Archive for November, 2010


Fresh Del Monte Produce Announces Third Quarter 2010 Financial ResultsCORAL GABLES, Fla.  (Food-News.net)  Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. (NYSE:FDP) today reported financial results for the third quarter ended October 1, 2010. The Company reported earnings per diluted share of $0.24 in the third quarter of 2010, compared with earnings per diluted share of $0.45 in the third quarter of 2009. Excluding asset impairment and other (credits) charges, net the Company reported earnings per diluted share of $0.22 for the third quarter of 2010, compared with earnings per diluted share of $0.61 in the third quarter of 2009. Asset impairment and other (credits) charges, net totaled a credit of $1.1 million, or $0.02 per diluted share, for the third quarter of 2010, primarily as a result of insurance recovery from flood damage to the Company’s Guatemala banana farms. Results for the third quarter of 2009 exclude asset impairment and other (credits) charges, net totaling $10.0 million, or $0.16 per diluted share.

“Our third quarter earnings results reflect that we are operating in a very challenging environment,” said Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer at Fresh Del Monte Produce. “Adverse weather conditions again impacted our banana production areas in Guatemala, resulting in higher production costs. These costs were compounded by unfavorable exchange rates in several producing countries, and a difficult banana market in Europe. Nonetheless, while I was clearly disappointed in our overall results, our progress towards our long-term initiatives remained strong during the quarter. The growth in net sales shows that our expansion into new markets and distribution channels has been well received. As we look forward, we will continue to seek ways to improve our performance, effectively manage our business for growth, and deliver long-term value for our shareholders.”

Net sales for the third quarter of 2010 increased $26.9 million to $793.1 million, compared with $766.2 million in the prior year’s third quarter. The increase in net sales was driven by increased banana volume in the Company’s North America and Middle East regions; higher volume and price increases in the Company’s gold pineapple product line and prepared food business segment; and the Company’s increased presence in new markets.

Gross profit for the quarter decreased to $52.0 million, compared with $69.0 million in the third quarter of 2009. Excluding other (credits) charges, net gross profit for the quarter decreased to $50.8 million, compared with gross profit of $69.0 million in the third quarter of 2009. The decrease in gross profit was primarily due to lower profitability in the Company’s banana business segment.

Operating income for the quarter decreased to $15.5 million, compared with $18.1 million in the third quarter of 2009. Excluding asset impairment and other (credits) charges, net for both periods, operating income for the quarter decreased to $14.4 million, compared with $28.1 million in the third quarter of 2009. The decrease in operating income was the result of the lower gross profit, partially offset by a decrease in selling, general and administrative expenses and the gain on sales of property, plant and equipment.

Net income for the quarter was $14.5 million, compared with $28.6 million in the third quarter of 2009. Excluding asset impairment and other (credits) charges, net for both periods, net income for the quarter was $13.4 million, compared with $38.6 million in the third quarter of 2009. The decrease in net income was primarily due to lower operating income and higher taxes.

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. and Subsidiaries
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Income
(U.S. dollars in millions, except share and per share data) – (Unaudited)
 
      Quarter ended   Nine months ended
                   
  Income Statement:   October 1,   September 25,   October 1,   September 25,
        2010       2009       2010       2009  
  Net sales   $ 793.1     $ 766.2     $ 2,736.2     $ 2,624.3  
  Cost of products sold     742.3       697.2       2,495.1       2,363.4  
  Other (credits) charges, net (1)     (1.2 )           8.3       17.1  
  Gross profit     52.0       69.0       232.8       243.8  
                   
  Selling, general and administrative expenses     40.9       43.3       125.9       122.6  
  Gain on sales of property, plant and equipment     4.5       2.4       7.9       4.3  
  Asset impairment and other charges, net (2)     0.1       10.0       24.1       11.5  
  Operating income     15.5       18.1       90.7       114.0  
                   
  Interest expense, net     1.9       2.7       7.9       8.4  
  Other income (expense), net     3.0       1.0       (6.6 )     (1.8 )
                   
  Income before income taxes     16.6       16.4       76.2       103.8  
                   
  Provision for (benefit from) income taxes     3.2       (12.8 )     4.7       (13.8 )
  Net income   $ 13.4     $ 29.2     $ 71.5     $ 117.6  
                   
  Less: Net (loss) income attributable to noncontrolling interests     (1.1 )     0.6       (0.3 )     1.9  
  Net income attributable to Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc.   $ 14.5     $ 28.6     $ 71.8     $ 115.7  
                   
  Net income per ordinary share attributable toFresh Del Monte Produce Inc. – Basic   $ 0.24     $ 0.45     $ 1.16     $ 1.82  
                   
  Net income per ordinary share attributable toFresh Del Monte Produce Inc. – Diluted   $ 0.24     $ 0.45     $ 1.16     $ 1.82  
                   
  Weighted average number of ordinary shares:                
  Basic     60,735,357       63,568,042       61,984,107       63,558,155  
  Diluted     60,919,626       63,682,513       62,149,688       63,629,854  
                   
  Selected Income Statement Data:                
  Depreciation and amortization   $ 19.5     $ 21.1     $ 59.2     $ 63.2  
                   
  Non-GAAP Measures:                
  Reported net income per share – Diluted   $ 0.24     $ 0.45     $ 1.16     $ 1.82  
  Other (credits) charges, net (1)     (0.02 )           0.13       0.27  
  Asset impairment and other charges, net (2)           0.16       0.39       0.18  
  Adjusted net income per share – Diluted (3)   $ 0.22     $ 0.61     $ 1.68     $ 2.27  
                   
  Reported gross profit   $ 52.0     $ 69.0     $ 232.8     $ 243.8  
  Other (credits) charges, net (1)     (1.2 )           8.3       17.1  
  Adjusted gross profit (3)   $ 50.8     $ 69.0     $ 241.1     $ 260.9  
                   
(1 ) Other (credits) charges, net for the quarter ended October 1, 2010 related principally to insurance reimbursements, partially offset by additional costs associated with flood damage to our Guatemala banana farms. Other (credits) charges, net for the nine months ended October 1, 2010 related principally to the write-off of inventory as a result of damage caused by the February earthquake in Chile, floods in our Guatemala banana farms and exit activities in Brazil, partially offset by insurance reimbursements. Other (credits) charges, net for the nine months ended September 25, 2009 related to the second quarter write-down of inventory as a result of exit activities in Brazil.
     
(2 ) Asset impairment and other charges, net for the quarter ended October 1, 2010 related principally to insurance reimbursements, partially offset by impairment charges as a result of flood damage to our Guatemala banana farms, the relocation of a port operation in North America and an impairment of an intangible asset in the United Kingdom. Asset impairment and other charges, net for the nine months ended October 1, 2010 related principally to damage caused by the February earthquake in Chile and floods in our Guatemala banana farms, partially offset by insurance reimbursements, exit activity charges in South Africa and Brazil, the relocation of a port operation in North America and an impairment of an intangible asset in the United Kingdom. Asset impairment and other charges, net for the third quarter of 2009 related to exit activities in Brazil and Europe. Asset impairment and other charges, net for the nine months ended September 25, 2009 related to exit activities in Brazil, Europe and Hawaii and an impairment of an intangible asset in the United Kingdom.
     
(3 ) Management reviews adjusted net income, adjusted net income per share and adjusted gross profit and considers these measures relevant to investors because management believes they better represent the underlying business trends and performance of the Company.
 

 

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. and Subsidiaries
Business Segment Data
(U.S. dollars in millions) – (Unaudited)
 
 
        Quarter ended
        October 1, 2010   September 25, 2009
Segment Data:                                
        Net Sales   Gross Profit

(Loss)

  Net Sales   Gross Profit

(Loss)

                                     
Banana     $ 370.1   47 %   $ (6.6 )   -13 %   $ 350.9   46 %   $ 14.0     20 %
Other Fresh Produce     320.2   40 %     45.6     88 %     311.0   41 %     44.0     64 %
Prepared Food     93.6   12 %     13.5     26 %     85.5   11 %     14.0     20 %
Other Products and Services     9.2   1 %     (0.5 )   -1 %     18.8   2 %     (3.0 )   -4 %
Total   $ 793.1   100 %   $ 52.0     100 %   $ 766.2   100 %   $ 69.0     100 %
                                     
                                     
        Nine months ended
        October 1, 2010   September 25, 2009
Segment Data:                                
        Net Sales   Gross Profit   Net Sales   Gross Profit

(Loss)

                                     
Banana     $ 1,225.0   45 %   $ 42.1     18 %   $ 1,125.5   43 %   $ 105.0     43 %
Other Fresh Produce     1,207.5   44 %     153.5     66 %     1,176.1   45 %     98.9     41 %
Prepared Food     266.3   10 %     37.2     16 %     248.0   9 %     41.8     17 %
Other Products and Services     37.4   1 %         0 %     74.7   3 %     (1.9 )   -1 %
Total   $ 2,736.2   100 %   $ 232.8     100 %   $ 2,624.3   100 %   $ 243.8     100 %
                                     
                                     
        Quarter ended   Nine months ended
        October 1,   September 25,   October 1,   September 25,
Net Sales by Geographic Region:   2010   2009   2010   2009
                                     
North America   $ 380.5   48 %   $ 357.3     47 %   $ 1,355.4   49 %   $ 1,270.7     48 %
Europe       198.1   25 %     210.4     27 %     703.6   26 %     728.8     28 %
Asia       93.6   12 %     95.7     12 %     319.1   12 %     335.9     13 %
Middle East     108.6   14 %     88.7     12 %     308.2   11 %     222.6     8 %
Other       12.3   1 %     14.1     2 %     49.9   2 %     66.3     3 %
Total   $ 793.1   100 %   $ 766.2     100 %   $ 2,736.2   100 %   $ 2,624.3     100 %
 
(1) Banana gross profit for the quarter and nine months ended October 1, 2010 included a net credit of $1.2 million and a net charge of $1.7 million, respectively, related to the write-off of inventory and other costs and an insurance reimbursement as a result of flood damage to our Guatemala banana farms.
 
(2) Other fresh produce gross profit for the nine months ended October 1, 2010 included charges of $6.6 million principally related to the write-off of inventory as a result of damage caused by the February earthquake in Chile and exit activities in Brazil.
 
(3) Other fresh produce gross profit for the nine months ended September 25, 2009 included charges of $17.1 million recorded during the second quarter of 2009 related to the write-down of growing crop inventory resulting from our decision to discontinue pineapple planting in Brazil.
 

 

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. and Subsidiaries
Condensed Consolidated Statements of Cash Flows
(U.S. dollars in millions) – (Unaudited)
         
    Nine months ended
    October 1,   September 25,
      2010       2009  
Operating activities:        
Net income   $ 71.5     $ 117.6  
Adjustments to reconcile net income to net cash        
provided by operating activities:        
Depreciation and amortization     59.2       63.2  
Amortization of debt issuance costs     1.7       2.7  
Asset impairment charges     25.8       12.5  
Gain on sales of property, plant and equipment     (7.9 )     (4.3 )
Foreign currency translation adjustment     (3.6 )     9.0  
Other changes     (0.3 )     (8.9 )
Changes in operating assets and liabilities:        
Receivables     46.7       67.7  
Inventories     42.8       16.0  
Prepaid expenses and other current assets     (5.5 )     4.5  
Accounts payable and accrued expenses     18.9       (25.9 )
Other noncurrent assets and liabilities     (9.5 )     (0.9 )
Net cash provided by operating activities     239.8       253.2  
         
Investing activities:        
Capital expenditures     (48.0 )     (63.2 )
Proceeds from sales of property, plant and equipment     12.5       12.4  
Return of investment by unconsolidated company     4.2        
Net cash used in investing activities     (31.3 )     (50.8 )
         
Financing activities:        
Net payments on long-term debt     (123.5 )     (204.7 )
Contributions from noncontrolling interests     3.4       13.0  
Proceeds from stock options exercised     0.8       0.7  
Repurchase of shares     (78.8 )      
Net cash used in financing activities     (198.1 )     (191.0 )
         
Effect of exchange rate changes on cash     5.9       (0.2 )
         
Net increase in cash and cash equivalents     16.3       11.2  
Cash and cash equivalents, beginning     34.5       27.6  
Cash and cash equivalents, ending   $ 50.8     $ 38.8  
 

 

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. and Subsidiaries
Condensed Consolidated Balance Sheets
(U.S. dollars in millions) – (Unaudited)
 
    October 1,   January 1,
    2010   2010
         
Assets        
Current assets:        
Cash and cash equivalents   $ 50.8   $ 34.5
Trade accounts receivable, net     288.9     309.8
Other accounts receivables, net     42.2     65.2
Inventories     396.9     436.9
Other current assets     49.3     54.0
Total current assets     828.1     900.4
         
Investment in and advances to unconsolidated companies     3.9     10.4
Property, plant and equipment, net     1,044.8     1,068.5
Goodwill     407.6     409.0
Other noncurrent assets     201.7     207.7
Total assets   $ 2,486.1   $ 2,596.0
         
Liabilities and shareholders’ equity        
Current liabilities:        
Accounts payable and accrued expenses   $ 348.8   $ 316.9
Current portion of long-term debt and capital lease obligations     5.4     4.9
Other current liabilities     40.7     35.5
Total current liabilities     394.9     357.3
         
Long-term debt and capital lease obligations     196.8     320.3
Other noncurrent liabilities     224.2     223.2
Total liabilities     815.9     900.8
         
Total Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. shareholders’ equity     1,644.9     1,673.1
Noncontrolling interests     25.3     22.1
Total shareholders’ equity     1,670.2     1,695.2
Total liabilities and shareholders’ equity   $ 2,486.1   $ 2,596.0
         
         
Selected Balance Sheet Data:        
Working capital   $ 433.2   $ 543.1
Total debt   $ 202.2   $ 325.2
 

 Third Quarter 2010 Business Segment Performance

(As reported in business segment data)

Bananas

Net sales increased 5% to $370.1 million for the quarter, compared with $350.9 million in the prior year period. The increase in net sales was primarily driven by higher volume in the Company’s North America and Middle East regions. Volume increased 8%. Worldwide pricing decreased $0.28, or 2%, to $13.47 per unit. Gross profit was a loss of $6.6 million, primarily due to heavy rains and flooding this year in Guatemala, lower selling prices, and unfavorable exchange rates in producing countries. Excluding asset impairment and other (credits) charges, net gross profit decreased $21.8 million to a loss of $7.8 million in the third quarter of 2010. Unit cost increased 4%.

Other Fresh Produce

Net sales for the quarter increased 3% to $320.2 million, compared with $311.0 million in the prior year third quarter. The increase was due to strong sales performance in the Company’s gold pineapple and non-tropical product lines. Gross profit increased $1.6 million to $45.6 million, compared with the third quarter of 2009. The increase was primarily attributable to increased volume and higher selling prices in the Company’s gold pineapple product line and higher selling prices in the Company’s fresh-cut product line.

  • Gold pineapple – Net sales increased 14% to $118.1 million. Volume increased 11%. Pricing increased 2%. Unit cost was 3% lower.
  • Melon – Net sales decreased 15% to $18.3 million. Volume decreased 9%. Pricing decreased 7%. Unit cost was in line with the prior year period.
  • Fresh-cut – Net sales decreased 4% to $78.8 million. Volume decreased 9%. Pricing increased 5%. Unit cost was 2% higher.
  • Non-tropical – Net sales increased 13% to $53.2 million. Volume increased 21%. Pricing decreased 6%. Unit cost was 5% higher.
  • Tomato – Net sales decreased 8% to $24.4 million. Volume decreased 6%. Pricing decreased 3%. Unit cost was in line with the prior year period.

Prepared Food

Net sales increased 9% to $93.6 million during the third quarter of 2010, compared with $85.5 million in the prior year period. The increase was primarily the result of higher sales in the Company’s canned pineapple and deciduous fruit product lines. Gross profit decreased 3% to $13.5 million, primarily due to higher production costs.

Other Products and Services

Net sales decreased to $9.2 million for the quarter, compared with $18.8 million in the third quarter of 2009. The decrease was attributable to lower sales in the Company’s third-party freight and Argentine grain businesses. Gross profit was a loss of $0.5 million, compared with a loss of $3.0 million in the prior year.

Cash Flows

Net cash provided by operating activities for the first nine months of 2010 was $239.8 million, compared with $253.2 million in the same period of 2009. The decrease was principally attributable to lower net income, partially offset by lower accounts receivable and inventory, and higher accounts payable levels.

Total Debt

Total debt decreased from $325.2 million at year end 2009 to $202.2 million at the end of the third quarter of 2010.

Conference Call and Web Cast Data

Fresh Del Monte will host a conference call and simultaneous Web cast at 11:00 a.m. Eastern Time today to discuss the third quarter 2010 financial results and to review the Company’s progress and outlook. The Web cast can be accessed on the Company’s Investor Relations home page at www.freshdelmonte.com. The call will be available for re-broadcast on the Company’s Web site approximately two hours after the conclusion of the call.

About Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc.

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. is one of the world’s leading vertically integrated producers, marketers and distributors of high-quality fresh and fresh-cut fruit and vegetables, as well as a leading producer and distributor of prepared food in Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the countries formerly part of the Soviet Union. Fresh Del Monte markets its products worldwide under the Del Monte® brand, a symbol of product innovation, quality, freshness and reliability for more than 100 years.

Forward-looking Information

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements regarding the intent, beliefs or current expectations of the Company or its officers with respect to the Company’s plans and future performance. These forward-looking statements are based on information currently available to the Company and the Company assumes no obligation to update these statements. It is important to note that these forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve risks and uncertainties. In this press release, these statements appear in a number of places and include statements regarding the intent, belief or current expectations of the Company or its officers (including statements preceded by, followed by or that include the words “believes,” “expects,” “anticipates” or similar expressions). The Company’s plans and performance may differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements as a result of various factors, including (i) the uncertain global economic environment and the timing and strength of a recovery in the markets the Company serves, and the extent to which adverse economic conditions continue to affect its sales volume and results, including the Company’s ability to command premium prices for certain of its principal products, or increase competitive pressures within the industry, (ii) the impact of governmental initiatives in the United States and abroad to spur economic activity, including the effects of significant government monetary or other market interventions on inflation, price controls and foreign exchange rates, (iii) the impact of governmental trade restrictions, including adverse governmental regulation that may impact the Company’s ability to access certain markets, (iv) the Company’s anticipated cash needs in light of its liquidity, (v) the continued ability of the Company’s distributors and suppliers to have access to sufficient liquidity to fund their operations, (vi) trends and other factors affecting the Company’s financial condition or results of operations from period to period, including changes in product mix or consumer demand for branded products such as its, particularly as consumers remain price-conscious in the current economic environment; anticipated price and expense levels; the impact of crop disease, severe weather conditions, such as the recent adverse weather conditions in the Company’s banana production areas, or natural disasters, such as the earthquakes, on crop quality and yields and on its ability to grow, procure or export its products; the impact of prices for petroleum-based products and packaging materials; and the availability of sufficient labor during peak growing and harvesting seasons, (vii) the impact of pricing and other actions by the Company’s competitors, particularly during periods of low consumer confidence and spending levels, (viii) the impact of foreign currency fluctuations, (ix) the Company’s plans for expansion of its business (including through acquisitions) and cost savings, (x) the Company’s ability to successfully integrate acquisitions into its operations, (xi) the impact of impairment or other charges associated with exit activities, crop or facility damage or otherwise, (xii) the timing and cost of resolution of pending legal and environmental proceedings, (xiii) the impact of changes in tax accounting or tax laws (or interpretations thereof), and the impact of settlements of adjustments proposed by the Internal Revenue Service or other taxing authorities in connection with the Company’s tax audits, and (xiv) the cost and other implications of changes in regulations applicable to its business, including potential legislative or regulatory initiatives in the United States or elsewhere directed at mitigating the effects of climate change. All forward-looking statements in this report are based on information available to the Company on the date hereof, and the Company assumes no obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. The Company’s plans and performance may also be affected by the factors described in Item 1A. – “Risk Factors” in Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc.’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended January 1, 2010 along with other reports that the Company has on file with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

 

California Strawberry Commission Launches New WebsiteWATSONVILLE, Calif.  (Food-News.net)  Today’s consumers enjoy direct contact with their favorite brands and products, and the California Strawberry Commission aims to make strawberries even more enjoyable, launching the new website, www.californiastrawberries.com

The new website is chock full of some of the best recipes from professional chefs and top food bloggers, along with colorful and mouth-watering food photography. Recipes can be shared via social networks, voted on, and printed. Additionally, consumers and bloggers can submit their own recipes to be featured on the California Strawberries site.

“Strawberry fans across the country like sharing their love for strawberries. They are always looking for the latest recipes, events and information,” said Carolyn O’Donnell, Communications Director, California Strawberry Commission. “We strive to create that direct, two-way communication with strawberry lovers everywhere with the new site, integrated with other social networks.”

In addition to recipes, consumers have access to the latest strawberry nutrition information and research, along with general health information from expert dietitians and authors such as Dave Grotto, author of 101 Optimal Life Foods, and Katherine Brooking from EatLikeAnRD.com.

Consumers will get questions answered about storing strawberries, safe fruits and veggies, organic and conventional produce, and much more.

Select Website Features and Highlights:

  • Food Bloggers and Recipes – Some of the best recipes and most beautiful food photography is created and shared via the food blogger community. The new California Strawberries site regularly features individual bloggers, their recipes and their blog URLs to help promote their efforts.
  • Dietitian’s Corner – With healthy lifestyles on the minds of most moms and their families, nutrition experts share healthy eating tips and information.
  • Grower Stories –Today’s consumers are interested in understanding where their food comes from. California strawberry farmers share their stories and their insight on growing the strawberries that people love to eat.
  • Chef Inspiration – In addition to chef-inspired recipes, California Chefs are regularly featured, along with tips and their favorite strawberry recipes.
  • Social Media Integration – For additional interaction and dialogue, strawberry fans can easily access the following social networks through the new California Strawberries site:

About the California Strawberry Commission

The California Strawberry Commission is a state government agency that represents an industry of 600 growers, shippers and processors of California strawberries. With a focus on food safety education, Commission strategies also include production and nutrition research, trade relations, public policy and marketing communications.



Bryan Foods Adds More Flavor to the South with Launch of New Premium Smoked SausageSHANNON, Miss.  (Food-News.net)  Bryan Foods today announced a new addition to their portfolio of quality meats with the introduction of new Premium Smoked Sausage. Made with only high-quality pork and beef and thinner in diameter than traditional smoked sausage, Bryan® Premium Smoked Sausage is the perfect new product to add to any grill master’s arsenal or for adding a flavorful punch to big-dish recipes and southern-style breakfasts.

Offered at a similar price point to existing Bryan products ($2.29-$3.99), Premium Smoked Sausage is available in two mouth-watering flavors – Original and Hot & Spicy – adding variety to the distinct Southern flavor and extensive Bryan portfolio that includes hot dogs, smoked sausage, cocktail smokies and lunchmeat. Whether it’s gathering for a barbeque, football tailgate, or a Sunday brunch, Bryan Foods, the Flavor of the South, is there when families come together.

“We’re excited to bring the new Premium Smoked Sausage to our consumers, giving families a new reason to fire up the grill and enjoy the bold new flavors from Bryan Foods,” said Kevin Philips, senior brand manager, Bryan Foods. “With its thin diameter, Premium Smoked Sausage is the perfect addition to any family gathering or grill-out, marrying the high-quality, pure taste of beef and pork that families in the South have loved for over 70 years.”

Try this Bryan recipe using Premium Smoked Sausage to wow your friends and family at your next big get-together:

Bryan® Premium Smoked Sausage -n- Dirty Rice (serves four)

Ingredients:

  • 1 package Bryan Premium Hot and Spicy Smoked Sausage
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1/2 white or yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • 1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Cajun seasoning powder
  • 2 cups uncooked long grain white rice
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 scallion, chopped
  • hot sauce, optional

1) Remove Bryan Premium Hot and Spicy Smoked Sausage from package and cut into 1/2-inch thick diagonal slices.

2) Heat oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage and cook 4 minutes per side. Sausage should be lightly browned.

3) Add onion, celery, and green bell pepper, and cook, stirring until softened, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and seasoning powder and cook 1 minute longer.

4) Add rice and stock. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and cover pan. Simmer until all the stock is absorbed into the rice, about 20 minutes. Fluff with fork and serve sprinkled with scallion and hot sauce, if you prefer.

For more information on Bryan Foods, their portfolio of products or recipes, visit www.bryanfoods.com.

About Bryan Foods

Bryan Foods has been providing quality meat products since 1936. Bryan is a Southern tradition using quality cuts of meat and original family recipes. Bryan offers a great variety of hotdogs, smoked sausage, cocktail smokies, bacon, breakfast sausage, corn dogs and lunchmeat and is dedicated to giving consumers the flavor they love, truly making us “The Flavor of the South.” Visit www.bryanfoods.com for additional information.

Mrs Bairds BakeriesFORT WORTH, Texas  (Food-News.net)  Mrs Baird’s® Bakeries, one of the country’s largest wholesale baking companies, announced today that it is opening new distribution routes in the Fort Smith, Arkansas area.  The initial launch also includes stores in Van Buren, Alma, Greenwood, Sallisaw, Poteau, Stigler and Mena. This is the first time Mrs Baird’s baked goods will be available in area grocery stores. A family tradition since 1908, Mrs Baird’s Bakeries maintains a commitment to quality and a no shortcuts approach to baking.

“We are excited to enter into the Fort Smith area,” said Mrs Baird’s Director of Sales Jerry Cureton.  “Many consumers are already familiar with Mrs Baird’s baked goods and have asked when our products will be available to them.  I am pleased to say that for the first time consumers in Fort Smith will have the opportunity to taste the freshness and quality that has made the Mrs Baird’s brand legendary.  For those not familiar with our products, we are excited to introduce them to our varieties of nutritious wheat breads, white breads and popular sweet baked goods.  We know they will quickly become family favorites.”

As part of the Fort Smith launch, Mrs Baird’s Bakeries will add new delivery routes serving grocery and convenience stores and restaurant locations. The company has already moved into a distribution center in Fort Smith and plans on calling the area home for a long time.

“We want to introduce ourselves, get involved locally in the Fort Smith community, and truly be a good neighbor,” said Cureton. “Our goal is to grow our business here in Fort Smith.”

As part of being a good neighbor, Mrs Baird’s Bakeries is proud to also announce its partnership with the River Valley Regional Food Bank in Fort Smith. Over the next three months, Mrs Baird’s Bakeries will donate 10,000 loaves of fresh bread to the food bank. In addition, Mrs Baird’s Bakeries will host food donation events at area grocery stores the week of October 25th to raise food and money for the food bank. In appreciation of their donation, consumers will also be entered into drawings for Free Bread for a Year.

Mrs Baird’s bread brings more than 100 years of baking tradition to Fort Smith, with a selection of white, wheat and whole grain breads, each with its own unique flavors and wholesome, nutritious goodness. Consumers will enjoy Mrs Baird’s traditional White Breads, including a made with whole grain variety. Also a complete line of wheat breads including 100% Whole Wheat, Honey Wheat and Honey 7 Grain enhanced with Antioxidants Vitamins A & E. Consumers on a special diet will enjoy the Mrs Baird’s Sugar Free Whole Grain Wheat. In addition, Mrs Baird’s will offer a complete line of buns and rolls to complement any meal or barbeque.

Mrs Baird’s will also present its select line of sweet goods. Consumers will enjoy the company’s famous and wonderfully soft and delicious powdered sugar, cinnamon sugar and chocolate frosted donuts in convenient “Grab ‘n Go” bags. Other tempting treats include apple and cherry pies, cinnamon rolls, honey buns and many more.

In addition to Mrs Baird’s products, consumers in the Fort Smith area will also enjoy other baking brands within the Mrs Baird’s Bakeries family including Oroweat® premium breads, recognized for whole grain varieties for healthy active lifestyles. Consumers will now have the opportunity to try Oroweat Sandwich Thins® rolls, a unique and original innovation for sandwiches and burgers. Also available are one-of-a-kind Thomas’® English muffins and bagels along with authentic Tia Rosa® chips and tortillas, and delicious Boboli® pizza crusts and sauce.

About Mrs Baird’s

Mrs Baird’s products are produced by Bimbo Bakeries USA (BBU) which operates 34 bakeries in the United States and distributes top brands such as Arnold®, Bimbo®, Boboli®, Brownberry®, Entenmann’s®, Francisco®, Freihofer’s®, Marinela®, Oroweat®, Stroehmann®, Thomas’®,  and Tia Rosa,® through more than 7,000 routes. Bimbo Bakeries USA is headquartered in Horsham, PA, and is a wholly owned subsidiary of Mexico’s Grupo Bimbo, S.A.B de C.V., one of the world’s largest baking companies with over 104,000 associates and operations in 17 countries throughout the Americas and China.  More information about Mrs Baird’s full line of products can be found at www.mrsbairds.com.

Bossa NovaLOS ANGELES  (Food-News.net)  According to a new consumer survey (1) by Bossa Nova, the Superfruit Company, half of adults rank antioxidants as the top nutrient they are most concerned about adding to their diets – ahead of calcium, fiber and iron. However, despite this desire, the online survey found that the majority of adults don’t know which fruits provide the most antioxidants.

In light of the popularity of acai juice beverages, some may find it surprising that 32 percent of consumers mistakenly select blueberries over acai berries for highest antioxidant content (2) when selecting from a list of fruits that include blueberries, pomegranates, cranberries, red grapes and oranges. In addition, the company reports as many as 15 percent of consumers simply don’t know which fruits are highest in the nutrient.

Adding to the confusion, many consumers who are familiar with acai have misperceptions about the superfruit’s health benefits. In fact, 25 percent of those surveyed mistakenly believe acai juice helps with weight loss.

“These results tell us we have a long way to go in terms of educating the public about food and its health benefits, especially superfruits such as acai berries which are rich in antioxidants, but do not contribute to weight loss,” said Jeremy Adams, head of marketing for Bossa Nova. “Part of the problem, unfortunately, is the many unsubstantiated health claims about acai that have led to misinformation for consumers. At Bossa Nova, we pride ourselves on delivering delicious, meaningful nutrition, without false promises.”

The survey results also showed that:

  • Most superfruits are super-mysterious: Fifty-eight percent of consumers are familiar with pomegranates, while less than 20 percent are familiar with acai. The number drops significantly (seven percent and fewer) when consumers are asked whether they are familiar with other superfruits such as goji, acerola and mangosteen. Younger adults, however, are more superfruit-savvy than older adults.
  • What do women want? Variety: Women are more likely to try a new fruit or vegetable, while 150 percent more men than women would not try a new fruit or vegetable.
  • Eat my veggies? No way! Adults are more than twice as likely to try new fruits (65 percent) than to try new vegetables (28 percent).

Antioxidants on-the-go: Meaningful nutrition from Bossa Nova

Juice has gone ‘mainstream’ for adults with 91 percent reporting they drink it regularly. A healthy option for families includes Bossa Nova’s acai juices beverages which are made from sustainably harvested acai berries picked by hand from the acai palm tree in the Brazilian Amazon rainforest. To optimize our antioxidant levels, the berries are harvested at the peak of ripeness. Bossa Nova acai juices are made with 80 percent juice and are not diluted with filler juices such as apple and white grape juice.

Bossa Nova developed a patent-pending technique to create a delicious juice abundant in antioxidants. “Our process aims to capture the most delicious and antioxidants-rich portion of the acai berry, eliminating fats that tend to be over-represented in the American diet, such as Omega 6’s which add unnecessary calories, and create a less enjoyable drinking experience. It’s important to note that Acai doesn’t contain significant levels of Omega 3’s, the healthy Omega’s which are under-represented in the American diet, so antioxidants are really the key benefit that acai juices can deliver. As an industry, we need to start clearing up the misinformation around acai and focus on the real, exciting benefits this fruit can deliver,” says Adams. Bossa Nova’s acai berry pulp is turned to juice within 10 hours of harvest. This process allows Bossa Nova to maximize the antioxidants captured in each bottle.

About Bossa Nova

The Bossa Nova Superfruit Juice Company researches, explores and delivers nature’s most potent superfruits. Headquartered in Los Angeles, Calif., Bossa Nova introduced its antioxidant-rich acai juice in the North American market in 2005. In 2008, Bossa Nova broadened its product line to include 10 total superfruit flavors: Acai Original, Acai Blueberry, Acai Mango, Acerola Mango, Acai Passionfruit, Acai Raspberry, Acerola Red Peach, Mangosteen Passionfruit, Mangosteen  Dragonfruit, and Goji Berry Tart Cherry. Beverages Holdings, LLC, acquired Bossa Nova in 2009, enabling the company to take advantage of its world class supply chain and manufacturing practices. Available in 10-oz. and 32-oz. bottles, Bossa Nova superfruit juice beverages are calorie-conscious and lightly sweetened with low-glycemic agave. For more information, including where to purchase Bossa Nova products, please visit www.bossausa.com. Become a Facebook fan at www.facebook.com/BossaNova.  

(1) All survey data, unless otherwise stated, has been derived from a StrategyOne survey conducted among a U.S. sample of 1,000 adults age 18 years or older on September 9-12, 2010. Results were weighted to represent the U.S. Census based on gender, age, geographic region and race to ensure reliable and accurate representation of the total U.S. population.

(2) United States Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. (2010, May) Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity (ORAC) of Selected Foods, Release 2. Retrieved from USDA Products and Services Online: http://www.ars.usda.gov/SP2UserFiles/Place/12354500/Data/ORAC/ORAC_R2.pdf.

Davisco Foods International, Inc. Receives GFSI RecognitionLE SUEUR, Minn.  (Food-News.net)  Davisco Foods Intl, Inc. has become one of the first nationwide food ingredient companies to have their factories “A”  certified against one of the internationally recognized Global Food Safety Initiative Standards.

Selected by CIES (http://www.ciesnet.com/), the Food Business Forum, to safeguard and ensure high quality in the international food supply chain, GFSI standards provide real time details on where suppliers fall short in food safety on a plant-by-plant basis, and go beyond the current FDA or USDA required audit process. Under the GFSI program, food manufacturers and producers of foods sold in the U.S. must be audited by independently trained, approved and licensed auditors who are experts in their industry.

As part of Davisco’s efforts to continuously improve their programs and challenge their systems, two of Davisco’s facilities recently participated in the BRC Global Standard for Food Safety certification program.  Both the Le Sueur Cheese and Lake Norden Cheese factories scored “A” certifications right out of the gate on the audit, the highest possible.  BRC is one of the recognized GFSI compliant standards and its success demands the highest level of compliance to state of the art food safety and quality principles. “Food Safety must be the top priority for all food manufacturers,” said Brian Paulson, Food Ingredient Director of Quality Assurance at Davisco. “Davisco is committed to food safety and we make sure our customers receive safe, high quality products every single shipment.”

About GFSI

The GFSI, managed by the Consumer Goods Forum, was set up in 2000 to pursue continuous improvement in food safety management systems, cost efficiency in the supply chain and, above all, safe food for consumers worldwide.

About Davisco Foods Intl, Inc.

Davisco Foods International, Inc. is a family-owned, international cheese and food ingredient company headquartered in Le Sueur, MN. Operating five dairy processing plants (cheese, whey and other dairy-based food ingredients) in South Dakota, Minnesota and Idaho, Davisco produces more than 370 million pounds of cheese annually and is one of the largest suppliers of cheese to Kraft Foods. Davisco has sales offices in Minneapolis, Geneva, Shanghai and world partners in the Middle East, Japan and Africa. A pioneer in whey protein isolate research, Davisco produces more than 10 million pounds of whey protein isolates annually. Davisco is the industry leader in technology and production, accounting for 65% of whey protein isolates sold worldwide. For more information about Davisco Foods please visit www.daviscofoods.com or call 1-800-757-7611.

GARNER, N.C.  (Food-News.net)  Whether you’re a Millennial (ages 18-30) or a Baby Boomer (ages 45- 64), everyone celebrates the most treasured meal of the year with many of the same Thanksgiving traditions. However, a new Butterball® survey reveals generational differences in cooking methods, activities and flavors. For example, while three quarters of all generations said they prefer traditional recipes(1), 60 percent of the Millennial generation said they are also looking for new, experimental recipes to help contemporize their Thanksgiving meal.(2)

“Whether it’s first-timers or veteran cooks preparing the Thanksgiving feast, we support all cooks and embrace how every generation puts their own spin on the most celebrated meal of the year,” said Mary Clingman, director of the Butterball® Turkey Talk-Line.®  “That’s so much of what America is all about – constantly adding to traditions to give them new life and meaning.”

Starting November 1, 2010, Clingman and the 50 experts at the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line, which is celebrating its 30th year, will be available at 1-800 BUTTERBALL to help cooks of every generation enjoy their Thanksgiving traditions and share tips on how to make this year’s meal special.

Here are some Thanksgiving dinner suggestions based on generational preferences uncovered in the survey:

  • Serve Up a New Kind of Turkey: While all generations agreed that a traditional roasted turkey is tops, Millennials and Gen Xers (ages 31-44) said they are also looking to try different turkey cooking methods. One in seven Millennials and Gen Xers reported deep frying, smoking or grilling their turkeys on Thanksgiving.(3) This year, consider making two turkeys – one traditionally roasted and one fried, smoked or grilled – to please all guests’ palates. Also, add a kick to your roasted turkey by experimenting with new flavors such as a chipotle flavored gravy, chipotle-spiced cranberries, or try Butterball’s savory Roast Turkey with Spicy Dry Rub recipe.
  • Don’t Try to Cut Calories: Across the board, all generations said they do not want to trade in their favorite indulgences for lighter fare on Thanksgiving. Less than seven percent of Americans consider including healthier recipes in their Thanksgiving menu.(4) For a decadent treat, indulge in Butterball’s Praline Topped Apple Cranberry Bread Pudding with warm Butter Rum Sauce.
  • Bring Something to the Table: More than half of Boomers, the group most likely to host Thanksgiving(5), will ask their guests to bring a dish to contribute to the feast. Whether you’re hosting or bringing a dish, try a new take on a classic. For instance, Butterball’s Sweet Potato Bar offers a contemporary twist and features a variety of toppings, including mini marshmallows, toasted pecans, Butterball® Turkey Bacon, coconut and more.
  • Make it Easy: When it comes to preparing the Thanksgiving meal, some cooks are short on time. With Butterball’s new Ready to Roast Turkey consumers can save time by eliminating the thawing process –– simply place the cook-in bag directly into the oven and enjoy a tender, juicy turkey with a great roasted flavor.

Helpful ideas and time-honored turkey prep advice from the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line experts are available from a variety of sources for all Thanksgiving cooks this year – Millennials, Gen Xers, Boomers and Matures (age 65+):

  • Facebook & Twitter: Get Thanksgiving advice on the Butterball Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/Butterball. Throughout November Butterball bloggers will be hosting one hour chats on Facebook to answer pressing Thanksgiving-related questions. Consumers can also follow Butterball on Twitter www.Twitter.com/Butterball for real-time tips and turkey prep info.
  • Butterball.com: Visit Butterball.com for expert turkey advice, savings, new recipes and more. In addition, five popular food and lifestyle bloggers representing the Millennial, Gen X and Baby Boomer generations will be posting their own recipe ideas and personal anecdotes on Butterball.com.
  • 1-800-BUTTERBALL: Starting November 1, 2010, Turkey Talk-Line experts will be available to answer questions and help Thanksgiving cooks become pros in the kitchen.  

About the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line

One of the first national, toll-free consumer help lines, the original Turkey Talk-Line staff of six home economists fielded questions from 11,000 turkey-troubled Americans during its first season in November 1981.  On Thanksgiving Day, the small group took hundreds of calls – with only a rolodex of notes and their own knowledge to help them answer the nation’s questions.  Now, as the Butterball Turkey Talk-Line turns 30, professionally trained turkey experts assist more than 100,000 callers each year in the United States and Canada during the holiday season.  With 50+ staff members, the Turkey Talk-Line has the resources to answer questions from either English- or Spanish-speaking callers, as well as respond to questions via e-mail.

About Butterball, LLC

Butterball, LLC offers consumers opportunities to celebrate traditional holidays and everyday meal occasions with the Butterball branded line of products.  As the most recognized name in turkey, the brand represents more than 50 years of cherished memories with consumers worldwide.  The retail, deli and foodservice products are distributed throughout the United States and in more than 20 countries.  The tradition of providing quality, great tasting products that make meals something to celebrate every day has made the brand America’s favorite.

Headquartered in Garner, N.C., Butterball is the largest producer of turkey products in the U.S.  The company’s three pronged approach to Doing Business Right focuses on self-governance, sustainability and social responsibility.  The initiative plays a key role in providing internal oversight for integrating values that are important to the company.

As the industry leader in quality and food safety, the company employs numerous processes to ensure the health of flocks and implements recognized prevention measures to exceed food safety standards in its six plants, located in North Carolina, Colorado, Arkansas and Missouri.  In addition, Butterball has surpassed important workplace safety and health benchmarks set forth by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s Voluntary Production Program (VPP).

For more information about Butterball, LLC, visit www.butterballcorp.com.  For more information on Butterball products, visit www.butterball.com. You can also call 1-800 BUTTERBALL for answers to your most puzzling questions about turkey preparation.  

(1-5)The Butterball generational survey was conducted to determine differences and similarities in Americans’ Thanksgiving celebrations. Fielded by StrategyOne in March 2010, the study surveyed 1,019 American adults (aged 18 and older) nationwide via phone. Survey findings have a +/- 3 percent margin of error.