subway recognizes the importance of supporting its communities and providing safe, reliable job opportunities to those seeking employment – now more than ever. Starting this summer at participating North America restaurants, thousands of job opportunities will be available ranging from entry-level to management.

"As our business continues to see a growing demand for our value offerings, curbside pick-up and delivery, we are happy to support such a large-scale employment opportunity to meet...

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Jun 23 8:13 AM, General News


McDonald's Restaurants Anticipate Hiring Approximately 260,000 this Summer

As states and communities continue to re-open their economies, McDonald’s restaurants are expecting to hire approximately 260,000 restaurant employees in the U.S. this summer. This comes as McDonald’s restaurants begin to welcome customers back into dining rooms with extra precautions in place.

McDonald’s has implemented nearly 50 new safety procedures to protect crew and customers. These include wellness and temperature checks, social distancing floor stickers, protective barriers at order points, masks and gloves for employees with the addition of new procedures, and training for the opening of dining rooms.

“We are excited to welcome new employees to our McFamily, and we want candidates and their families to know we have one goal – to keep our people safe. We’ve put new minimum national standards and nearly 50 new processes in place in our restaurants as they continue to...

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Jun 22 8:16 AM, General News


CBP Intercepts Nearly 20,000 Pounds of Smuggled Animal Products from China at LA/LB Seaport

In just a few weeks, from April 6 to June 6, U. S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) agriculture specialists assigned to the LA/Long Beach Seaport, intercepted 19,555 pounds of prohibited pork, chicken, beef and duck products arriving from China.

Most of the unmanifiested animal products were commingled in boxes of headphones, door locks, kitchenware, LCD tablets, trash bags, swim fins, cell phone covers, plastic cases and household goods in a clear attempt to smuggle the prohibited meats.

CBP agriculture specialists identified, examined and seized 12 shipments containing a total of 834 cartons which lacked the required...

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Jun 22 8:15 AM, General News


New Legislation Introduced to Help Independent Restaurants Recover from COVID-19 Challenges

The Real Economic Support That Acknowledges Unique Restaurant Assistance Needed to Survive (RESTAURANTS) Act of 2020 was introduced on June 18 calling for $120 billion to help independent restaurants recover from the challenges posed by COVID-19.

Introduced by a bipartisan coalition of politicians including U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Kyrsten Sinema, D-Ariz., and Representatives Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., and Brian Fitzpatrick, R-Pa, the legislation will create a fund to deal with the impacts of the coronavirus and help reemploy...

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Jun 19 11:54 AM, General News


Tyson Foods Appoints Dan Turton As Senior Vice President, Global Government Affairs

Tyson Foods, Inc. named Dan Turton as Senior Vice President, Global Government Affairs, effective June 29, 2020. Turton will be based in Washington, D.C. and will lead the worldwide government relations activities for the Company. He will report to Amy Tu, Executive Vice President and General Counsel.

“Dan is well-respected across the political spectrum,” Tu said. “He brings nearly three decades of experience in government affairs and public policy to this role, including time spent working in corporate and government positions on Capitol Hill, in the White House, and with General Motors. I am confident that he will...

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Jun 19 8:58 AM, General News


ANALYSIS: Heavy Chickens and More of Them

Keen observers of the chicken market are well aware of the growing price spread between medium and jumbo-sized product...

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Jun 19 8:18 AM, Urner Barry


USDA Trade Mitigation Purchases to Feed People in Need and Aid American Farmers Surpass $2B

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced that it has purchased more than $2.2 billion of meat, fruits, vegetables, specialty crops and dairy products in fiscal years 2019 and 2020 in its ongoing efforts to feed people in need and assist American farmers and ranchers suffering from damage due to unjustified trade retaliation by foreign nations.

USDA is on target to reach its fiscal year goal of about $1.4 billion of trade mitigation purchases in the next phase of fiscal year purchasing, which ends Sept. 30. The purchases were made through...

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Jun 19 8:17 AM, General News


Six Flags Announces New Mobile Food Ordering

Six Flags Entertainment Corporation announced the biggest planned rollout of Mobile Food Ordering in the regional theme park space. As more Six Flags parks open with new safety guidelines in place, the program offers a minimal to no-contact process with the use of the Six Flags App.

“Social distancing is a key component of our operations. By utilizing Mobile Food Ordering, guests will spend significantly less time in food lines and more time enjoying their visit. More than 75% of our dining locations now offer...

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Jun 19 8:17 AM, General News


COVID-19 Continues to Impact Initial Unemployment Claims 

According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the figure for seasonally adjusted initial unemployment claims reached 1,508,000 in the week ending June 13. This is a decrease of 58,000 from the previous week's revised level. The previous week's level was revised up by 24,000 from 1,542,000 to 1,566,000. The four-week moving average was 1,773,500, a decrease of 234,500 from the previous week's revised average. The average from the week prior was revised up by 6,000 to 2,008,000.

For the week ending June 6, the advance seasonally adjusted insured unemployment rate was 14.1%, unchanged from the prior week's revised rate. The advance number for seasonally adjusted insured employment was 20,544,000, a decrease of 62,000 from the week before. The four-week moving average was...

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Jun 19 8:16 AM, Urner Barry


Urner Barry’s Executive Conference and Global Protein Summit to be One Epic Online Experience

June 19, 2020, Toms River, NJ – Urner Barry, the leading provider of protein market news and information in the food industry, is excited to announce its two biggest events of the year will be merged into one online experience in 2020.

During this unprecedented time, our industry has been impacted like never before. We know you were looking forward to attending Urner Barry's Executive Conference and Global Protein Summit this year, but the safety of our customers and employees is the main priority. As Urner Barry is uniquely placed to provide you with vital information on the protein markets during this time of vast uncertainty, we remain committed to delivering the insights that you need to best navigate your business – and because of this, for 2020 only, we are combining our two events into one epic, online experience.

The wellbeing of our community and colleagues remains our number one priority so, while this decision has not been taken lightly, we feel that taking the event online this year provides...

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Jun 19 8:15 AM, Urner Barry


Kroger Reports First Quarter 2020 Results and Provides Update on COVID-19 Response

The Kroger Co. reported its first quarter 2020 results, provided a Restock Kroger progress update on the three-year transformation plan and an update to the COVID-19 response.

Comments from Chairman and CEO Rodney McMullen

"The COVID-19 pandemic and the most recent instances of racial injustice have changed our country in unmistakable ways, not the least of which is the devastating loss of life and livelihood that has affected so many Americans. Kroger remains guided by our purpose and our values. I am proud of our associates who stepped up when we were called to be there for our customers, communities and each other. Our company is proud to...

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Jun 18 9:13 AM, General News


ANALYSIS: Tom and Hen Poults Follow a Distinct YoY Path

As stay-at-home guidelines are lifted and the foodservice sector gradually returns, turkey market participants look to the hatch data in an attempt to refine their buying and...

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Jun 18 8:20 AM, Urner Barry


While COVID-19 Remains a Focus, Consumers’ Interests have Started to Shift Beyond the Pandemic

Since the beginning of the pandemic, the world has been focused on coronavirus. With the virus impacting just about every aspect of consumers’ lives, stepping away from the news is not always enough to escape the fatigue.

For the first time in three months, the virus is no longer front and center amid recent events surrounding protests. In some ways, Datassential found that this has caused some households of younger generations to relax COVID-19 precautions and take on more risk to get out and reclaim their lives.

More than others, younger generations and households with children are partaking in socializing in larger groups and heading back to dining rooms. While Americans are not ready to completely turn off virus-related news, they are ready to...

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Jun 18 8:19 AM, Urner Barry


Chipotle Expands Digital Platform with Canadian App Launch and U.S. Ordering Enhancements

Chipotle Mexican Grill announced a series of innovations to its digital platform to increase access and convenience for guests, including the introduction of the Chipotle app in Canada. Now guests in Canada can order their favorite Chipotle meals via Chipotle.ca or the Chipotle app, as well as through DoorDash and Uber Eats.

"Investing in our digital ecosystem in Canada will enhance the guest experience and position us well for future growth," said Anat Davidzon, Managing Director – Canada, Chipotle.

Chipotle is also introducing a series of enhancements to its mobile ordering capabilities including Pepper, its Concierge Bot on Facebook Messenger. Beginning June 22, customers can...

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Jun 18 8:18 AM, General News


May Retail Sales Improve Dramatically Over April but Still Below Last Year

Retail sales rose dramatically in May as retailers and other businesses closed by the coronavirus pandemic began to reopen, but remained well below spending levels seen during the same period a year ago, the National Retail Federation said.

“This sales report is very encouraging news at a time when we need to focus on what will happen as retail doors open once again,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said during a live interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box program. “For a sick economy, there is no better medicine than retailers responding to consumers who are ready to safely return to stores. These sales numbers do not reflect the same strength we had going into the pandemic, but they certainly reflect the trajectory we need coming out of it. The most important thing now is...

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Jun 18 8:18 AM, General News


Mintel: A Quarter of British Millennials Say COVID-19 has Made a Vegan Diet More Appealing 

The prospect of a diet packed with chickpeas, lentils, and quinoa appears to be more tempting as of late, as new research from Mintel reveals that a quarter (25%) of young British Millennials (aged 21-30) say that the COVID-19 pandemic has made a vegan diet more appealing.

These plant-loving Millennials are not alone, as the research reveals that a vegan diet is proving more attractive to over one in ten (12%) of all Brits, rising to almost a quarter (22%) of Londoners, since the start of the pandemic.

This comes as Mintel research indicates there is a strong belief in the healing power of plants, as half of Brits (51%) believe plant/botanical ingredients (eg herbs, spices) can have...

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Jun 18 8:17 AM, General News


NAMI to President Trump: China Must Meet Phase One Obligations

The North American Meat Institute joined a broad coalition of agribusinesses and agriculture organizations calling on President Trump to ensure continued implementation of the U.S. China Phase One Trade Agreement due to the significance of China’s market for U.S. food and agricultural exports, particularly U.S. meat and poultry products, which now enjoy expanded market access under the Agreement. The organizations emphasize the Agreement’s benefits for the U.S. rural economy, and underscore its importance to the overall growth and vitality of the U.S. agriculture sector.

The letter, sent June 16, 2020, was signed by 192 groups representing all parts of the food value chain and rural economies. The following is the text of the letter...

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Jun 17 9:58 AM, General News


Hard Rock Cafe to Reopen Restaurant Locations Under New Health and Safety Plan 

Hard Rock International announced plans to reopen company-owned Hard Rock Cafe locations in the United States and Europe, in compliance with recommendations from national and local health officials. To help keep guests and team members safe and healthy, Hard Rock Cafes have implemented "SAFE + SOUND," a new program featuring stringent guidelines developed in collaboration with leading worldwide health and sanitization partners like ECOSURE and the National Sanitation Foundation (NSF).

The "SAFE + SOUND" program implements the highest of level of safety, sanitation, food handling and employee training. As part of the new protocol, all guests and team members will be required to...

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Jun 17 8:22 AM, General News


As Restaurants Begin to Reopen, Operators Expect a Long Road Ahead

According to the National Restaurant Association, the restaurant industry has lost $120 billion in sales over the last three months due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States.

The Association said stay-at-home policies led to losses of $30 billion in March, $50 billion in April, and another $40 billion in May.

Most of the country is beginning to reopen dining at some capacity. States are allowing limited capacity while others are set to allow outdoor dining and there is hope that restaurants...

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Jun 16 11:57 AM, General News


PODCAST: Checking In on Chicken - Retail Demand, Unemployment, and More

COVID-19 has caused shockwaves across the whole protein sector and chicken is no exception. Retail demand, unemployment, seasonal factors, and more...

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Jun 16 10:42 AM, Urner Barry


Sweet Earth Foods Debuts Eight New Plant-Based Products

Sweet Earth Foods announced the national launch of a selection of eight new burritos and entrée bowls. As the latest additions to Sweet Earth's best-selling product lines, these two new burritos and six new entrée bowls are available now in the frozen aisle of grocery stores, with distribution increasing in the following weeks.

The new burritos and bowls all incorporate plant-based Awesome Grounds or Mindful Chik'n, satisfying cravings for the meaty, juicy taste of traditional meats, and making them a good source of protein. Created with wholesome ingredients like veggies and globally inspired spices, the burritos and bowls are...

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Jun 16 10:05 AM, General News


Family, Friends and Colleagues Saddened At the Passing of Food Industry Leader Dilio Di Pasquale

Long-time Fancy Foods Associate Dilio Di Pasquale passed away on May 28th after battling an illness for the past few years. Besides being a loving father and husband of 68 years to his wife, Pat, he was an Uncle, Grandfather, and extraordinary mentor.

Dilio emigrated from Italy at the age of 5, growing up in New York and New Jersey. He later served in the U.S. Army as a paratrooper. Dilio's business skills led him to become a highly respected and trusted food industry professional and icon. Dilio owned the Bergen Pork Store in North Bergen before transitioning into the wholesale meat business where he spent the rest of his career as...

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Jun 16 9:57 AM, General News

McDonald's Reports April and May 2020 Comparable Sales and Provides COVID-19 Business Update

McDonald's is providing comparable sales results and an update on the COVID-19 impact to the Company's operations ahead of the second quarter earnings announcement.

Highlights:

  • 95% of McDonald's restaurants around the world are open to serve customers.
  • Comparable sales have improved sequentially from late March through May.
  • The Company is investing in the System to accelerate recovery.

"Our strong foundation and the unique advantages of the McDonald's System, including...

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Jun 16 9:48 AM, General News


Hormel Foods Announces Retirement

Hormel Foods Corporation announced the upcoming retirement of Jim Splinter, group vice president, corporate strategy. Splinter's long tenure with the company includes leading the company's successful Grocery Products division and holding executive positions with the Refrigerated Foods and Jennie-O Turkey Store divisions.

Most recently, Splinter led corporate strategy for Hormel Foods, including corporate innovation, digital experience, communications and corporate development, including leading the M&A pipeline, which resulted in several important acquisitions over the last few years.

Under his leadership, Hormel Foods formed its digital and e-commerce center of excellence and its agile and incubator centers, resulting in the successful introduction of...

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Jun 16 9:40 AM, General News


U.S. Restaurant Chain Transaction Declines Continue to Soften, Down 14% in Week Ending June 7

U.S. major restaurant chain transactions were down 14% in the week ending June 7 versus the same week a year ago, a 29 point gain from the steepest decline during the COVID-19 pandemic of  43% in week ending April 12, reports The NPD Group.  Sixty-nine percent of restaurant units are now in geographies that permit some level of on-premise dining and the number should increase to 74% in week ending June 14.

Major full service restaurant (FSRs) chains are still seeing the most improvement of restaurant segments as more dining rooms open and those already open increase capacity...

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Jun 16 8:12 AM, General News


Tyson Foods, Inc. Releases Results From Covid-19 Testing At Berry Street Facility In Springdale, AR

Tyson Foods, Inc. (NYSE: TSN) announced today the results of facility-wide testing for COVID-19 at its Berry Street poultry facility in Springdale, Arkansas. 

Of the 1,102 team members who work at the facility and were tested onsite from June 4 to June 6, 199 tested positive, only one of whom showed symptoms. The other 198 individuals who tested positive did not show any symptoms and otherwise would not have been identified. 

This is in addition to 48 positive cases identified at Berry Street by the Department of Health or when seeking care through their own health care providers...

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Jun 15 11:34 AM, General News


Sysco Launches New Interactive Virtual ‘Restaurant Readiness Tool’ for Operators

Today, Sysco announced the launch of its Restaurant Readiness Tool, a first-of-its kind simulation that intuitively provides a comprehensive view of best practices, key considerations and essential supplies for operators re-opening their restaurants as COVID-19 stay-at-home orders continue to ease.

The Restaurant Readiness Tool enables operators to tour a virtual restaurant where they experience an immersive, 360-degree view of the establishment. Users can navigate through the restaurant, clicking various icons for each area and foodservice role to learn about best practices for ensuring the health and safety of both guests and employees...

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Jun 15 8:46 AM, General News


Smithfield Foods Details Ongoing COVID-19 Testing at Its Facilities

Smithfield Foods, Inc. today said that it is continuing to prioritize employee health and safety by providing free, on-demand COVID-19 testing to all its employees at its more than 40 U.S. facilities. The company offered the following details about the ongoing COVID-19 testing:

- Last month, Smithfield completed a testing phase in which private healthcare providers administered mass testing on a voluntary basis to all its employees.  

- At the conclusion of that phase, beginning last month, the company hired four private healthcare providers, Matrix Medical NetworkEurofins ScientificMako 

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Jun 15 8:42 AM, General News


Pilgrim’s CEO on Paid Leave of Absence

Pilgrim’s Pride Corporation (NASDAQ: PPC) today announced that president and CEO Jayson Penn has begun a paid leave of absence, effective immediately. During his leave of absence, Mr. Penn intends to focus on his defense of the recently disclosed indictment against him, to which he has pleaded not guilty. The Pilgrim’s Board of Directors has appointed Fabio Sandri, Pilgrim’s CFO, as interim president and CEO.

“Pilgrim’s operates with the highest standards of integrity and is committed to free and open competition that benefits both customers and consumers,” said Gilberto Tomazoni, chairman of Pilgrim’s Board of Directors...

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Jun 15 8:17 AM, General News


Taco Bell Owner Sues Grubhub, Claiming it Violated Distribution Agreement

Taco Bell owner Yum Brands is suing Grubhub, claiming that it violated its distribution agreement.

Yum bought a 3% stake in the third-party delivery app in 2018 as more national chains looked to lift sales by offering delivery. As part of the deal, the two signed a contract that required the delivery app to give Yum favorable pricing and service levels for thousands of Taco Bell and KFC restaurants, which are largely operated by franchisees...

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Jun 12 8:39 AM, Urner Barry


Instacart Announces $225 Million In New Funding Led By DST Global, General Catalyst And D1 Capital

Instacart, the North American leader in online grocery, today announced it has raised $225 million as part of a new financing round led by DST Global and General Catalyst, with existing investor D1 Capital Partners participating. The investment comes as Instacart continues to experience an unprecedented surge in customer demand for grocery delivery and pickup. Today's announcement increases the company's valuation to $13.7 billion...

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Jun 12 8:07 AM, General News




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