Archive for April, 2011

Blue Bunny Debuts Ice-Cream-and-Cake CreationsBlue Bunny Ice Cream has partnered with television personality, celebrity cake baker and owner of Charm City Cakes Chef Duff Goldman, in the creation of four new ice cream flavors. Inspired by Duff’s exceptional cake baking skills, the four Blue Bunny Chef Duff Goldman ice cream creations blend rich, creamy ice cream with actual pieces of cake.

“For me cake and ice cream belong together like mashed potatoes and gravy,” said Duff. “We came up with these creations because they combine the best of both worlds and we are really excited to see the reaction of folks when they discover them in their freezer aisle.”  

Duff worked directly with Blue Bunny’s ice cream flavor experts in the development of the new line – making trips to the Ice Cream Capital of the World, Le Mars, Iowa, where Blue Bunny is based, to help create the perfect flavor combinations.

“The Blue Bunny Chef Duff Goldman flavors bring a certain dramatic experience to ice cream that is so exciting,” said Curtis Hansen, marketing manager for Blue Bunny packaged ice cream. “The synergy of Duff’s innovative ideas and our expertise in high quality ice cream have blended nicely to bring these decadent flavors to life.”

The pairing of ice cream and cake inspired four Blue Bunny Chef Duff Goldman flavors:

Red Carpet Red Velvet Cake    

Red velvet cake flavored ice cream swirled with cream cheese frosting flavored ice cream and red velvet cake pieces.

Chocolate Lovers Triple Chocolate Cake  

Decadent chocolate ice cream served with fudgy chocolate cake pieces and dressed in ribbons of thick, chocolate frosting.

I Do! I Do! Wedding Cake

Celebrate the marriage of sweet buttercream frosting ice cream and white cake pieces wrapped in delicate ribbons of raspberry sauce.

Strawberries are Forever Shortcake

The sweet taste of strawberry ice cream and real strawberries mixed with pound cake pieces and swirls of whipped cream frosting.

These flavors are available at grocery retailers nationwide. Each has a suggested retail price of $4.99.

Blue Bunny, founded in 1913, is a brand of Wells Enterprises, Inc.—the largest family-owned and managed ice cream manufacturer in the United States.  Today, more than 500 Blue Bunny-branded products, including ice cream and frozen novelties, can be found across the US. Always committed to quality, Blue Bunny products are made with only real ice cream. Wells Enterprises, Inc. is headquartered in Le Mars, Iowa, the Ice Cream Capital of the World. Become a Blue Bunny fan on Facebook (facebook.com/BlueBunnyIceCream) for ice cream news and updates.

Duff has been cooking since the age of four, when his Mom caught him in the kitchen swinging around a meat cleaver while watching Julia Child on TV. After studying at the Culinary Institute of America in Napa Valley, California, Duff worked at several acclaimed culinary destinations, including the French Laundry, the Vail Cascade Hotel, and Todd English’s Olives. In 2002 he returned to his beloved Baltimore to open Charm City Cakes. There, Duff was able to show off his creativity, which comes from a long line of artistic genes. The bakery became a household name via a hit show on the Food Network, “The Ace of Cakes.” Duff also dabbled in graffiti, which may explain a thing or two about the vibrant and occasionally irreverent cake designs. When he’s not cakin’ and bakin’, Duff plays bass in his band, “Sand Ox” and cruises around town in his classic muscle cars and motorcycles.



New Research Suggests Grapefruit Can Play a Role in Weight Loss SuccessOne-hundred percent grapefruit juice – a dieter’s friend? A new study, published in Nutrition & Metabolism, concluded that enjoying a pre-meal snack of grapefruit, grapefruit juice or water as part of a reduced-calorie diet can be part of an effective weight loss strategy for obese adults.(1)

Researchers at Vanderbilt University found that obese adults who consumed half a grapefruit, about a half-cup (4.5 ounces) of 100 percent grapefruit juice or about a half-cup (4.5 ounces) of water before three main meals, while on a reduced-calorie diet, experienced significant decreases in weight, body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference. Following the 14-week study, participants experienced an average weight loss of 7.1 percent of their initial body weight. This translates to an average of about 15 pounds per person.

“There’s often a misconception that 100 percent fruit juice should be omitted by those on a weight loss plan,” says Heidi J. Silver, PhD, RD, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Vanderbilt Center for Human Nutrition. “However, this study shows that consumption of a half-cup of 100 percent grapefruit juice led to similar weight loss results as those who chose fresh grapefruit or water as a pre-meal snack three times daily. As with any food or beverage, it’s all about moderation while on a weight loss plan.”

Benefits of Grapefruit and Grapefruit Juice Consumption Go Beyond Weight Loss

While the study shows that participants who consumed a serving of grapefruit or 100 percent grapefruit juice before meals lost the same average weight as those who drank water, these individuals experienced additional potentially significant benefits not reported in the water-drinking group:

  • Increase in HDL cholesterol – Participants who ate half a grapefruit or drank a half-cup of grapefruit juice experienced a significant increase in HDL cholesterol, often referred to as “good” cholesterol – the magnitude of increase in HDL-C could have significant cardiovascular benefits.
  • Decrease in appetite – Those who enjoyed about a half-cup of grapefruit juice as their pre-meal snack reported a significant decrease in appetite.
  • Increase in key nutrient intake Daily consumption of fresh grapefruit or 100 percent grapefruit juice also led to a significant increase in vitamin C intake. Additionally, those who ate half a grapefruit as their pre-meal snack had the added benefit of increasing their fiber intake.

“These findings are noteworthy given that dietary fiber and vitamin C are generally under-consumed by the U.S. population,”(2) adds Gail Rampersaud, MS, RD, LDN, Assistant in Nutrition Research and Education, University of Florida. “Quite often, individuals inadvertently reduce nutrient intake while on a weight loss plan. Grapefruit and 100 percent grapefruit juice are nutrient-rich, making regular consumption an ideal and convenient way to obtain essential vitamins and minerals while maintaining a healthy, reduced-calorie diet.”

The Florida Department of Citrus is an executive agency of Florida government charged with the marketing, research and regulation of the Florida citrus industry. Its activities are funded by a tax paid by growers on each box of citrus that moves through commercial channels. The industry employs nearly 76,000 people, provides an annual economic impact close to $9 billion to the state, and contributes hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenues that help support Florida’s schools, roads and health care services. For more information about the Florida Department of Citrus, please visit www.floridajuice.com.  

The Florida Department of Citrus is an Equal Opportunity Employer and Agency. The Florida Department of Citrus prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities based on race, color, national origin, gender, religion, age, disability, political beliefs, sexual orientation, and marital and family status. (Not all prohibited bases apply to all programs.)  

(1) Silver HJ, Dietrich MS, Niswender KD. Effects of grapefruit, grapefruit juice and water preloads on energy balance, weight loss, body composition, and cardiometabolic risk in free-living obese adults. Nutrition & Metabolism. 2011;8(8).

(2) U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010. 7th Edition, Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, December 2010.

Hostess Raises Flavor Stakes With New Strawberry CupCakesHostess, creator of The Original Squiggle and baker of America’s most iconic snack cakes, is raising the flavor stakes this month with the help of their recently launched Strawberry CupCakes.  The sweet new variety bursting with fruit flavor will be part of the brand’s CupCake Jackpot promotion, which offers consumers the chance to win a grand prize of $10,000 as well as more than 300 daily prizes, including cash, a one-year supply of Hostess CupCakes, Hostess prize packs, and Flip Video cameras with customized squiggle skins.

Hostess Raises Flavor Stakes With New Strawberry CupCakesBy registering game codes printed on the back of specially marked multipacks of Hostess CupCakes at www.hostesscakes.com, consumers can “spin” the online CupCake Flavor Wheel for a chance at a $10,000 grand prize or one of over 300 daily prizes.  Additionally, consumers can show their support for their favorite CupCake flavors by voting in an online poll on www.hostesscakes.com.

“Fans of The Original Squiggle will be feeling lucky this month as they spin the virtual wheel for a chance to win some amazing prizes during our CupCake Jackpot promotion,” said Mike Touhey, Vice President of Snack Marketing for Hostess Brands.  “With new Strawberry CupCakes joining our iconic varieties on shelves across the country, consumers have more reasons than ever to spin their CupCake cravings into a sweet reward.”

Hostess CupCakes come in several squiggle-topped varieties:

  • Chocolate – Frosted Chocolate Cake with Creamy Filling
  • Golden – Frosted Yellow Cake with Creamy Filling
  • Orange – Orange Flavored Cake with Creamy Filling
  • *New* Strawberry – Frosted Strawberry Cake with Creamy Filling

In addition, Hostess 100 Calorie Pack CupCakes are available in Chocolate, Lemon, and Strawberry.

Hostess Brands, Inc. is one of the nation’s largest providers of fresh-baked bread and sweet goods, sold under various brand names including Wonder, Merita, Home Pride, Nature’s Pride, Hostess, Drake’s, and Dolly Madison. The Company is headquartered in Irving, Texas.

Beanfields Bean & Rice Chips Deliver Big Taste, Satisfying Crunch & Gluten Free NutritionHealthy snacking is grabbing plenty of headlines these days. Millions of snack-happy Americans are looking for healthier choices that not only taste great, but also satisfy hunger, supply the body with energy, and provide important nutrients.  For those that are trying to eat healthy foods or avoid questionable ingredients, a new generation of snack foods is hitting grocery store shelves.

One of the biggest sensations at the 2011 Natural Foods Expo was Beanfields Bean & Rice Chips, a new line of corn free and gluten free tortilla chips made from black beans, navy beans and long grain rice.  Beans are one of the most nutritionally complete foods, and are number one on the list of recommended foods by the American Diabetes Association.  But it took Beanfields to perfect a way to make a light and crispy tortilla chip made from beans. The four flavors of Beanfields chips (Naturally Unsalted, Sea Salt, Sea Salt & Pepper, and Pico de Gallo) are healthier and more filling snacks, with twice as much complete protein and fiber as most other tortilla, corn, or potato chips.

“Any nutritionist will tell you that a bowl of beans is a far superior alternative to snack chips made from corn or potatoes,” said Reed Glidden, Beanfields’ Founder and President. “Our job was to make beans into a crispy and delicious treat.”  Early consumer response from grown-ups, kids, and health experts alike has been overwhelmingly enthusiastic.  In her recent product review, top-rated nutritionist Jen Hoy said, “These are hands-down the best chips I’ve ever had.”

In addition to their great taste and satisfying crunch, every 1 oz. serving of Beanfields delivers 4 grams of protein, the same as a 4 oz. glass of milk, and 4 grams of fiber, the same as a 1/2 cup serving of raisin bran.

Beanfields chips are made with non-GMO ingredients from crops grown in the USA. Because beans are good for both families and farmers, Beanfields supports sustainable farming practices and invests in food security to ensure viable and nutritious crops for future generations.

Arriving in stores this spring, the Beanfields website lists store locations. They’re also available on the site for delivery nationwide.  A 6 oz. bag retails from $2.99 to $3.99.

Sugar Farmers Sue Corn Processors for Falsely Marketing High-Fructose Corn Syrup as 'Sugar'American sugar farmers and refiners have filed a suit to stop big corn processors from marketing high-fructose corn syrup as a “natural” product equivalent to real sugar.

The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles by Western Sugar Cooperative, Michigan Sugar Company and C & H Sugar Company, Inc., charges that the “corn sugar” branding campaign financed by the corn refining industry’s giant companies constitutes false advertising under federal and state law. The processors’ campaign was launched as a way to thwart declining sales of high-fructose corn syrup, or “HFCS.”

Companies named as defendants include Archer Daniels Midland Company, Cargill, Inc., Corn Products International, Inc., Penford Products Co., Roquette America, Inc., Tate & Lyle Ingredients Americas, Inc. and the companies’ marketing and lobbying organization, The Corn Refiners Association, Inc.

“This suit is about false advertising, pure and simple,” said Inder Mathur, President and CEO of Western Sugar Cooperative. “If consumers are concerned about your product, then you should improve it or explain its benefits, not try to deceive people about its name or distort scientific facts.”

The sugar producers seek an injunction to end the advertising campaign and also seek damages, including compensation for corrective advertising.

According to the complaint, consumers have increasingly sought to avoid food and drinks containing HFCS, because of its possible role in the obesity epidemic and other nutritional and health problems, or simply to avoid non-natural ingredients. As a result, food and beverage makers have been replacing HFCS with real sugar, and the corn refining industry has seen HFCS sales steadily decline.

The sugar producers charge the defendants with trying to resuscitate HFCS sales through a marketing blitz aimed at changing consumer perceptions of HFCS by equating it with real sugar. The defendants are attempting to do so, allege the sugar producers, by marketing HFCS as a natural sugar that is simply extracted from corn, which is not true.

While the corn refining industry has petitioned the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for approval to substitute “corn sugar” for “high-fructose corn syrup” on ingredient labels, the sugar-producing plaintiffs assert that the defendants did not even wait for the FDA’s response before beginning their “corn sugar” branding efforts. The complaint states that “Defendants’ resort to such literally false and misleading statements harms consumers, harms the makers of real sugar and harms any dialogue based on the truth.  This lawsuit seeks to put an end to the deception.”

Headquartered in Colorado, Western Sugar is a grower-owned cooperative including about 1,000 American sugar beet farmers in Colorado, Nebraska, Wyoming and Montana.

New Toll-Free Ham Hotline Answering Calls for Ham HelpMake spring celebrations easy and memorable this year with a delicious ham prepared to perfection with the help of the Kentucky Legend Ham Hotline.

The ham hotline, open April 1-30, will help at-home chefs choose, prepare and serve up a delicious ham meal – and even provide recipes for the leftovers.  Ham experts will field calls at 1-866-343-5058 from 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday-Friday.  

Kentucky Legend Ham decided to sponsor the first-ever ham hotline because consumers frequently contacted the company with questions during peak ham holidays, such as Easter.  The dedicated hotline assures consumers will get answers when they need them, whether they’re about to buy a ham, placing it in the oven or carving it at the table.  Consumers also can learn more about ham and find new recipes at www.specialtyfoodsgroup.com.

“We’re here to help,” says Janet Sweeney, marketing director for Kentucky Legend Ham.  “Whether you’re preparing a new glaze or sauce for your ham or just need to know how big of a ham to buy.”

Best of all, anyone can create a great ham dinner, according to Diane Morgan, author of more than 16 cookbooks, including several on entertaining (www.dianemorgancooks.com) “No matter what your skill level in the kitchen, ham is just about foolproof – especially with the hotline backing you up,” she said.  “And the leftovers are an added bonus.  You can stretch your food dollars by using them in everything from sandwiches and soups to creative casseroles.”

Kentucky Legend Ham is appropriately named.  Made for more than 100 years in Owensboro, Kentucky, each ham is hand-carved from a recipe handed down through generations.  The hams are slow-cooked in their own natural juices, then double-smoked.  They can be eaten right away, or gently reheated in the oven.

Kentucky Legend Hams are produced by Specialty Foods Group. Specialty Foods Group, Inc (SFG) is a leading U.S. producer and marketer of a wide variety of premium branded and private-label processed meat products.

Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes Now AvailableEver wish you could have the same golden-brown hashbrowns you enjoy at your favorite restaurant in the comfort of your own home? Now you can with Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes, newly available at major grocery chains nationwide. Made from 100 percent Idaho potatoes, Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes come fully cooked and seasoned and require no refrigeration. In just four steps, you can make tasty hashbrown potatoes in approximately 15 minutes, making it easy for you to enjoy a home-cooked family breakfast, the most important meal of the day.

“Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes are a great pantry staple to keep on hand for a meal or side dish the whole family will love,” said Basic American Foods Vice President and General Manager of Consumer Foods Matt Riley. “With Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes, everyone can enjoy delicious hashbrown potatoes in a matter of minutes.”

Hashbrown potatoes are the number one breakfast item ordered by U.S. adults at restaurants on any day of the week.(1) With Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes, you can replicate this experience at home. Just add hot tap water to the carton, allow the carton to stand for 12 minutes and drain any excess water. Next, pan fry the hashbrowns until golden brown for restaurant-quality hashbrown potatoes in minutes. The pint-sized carton is made for convenient storage in home pantries and is easily portable for outdoor cooking when camping or backpacking.

Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes are a great meal option for budget-conscious families. Each carton makes one pound of hashbrown potatoes for a total of six servings. You can find Hungry Jack Premium Hashbrown Potatoes for approximately $1.79 per carton at grocery stores such as Walmart, H-E-B, Safeway, Kroger, Publix, Food Lion, Albertsons and Super Target.

For more information and recipe ideas, please visit: www.hungryjackpotatoes.com.  

Hungry Jack has been feeding families like yours for nearly 70 years. From the launch of Hungry Jack Mashed Potatoes in 1967 to the innovation of the reheatable microwavable Hungry Jack Syrup bottle in 1994, Hungry Jack has been gathering families around the table for good times, great food and that delicious Hungry Jack taste. That’s why Everybody’s happy when it’s Hungry Jack!

Headquartered in Walnut Creek, Calif. and privately held, Basic American Foods is one of the world’s leading suppliers of convenience food products, including dry potato and bean products. Founded more than 75 years ago, Basic American Foods serves foodservice distributors, commercial and non-commercial foodservice operators, industrial, wholesale club, and retail customers in domestic and international markets.  For more information, please visit www.baf.com.

(1) Mintel. (2009, November) Breakfast Foods.

© Basic American Foods. Hungry Jack and Everybody’s happy when it’s Hungry Jack are trademarks of The J.M. Smucker Company, used under license.

New Low-Carb, Breakfast-Inspired Flavors Added to Atkins Nutritionals' Popular Day Break Product LineAtkins Nutritionals, Inc., with its market-leading, weight-management products, has introduced six new Day Break products in morning flavors consumers love: the first and only ready-to-drink, low carb breakfast shake featuring resealable twist-off cap technology, soft baked breakfast squares, and a tasty new morning snack bar. These new low-sugar additions offer a delicious and satisfying breakfast or mid-morning snack for those on the go.

Recent studies blame refined sugars and carbohydrates as key contributors to conditions such as excess weight, heart disease and Type 2 Diabetes, creating a demand for foods that are high in protein and fiber yet low in sugar. The new Atkins products fulfill this need: the new Day Break shakes contain on average 20 grams less net carbs and 2 grams more fiber than leading competitors including Special K and Slim-Fast. Additionally, the new Day Break Oatmeal Squares contain on average 18 grams less sugar, 35 grams less net carbs and 5 grams more fiber compared to similar Quaker Instant Oatmeal products.

“Fifty-four percent of consumers say they don’t have enough time to eat breakfast(1) – they want easy, grab-n-go choices that are still low in sugar and simple carbs,” said Atkins CEO, Monty Sharma. “We saw this as an opportunity to offer an interesting variety of breakfast options.”

Additionally, as research showed sixty percent of consumers consume breakfast shakes on-the-go(2), Atkins added a new resealable cap to their Day Break Shakes, making them easy to open, close and carry while in transit.

The new Day Break flavors will be available wherever Atkins products are sold nationwide by May.

New Atkins Day Break products include:

Breakfast shakes with resealable, twist off caps (SRP $6.99 for 4 shakes):

In flavors requested by consumers and available in breakthrough packaging, these shakes offer on-the-go enjoyment. All of Atkins Day Break Shakes have 10 grams protein, 3 grams net carbs or less, and 0 grams sugar.

  • Wild Berry Shake – Strawberries, raspberries and blueberries with rich cream. The perfect amount of fiber and protein made delicious in this creamy berry surprise.
  • Creamy Chocolate Shake – Chocoholics can now start the day in the best way imaginable. We’ve turned the thick and creamy taste of chocolate into a nutritional breakfast – packed with the perfect amount of protein and fiber.
  • Strawberry Banana Shake – A delicious blend of sun-ripened bananas, strawberries and rich cream. It’s the right amount of protein and fiber, without the carbs.

Soft baked breakfast squares (SRP $6.99 for 5 baked squares):

These high-fiber baked squares are convenient breakfast choices in the morning flavors people love.

  • Blueberry Almond Baked Square – Two breakfast favorites – ripe blueberries and almond chunks – baked into a soft, chewy square and topped with vanilla drizzle. The Blueberry Almond Baked Square has 5 grams protein, 6 grams net carbs, and 2 grams sugar.
  • Oatmeal Cinnamon Baked Square – Lightly sweetened with vanilla drizzle and the spice of cinnamon, this oatmeal square has your health at heart. The Oatmeal Cinnamon Baked Square has 5 grams protein, 6 grams net carbs, and 1 gram sugar.

Cherry Pecan Bar (SRP $6.99 for 5 bars): This crunchy-sweet combo satisfies the heartiest morning appetite. Real, perfectly sweetened cherries come together with crunchy pecan chunks for a hearty, healthy start to the day. The Cherry Pecan Bar has 5 grams protein, 6 grams net carbs, and 3 grams sugar.

Atkins Nutritionals, Inc. is a leading player in the $2.4 billion weight control nutrition category, and offers a powerful lifetime approach to weight loss and weight management. The Atkins Diet focuses on a healthy diet with reduced levels of refined carbohydrates and added sugars and encourages the consumption of protein, fiber, fruits, vegetables and good fats. Backed by research and consumer success stories, this approach allows the body to burn more fat and work more efficiently while helping individuals feel less hungry, more satisfied and more energetic.

Atkins Nutritionals, Inc., manufactures and sells a variety of nutrition bars, foods and shakes designed around the nutritional principles of the Atkins Diet. Atkins’ four product lines: Advantage, Day Break, Endulge and Cuisine appeal to a broad audience of both men and women who want to achieve their weight management goals and enjoy a healthier lifestyle. Atkins products are available in more than 30,000 locations throughout the U.S. and internationally. For more information, visit atkins.com.

(1) Source: Datamonitor, Wrapped Snack Trends, May 2010

(2) Murphy Marketing, Product Concept Testing, Feb. 2010

Tart Cherries May Reduce Inflammation, Risk Factors for Heart DiseaseTart cherries have a unique combination of powerful antioxidants that may help reduce risk factors for heart disease, according to new research presented at the Experimental Biology annual meeting in Washington, DC.

In a series of three studies, researchers from University of Michigan, University of Arizona and Brunswick labs studied the antioxidant levels and anti-inflammatory benefits of tart cherries. They found:

  • Reduced Inflammation and Cardiovascular Risk: Drinking eight ounces of tart cherry juice daily for four weeks significantly reduced important markers of inflammation in a study of 10 overweight or obese adults. Many of the adults also had lower levels of uric acid (linked to inflammation and gout) and triglycerides (linked to heart disease).(1)
  • Reduced Atherosclerosis and other Heart Disease Risk: A cherry diet (at 1% of diet as tart cherry powder) reduced C reactive protein and other markers of inflammation by up to 36 percent and lowered levels of total cholesterol by 26 percent in a five-month mouse study. The researchers suggest that there’s an atherosclerosis benefit connected to both lowering cholesterol, and an anti-inflammatory effect, specifically in the blood vessels coming from the heart. Importantly, the mice eating the cherry diets had a 65 percent reduction in early death, likely due to improved cardiovascular health.(2)
  • Powerful Antioxidants: The heart benefits and many others may be due to the unique combination of natural antioxidant compounds in the “Super Fruit.” About one cup of freeze-dried tart cherries have an ORAC over 10,000, and contain a diverse combination of antioxidant compounds and phytochemicals likely responsible for their health benefits, according to the researchers.(3)

The Power of Eating RED

This is the latest in a growing body of science linking cherries to protection against heart disease and inflammation.  Previous research from the University of Michigan revealed that cherry-enriched diets in animals lowered multiple risk factors for heart disease, from lowering total blood cholesterol levels to reducing total body weight and fat, in particular the “belly fat” that is most often associated with heart disease risk.(4,5) The University of Michigan researchers, using a “whole food” approach, also found the cherry-enriched diets reduced not only overall body inflammation, but inflammation at key sites (belly fat, heart) known to affect heart disease risk in obese, at-risk rats.(6)

Researchers attribute the benefits to anti-inflammatory, antioxidant compounds in the red fruit called anthocyanins, also responsible for cherries’ bright red color. In addition to heart heath benefits, research also suggests cherries could affect inflammation related to muscle recovery post-workout and arthritis.

Available year-round in dried, juice and frozen form, it’s easy to incorporate the RED power of cherries into the daily diet to manage inflammation – from topping dried cherries in oatmeal to making a heart-smart smoothie with cherry juice and lowfat yogurt.

The research was funded by the Cherry Marketing Institute, which provided an unrestricted grant to the institutions to conduct the research and was not directly involved in the design, conduct or analysis of the projects.  For more information on the heart health benefits and antioxidant profile of tart cherries, visit www.choosecherries.com.

The Cherry Marketing Institute (CMI) is an organization funded by North American tart cherry growers and processors. CMI’s mission is to increase the demand for tart cherries through promotion, market expansion, product development and research. For more information on the science supporting the unique health benefits of cherries and for cherry recipes and menu ideas, visit www.choosecherries.com.

Sources:

(1) Martin KR, Bopp J, Burrell L, Hook G. The effect of 100% tart cherry juice on serum uric acid levels, biomarkers of inflammation and cardiovascular disease risk factors. FASEB Journal. 2011.

(2) Seymour EM, Kondoleon MG, Huang MG, Kirakosyan A, Kaufman PB, Bolling SF. FASEB Journal. 2011.

(3) Seymour EM, Ou B. Phytochemical and diverse antioxidant profile of whole tart cherries (Prunus Cerasus). FASEB Journal. 2011.

(4) Seymour EM, Singer AAM, Bennink MR, Bolling SF. Cherry-enriched diets reduce metabolic syndrome and oxidative stress in lean Dahl-SS rats. Experimental Biology 2007 225.8, Presented in minisymposium 225, Dietary Bioactive Compounds: Chronic Disease Risk Reduction.

(5) Seymour EM, Lewis A, Kirakosyan A, Bolling S. The Effect of Tart Cherry-Enriched Diets on Abdominal Fat Gene Expression in Rats. American Dietetic Association FNCE 2008.

(6) Seymour EM, Urcuyo-Llanes D, Bolling SF, Bennink MR. Tart cherry intake reduces plasma and tissue inflammation in obesity-prone rats. FASEB Journal. 2010; 24:335.1.

Sneak a Little Healthy Treat Into Easter With Grapple Brand ApplesEaster means a lot of things: a new dress, a big ham dinner and of course a basket filled with candy. For parents trying to keep their kids eating healthy, this holiday is nothing short of a challenge. Combat the task by adding a Grapple, an apple that is nothing short of extraordinary to the Easter basket or the meal to give kids a healthy alternative that is made with them in mind. Kids love Grapples because they combine two of their favorite fruits- apples and grapes into one crunchy bite. Parents love them because they are as healthy as if just picked off a tree and kids will eat them up.  

Grapples begin as a Washington State Gala or Fuji apple. Through a complex, patented process, these apples are gently bathed with an ingredient mix that is primarily grape flavor and pure water. Through the process the apples take on the grape flavor, which doesn’t add any extra sugar, calories, carbohydrates or anything else. In fact the apples maintain their natural supply of vitamins, minerals, nutrients and fiber.

Because Grapples are no ordinary apple, they fit into an occasion such as Easter. Enjoy this recipe for a special Easter salad that kids simply love and can be made anytime there are Grapples in the kitchen.  

Grapple Easter Salad:
8 oz. cream cheese
3/4 c. mayonnaise
1-pint cream, whipped
1 large package mini marshmallows
1 can drained chunk pineapple
2 Grapples, cored and cut into small pieces

Mix all the ingredients together and put it in the refrigerator overnight.

This season Grapples are widely available in grocery stores from October through June. They are sold in a 4-pack clamshell with an average MSRP of $3.49-5.99, to find a store or to order online visit http://www.grapplefruits.com.

Grapple brand apples are the quintessential perfect healthy snack for kids of all ages. Through a patented process, premium Washington State apples are infused with grape flavor to create a product that “Crunches like an Apple, Tastes like a Grape”.

Kellogg's Introduces New Eggo FiberPlus WafflesFiber is forging a delicious path into the frozen-food aisle with the introduction of Eggo FiberPlus Waffles. The newest addition to the Eggo lineup combines a delicious Eggo taste with positive nutrition.

Eggo FiberPlus Waffles boasts a golden, crispy outside and warm, fluffy inside of traditional Eggo waffles while providing an excellent source of fiber — satisfying 35 percent of the daily recommended value in every tasty serving. Kellogg Company recognizes that fiber is an important nutrient and that fewer than 1 in 10 Americans get enough of it on a daily basis(1). Additionally, the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) call attention to fiber as a “nutrient of concern(2).”  Eggo FiberPlus Waffles are a delicious offering that will help people close the fiber gap. 

The new Kellogg’s Eggo FiberPlus Waffles are available in two flavors: buttermilk and chocolate chip.  The buttermilk variety offers 35 percent of the recommended daily value of calcium, while the chocolate chip variety provides 20 percent of the recommended daily value of the antioxidants vitamin E and zinc. Both varieties are a good source of 10 or more vitamins and minerals. Research shows that consumers also are seeking to add more antioxidants and other nutrients to their diets(3) and Eggo FiberPlus Waffles help satisfy this need.

Eggo FiberPlus Waffles offer a simply delicious taste that consumers have come to expect from Eggo,” said Cathy Schneck, VP Marketing Kellogg Frozen Foods. “Now they also provide the added nutrition benefits of fiber and either the antioxidants vitamin E and zinc or calcium.”

Eggo FiberPlus Waffles will join other favorites including Eggo Home-style, Buttermilk and Eggo Nutri-Grain waffles — all part of a great-tasting family of products that consumers have enjoyed for years.

Eggo FiberPlus Waffles are available now in the frozen section of grocery retailers nationwide.  To learn more about new Eggo FiberPlus Waffles and about other Eggo products, visit www.LeggoMyEggo.com.

(1) Kellogg telephone survey of 1,006 American adults conducted by Caravan Survey in November 2010.

(2) U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Agriculture. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office, January 2011.

(3) Wellness Lifestyle Insights 2007 by the Hartman Group, Inc.

Pat Boone All-American Meats Introduces New Gourmet Burgers and Hot Dogs, Sampler PacksNo summer barbeque or cookout is complete without a delicious fire-grilled hot dog or burger. Just in time for barbeque season, Pat Boone All-American Meats has announced the addition of American-Style Kobe Beef Hot Dogs and Gourmet Burgers to its product line up, along with a new collection of Pat’s Signature Sampler Packs. The new products offer yet another delectable way for customers to enjoy a delicious meal with family and friends, while supporting Pat’s mission to end world hunger.

“Nothing says summer like a hot dog bursting with flavor or a juicy hamburger hot off the grill,” said Michael Genho, president of Pat Boone All-American Meats. “And, just like our premium steaks, these products are made with only the finest quality all-American beef for a taste that’s unlike any other.”

Made with the perfect combination of American-Style Kobe beef and a precise blend of old-world seasonings and ingredients, the all-beef jumbo size hot dogs deliver premium quality taste and texture. Shipped frozen in packs of 12 or 24, the dogs are perfect for both small and large get-togethers with family and friends.

Pat’s Gourmet Burgers feature 1/2 pound patties of 100 percent all-American ground chuck for mouthwatering flavor and juiciness. Individually flash frozen for easy portioning, the scrumptious burgers are available in packs of 8 or 16 patties to make them the perfect focal point for gathering around the grill with family and friends.

To make it even easier for customers to get the variety they crave at a better value, Pat Boone All-American Meats now features a full line of Pat’s Signature Sampler Packs that are sure to please everyone at your next gathering. The new sampler packs include:

  • The Entertainer – four (6oz.) Filet Mignons and four (12oz.) New York Strips
  • The Hollywood Star – four (6oz.) Filet Mignons and four (12oz.) Ribeyes
  • The Patriot – four (6oz.) Filet Mignons and four (10oz.) Top Sirloins
  • The All-American – eight (1/2 lb.) Gourmet Burgers, 12 Jumbo Dogs and four (8oz.) Top Sirloins 
  • The Chart Topper – four (6oz.) Filet Mignons, four (12oz.) New York Strips, four (8oz.) Top Sirloins and two (18oz.) T-Bones.

“The beauty of these new sampler packs is that you can’t go wrong—there’s sure to be something to suit everyone’s taste at your next cookout, and they’re also perfect for gift-giving,” Genho said. “Perhaps the best part is that you can enjoy a great meal along with the satisfaction of knowing you’ve contributed to a very worthwhile cause to help Pat fight world hunger by simply making a purchase.”

The legendary entertainer’s legacy brand of premium mail-order steaks and other fine cuts contributes 5 percent of every purchase to feed the hungry through the Pat Boone Foundation. The gourmet-quality USDA premium cuts at Pat Boone All-American Meats offer only the highest quality, 100 percent U.S.-raised and processed beef for consistently delicious and perfectly-aged steaks and other meats. The products are packed in dry ice to ensure they arrive fully frozen in excellent condition and delivered straight to your door via FedEx in reusable, insulated containers. The company also offers gift cards and can package steaks for gift giving.

Pat Boone All-American Meats was born out of a passion for faith, family, food and freedom, as well as the legendary entertainer’s love of a great steak. Founded in 2010 by Pat Boone and JW Roth, Pat Boone All-American Meats delivers only the finest, premium-quality, U.S.-raised meats right to your door. As a charitable mission, at least 5 percent of every order goes directly to the nonprofit Pat Boone Foundation that supports organizations actively addressing the problem of world hunger. The brand is owned and operated by Accredited Members Holding Corp. (ACCM.OB), a publicly traded investment research firm based in Colorado Springs, CO. For more information, or to order by phone, call 1-866-400-9507 or visit www.PatBooneMeats.com to order online.

 

Frito-Lay Turns Up the Heat With New Tapatio Hot Sauce-Inspired FlavorsPepsiCo’s Frito-Lay North America division and the family behind the renown Tapatio hot sauce brand today announced a new partnership in which Frito-Lay will sell and distribute Tapatio hot sauce-flavored Doritos tortilla chips, Fritos corn chips and Ruffles potato chips. Aimed at consumers looking to add a zesty kick to their snacking, the new Tapatio-flavored products are rolling out in grocery and convenience stores in the western and central regions of the U.S. this month.

All three Tapatio-flavored Frito-Lay products include a unique combination of red chili peppers, spices and a hint of garlic – the same ingredients used to create the original Tapatio hot sauce recipe. That distinct Tapatio taste is added to top-selling Doritos Nacho Cheese flavored tortilla chips to make Doritos Tapatio. In Ruffles Tapatio Limon, a hint of lime juice is combined with the fiery hot sauce for a one-of-a-kind, tangy twist. All three Tapatio-flavored products offer an entirely new taste experience reminiscent of spicy Mexican cuisine.

“Since first entering the market four decades ago, Tapatio hot sauce has become a must-have for consumers looking to add authentic Mexican flavor to meals and snacks,” said Dorothy Jones, senior director, innovation, Frito-Lay North America. “We’re so excited to now bring that exceptional flavor – a perfect blend of heat and smokiness – to some of our most popular Frito-Lay brands, and satisfy consumers eager for hotter, spicier foods.”

Tapatio hot sauce was first introduced to consumers in the early 1970s. Founder Jose-Luis Saavedra, Sr. began by making batches of hot sauce from his family home and personally delivering bottles of the finished product to local Los Angeles markets. Though the first few years were difficult, and at times even uncertain, Tapatio hot sauce eventually caught on and is now a staple in homes and restaurants across the U.S., particularly in the western part of the country.

“Tapatio hot sauce and Frito-Lay share a common heritage, both beginning as small, family-owned businesses and growing thanks to loyal and passionate fans who love our products,” said Jose-Luis Saavedra, Sr., founder, Tapatio Hot Sauce. “We’re excited to work with Frito-Lay on the next phase of Tapatio’s growth, and can’t wait to bring our unique hot sauce flavor to many new consumers through Frito-Lay’s popular brands.”

New Tapatio-flavored Doritos, Fritos and Ruffles are available at select retailers for a suggested retail price of $0.99 each for small bags and $2.99 each for large bags. For more information, and a list of where to buy new Tapatio-flavored Frito-Lay products, please visit www.fritolay.com.

Doritos, Fritos and Ruffles are three of the many brands made by Frito-Lay North America, the $13 billion convenient foods business unit of PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP), which is headquartered in Purchase, NY.  Learn more about Frito-Lay at the corporate website, http://www.fritolay.com/, the Snack Chat blog, http://www.snacks.com/ and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/fritolay.

PepsiCo offers the world’s largest portfolio of billion-dollar food and beverage brands, including 19 different product lines that generate more than $1 billion in annual retail sales each. Our main businesses — Quaker, Tropicana, Gatorade, Frito-Lay, and Pepsi Cola — also make hundreds of other enjoyable and wholesome foods and beverages that are respected household names throughout the world. With net revenues of approximately $60 billion, PepsiCo’s people are united by our unique commitment to sustainable growth by investing in a healthier future for people and our planet, which we believe also means a more successful future for PepsiCo. We call this commitment Performance with Purpose: PepsiCo’s promise to provide a wide range of foods and beverages for local tastes; to find innovative ways to minimize our impact on the environment, including by conserving energy and water usage, and reducing packaging volume; to provide a great workplace for our associates; and to respect, support, and invest in the local communities where we operate. For more information, please visit www.pepsico.com.

Fill your Easter Basket with Handmade Easter Chocolate Favorites from Phillips Candy HousePhillips Candy House, New England’s oldest chocolatier, offers old fashioned Easter chocolate favorites including its best-selling Chocolate Turtle Basket, Marshmallow Peeps dipped in milk chocolate, and an impressive variety of traditional chocolate covered eggs filled with vanilla cream yolk, chocolate fudge, coconut cream, rocky road fudge, chocolate royal hash and the newest creation, chocolate chip mint fudge – all handmade in small batches, using only the finest and freshest ingredients without the use of preservatives. See their full selection and order on line at http://www.phillipschocolate.com or call (800) 722-0905.

Featured Easter favorites include:

Best-selling Chocolate Turtle basket – a 1 lb assortment of turtles topped with a 2 and 1/2 ounce foil wrapped milk chocolate bunny and sprinkled with five foil-wrapped milk chocolate eggs.  $45.95

Marshmallow Peeps in a Puddle – marshmallow peeps hand-dipped in rich dark chocolate, milk chocolate or white chocolate. $5.00

Traditional Chocolate Cream Filled Eggs – Rich milk chocolate with a creamy vanilla center resembling real egg yolk; dipped in milk or dark chocolate, the eggs are available in chocolate fudge, coconut cream, rocky road fudge and royal hash. Small filled eggs (4 oz.): $6.95; large filled eggs (8 oz.): $10.95; (8 oz.) Royal Hash egg, $11.95.

Chocolate Chip Mint Fudge Filled Eggs – Creamy peppermint fudge, with chocolate chips, dipped in dark chocolate (4 oz.): $6.95.

Handcrafting Easter chocolates since 1925, Phillips Candy House stocks their shelves with thousands of chocolate rabbits and colorful Easter baskets filled with treats such as old fashioned fudge, freshly baked chocolate chip cookies, jelly beans, and speckled malted milk eggs. Other seasonal favorites and Easter gifts include soft and cuddly Easter toys and foil wrapped Easter eggs in milk, dark, white, crispy milk chocolate and peanut butter-filled.

Phillips Candy House has two locations – 818 Morrissey Blvd. in Boston and a store at the South Shore Plaza in Braintree. Phillips Candy House Boston location is open 8:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. Monday – Saturday and 9:30 a.m. – 6 p.m. Sunday; South Shore Plaza location is open 10:00 a.m.  – 9:00 p.m. Monday – Saturday and 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. on Sunday.

Iron Girl and Nestle Announce the Launch of the New Iron Girl Energy Bar for WomenNestle Performance Nutrition and its PowerBar® brand have announced a new co-branded women’s energy bar with the Iron Girl® event-based brand.  The Athleta Iron Girl Event Series consists of 13 races nationwide, ranging from 10K/5K to half-marathon, duathlon and triathlon.  Empowering females of all ages to lead a healthy and active lifestyle, Iron Girl is part of World Triathlon Corporation (WTC), producers of the Ford Ironman World Championship in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii.

“We are excited to announce the launch of the new Iron Girl™ energy bar, as an extension to our long-standing partnership with WTC,” said Neel Premkumar, Brand Development Manager for PowerBar®.  “This product supports the active lifestyle of adult women, whether training for an event or getting through a busy daily routine.”

The all-new Iron Girl Energy Bar has nutrition for the athlete in every woman.  Each Iron Girl Bar contains calcium, iron and B vitamins, offering an excellent source of energy in each bite.

Iron Girl Energy Bars are sold at Target® and are available in two flavors – Strawberry & Cranberry and Cocoa Crunch – that have soft and chewy whole grains mixed with real fruit and cocoa.

The new bar launch will be supported by sampling at events in the 2011 Athleta Iron Girl National Series, couponing with a “buy one, get one FREE” offer, and direct mail to Target® customers.

Register on www.powerbar.com/irongirloffer today to receive your own “buy one, get one FREE” coupon, as well as other special offers, access to training tools and expert nutrition advice, and to connect with athletes and trainers.

Vice President of Iron Girl® at WTC, Judy Molnar, commented, “This is an exciting new energy bar developed specifically to support the active lifestyles of women.  We know the importance of nutrition and the challenge of balancing all of life’s demands with staying active – this bar will help provide women with nutrition on-the-go.”

The new Iron Girl Energy Bar will be available starting mid-April in all Target® stores (U.S.A.) for a suggested retail price of $0.99 for a single bar and $4.99 for a multi-pack (six bars).

To learn more about Nestle Performance Nutrition and PowerBar®, visit www.powerbar.com.  For more information on Iron Girl®, log on to www.irongirl.com.  

About Nestle Performance Nutrition

Nestle Performance Nutrition is a business unit within Nestle that has deep expertise in sports nutrition. It markets and sells PowerBar® and Musashi® brand sports nutrition products in more than 30 markets worldwide and is involved in helping athletes perform in races from Ironman to the Tour de France to the New York Marathon. Visit PowerBar.com for more information.

About Iron Girl

Launched in 2004 with just two races, the Iron Girl® Event Series has grown to include 13 events nationwide, varying in distance from 5K to duathlon and triathlon. Iron Girl recently introduced its first half-marathon with plans to expand on the distance in 2012. With the mission of empowering women toward a healthy lifestyle, Iron Girl has celebrated finishers ranging in age from five to 89 years old with an average age of 36.  Visit www.irongirl.com, a site filled with training tips, guest columnists and nutrition information, and www.irongirlshop.com, an online store that offers products and accessories to match the active lifestyle of women.

Lance Unveils New All-Natural Sandwich Cracker with the Goodness Baked InThe cracker aisle will be getting a bit more flavorful with the recent launch of Cracker Creations™ — a premium seasoned sandwich cracker with vegetables, cheese or herbs baked right into the cracker. Best known for making America’s favorite sandwich cracker, Lance® is launching a new line of all-natural sandwich crackers with five grams of whole grain per serving. Cracker Creations™ will be available in two varieties: Garden Vegetable and Parmesan Herb. The crispy and flavorful crackers are perfectly balanced with a real cream cheese filling.

Garden Vegetable is reminiscent of vegetables just picked from the garden. This variety features the taste and aroma of tomatoes, bell peppers and onions. The Parmesan Herb variety features the rich, buttery taste of just grated Parmesan cheese.

“Our research revealed that consumers are looking for a premium snacking option that will excite their taste buds while keeping them full between meals,” said Alvaro Trinidad, Senior Brand Manager. “By baking the vegetables, cheese and herb flavors right into the cracker, Cracker Creations fills the gap for adults who want a sensible, fresh and all-natural snack.”

Like all Lance® Sandwich Crackers, Cracker Creations™ are made with 0 grams trans fat, no preservatives and no high-fructose corn syrup.

Cracker Creations™ are larger than traditional Lance® Sandwich Crackers and will be packaged in convenient twin packs with six twin packs per box. Cracker Creations™ are available at major grocery retailers and Walmart with a suggested retail of $2.99. For more information about Cracker Creations™ visit www.crackercreations.lance.com. For a full list of Lance® Sandwich Crackers or to locate a retailer visit www.lance.com or The Official Lance Snacks Facebook page.

About Snyder’s-Lance, Inc.

Snyder’s-Lance, Inc., headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, manufactures, markets and distributes snack foods throughout the United States and internationally. The company’s products include pretzels, sandwich crackers, potato chips, cookies, tortilla chips, restaurant style crackers, nuts and other snacks. Snyder’s-Lance has manufacturing facilities in North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Indiana, Georgia, Arizona, Massachusetts, Texas, Florida, Ohio, and Ontario, Canada. Products are sold under the Snyder’s of Hanover, Lance, Krunchers!, Cape Cod, Jays, Grande, Tom’s, Archway, O-Ke-Doke, and Stella D’oro brand names along with a number of private label and third party brands. Products are distributed widely through grocery and mass merchandisers, convenience stores, club stores, food service outlets and other channels.

 

Grapico and Great-Tasting Diet Grapico Feature New DesignOne of the South’s best-loved soft drinks and cultural icons has experienced a design makeover. Grapico and great-tasting Diet Grapico have been spruced up with a new look, and rolled out to store shelves and coolers all across Buffalo Rock Bottling Company’s southeastern footprint.

The new packaging design, developed by longtime Buffalo Rock advertising agency o2ideas of Birmingham, features a new multi-hued purple emblem, product wording in a signature Southern block script, and a cluster of purple grapes at the top. This “new retro” look brings together the nostalgic best of Grapico’s proud history and the ever-growing popularity of the same grape great taste. The packaging redesign applies to all versions of the soft drink, including the two-liters, 20 oz. single serving bottles, 12 oz. cans, and 12-pack cartons. Grapico is in purple cans and packaging, while great-tasting Diet Grapico comes in white packaging.  Both feature the new purple shield.

“We really wanted to splice something old with something new to create a new look for Grapico and Diet Grapico,” said James C. Lee, III, Chairman and CEO of Birmingham Buffalo Rock Company. “Generations of Southerners from all walks of life have grown up with Grapico.  And still, it continues to grow in popularity as a great tasting, premium, full-flavored beverage at a value price.”

Grapico’s roots go back to New Orleans in 1914, when it first began to be bottled by J. Grossman’s Sons. The grape-flavored drink quickly caught on.  In 1916, a musical score called “Meet Me in the Land of Grapico” was composed by Peter De Rose and Ivan Reid.  The first line in the song was “Grapico, Grapico, land that I love far away.” Through the years, Grapico is also mentioned in novels from authors such as Fannie Flagg, Anne George and Cassandra King. 

After decades of being a familiar part of Southern homes, in 1981 the Grapico franchise rights were sold to Buffalo Rock Bottling Company. In 1988, Buffalo Rock took Grapico distribution beyond Alabama, Florida and Georgia to extend all across the southeastern United States.  Today, Grapico and great-tasting Diet Grapico are family favorites at tailgate parties, barbecues, picnics, or just out of the fridge for lunch, dinner or snacks.    

About Buffalo Rock

Founded in 1901 by Birmingham’s Lee family, Buffalo Rock is one of the nation’s largest privately held Pepsi bottlers. The company has 2,200 employees, including 700 in Birmingham. Buffalo Rock has 14 offices and distribution facilities in Alabama, Georgia and Florida.

About o2ideas, Inc.:

o2ideas is a corporate communications and brand relations firm based in Birmingham, AL. For more information about o2ideas, visit www.o2ideas.com.

Best Food and Beverage Websites of 2011 to be Named by Web Marketing Association in 15th Annual WebAward CompetitionThe Web Marketing Association announces the call for entries for its 15th annual international WebAward Competition for Web site development at www.webaward.org. The WebAwards is the standards-defining competition that sets benchmarks for 96 industries, including food and beverage websites, based on the seven criteria of a successful web site. The deadline for food and beverage websites to enter to be judged is May 27, 2011.

“Both the foods and the beverage industries are very competitive when it comes to Web development and companies can benefit from the independent evaluation of their online efforts,” said William Rice, President of the Web Marketing Association. “Food web sites are usually well designed and contain well-written content. Areas of improvement include innovation and use of technology. Beverage websites have traditionally been innovative and score high in design aspects.”

Web sites are judged on seven criteria including design, innovation, content, technology, interactivity, copy writing and ease of use. Each WebAward entry is judged against other entries in its industry category and then against an overall standard of excellence.

All entrants benefit from receiving valuable feedback in terms of their specific scores compared against the average scores for their industry. They also may receive specific comments from the WebAward’s professional judging panel on their Web site development efforts.

Winners of a WebAward in the food and beverage categories will also receive:

  • Handsome statue or certificate of achievement
  • Increased visibility for their company
  • Marketing opportunity to promote the company website to the media
  • Links to your site from the highly ranked WebAward site to help SEO
  • A highlight for your resume
  • Admiration of peers, friends and co-workers

Each year the Web Marketing Association names the best industry websites based on the scores submitted by the competition judges.

Recent winners of the Best Food Web site include:

2010 — Biggs|Gilmore for Apple Jacks/Catch the Taste
2009 — G2 interactive for Fishful Thinking
2008 — XylemCCI for Jack Link’s Beef Jerky Web site
2007 — Biggs|Gilmore for Pop-Tarts
2006 — Publicis Net for Coca Cola BlaK
2005 — These Days & Sara Lee for Jacqmotte Escape
2004 — Emerald of California for Emerald of California web site
2003 — Fairytale Brownies for brownies.com
2002 — Fry, Inc. for Hickory Farms

Recent winners of the Best Beverage Web site include:

2010 — Hungama Digital Media for Pepsi-The Game
2009 — BLITZ Agency for Naked Juice Web Site
2008 — Eurorscg 4D Amsterda, for Carte Noire: ‘Une Declaration Nommee Desir’
2007 — Squeaky Wheel Media for SoBe Beverages
2006 — Creative Presence Partners / MaxMedia Design for KING JAMES
2005 — Tribal DDB Sydney for Dare Shot
2004 — Brown-Forman for Early Times
2003 — Bacardi Global Brands / Motivo / cosmoblonde for BACARDI.COM

There is one significant change in this year’s WebAwards. The much coveted Top Agency WebAward is given to the organization who wins the most total WebAwards in a single competition. However each year many agencies win multiple awards and deserve additional recognition. This year, we will recognize each organization that wins 10 or more WebAwards with an Outstanding Interactive Developer trophy.

Participants can improve their chances on winning a WebAward by checking out the Web Marketing Association Facebook Page and becoming a fan of the page.  The Web Marketing Association will be providing hints and tips on how to improve your chances on winning a top award throughout April and May.

The 2011 WebAwards are sponsored by the following leading organizations: BGT Partners, Burst Media, PR Newswire, AllBusiness, ExactTarget, ad:tech conferences,  Internet World UK, SES Conferences, Webmaster Radio, and Website Magazine.

About the WebAwards

The Web Marketing Association’s 15th annual international WebAwards competition sets the standard of excellence in 96 industries by evaluating Web sites based on the seven essential criteria of successful Web site development. The WebAwards recognizes the people and organizations responsible for developing the most effective Websites on the Internet today. Entrants benefit from a Website assessment by a professional judging panel and the marketing opportunities presented to an award-winning Web site. For more information, visit www.webaward.org.

Chef Curtis Stone Teams Up with Post Great Grains CerealCurtis Stone has partnered with Post Great Grains Cereal to spread his whole-food philosophy starting with breakfast, the most important meal of the day. In a national advertising campaign breaking this month, Stone shows that not all whole grain cereal flakes are created equal and talks about the importance of eating less-processed whole grains for better nutrition.

Breakfast with Curtis

Breakfast buffs and whole-foods enthusiasts are invited to join Curtis in the movement to “Keep it Whole” and in a live video chat over breakfast on Wednesday, April 20th at 10:00am E.T. at www.facebook.com/GreatGrains.

Among his many titles — chef at Michelin-starred restaurants, critically acclaimed restaurateur in his own right, judge on NBC’s “America’s Next Great Restaurant” and newly appointed host of Bravo’s “Top Chef Masters” — at the start of each day, Stone is a breakfast lover. He is passionate about using quality ingredients and teaching others about cooking and eating for better health.

“Breakfast is key to starting the day right, and Post happens to make a cereal that I absolutely love,” says Stone. “Great Grains starts with the real whole grain, then mixes in beautiful fruit and nuts for a cereal that’s really good for you and tastes amazing. What’s more, you can actually see the difference when you look at the flake.”

Look for the seam

The whole grains in Great Grains Crunchy Pecans, and Great Grains Raisins, Dates and Pecans Cereals are less processed than other leading whole grain cereals. The wheat kernels are gently steamed, rolled and baked, maintaining the wheat berry seam and the naturally occurring nutrients, fiber and antioxidants.

Also, try Great Grains Cranberry Almond Crunch, which contains a multi grain flake that locks in flavor and nutrition.

Our Whole Grain content

Great Grains Crunchy Pecans, Great Grains Raisins, Dates and Pecans and Great Grains Cranberry Almond Crunch Cereals each provide at least 50 percent of the daily need of whole grains, which is significantly more whole grain than other ‘Healthy’ cereals. Great Grains is whole food from the field to the bowl with whole grain, fiber and nutritious ingredients in every bite.

“Curtis’s personal food philosophy is central to the mission of Post Great Grains — that great tasting, nutritious food starts with less processed, quality ingredients,” said Joahne Carter, Associate Director of Marketing for Post’s Adult Brands. “He is the perfect partner to help make all of us more aware of the source of our food and the benefits of incorporating more whole foods into our diets.”

The marketing campaign featuring Stone includes national broadcast, print and online media, retailer activities and an integrated Hearst publishing program. Additionally, consumers can view the commercial and get tips and recipes from Stone and more information at www.facebook.com/GreatGrains. In addition, consumers can also find on-pack promotions for 24 Hour Fitness in June, including a 24 Hour Fitness 7-day free trial and a discount code for 10% off at 24hourfitness.com.

About Post Foods, LLC

Post Foods, LLC, a subsidiary of Ralcorp Holdings, is the manufacturer of iconic ready-to-eat cereal brands including Post Great Grains, Honey Bunches of Oats, Pebbles, Post Grape-Nuts, Post Shredded Wheat, Honeycomb, and other great tasting cereals. For more information, please visit www.postcereals.com.

Spring Is the Season to Love American LambAt a time when families are preparing to celebrate holidays such as Easter and Passover, nothing sings spring like American Lamb.  A culinary bridge across cultures, lamb is a staple of spring cooking, rooted in a number of religious traditions.  Though American Lamb is available year-round, demand more than doubles in America during the spring holidays.  From eye-catching crown roasts to family-friendly leg, American Lamb makes for an easy and elegant feast and flavorful alternative for everyday meals.  

Fans of lamb can learn simple strategies for preparing the ultimate holiday meal here, through a series of brief, how-to videos.  From tips for how to stuff, cook and carve a tender holiday roast to learning quick and easy marinades that enhance the rich flavor of American lamb, these easy-to-follow guides can turn any home cook into a lamb master in minutes.

Americans Spring for Lamb

  • Nearly 20 percent of U.S. lamb consumption occurs during the spring holidays.
  • Sales more than double as families around the country gather for Easter and Passover holidays.
  • The average American consumes only one pound of lamb each year, compared to 61 pounds of beef, 59 pounds of chicken and 46 pounds of pork.
  • There are approximately 70,000 sheep producers in the U.S. a majority of which are family-owned and operated.
  • The most popular cuts for spring holidays include leg and rack of lamb.

Most people only think of lamb for spring celebrations but no matter the season fresh American Lamb is available year-round.  American Lamb is a refreshing alternative to pork, beef or chicken without any extra effort in the kitchen.  Beyond the rack, a variety of affordable cuts such as leg, shank and shoulder make lamb the perfect solution for everyday meals.  

For more information and American Lamb recipes, visit www.AmericanLamb.com, become a fan on Facebook or follow @FANofLAMB on Twitter.  

About the American Lamb Board

The American Lamb Board is an industry-funded research and promotions commodity board that represents all sectors of the American Lamb industry including producers, feeders, seed stock producers and processors. The Board, appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture, is focused on increasing demand by promoting the freshness, flavor, nutritional benefits, and culinary versatility of American Lamb. The work of the American Lamb Board is overseen by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the board’s programs are supported and implemented by the staff in Denver, Colorado.

Lance Sandwich Crackers Joins National Salt Reduction InitiativeLance Sandwich Crackers has joined the National Salt Reduction Initiative (NSRI) in its effort to reduce the amount of sodium consumed by Americans. Currently 28 of the nation’s leading food manufacturers have joined NSRI.

Lance Sandwich Crackers has agreed to lower the amount of sodium in 13 of its sandwich cracker varieties to meet the NSRI guidelines by 2012. America’s favorite sandwich cracker has a long history of making consumer desired nutritional changes including the removal of trans fats and high fructose corn syrup, creating a line of whole grain sandwich crackers as well as offering reduced fat and 100 calorie versions of its most popular sandwich crackers including ToastChee and Toasty.

NSRI is a nationwide effort among 72 local and state health departments and health organizations to work with the food industry to cut the salt in packaged and restaurant foods by 25% over five years — an achievement that would reduce the nation’s salt intake by 20% and prevent tens of thousands of deaths each year due to conditions caused by high blood pressure.

“We are thrilled to have another flagship brand in the Snyder’s-Lance family join the NSRI’s efforts to make lower sodium, healthier snacks,” said Carl Lee, President and Chief Operating Officer of Snyder’s-Lance. “As the makers of America’s favorite brand of sandwich crackers and pretzels, Snyder’s-Lance looks forward to continuing to provide great tasting, premium quality salty snacks while working with the NSRI toward reducing sodium in our salty snack offerings.”

In December 2010, Lance, Inc. and Snyder’s of Hanover, Inc. finalized the merger of the two companies creating a leading snack food manufacturer. Prior to this, Snyder’s of Hanover had joined NSRI in November 2010. At that time, the nation’s leading pretzel manufacturer already met the NSRI target for pretzels and agreed to cut the salt in its unflavored chips. This latest announcement adds Lance sandwich crackers to the 2012 sodium target reduction.

Lean Pork May Help Dieters Lose WeightDieters trying to stick to their diets may want to look no further than lean protein, according to two studies published in the prestigious journal Obesity. (1, 2) Including protein such as lean pork in three daily meals could reduce late-night desires to eat, increase feelings of fullness and decrease distracting thoughts about food, according to the research.

Researchers at Purdue University conducted two studies of overweight and obese men eating either a normal protein diet (14% of total calories from protein), or a higher protein diet (25% of total calories from protein – the additional protein mostly from lean pork and eggs), with the protein equally divided between three or six meals per day. Calories and fat did not differ between the two diets.

The researchers looked at short-term and longer term effects of the two protein levels and in both studies, the higher protein diets were associated with greater feelings of fullness during weight loss, and in the longer term study, particularly decreased late-night desires to eat –key findings that could ultimately reduce calorie intake and affect weight loss success, according to the researchers. In the latest study, 27 men followed a calorie restricted diet for 12 weeks, while the other study looked at short-term effects of protein on hunger/appetite in 13 men fed controlled meals on four separate days.

“Our research shows that eating about a quarter of one’s daily calories as lean pork and other high quality proteins three times a day is a powerful dietary weapon for people seeking weight loss,” said study lead Dr. Heather Leidy, currently an Assistant Professor in the Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology at the University of Missouri.

“It’s time to redefine ‘high protein’ eating for weight management. It does not mean limitless amounts of meat, fish and eggs. Instead, think a quarter of the plate roughly dedicated to a lean protein, like three ounces of pork tenderloin for example. The rest of the plate can be fruits, vegetables and higher-fiber carbohydrates,” continues Dr Leidy.

The additional protein in the “higher protein” diet consisted primarily of pre-portioned quantities of lean pork and eggs. At 25% of total calories, this amounts to roughly no more than 200 protein calories (or 50 grams of protein) at each of three mealtimes. Further, this “higher protein” dietary pattern falls within the “acceptable macronutrient distribution range” (AMDR), which is 10-35 percent of total calories for protein.  According to the National Academy of Sciences, the AMDR is the range associated with reduced risk for chronic diseases, while providing essential nutrients like vitamins and minerals.

Adhering to a higher protein diet like those tested in these studies is easier than ever for consumers. Today’s most popular cuts of pork have 16 percent less total fat and 27 percent less saturated fat than they did 20 years ago. In fact, cuts of pork that come from the loin – including chops and roasts – and 96 percent lean ground pork are the leanest cuts of pork available. Ounce-for-ounce pork tenderloin is as lean as skinless chicken breast.

The National Pork Board has responsibility for Checkoff-funded research, promotion and consumer information projects and for communicating with pork producers and the public. Through a legislative national Pork Checkoff, pork producers invest $0.40 for each $100 value of hogs sold. The Pork Checkoff funds national and state programs in advertising, consumer information, retail and foodservice marketing, export market promotion, production improvement, technology, swine health, pork safety and environmental management. 

1. Leidy H, Tang M, Armstrong C, Martin C, Campbell W.  The effects of consuming frequent, higher protein meals on appetite and satiety during weight loss in overweight/obese men. Obesity. 2011; 19:818-824.

2. Leidy H, Armstrong C, Tang M, Mattes R, Campbell W.  The influence of higher protein intake and greater eating frequency on appetite control in overweight and obese men. Obesity. 2010; 18:1725-1732.

Convenience Store Foods Overlooked by Hungry ShoppersConsumers are constantly on-the-go these days and as a result, they prefer that restaurants offer quick and convenient meal and snack options that won’t slow them down. However, one foodservice option that is widely ignored by hungry shoppers is the convenience store. While c-stores position themselves as the ultimate destination for convenience, recent Mintel research found that 33% of consumers who have never purchased food at a convenience store haven’t done so because they believe the food is of low quality.

“When consumers think of convenience stores, food quality isn’t the first thing that comes to mind,” says Eric Giandelone, director of foodservice research at Mintel. “Improved quality—not just for products but for service, location and marketing communications—is needed to bring in or bring back consumers for whom c-stores aren’t top-of-mind choices.”

Of those who don’t purchase processed food at convenience stores, 64% said they never or rarely consider purchasing food from a c-store. Meanwhile, 32% say the food was not appealing to them and 26% cite high prices as a deterrent. Thirty-five percent reported that there were better food options nearby.

“Convenience stores are always going to face competition from restaurants, especially fast food establishments,” notes Eric Giandelone. “Luckily, convenience store foodservice suffered less than restaurants did during the recession and we forecast this $22.8 million dollar industry to experience 4.1% growth in 2011.”

So what foods are consumers purchasing when they visit convenience stores? It seems c-stores are most popular for their beverage options. Fifty-eight percent of consumers say they purchase fountain beverages, 52% purchase coffee drinks and 44% purchase “slushies” or other frozen beverages.

When it comes to consumers who purchase c-store food—hot dogs (38%) and pizza (33%) are the most popular choices. Additionally, 28% go for made-to-order sandwiches, 26% grab nachos and a quarter of shoppers opt for chicken wings or tenders.

Could Maple Syrup From Canada Be the Next Champion Food?NEW YORK  (Food-News.net)  There’s more good news about pure maple syrup from the University of Rhode Island (URI). Researchers there have now identified 54 compounds in maple syrup from Canada, double the amount previously reported, and many with antioxidant activity and potential health benefits. In laboratory studies, they acted as anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory agents. Initial studies also suggest that maple compounds may inhibit enzymes relevant in Type 2 diabetes management.

These new findings were presented on March 30th at the annual meeting of the American Chemical Society in Anaheim, CA, during a day-long session exclusively examining the bioactive compounds found in natural sweeteners. The session was organized and chaired by Dr. Navindra Seeram, assistant pharmacy professor at URI and a lead scientist on the maple syrup research team.

According to the URI research team, maple syrup contains a cocktail of polyphenol compounds, several with antioxidant properties and many with well-documented health benefits. “We found a wide variety of polyphenols in maple syrup,” said Seeram. “It is a one-stop shop for these beneficial compounds, several of which are also found in berries, tea, red wine and flaxseed, just to name a few,” Seeram continued. “Not all sweeteners are created equal. When choosing a sweetener, pure maple syrup may be a better choice because of the range of antioxidant compounds not found in other sweeteners.”

Maple syrup may prove to be relevant in Type 2 diabetes management, although the findings must be verified in clinical trials. “We discovered that the polyphenols in maple syrup inhibit enzymes that are involved in the conversion of carbohydrate to sugar,” said Seeram. “In fact, in preliminary studies maple syrup had a greater enzyme-inhibiting effect compared to several other healthy plant foods such as berries, when tested on a dry-weight basis. By 2050, one in three people will be afflicted with Type 2 diabetes and more and more people are looking for healthier diets, so finding a potential anti-diabetic compound in maple syrup is interesting for the scientific community and the consumer,” said Seeram.

Five of the 54 antioxidants in maple syrup were identified for the first time in nature, and are unique to the natural sweetener. Among the five new compounds never before identified, one polyphenol is of particular interest. Given the common name of Quebecol, in honor of the province of Quebec, this compound is created during the process of boiling down maple sap into maple syrup. “We don’t know yet whether the new compounds contribute to the healthy profile of maple syrup, but we do know that the sheer quantity and variety of identified compounds with documented health benefits qualifies maple syrup as a champion food,” commented Seeram, whose findings have recently been published in the Journal of Functional Foods. Dr. Seeram’s work at URI is supported by a grant funded by The Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers, in conjunction with the Conseil pour le developpement de l’agriculture du Quebec (CDAQ) and Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC)on behalf of the Canadian Maple Syrup Industry.

Attendees at the American Chemical Society’s annual meeting also heard promising results from other Canadian researchers who are studying the health benefits of maple syrup. “Part of our New Generation of Maple 2020 strategy is to work with talented scientists to discover and share more knowledge about maple syrup. We are excited that this line of research receives interest from all over the world,” says Serge Beaulieu, President of the Federation and member of the Canadian Maple Industry Advisory Committee. Genevieve Beland, Marketing Director for the Federation, adds “Maple is the most important food derived from the pure sap of trees, and given its amazing potential for human health and great nutritional value, it is a natural choice for a healthy lifestyle.” The Federation’s members produce about 80 percent of the worldwide supply of the natural sweetener.

Click http://www.purecanadamaple.com/next-champion-food/ to see a video of Dr. Navindra Seeram at The American Chemical Society’s Annual Meeting discussing the groundbreaking new health findings surrounding maple syrup from Canada. For more information about maple syrup, please visit www.purecanadamaple.com.  

About the Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers

The Federation of Quebec Maple Syrup Producers was founded in 1966 with the mission of defending and promoting the economic, social and moral interests of its 7,400 maple family farms and businesses. These men and women are working together to collectively create quality standards, knowledge and market their products. Quebec is responsible for 93 percent of the Canadian production and close to 80 percent of today’s global maple syrup output. The Federation is proud to lead the Canadian Maple Innovation Network in the name of the entire Canadian maple syrup industry. Ontario, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia contribute 7 percent of the total Canadian production.

The University of Rhode Island’s research grant was co-founded by the Federation, CDAQ and AAFC. Funding of CDAQ is provided through Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada’s Advancing Canadian Agriculture and Agri-Food (ACAAF) program. AAFC has been able to provide financial support for maple syrup research through the program “Growing Canadian Agri-Innovations.”

 

Soyfoods, Good for You and Good for Your WalletWASHINGTON  (Food-News.net)  April is National Soyfoods Month, and finding delicious soy-based foods at affordable prices has never been easier. During April several Soyfoods Association of North America (SANA) members are offering coupons and discounts on a variety of tasty soyfoods, making this month a great time for consumers who may not be as familiar with the various soy products to try them for the first time.  The promotions should also appeal to the soy enthusiasts, motivating them to visit their local grocery stores and stock up.

For the first time ever, soyfoods were brought front and center in the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Health and Human Services (HHS)’s 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The recommendations included increasing the intake of soy products and fortified soy beverages.  Vegetarian and vegan meal patterns, that included soyfoods, also made their Dietary Guidelines debut back in January as adaptations to the USDA Food Patterns.

Soyfoods, which are the only complete plant-based protein, help families follow the Dietary Guidelines. They are easy to prepare and simple to incorporate into your daily meals.  Try these combinations for:

  • Breakfast: Start the day off with a protein-rich soy yogurt.
  • Lunch: Add some fresh edamame to a lunch salad, or heat up some meatless “chicken” nuggets.
  • Snack: For an afternoon pick-me-up, try some toasted soy nuts or a whole soy nutrition bar.
  • Dinner: Soy crumbles make tasty tacos, which you can top with soy cheese. Or use silken tofu to make a creamy Fettuccini Alfredo.

Money-smart soyfoods help consumers to gain health without spending a fortune.  Adopting a diet with plenty of plant-based protein from soyfoods makes good health and economic sense.

For more information on April’s National Soyfoods Month, please visit www.soyfoodsmonth.org or contact SANA at (202) 659-3520.

The Soyfoods Association of North America (SANA) is a non-profit trade association that has been promoting consumption of soyfoods in the diet since 1978. SANA is committed to encouraging sustainability, integrity and growth in the soyfoods industry by promoting the benefits and consumption of soy-based foods and ingredients in diets. More information is available at www.soyfoods.org.