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Newsletter 17 August 2011

Your Newsletter

 17 August 2011 | Your weekly food industry news and insights….
SmartStuff:   “Trust your own instinct. Your mistakes might as well be your own, instead of someone else’s.”  Billy Wilder, American filmmaker

Bidfood Solutions
Editor’s Stuff: Is this the start of a biscuit battle in SA?
I WONDER if the folks at AVI’s National Brands are feeling a little frayed/afraid right now? AVI’s dominance of SA’s R3-billion biscuit market (put as high as 70%) is heading for a major shakedown, with the large-scale play now being planned by two major competitors, Pioneer Foods and newcomer, IFFCO from the UAE.

Pioneer's HanekomPioneer recently opened its new R150-m biscuit plant in Clayville, Jo’burg, and intends to take at least 10% market share, if MD Andre Hanekom has his way. A new Pioneer biscuit brand will be unwrapped later this year to replace its existing Kwality one – and what a good idea, too; the mere spelling smacks of anything but quality.

Lauren SiebritsMost interesting, perhaps, is the entry into our market by IFFCO from the UAE. It has set up a local subsidiary, IFFCO SA, and has even managed to poach as its CEO the snacking wonder-woman, Lauren Siebrits, ex boss at Simba and the first female to head up the PepsiCo International business unit. IFFCO brands have been long on Shoprite shelves, but already a major expansion programme into the retail mainstream is underway.


IFFCO’s big bucks and quality-value brands, driven by Siebrits’ brains (and ‘balls’) makes for a formidable combination. Let the cookie crusades begin!

Enjoy this week’s read!

Brenda Neall: publisher & editor

 FOODStuff SA is a hub for food industry recruitment… Click here!

Kerry Ingredients

 Local Food Industry News

Appletiser has added 350ml and 1.25l PET bottle options to its popular sparkling fruit juice range. This new pack offering is intended to “revolutionise the brand by improving its convenience and value offering and enabling more South Africans to enjoy more Appletiser, more often”, says the company. Read more

Cape Town’s Orley Foods, the leading chocolate and confectionery ingredients company and maker of the legendary Orley Whip, has been awarded ISO 22000 certification. Read more

George-based dairy ingredients producer, Lakeland Food Company, has been honoured by the town’s business community as ‘Business Person of 2011’ – that accolade may be in the singular but it was awarded jointly to Lakeland’s business partners, Des Kiely and Tracey Simons.


 Food Trends, NPD and Marketing
The ‘miniature’ trend has real staying power in the sweet treats category, according to market researcher The Hartman Group. In the latest of a new series of webinars exploring food and beverage trends, Hartman’s director of culinary insights Melissa Abbott said bite-size snacks and desserts were seen by many consumers as a form of guilt-free indulgence without compromising on taste.
Smell by scentThe smell of commerce: How companies use scents to sell their products
Does the subtle hint of coffee make you more likely to buy a cup? Does the aroma of piña colada cause parents to linger in toy shops? Using scents to sell is moving mainstream…
Discussing the impact of private label brands
Private labels are rejected before they are even tried, mostly because of poor perceptions on quality and a lack of trust from the potential buyer. For national brands, trust is established post purchase once consumers have tried and experienced the brand; therefore rejection tends to mostly occur after trial, the opposite of private label brands…
    Private label brands were in focus at a recent meeting hosted in South Africa by Caxton Magazines and the Newspaper Advertising Bureau (NAB). 
Six social marketing truths executives must understand
The arrival of sites like Facebook, Twitter and most recently Google+ have changed the way societies communicate. While many brand marketers have incorporated social into their plans, many still wrestle with questions like how much, to what degree, how to execute, and what is next? Simply “being social” is not enough. Here are six truths marketing executives need to know about this phenomenon.

 Verni Superflor

 Soaring Food Prices
If we don’t reverse the current trend in food prices, we’ve got until August 2013 before social unrest sweeps the planet, say complexity theorists…
Cargill blames government hoarding for global food price surge
Cargill chief Greg Page, who runs the largest US agricultural company, has a good idea whom to blame for the global surge in food prices at the end of 2010: governments. He said government hoarding was the biggest contributor to the rise in prices, which had soared 15 percent from October through January and pushed 44 million people into poverty, according to the World Bank.

Savannah Fine Chemicals

 Food Science, Sustainability and Ingredients

Introducing odour-induced saltiness enhancement – a technique whereby tinkering with its smell could help make salt-reduced processed food more acceptable to consumers on both taste and health grounds.

Traditionally, peanut allergy has always been considered the most “dangerous” food allergy. However, tree nuts can cause a wide spectrum of allergic reactions which may be equally or even more severe than allergies to peanuts. This report by FACTS, SA’s well-known food allergy consulting and testing service run by Dr Harris Steinman. Read more

Sanitising the outside of produce may not be enough to remove harmful food pathogens, according to a Purdue University study that has demonstrated that salmonella and E coli can live inside plant tissues.

Natural food preservatives are being much researched, in part because consumers are demanding fewer synthetic chemical food preservatives. Now, a team led by researchers from Washington State University, Pullman, has found, contrary to expectations, that a group of garlic-derived organosulfur compounds has greater antimicrobial activity than garlic-derived phenolic compounds. Read more

Kerry shares meat solutions with peers
Kerry Ingredients & Flavours is taking the lid off its R&D work to reveal some of the meat solutions it has in the pipeline for clean label, salt and fat reduction, coatings developments and taste enhancement.
Microwave kit to ‘revolutionise’ food manufacturing
Longer shelf-life and improved nutritional qualities and flavours are the benefits claimed for a “revolutionary” new cooking and pasteurisation process from Advanced Microwave Technologies. The process, known as microwave volumetric heating, delivers microwave energy into the centre of food and beverages.
Past ‘techno disasters’ matter, think tank warns nanotech supporters
Industry must learn crucial communication lessons from past “techno disasters” such as GM and asbestos to ensure greater consumer acceptance of new technologies such as nanotechnology, says scientific think tank Matter.

 Packaging Stuff

Hong Kong-based Mint Urban Technologies has introduced an aromatic coffee lid for take-away cups which it claims improves the taste of coffee when drinking through the lid. The aroma is not “mint,” as the company’s name suggests, but an aromatic material formulated to enhance the bouquet of the coffee.

Report calls for rethink on flexible packaging waste management
Tough technological challenges and a lack of infrastructure mean that the vast majority of flexible packaging is almost impossible to recycle, said industry analysts Envicura, who has called for the development of novel materials and new waste management methods to tackle the issue.

 Weird, Whacky and Wonderful Stuff
Lack of initiative seems to be a modern malaise, especially in South Africa with its unfortunate history of the personal disempowerment of the mass of its people. But not for Lwando Dabata (left), a factory line operator at specialist chocolate and confectionery ingredients company, Orley Foods, in Cape Town’s Montague Gardens. Read more

Home beer-brewing is sort of like writing a novel – although you might like the idea of having done it, the thought of all the work involved in doing it can be off-putting. Enter the WilliamsWarn brewing machine…

If you believed the mountains of vitriol dumped on America’s processed food industry by its critics, you’d swear that the country’s supmarkets were laden with nothing but toxic, life-threatening junk calories. A growing advocacy movement is underway to convince urban Americans to get closer to their food source, to discover, grow, buy and eat ‘real’ food. One of these initiatives is quirky and witty: the Truck Farm.

Food bites… Food fight: why are we so passionate about what enters our bodies?

“Why is that there can be such divergent views about basically the same body of evidence regarding organic and GM food?….
   “Much has been written lately about the Theory of Argumentative Reasoning, the idea that human reason developed not as a tool for figuring out the truth but as a way to advance the fitness and survival of those who could win arguments and have things go their way.
   “Winning arguments, then, is not about something as superficial as the truth. It’s a much more important battle about whose truth wins. Which may help explain why when the facts don’t work, we disparage those with whom we disagree, challenging their veracity, their honesty (funding), their intelligence.”
David Ropeik, Harvard Extension School and author of ‘How Risky Is It, Really? Why Our Fears Don’t Always Match the Facts‘. Read more

 [A profoundly interesting read on the cultural constructs behind our beliefs, food and otherwise. Ed]

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Published every Friday (except this August) 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!


Brenda NeallFOODStuff SA is published and edited by Brenda Neall.


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