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Newsletter 02 March 2012

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DairyPack Tubs

 2 March 2012 | Your weekly food industry news and insights…                                                                 
SmartStuff:   “There’s only one corner of the universe you can be certain of improving, and that’s your own self.”
Aldous Huxley, British writer

Bidfood Solutions
Editor’s Stuff: New labelling regs come into force!

March 1, 2012, was a historic one for the South African food industry – the day when our new labelling legislation, R146, came into effect after a long, often tortuous, gestation of well over 15 years.

With ample time to change labels in accordance with the regulations, manufacturers will face serious repercussions if they do not comply, if not from the Dept of Health due to its policing capacity constraints, then from peers and competitors out in the marketplace.

The legislation ensures consumers are provided with information on ingredients and their nutritional value (albeit not compulsory in all instances) for all food and beverages manufactured, imported and sold in South Africa.

While there is never going to be consensus on something this complex, and important aspects of the regulations are still on the drawing board awaiting their phasing in, R146 as it stands is nonetheless a big step forward in helping consumers to make informed decisions when buying food. It has also put a welcome end to misleading and even outrageous labelling that fanciful markerters have gotten away with in the past. Welcome!

Labelling D-Day: notes from the front

Enjoy this week’s read!


Brenda Neall: publisher & editor
 Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! Many interesting career opportunities are posted up on FOODStuff SA’s Jobs pages! Click here!

Kerry Ingredients

  Local News and Developments

Cape soft drink makers are beginning to fizz. In a market that has long been dominated by Coca-Cola , several Cape Town-based carbonated soft drink manufacturers are finding juicy niches for themselves.

SA’s liquor industry: set for consolidation in face of more competition
Most observers would clink their glasses in agreement that the local liquor industry, though made up of no more than a handful of genuine contenders, is likely to undergo intense consolidation in the next five years, especially in light of increased international competition.
Since the 2009 recession, grape and wine consumers have opted to buy cheaper, leaving producers in a cost-price squeeze with income failing to keep up with rises in production costs, according to a recent study by wine producers’ body, VinPro.
Two South African women have been shortlisted by a leading international research company for its line-up of the world’s most influential figures in wine over the past decade.
Freely available market intelligence and research on food-bev sectors is notoriously hard to come by in this country. Thus, FOODStuff SA wishes to draw attention to this comprehensive report, a four-year overview of SA’s liquor consumption habits, recently published by SAWIS, the wine industry’s information service.

Food fraud is big business, and it has been in the news headlines in SA when it comes to fish substitution, and more recently in late 2011 with the Orion meat saga in Cape Town where the company incurred the outrage of the Muslim community due to alleged fraudulent mislabelling of meat products. Respected consultancy, FACTS, headed by the well-known Dr Harris Steinman, now offers comprehensive DNA-based testing to validate meat species.

KFC is building on its highly successful base in South Africa, where it has 590 restaurants, the sixth highest in the 110 countries in which Yum! operates KFC. Keith Warren (left), KFC Africa’s MD, has a tough task: to take KFC in Africa to the same level of success it has reached in China.
SA retailers upping the private label game
Private labels are taking on a new role in retail, positioning themselves as higher quality products on supermarket shelves, rather than the “low quality’ option they were initially perceived to be. [Good commentary on this pertinent issue. Ed]

Potch University is hosting an international conference and practical training seminar week on extrusion technology applied in food and feed manufacturing in August. It will be held at the Protea Hotel Kruger Gate in Mpumalanga.

 International News and Developments
Nestlé has become the first major confectionery manufacturer in Britain to remove all artificial ingredients from its entire confectionery range.
Müller and Pepsi unite to bring Yanks yoghurt
The Theo Müller company, Germany’s biggest dairy, has announced it was joining forces with Pepsi to sell yoghurt products in the AS. Müller will invest an estimated €150 million with PepsiCo to develop and market milky treats for US consumers. No date has yet been set for when the joint venture’s products will hit supermarket shelves.

The sophisticated food demands of newly affluent consumers in China and other developing nations are likely to cause major change in US farming and food production, Asian food policy and world trade, according to Food 2040, a new study of emerging food trends in Asia by the US Grains Council (USGC).

UK: Going bananas for Fairtrade
Sales of fairly traded products have bucked the trend of decline in the UK retail market to grow by 12% in the last year. The value of Fairtrade products sold through shops reached £1.32bn in 2011, compared to £1.17bn in 2010, according to figures from the Fairtrade Foundation.
‘Rambo root’ offers climate change hope to African farmers
Cassava is “the Rambo of food crops”, and could be the best bet for African farmers threatened by climate change, scientists claim. Cassava is the second most important source of carbohydrate in sub-Saharan African, after maize. It is eaten by about 500 million people every day.

Savannah Fine Chemicals

 Food Trends, Marketing and Innovation

Cherries have long been appreciated for their taste, but growing evidence about their health benefits is now putting them squarely in the frame for ‘superfruit’ status and they are increasingly being used in juices and juice drink blends, reports Innova Market Insights.

How Americans learn to cook, select recipes, plan their meals, purchase their food and share their culinary secrets with others has dramatically changed, according to a new study released last week. Called Clicks & Cravings: The Impact of Social Technology on Food Culture, the study finds social/digital media is replacing Mom as the go-to culinary source of knowledge for many people.

Senior nutrition has become the key driver of innovation in the food and health market with consumers over 50 already making up the most important group of buyers for most health brands, says New Nutrition Business.

Ten consumer trends wreaking havoc on brands
It’s no secret that consumer behaviour is at the core of any major marketer’s decision-making process.  The challenge, of course, is accurately determining how consumers are responding to the societal changes and influences that ultimately impact their buying decisions.
Study: More companies to sell direct-to-consumer
Given their comfort with social media channels, more consumer goods companies will experiment with a direct-to-consumer selling model, finds new research from the Economist Intelligence Unit. 

Red Bull is set to launch Red Bull Total Zero in April, the company’s first line extension since the debut of its (now discontinued) energy shot in 2009. Aiming to tap into the growing market of calorie-averse consumers, the new product boasts a zero calorie/carb/sugar formulation and a “new twist” on the classic Red Bull flavour.

Greek yoghurt stirs up the US food industry
More on the extraordinary success of Greek yoghurt…. Its sudden rise in fortune is one of the most stunning in recent history, with sales rising 100% in each of the last three years. Now, even Ben & Jerry’s is getting in on the act. [When will we see the equivalent here? Ed] 

 Verni Superflor

 Food Science, Safety and Ingredients Stuff
‘Breathable’ caffeine shot just the beginning, says AeroShot inventor
Dr David Edwards, the brilliant Harvard inventor of the AeroShot, foresees huge scope for the technology for the likes of vitamin, supplements, confections and many other things including products related to oral healthcare. “Where the goal is to deliver taste, or flavour, with minimum calories (essentially zero), breathable products are wonderfully useful,” he says.

What is THAT ingredient?
The food industry is investing heavily in a growing body of specialised ingredients to address the more urgent needs of food availability, nutritional content, and the inherent demands of distribution and food safety.  But the scientific names of many of these materials can have a chilling effect on the ignorant and become a stumbling block in the future of the ingredient. 
Nine steps to enviro-friendly packaging
Improving the sustainability and environ-friendliness of packaging is a hot topic for packaging professionals – and it has progressed from the latest buzzword to an everyday part of their vocabulary. Still, there is room for basic knowledge and guidance, especially for those companies lacking large packaging staffs or sustainability departments.

 Health and Nutrition Stuff

The anti-gluten movement has exploded in recent years as reports of celiac disease, gluten allergies and general sensitivities have risen. Genuine intolerance to gluten does exist, but experts say that this is not the cause of many gastric or intestinal problems and that more research is needed.

More flavourful alternatives to white sugar abound, but are they any healthier for you? Here’s a guide to what’s actually in your sweetener of choice.

Is sugar the new tobacco? Maybe not
In a recent issue of Nature (Feb 2), researchers wrote a commentary on sugar and its effects on health. They cited research suggesting that sugar had an “association” with a rise in non-communicable diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease. They feel that sugar should be regulated, much the same way that alcohol and tobacco are, and offered suggestions on ways to do that.
Eat your broccoli: Another mechanism discovered by which sulforaphane prevents cancer
Researchers in the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University have discovered yet another reason why the “sulforaphane”compound in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables is so good for you.
Study finds nutritional quality of food declining
According to a recent Duke study, the nutritional quality of branded foods has decreased over the past 20 years since nutrition facts were required on food products.

 Weird, Whacky and Wonderful Stuff
Pigging out in SA
Not long ago few South Africans knew the difference between pancetta and prosciutto. Now small-shop, artisan charcutiers are popping up all over the place.

Italian chefs tell world how to make correct bolognese

While the dish has been a staple for millions of diners around the world for decades, Italian gourmands claim the original recipe has become so corrupted it is in urgent need of culinary rescue. 

 Food bites… “Buy small South African business” campaign

“The hope is – that as South African consumers, we become less seduced by big brands and their advertising illusion and rather start an active support of local entrepreneurs and small business.

We can talk until we’re blue in the face about how government should be offering tax breaks, support, less red tape and all that good stuff to entrepreneurs, but the fact is that buying the goods that entrepreneurs sell is the only thing that’ll really drive this economy forward….

… for South Africa to prosper, it’s not the outdated notion of creating jobs that’ll do it – it’s the creation and support of a thriving entrepreneurial infrastructure. One where South African brands are exported to Europe and the US for a change – rather than the other way around.

The key to this prosperity is however not more workshops and talking about how we need small business – it’s about getting off our asses and finding products and services to buy from entrepreneurs and then telling others about the ones you really like.

Conscience Consumerism – one where you make active and informed purchasing decisions about what and from whom you are buying from – is the answer.

So our marketing and business prediction of the biggest emerging trend in South Africa in 2012 – is that we being to Buy Small South African Business. We keep money circulating within our communities and actively go out of our way to source, support and sing about great local small business.

It takes a bit of work and effort but our country’s future depends on the success of the ones that take the leap and start their own thing. They’re not going to stay in business unless they can do business with you.

If you’re reading this – make Buy Small SA Business your mission in 2012. It’s a revolution worth supporting.”

DSM Quality for Life
QPro International

Swift Micro Labs

Par Excellance
Professional Career Services
The HR Company
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Brenda NeallPublished every Friday (except for this January) as part of, this newsletter is a cherry-picking, agglomerating service for all food and beverage industrialists. It aims to be topical, insightful, provocative, intelligent… fast, fresh and full of additives!
FOODStuff SA, stuff about FMCG food-bev manufacture from farm gate to retail shelf, is published and edited by Brenda Neall. You can contact her at:

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