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Package Sensor Technologies Will Help Reduce Food Waste

July 19, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A presentation at a recent food science meeting outlined how “intelligent packaging” of food will help reduce food waste. Michigan State University adjunct professor Claire Sand said innovative packaging equipped with a variety of sensors will communicate shelf life, freshness and quality to consumers. Some, such as time-temperature indicators, are already in use on seafood and other food packages. New degradation sensors that detect spoilage can measure product decay and change color to warn consumers.  “We’re very close to being able to do this for a multitude of foods,” Sand told the Institute of Food Technologists symposium.
"New Sensors on Packages Can Detect Spoiled Foods", News release, Institute of Food Technologists, July 19, 2016, © Institute of Food Technologists
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Take-And-Bake Pizza Chain To Serve Only Antibiotics-Free Chicken

July 18, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
National pizza-kit restaurant chain Papa Murphy’s announced it is beginning a transition to antibiotics-free, vegetarian-fed chicken in all of its 1,500 locations. The chain is also committed to removing artificial flavors and colors from its food by 2017. It is working to eliminate palm oil and high-fructose corn syrup from menu items by this fall. It has already eliminated monosodium glutamate from its offerings. Papa Murphy’s is the largest take-and-bake pizza brand in the U.S., and also offers salads, sides and desserts.
"Papa Murphy's Is The First National Pizza Brand to Serve Chicken Raised Without Antibiotics", News release, Papa Murphy's, July 18, 2016, © Papa Murphy's Holdings, Inc.
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Stevia Producer Expands Agronomy Program

July 18, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Stevia producer PureCircle said it will invest another $100 million in a program to create the world’s largest natural supply of stevia for the food and beverage industry. The PureCircle Agronomy Program hopes to expand stevia growing to 15 regions beyond China. The company said the expansion will result in a 10,000-hectare pipeline of stevia. The program is focused on sustainable agricultural expansion, R&D to create advanced stevia varieties, and training and support of farmers.
Rachel Quenzer, "PureCircle Announces $100 Million Investment In Agronomy Program", News release, PureCircle, July 18, 2016, © PureCircle
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Tesco Extends Sustainability Support To Cocoa Certified By Rainforest Alliance

July 15, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
All cocoa used by Tesco in its in-house chocolate products in the U.K., as well as all cocoa used in other Tesco foods, will be certified by 2018 by the Rainforest Alliance as responsibly and sustainably sourced, the company announced. Certification by the Alliance supports cocoa-growing communities, helps increase farmer income, safeguards soils and conserves wildlife. Other Tesco food products that will contain only certified cocoa include biscuits, cakes, desserts and cereals. Tesco cooperates with several sustainability programs: the Rainforest Alliance, UTZ, Cocoa Horizons and Fairtrade.
"Tesco to Source Rainforest Alliance Certified™ Cocoa For All of Its Own Label Chocolate in the UK", News release, Tesco, July 15, 2016, © Tescoplc.com
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Online Health Food Retailer Profits From Program To Reduce Waste

July 15, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A British online health food, beverage and supplement retailer hopes to raise $130,000 through crowdfunding to expand its program of selling out-of-date products at steep discounts. Vitalife’s “Love Health Hate Waste” initiative, launched a year ago, has kept nearly a million dollars’ worth of foods, drinks and supplements from ending up in landfills. The company said it was throwing away products that had reached their best-used-before date but were still “perfectly fit for consumption and legal to sell.” The company sells the products at discounts as high as 90 percent off retail. Under the program, which is expected to turn an $800,000 profit this year, “we are making healthy food and drink accessible to everyone,” a spokesman said.
Edward Devlin, "Vitalife in Crowdfunding Bid for Love Health Hate Waste", The Grocer, July 15, 2016, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Funding Available For Food Waste Projects From “Impact Investor”

July 15, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
The charitable arm of a venture fund focused on “impact investment” is conducting a search for fundable projects that address America’s food waste crisis. The Closed Loop Foundation says there are a lot of innovative solutions to food waste that lack capital to get off the ground. Proposals for funding can be submitted on the foundation’s website by individuals or groups with food waste ideas until August 12. Grants and loans will range from $25,000 to $50,000. The Fund typically awards no-interest loans to cities and municipalities and low-interest loans to businesses. The Closed Loop Fund is a social impact fund investing $100 million to support recycling of products and packaging. It is primarily sponsored by the Walmart Foundation.
Krithika Varagur, "Have A Bright Idea To Reduce Food Waste? This Group Wants To Fund It.", The Huffington Post, July 15, 2016, © TheHuffingtonPost.com, Inc.
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Simple, Inexpensive Products That Help Extend The Fridge Life Of Produce

July 15, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
The Huffington Post, whose website is sponsoring a “Reclaim” project to help consumers cut food waste in the home, has compiled a list of nine inexpensive products that preserve the freshness of herbs, fruits and vegetables in the fridge. Sheets of Fresh Paper ($9.99), for example, line the crisper drawer or the mixed greens salad box, to keep produce fresh two to four times longer. They are made from edible organic spices. The Mastrad Keep Sack ($10.28) is a cotton bag that keeps up to four pounds of onions out of sunlight, preventing sprouting. Other products keep cheese moist, fight harmful pathogens, preserve fresh herbs, soak up ethylene gas that ripens fruits too quickly, prevent garlic sprouting by keeping them in the dark, etc.
Julie R. Thomson, "9 Clever Products That’ll Help Prevent Your Produce From Rotting", The Huffington Post, July 15, 2016, © TheHuffingtonPost.com, Inc.
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Unilever, IFF Partner With Nongovernment Groups To Support Haiti's Vetiver Farmers

July 14, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Unilever and International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. launched Vetiver Together, a partnership with leading nongovernment organizations to improve the livelihoods of smallholder vetiver farmers in Haiti. Also, the program aims to improve food security, increase yields, and diversify farmers’ income in a sustainable way. At the same time, the campaign seeks to help empower women and promote protection of the environment. Haiti produces some of the world’s best vetiver, the source of oil commonly used in various fragrances Unilever uses in brands, including Axe and Impulse.
"IFF and Unilever Launch Partnership to Improve the Lives of Vetiver Farming Communities in Haiti", Business Wire, July 14, 2016, © Business Wire
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Dannon Rids Yogurt Brands Of GMO Ingredients, And Will Clearly Label GMO Products

July 14, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Dannon unveiled yogurts under the Dannon and Oikos brands that contain no GMO ingredients. The company said it plans to transition all yogurt brands, including Danimals, to non-GMO content, and will also clearly label products still containing GMO ingredients. The next step in the process will come in 2017, when Dannon will ensure that the cows that supply milk for its flagship brands will be raised on non-GMO feed. The company will convert 80,000 acres of farmland to produce non-GMO crops
"Dannon Brings non-GMO Ingredient Options And Clear-Labels Commitment", News release, Dannon, July 14, 2016, © Dannon
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Using Advanced Technology To Battle Food Waste

July 14, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A number of technological innovations designed to reduce food waste are making their way to the marketplace. Intelligent food labeling, smartphone apps, intelligent refrigerators, etc., could transform the way consumers shop for food and prevent edible food from ending up in the trash. Samsung’s Family Hubrefrigerator, to be unveiled in the U.K. this fall at a price of nearly $6,000, will feature three cameras, Amazon’s voice-responsive AI assistant, and a WIFI connection to the Internet. The cameras allow shoppers to check what’s in the fridge while in the grocery store. Other innovations include: stick-on “leftover labels” that change color – green means still edible, red means it’s time to toss; and a free app, Olio, which connects people locally with others who have leftover food to give away.
Rebecca Smithers, "Tech Innovations That Could Reduce Food Waste", The Guardian, July 14, 2016, © Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies
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Tom's Of Maine Launches Campaign To Promote School-Based Sustainability Efforts

July 14, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Tom's of Maine launched its “Green Your School Fund” campaign to promote school projects that aim to protect the environment. As part of the initiative, the company partnered with DonorsChoose.org to give $1 million to classrooms across the US to encourage students to support sustainability efforts. According to the company, more than 250 school projects from 40 states were submitted. Members of the panel of judges include celebrity Kevin Jonas, The Huffington Post enterprise editor and senior reporter Kate Sheppard, and TerraCycle CEO Tom Szaky. Cash prizes await the winning projects, including $25,000 for the project that will receive the most votes.
"Tom's of Maine "Green Your School Fund" Invites Public to Make a Difference for Communities and the Planet by Voting for Favorite Classroom Projects", PR Newswire, July 14, 2016, © PR Newswire Association LLC
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Innovative Technologies Turn Food Processing Waste Into Healthful Powders

July 13, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A start-up based in Colorado has combined five “eco-sustainability” technologies that preserve, dehydrate and mill “almost any raw food” to create healthful food powders. Its first product is a powder made from orange peels left over from juice production in Mexico. The powder can be sprinkled on salads, blended into smoothies, baked into recipes, etc. NewfoodZ has now launched an Indiegogo funding campaign to raise $1.5 million over 45 days to expand the business to Alaska. There it hopes to apply the technology to Native American salmon processing waste. Upcoming projects will target apples, sweet potatoes and carrots.
"NewfoodZ Launches Indiegogo Campaign to Reduce Industrial Food Waste", News release, NewfoodZ, July 13, 2016, © NewfoodZ
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Tesco To Sell Only Cage-Free Eggs By 2025

July 13, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
U.K. grocery retailer Tesco said it will stop selling eggs from caged hens by 2025. It made the decision following a focused review of its egg-sourcing strategy, which included meetings with suppliers, industry experts, and other interested parties. The decision follows other sustainability initiatives, including a Fair For Farmers Guarantee for dairy farmers, guaranteed high-value contracts for U.K. potato farmers, and sustainable farming programs for lamb farmers and cheese producers.
"Tesco to stop selling caged eggs by 2025", Tesco, July 13, 2016, © Tescoplc.com
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The Body Shop Launches Monkey-Themed Campaign On Tinder

July 7, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Beauty retailer The Body Shop launched a marketing campaign on dating app Tinder to promote the company's Bio-Bridges program to protect endangered species. Reggie, a Red Shanked Douc monkey from Vietnam, serves as the brand's representative. Reggie's Tinder profile provides details about the Bio-Bridges program, which aims to restore wildlife corridors in damaged habitats and help endangered species reconnect, breed, and thrive.
"The Body Shop Trials 'Gorilla' Marketing with Monkey Tinder Takeover", CNW, July 07, 2016, © CNW Group Ltd.
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Revlon Names Pamela Gill Alabaster Head Of Global Communications And CSR

July 7, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Revlon, Inc. said it has appointed Pamela Gill Alabaster to manage the company’s Global Corporate Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility department. Alabaster’s responsibilities will include managing the beauty brand’s global internal and external communications, public affairs, and CSR programs and initiatives. She will report to Revlon president and CEO Fabian Garcia.
"Revlon, Inc. Appoints Pamela Gill Alabaster to Lead Global Corporate Communications and Corporate Social Responsibility", Revlon, July 07, 2016, © Revlon Consumer Products Corporation
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Kroger Outlines Expanded “Eco-Stewardship” Goals For Next Four Years

July 7, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
The Kroger Co.’s expanded sustainability goals include a commitment to 100 percent sustainable seafood and a transition to a cage-free egg supply chain by 2020. CEO Rodney McMullen said the company wants to be a “positive force for change” while driving sustainability and innovation across the supply chain. The company said it is also committed to optimizing all corporate brand packaging, and implementing zero waste in at least 90 percent of its facilities over the next four years.
"Kroger Announces Sustainability Goals for 2020", News release, Kroger , July 07, 2016, © The Kroger Co.
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L'Oreal Australia Partners With TerraCycle To Launch Recycling Program For Used Personal Care And Beauty Packaging

July 6, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
L'Oreal Australia said it has partnered with TerraCycle to recycle used personal care and beauty packaging through the FREE Beauty Products Recycling Program. Involving the company's Garnier, L'Oreal Paris, and Maybelline brands, the program will allow Australian consumers to recycle their personal care and beauty packaging by signing up for free. L'Oreal said the program is part of its Sharing Beauty with All sustainability initiative.
"TerraCycle Partnership", L’Oréal, July 06, 2016, © L’Oréal
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Unilever Thailand, Local Marketers Receive Call From Government For Support For Start-Ups And Sustainable Growth

July 5, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Thailand's Deputy Prime Minister Somkid Jatusripitak called on Unilever Thailand and the Marketing Association of Thailand to support the government's Pracha Rath project to help local business start-ups. Speaking at the business forum “Mobilizing Collective Action to Achieve the Sustainable Development Goals of a Zero Carbon, Zero Poverty World,” the government executive said Pracha Rath promotes close collaboration between the government and private sectors, as well as the people, to promote sustainable development and economic growth.
Kwanchai Rungfapaisarn And Nataya Thiraporn, "Unilever, marketing groups urged to support start-ups", THE NATION , July 05, 2016, © www.nationmultimedia.com
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L'Oreal Opens Upgraded Manufacturing Plant With Sustainable Features In Italy

July 5, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
L'Oreal Italy introduced its renovated manufacturing plant outside the city of Turin. Featuring a fully robotized production process, the factory is carbon neutral. According to the company, the renovation enabled the factory to eliminate 9,000 tons of potential carbon emission per year. By combining different renewable sources, including 14,000 solar panels and the use of biogas for the production process, the company has greatly improved the factory's sustainability features.
Sandra Salibian , "L’Oréal Italy Unveils Renovated, Sustainable Plant", Women's Wear Daily, July 05, 2016, © Fairchild Fashion Media
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Scientists Seek A Way To Use Nutrient-Rich Berry Pomace In Bread

June 29, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
The British government has awarded $291,000 to food scientists at the University of Huddersfield to work with a blackcurrant juice maker to come up with a way to turn the leftover pomace into food. Scientists believe the pomace – pulp, seeds, and stems – can be turned into an edible substance that can enrich the polyphenol and fiber content of bread, muffins, biscuits and breakfast foods. The Huddersfield scientists are working with British company Lucozade Ribena Suntory, maker of the Ribena blackcurrant drink brand. The company normally discards the pomace after making the juice.
Chloe Glover, "University of Huddersfield Take on Government Project to Turn Blackcurrant Pomace Into Food", The Huddersfield Daily Examiner, June 29, 2016, © Trinity Mirror North West
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Investors Needed To Help Build World’s First Pulse Waste Processing Plant

June 27, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Australia’s Wimmera Development Association is looking for investors in a project to build a processing plant in Victoria that would convert pulse grain waste into protein powder. Besides creating jobs and providing a market for farmers’ leftover grain husk, the plant would help reduce food waste. The project received some funding from the state to look into the potential of such a plant, but is now seeking investors to carry the project forward. The powder made from pulse grain waste is 85 percent protein and could be used to make breakfast cereal, muesli bars, health foods, consumable protein powders and ready-made meals, according to project promoters.
Erin McFadden, "Pulse Protein Powder Plant: Wimmera Development Association Seeks Investors", Stock And Land, June 27, 2016, © Fairfax Media
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Walmart Hopes Its New Date Labeling Scheme Will Help Reduce Wasted Food

June 26, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Walmart is changing the date labeling scheme on its food products to avoid consumer confusion over safe-to-eat dates. That confusion has led Americans to toss $29 billion worth of edible food into the trash every year. Walmart’s fix is to require suppliers of its own label Great Value products to use the same standardized date – “best if used by” – for non-perishable foods. The change began last year, and the company says 70 percent of its private label suppliers have already complied. The rest have until next month to comply. The Food Marketing Institute says most date labels aren’t meant to indicate safety, only when manufacturers believe products will go beyond peak quality.
Twilight Greenaway, "Can Walmart's food labels make a dent in America's $29bn food waste problem?", The Guardian, June 26, 2016, © Guardian News and Media Limited or its affiliated companies
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Food Waste Has Become A “Platform For Commerce”

June 24, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A growing number of entrepreneurs in the U.S. see profit opportunities in the 40 percent of the food supply that ends up in the trash. “Food waste,” says The New York Times, “is now a platform for commerce.” Among the latest ventures: Back to the Roots (sells mushroom- growing kits using coffee grounds}; EcoScraps (turns food waste into gardening products); Cerplus (links farms with waste produce to wholesalers); Harvest Power (processes organic waste into mulch and fertilizer); Food Cowboy (app connects rejected truckloads of fresh foods to charities}; and Liquid Environmental Solutions (processes waste water and used cooking oil). Some of these companies have been able to bootstrap their enterprises, but others have garnered millions in venture capital cash to get their businesses up and running.
Stephanie Strom, "New Crop of Companies Reaping Profits From Wasted Food", The New York Times, June 24, 2016, © The New York Times Company
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Lush Cosmetics Launches Campaign In Australia To Save Great Barrier Reef

June 24, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Lush Cosmetics partnered with activist group GetUp! to launch a campaign calling for action on climate change. Timed ahead of Australia's federal election on July 2, 2016, the campaign will involve the beauty retailer's 29 stores across the country handing out election cards highlighting major political parties' platforms regarding global warming and protecting the Great Barrier Reef. Protecting the environment is the present generation's responsibility for the coming generations, according to Lush Cosmetics director for Australia and New Zealand, Peta Granger. Granger also said the company, with more than 400 employees and over $36 million in annual sales, was founded by animal and environmental activists.
Dinushi Dias , "Why Lush Cosmetics has launched a federal election campaign with GetUp! to try to save the Great Barrier Reef", SmartCompany, June 24, 2016, © SmartCompany
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Smartphone App That Tracks Food Shelf Life Wins Sustainability Contest

June 22, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A smartphone app designed to reduce global food waste and improve how people consume food has won a contest whose goal is to help launch a new sustainable product or service in the food and beverage industry. According to its creators, the Foodfully app could save consumers as much as $600 a year on groceries by keeping track (from shopping receipts) of food purchases, especially shelf life and spoilage dates. The competition, which received 140 applicants, was sponsored by Net Impact, a global network of “aspiring change agents,” and supported by Campbell Soup Company and General Mills.
Catherine Muriel, "Food Waste App Takes Top Prize in the Forward Food Competition", 3BL Media, June 22, 2016, © 3BL Media, LLC
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British Research Project To Develop New Gels From Surplus Potatoes

June 16, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Several British universities and research institutes will benefit from a $3.7 million grant supporting development of personal care gels, creams and other products from discarded starchy vegetables like potatoes. The food industry throws away millions of tons of vegetables that are unsold for one reason or another each year. Also contributing to the problem are surplus supply and processing waste. The researchers will investigate how nature’s catalysts –  enzymes – can be used to make starch-based gels using nanoscale fibers. The new gels could be used across the pharmaceutical, beauty, home product and food industries. Participating in the research are the University of East Anglia, the John Innes Center, the University of Bath, and the University of Exeter. 
"£2.8 million project to make new types of gel from waste food", News release, University of East Anglia, June 16, 2016, © University of East Anglia
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Home System Turns Organic Waste Into Useable Biogas

June 13, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
An Israeli company is marketing a device that turns food and organic waste – meat, fish, fats, oils, dairy, used kitty litter, etc. – into clean cooking gas. The easily assembled HomeBiogas sells for less than a thousand dollars, runs without electricity, and creates a byproduct that can be used as fertilizer. The daily gas output from the bacteria-driven digester is equivalent to about six kilowatt-hours of energy – enough gas for about three hours of cooking. It can also be used for lighting, or for heating water using devices that work with low-pressure biogas.
Elyse Wanshel, "This Machine Turns Your Food Waste Into Gas For Cooking", The Huffington Post, June 13, 2016, © TheHuffingtonPost.com, Inc.
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Kimberly-Clark Professional Expands Recycling Program Coverage To Industrial And Manufacturing Segments

June 9, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Kimberly-Clark Professional said it has expanded its RightCycle by Kimberly-Clark Professional recycling program to accept participants from the manufacturing and industrial sectors. Launched in 2011, the recycling program allows participants to recycle non-hazardous waste, such as nitrile gloves and apparel, instead of sending them to landfills. Having diverted more than 300 tones of waste from landfills, the program sends recyclables to recyclers in the US, turning them into nitrile powder and pellets used to create ecology-friendly consumer products and durable goods.
"Kimberly-Clark Professional Expands RightCycle, the First Large-Scale Recycling Program for Non-Hazardous Lab and Cleanroom Waste, to Industrial Environments", Kimberly-Clark, June 09, 2016, © KCWW
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Euromonitor Starts Tracking Ethical Food Labeling, A Nearly $1 Trillion Industry

June 8, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Euromonitor has responded to the social media-driven trend toward ethical consumerism by creating a 26-market database, Passport Ethical Labels, that quantifies packaged food and beverage product labels by three categories: people/values, the environment and sustainability, and animal welfare. Consumers, of course, have no intention of stopping consuming because of concerns about the Indonesian rainforest, slaughter houses, chicken sheds, pig farms, dubious food additives, etc. They still want convenience, but also a less guilty conscience. The newest data show that the global market for ethical labels on branded packaged foods, soft drinks and hot drinks totaled $794 billion in 2015, three-quarters of which comprised environment- and /sustainability-related labels having mostly to do with recycling.
Simone Baroke , "Passport Ethical Labels – Key Findings", Blog, Euromonitor , June 08, 2016, © Euromonitor International
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Beiersdorf Says 18 Percent Of 2015 Sales Came From Sustainably Made Products

June 7, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Beiersdorf said 18 percent of its sales in 2015 came from products with significantly reduced impact on the environment. Data from the company's Sustainability Review 2015 showed Beiersdorf aims to continue offering high-quality, safe, and reliable products made from materials from environment-friendly sources. Based on the company's sustainability targets for 2020, Beiersdorf seeks to reduce carbon dioxide emission by 30 percent.
"Sustainability Review 2015", Beiersdorf, June 07, 2016, © Beiersdorf
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Cleancult Launches Kickstarter Campaign To Raise Funds For Planned Box Subscription Service For Green Household Cleaning Products

June 7, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Cleancult, a startup seeking to offer a subscription service for environment-friendly and safe household cleaning products, has launched a fund-raising campaign on Kickstarter. Seeking to raise $10,000, the company plans to start its business by offering laundry detergents. Company founder Ryan Lupberger said, Cleancult will provide consumers with a detergent that removes 94 percent of stains without toxins.
Olivia Vanni, "'Cleancult' Is A New Box Subscription for Toxin-Free Cleaning Products", BostInno, June 07, 2016, © STREETWISE MEDIA
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Kroger Makes It To Newsweek's List Of Top 500 Environment-Friendly Companies

June 7, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Retailer Kroger Co. said it has been included in the Newsweek Green Rankings list of the top 500 environment-friendly companies for 2016. Kroger's sustainability efforts include reducing its carbon footprint by reducing overall energy consumption in all of its stores by 35 percent. Also, the retailer is nearing the EPA's Zero Waste threshold of 90 percent. Kroger, a founding partner of Feeding America, supports organizations that bring food and hope to hungry people. During the last eight years, Kroger has created more than 74,000 new jobs.
"Kroger Recognized in Newsweek's 2016 Green Rankings", Kroger , June 07, 2016, © The Kroger Company
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New Partnership Will Help Determine Levels Of Food Waste In Countries

June 6, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Though 800 million people globally are malnourished, about a third of all food – approximately $940 billion worth each year – is lost as it moves from farm (or factory) to table. To help end this trend, a group of international organizations has partnered to launch a Food Loss and Waste Standard that will help businesses, governments, and other organizations to measure the problem. Organizations involved in the initiative include the World Resources Institute, the Consumer Goods Forum, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), and others. The basic goal of the program is to help companies and countries find out how much food is lost or wasted, and where it occurs within their borders, operations or supply chains.
"First-Ever Global Standard to Measure Food Loss and Waste Introduced by International Partnership", News release, World Resources Institute, June 06, 2016, © World Resources Institute
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Food Retailers, Manufacturers Back New Food Waste Reporting Protocol

June 6, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Swiss food manufacturer Nestle and British retail grocery chain Tesco have announced support for new international reporting requirements for food loss and waste. A Nestle representative called the reporting standards “a massive, global step in fighting food loss and waste.” The World Resources Institute (WRI) said food loss and waste globally costs $940 billion a year; food loss generates about eight percent of global greenhouse gas emissions. Using the standard, countries and companies will be able to quantify how much food is lost and wasted and where. They will also be able to report on it credibly and consistently. Other major companies backing the standard individually, or through the Consumer Goods Forum, include Australia’s Woolworths and Unilever.
John Shepherd, "Nestle, Tesco back new world standard on food loss and waste", Just-Food, June 06, 2016, © just-food.com
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Restaurant Chains Claim Reductions In Antibiotics Use, But Who Really Knows?

June 4, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Several large fast-food restaurant chains have announced voluntary “free from antibiotics” policies thanks to pressure from consumers and consumer advocacy groups. But with limited information from the companies themselves, no agreed-upon standards, and no government regulation, how does a consumer really know whether his pizza is antibiotics-free? Each company is implementing the policy in its own way, some following, for example, USDA guidelines for reducing drug use in livestock production except in case of illness. But one fact remains clear: there's little evidence that agricultural use of antibiotics is dropping. The FDA reported in December that antibiotics sales for farm animals was up 22 percent from 2009 to 2014. International use is expected to rise 66 percent by 2030.
Deena Shanker, "Can You Really Know If That Pizza Is Antibiotic-Free?", Bloomberg, June 04, 2016, © Bloomberg L.P.
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Kao Starts Using FSC-Certified Corrugated Carton, The First In Japan To Do So

June 3, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Kao Group said it has started using Forest Stewardship Council-certified corrugated cartons for packaging. With the company starting to purchase FSC corrugated cartons in March 2016, Kao aims to have about 50 percent of corrugated cartons it is using certified by the organization. Kao Environment Statement seeks to purchase only recycled paper or sustainably sourced paper and pulp for use in consumer products, packaging, and office paper. Also, when the company uses virgin pulp, Kao pledges to zero deforestation at the source.
"Kao is the first company in Japan to Use FSC®-Certified (Forest Certification) Corrugated Carton", Kao Corp., June 03, 2016, © Kao Corp.
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Clever Technologies Turn Food Waste Into Eco-Fashion

June 2, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Turning food waste into fashion isn’t going to solve the huge global leftover food problem. But it will help a little, while teaching consumers about the importance of recycling, upcycling, and reusing food. Among the basic food-based clothing innovations being reported are: coffee grounds turned into fabric (Ecoalf’s process turns processed coffee grounds into a nano-powder that can be spun with polyester polymers into fabric); salmon skin into leather (Tidal Vision’s tanning process results in belts, wallets, and handbags); and coconut ash mixed with polyester makes coat insulation (Nau’s coconut-based fiber will possibly replace goose down and other clothing insulation).
Katherine Martinko, "How leftover foods are being turned into green fashion", TreeHugger, June 02, 2016, © Narrative Content Group
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Beauty And Personal Care Companies Create Ingredients As Good As Those From Nature

June 1, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Manufacturers of beauty and personal care products are developing more nature-identical materials that can be used as ingredients in place of natural extracts, botanicals, and actives. These efforts are driven by concern about sustainability and depletion of natural resources, the need for reliable consistency, price, and other related factors. Among the more popular ingredients is the Erasa XEP-30 Extreme Line Lifting and Rejuvenation Concentrate, introduced in 2015 and winner of the 2016 Breakthrough Face Product award from totalbeauty.com, and created by BioMimetics Laboratories chief scientist Jules Zecchino. Helped by available extraction processes capable of creating new materials that uses and improves those available from nature, manufacturers create nature-identical ingredients, including antioxidants and preservatives with various applications, such as anti-aging skincare and haircare.
Christine Esposito, "Virtual Reality", Household And Personal Products Industry, June 01, 2016, © Rodman Media
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Floating Farm Could Be Harbinger Of The Future Of Agriculture

June 1, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
A Dutch building developer who specializes in floating structures is constructing a variation on the urban farm concept. The floating dairy farm will house 60 cows producing milk, cheese, cream, butter, and yogurt, and will demonstrate how self-sufficiency can be achieved on rivers and in harbors. Peter van Wingerden, director of Beladon, hopes to someday build fully floating, self-sustaining cities that will provide their own essential elements like clean water, energy, food, and waste management. The Floating Farm is expected to be finished in  Rotterdam's Merwe harbor in January 2017.
Adele Peters, "The World's First Floating Urban Dairy Farm Will Be Built In Rotterdam", Fast Company, June 01, 2016, © Mansueto Ventures, LLC
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Pizza Hut To Remove Chemical Preservatives From Menu Items

May 31, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Responding to concerns voiced by consumers regarding artificial ingredients in their foods, Pizza Hut says it will eliminate even more questionable additives from its menu items. The company a year ago removed artificial flavors and colors from its pizzas. Now it says it will remove the antioxidants BHA and BHT (and other preservatives) from its meats and cheeses, as well as antibiotics from chicken, by next March. Though removal of GMO ingredients from foods has garnered more headlines (thanks largely to a Vermont law taking effect next month), other companies, including Kellogg and General Mills, have announced plans to remove BHA and BHT from their products.
Karen Robinson-Jacobs, "Plano-based Pizza Hut to ditch artificial preservatives as industry faces skeptical public", The Dallas Morning News, May 31, 2016, © The Dallas Morning News Inc.
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Colgate's Factories Here And Overseas Reflect Sustainability Commitment

May 30, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
As part of its Sustainability Strategy, Colgate has built a factory in Ho Chi Minh city (Vietnam) that is certified under the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) program. According to USGBC, the new factory, which makes toothbrushes, will help Vietnam move toward a more sustainable future. The company recently opened a LEED-certified plant in India that manufactures oral care products. Colgate has 10 LEED-certified facilities in the U.S. and abroad, with 11 more underway whose goal is to reduce use of natural resources and curb harmful greenhouse gas emissions. The program calls for eventually reducing deforestation to zero and promoting use of renewable energy.
Mary Grauerholz, "Colgate-Palmolive strives to become a leader in sustainable building practices around the world.", Green Standard, May 30, 2016, © U.S. Green Building Council
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U.S. Turns Its Attention To Innovative Ways To Reduce Food Waste

May 28, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Retail grocers and entrepreneurs in the U.S. are following the lead of their colleagues in Europe who are endeavoring to reduce food waste by making it okay to buy “ugly” foods. Whole Foods Market and Giant Eagle, for example, have introduced malformed carrots, oranges with protruding navels, and blemished pomegranates in their stores to get customers used to the idea that ugly produce is edible and need not be dumped in the trash. Meanwhile, entrepreneurs are developing business ideas that focus on ways to recover edible but unappealing produce and distribute it to the needy. One company is working on ways to turn fresh, but unappealing, fish into healthful jerky. Food activist Danielle Nierenberg says, “A lot of the innovation is going to come from companies, and that is exciting,”
Dave Armon, "Gnarly Fruit Paves Way for Ugly Fish Jerky in Battle to Curb Food Waste", Blog, 3BL Media, May 28, 2016, © 3BL MEDIA, LLC
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Discounted “Wonky” Veggies Win Over British Grocery Shoppers

May 27, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
British supermarkets, including Tesco and Asda, are reporting greater acceptance of so-called “wonky” (ugly or misshapen) fruits and vegetables, thanks to significant discounting. Tesco launched an initiative called Perfectly Imperfect in March with misshapen potatoes and parsnips, extended it to apples and strawberries in May, and hopes to broaden the range to 15 to 20 produce lines.  A Tesco executive called the program a huge success, with sales having grown tenfold. Sales of Perfectly Imperfect strawberries account for 10-15 percent of total category sales. Besides increasing sales, the initiative has also led to increased crop utilization and reduced food waste. Tesco is now taking 95 percent of strawberries from its suppliers, up from 85 percent. Apple utilization is at 97 percent.
Ian Quinn et al., "Sales of new Perfectly Imperfect fruit & veg are 'flying' at Tesco", The Grocer, May 27, 2016, © William Reed Business Media Ltd
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Shiseido Creates Group To Manage Sustainable Development Efforts In EMEA Region

May 27, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Japanese beauty brand Shiseido announced its has created a group tasked with overseeing sustainable developments for its business operations in the Europe, Middle East, and Africa region. Part of the company's Vision 2020 corporate strategy started by company president and CEO Masahiko Uotani, the group will be managed by Daniel Guillermin, Shiseido Group EMEA head of sustainable development.
Jennifer Weil , "Shiseido Creates Body for Sustainable Development in EMEA Region", Women's Wear Daily, May 27, 2016, © Fairchild Fashion Media
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Wearable Food Waste May Help Solve A Global Problem

May 26, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Researchers in Hong Kong are working on a way to turn discarded food into clothing. The core of the technology is the use of a lactic acid fermentation to transform starchy food waste with high sugar content into spun fibers. The researchers say the fiber is not yet strong enough to make textiles out of it, but further study should solve that problem. Meanwhile, scientists around the globe are creating their own food-waste-to-clothing solutions: orange peels into textile fibers; “leather” from pineapple leaves; fabrics from fermented milk and wine; and even food waste buttons.
"Use the power of innovation to reduce food waste", South China Morning Post, May 26, 2016, © South China Morning Post Publishers Ltd.
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Aldi’s Cage-Free Egg Decision Proves Controversial In Australia

May 25, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Despite criticism from egg producers in Australia, German retail grocery chain Aldi will spend the next ten years transitioning to cage-free eggs. Consumer pressure pushed the company to take the complicated, expensive and hopefully sustainable step. But egg producers ironically call the move a “slap in the face” to consumers who may not want to spend premium prices for cage-free eggs. Aldi’s decision will “hurt Australian egg farmers and can’t be justified on the basis of either science or consumer behavior.” One egg industry representative said Australian research shows that hen stress levels are similar across cage, barn and free range farming environments. Animal husbandry practices “have the greatest influence on hen welfare.”
"Aldi to phase out cage eggs", Food and Drinks Business (AU), May 25, 2016, © Yaffa
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Food Industry Is “Remarkably Sensitive” To Shifts In Consumer Preferences

May 25, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Market researcher Packaged Facts reports that the food industry is doing whatever it can to accommodate growing consumer demand for “free-from” foods. Five broad food avoidance concerns, or “constituencies,” were identified. These include allergies and intolerances, health and wellbeing, and humanitarian, environmental, and religious concerns. The result has been the creation and marketing of sugar-free, fat-free, low-carbohydrate, gluten-free, no artificial colors, flavors, antibiotics, preservatives or other questionable ingredients. Cage-free eggs is another facet of the trend. Some people in the avant garde of food reformulation may think changes are coming at a glacier pace, but “in fact, the industry is remarkably sensitive to shifts in consumer demands."
"Packaged Facts: Food Industry Committed to Meeting Consumer Demand for "Free-From" Foods", News release, Packaged Facts, May 25, 2016, © Packaged Facts
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Walmart Recognizes Henkel's Achievements In Ingredient Transparency

May 25, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Henkel received recognition for its sustainability efforts in Walmart's 2016 Global Responsibility Report. Walmart highlighted Henkel's achievements in terms of ingredient transparency and empowering consumers with enhanced information on ingredients. Henkel has been one of Walmart's key partners since the retailer announced its environmental goals in 2005.
"Henkel recognized under the topic of ‘Supplier Leadership’", Henkel, May 25, 2016, © Henkel Corporation
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Grocery Chain Tests “Smart” Cameras In Fridges To Reduce Over-Buying

May 23, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
British retail grocery chain Sainsbury’s is pilot testing an interesting an interesting solution to food loss in the home. The company has selected 20 families in Derbyshire to try Bosch fridge-freezers fitted out with “smart” cameras that tell a consumer’s smartphone which foods they already have in the fridge at home. The six-month test, part of the company’s “Waste Less, Save More” initiative, is to determine whether the smart cameras will keep consumers from over-buying – and potentially wasting – food. The top five over-bought products, according to Sainsbury’s, are fruits, vegetables, milk, cheese and eggs.
"‘Smart’ fridge cameras allow Sainsbury’s shoppers to reduce waste", The Scotsman, May 23, 2016, © Johnston Publishing Ltd.
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Lawsuit Accuses Kellogg Of Marketing “Whole Grain” Crackers Made With White Flour

May 19, 2016: 12:00 AM EST
Consumer watchdog Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has filed a federal lawsuit accusing Kellogg of allegedly falsely advertising a variety of its Cheez-It snack crackers as made with “Whole Grain.” CSPI said the crackers are actually made from refined white flour, not whole grain as claimed on the package. Whole Grain Cheez-It crackers “are nearly identical nutritionally to the Original version of Cheez-Its, providing a negligible one gram of fiber,” CSPI said. The plaintiffs are asking the court for injunctive relief to prevent Kellogg “from continuing to engage in deceptive marketing of Cheez-Its.”
"Lawsuit Targets Cheez-It “Whole Grain” Crackers, Which are Mostly Made of Refined White Flour", News release, Center for Science in the Public Interest, May 19, 2016, © Center for Science in the Public Interest
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