food industry

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Neighbors Sue Pork Giant That 'Sprays Feces, Urine'

Smithfield Foods' farm is under fire

(Newser) - A low-cost, high-volume livestock-rearing method pioneered in North Carolina came under fire Tuesday as jurors began hearing a lawsuit from neighbors who say the world's largest pork corporation is endangering their health and making their lives miserable. The legal action is the first in a string of federal lawsuits... More »

'Cauliflower Rice' Is Very Upsetting to Actual Rice

The mighty rice lobby is demanding the cauliflower people stop calling it 'rice'

(Newser) - "Only rice is rice, and calling 'riced vegetables' 'rice' is misleading and confusing to consumers," begins the latest agricultural throwdown, this one courtesy of the president of USA Rice. The lobbying group is understandably upset by what Quartz terms the "popularization of 'cauliflower rice'... More »

It's Not 'Lab Meat,' It's 'Clean Food'

Industry behind lab-grown foods is lauding their efficiency and sustainability

(Newser) - If meat grown by scientists using stem cells in a lab doesn't sound terribly appetizing, consider the perks: It's more sustainable, it doesn't involve killing any animals, and it uses less energy than growing real animals to butcher. So the industry behind so-called "in vitro" meat... More »

Tyson Wins Hillshire Farms Sweepstakes—for $7.7B

Almost $1B more than rival Pilgrim's Pride offered

(Newser) - Tyson Foods has won the bidding war to buy Hillshire Brands, topping an offer from rival Pilgrim's Pride by almost a billion dollars, the Wall Street Journal reports. Tyson will pay $63 a share in cash for Hillshire, which makes Jimmy Dean sausages and Ball Park franks, among other... More »

Food Companies Sell 6.4T Fewer Calories Than in 2007

Study finds industry exceeds pledge to reduce counts

(Newser) - Some of the nation's largest food companies have cut daily calorie counts by an average of 78 per person, a new study says, more than four times the amount the industry pledged to slash by next year. The study sponsored by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation found that between... More »

Quick, Name the Surgeon General ... Didn't Think So

Mark Bittman on why we need a strong one again

(Newser) - With Americans' terrible diets responsible for millions of premature deaths along with soaring health-care costs, the country needs a strong surgeon general more than ever to fight "the obfuscation and confusion sown by Big Food," writes Mark Bittman in the New York Times . But, sadly, the essential job... More »

Animal Cruelty Video Shows Abuse at Major Dairy Farm

Idaho operation supplies Burger King, other chains

(Newser) - Yet another tough-to-stomach video is out detailing the abuse of animals in the fast-food industry, this time at a huge dairy farm in Idaho. The video by Mercy for Animals shows workers at Bettencourt Dairies punching, kicking, dragging, and stomping on cows, reports the Miami Herald . Because Burger King gets... More »

Food Prices Could Jump 4% in 2013

And losses could hit $12B

(Newser) - For the average consumer, the effects of this year's brutal drought are still months away, but they are coming, as many food prices next year are expected to jump by as much as 4%, reports Reuters . Already corn and soy prices are going up , which is expected to lead... More »

90% of Food Workers Basically Starving

New study finds lousy conditions for workers

(Newser) - Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to be line cooks. The food industry is a pretty terrible one to work in, a new study from the Food Chain Workers Alliance argues, with nearly nine out of every 10 workers earning less than a "livable wage." The... More »

Scientists Crack Tomato Genome

Which should allow producers to breed tastier ones

(Newser) - What makes a tomato a tomato? Researchers now know all 35,000 genes that make up the answer to that question, Reuters reports. An international team of scientists has fully mapped the order, orientation, types, and relative position of all those genes inside both a domesticated and a wild tomato... More »

Your New Grocery Store: Dollar General?

Chain hopes offering groceries will draw in more customers

(Newser) - When you think dollar stores, you probably think of Tiki statues, fragile toys, and cheap kitchen implements. But Dollar General is trying to change all that, the Wall Street Journal reports, by taking a real shot at the grocery market. Over the next year, the discount chain intends to open... More »

Farmers Fret as USDA Shuts Hundreds of Offices

Critics worry move will compromise public safety

(Newser) - The US Department of Agriculture announced plans to close 259 offices, labs, and other facilities yesterday, in a move that will save the agency $150 million per year. But the announcement has some farmers and food safety experts worried, the AP reports. "They wiped out the entire Midwest,"... More »

Farmers: EPA Going Overboard on Dioxins

Toxic chemical found in most meat, dairy

(Newser) - The EPA is set to release guidelines this month warning the public not to ingest too much of a class of poisonous chemicals. Sound reasonable? Well, farmers and the food industry beg to differ, because the chemicals in question are dioxins—a ubiquitous byproduct of paper, metal, and cement production... More »

Restaurant Workers Sue Mario Batali Over Pay

Lawsuit claims management withheld tips

(Newser) - Celebrity chef Mario Batali faces a lawsuit from 27 employees of his renowned Del Posto restaurant in New York City, the Wall Street Journal reports. The staff claims that tip money and extra income from banquets were never paid. Specifically, the suit claims that Del Posto improperly pooled workers' tips... More »

Town That Gave Us the Drive-Thru Bans Them

Calif. town battles traffic, obesity

(Newser) - The California town that gave the world its first drive-thru restaurant has banned the construction of new ones for at least 9 months. Officials in Baldwin Park, birthplace of the cult classic In-N-Out Burger chain that revolutionized fast food, say the move will both ease traffic congestion and help tackle... More »

FDA Urged to Take On Food Fraud

That snapper you're eating probably isn't snapper

(Newser) - Mislabeling and diluting of foodstuffs has reached epidemic levels during the economic downturn and the FDA isn't doing enough to combat the problem, industry groups say. Experts believe at least 5% of the American food is supply is mislabeled and say regulators should step up efforts to stop instances of... More »

Food Industry's Loveliest Ladies

Padma Lakshmi tops list; Food Network faves score

(Newser) - Of a piece with the site’s list of the hottest men in food , Slashfood presents its top women:
  • Padma Lakshmi: “Calm, collected, and poised, the host of Bravo’s Top Chef is possibly the hottest woman on television,” John Devore writes.
  • Giada De Laurentiis: The Food Network
... More »

Kraft Closes in on Cadbury Deal

British miffed as $19B takeover deal sealed

(Newser) - Kraft has won a sweet victory in its 4-month-long battle to take over Cadbury, according to sources who expect a deal to be announced today, barring last-minute complications. The British chocolate maker's board has agreed to accept Kraft's improved offer of roughly $19 billion in cash and stock in a... More »

General Mills Slashes Sugar in Kids' Cereals

Cut affects Cocoa Puffs, Lucky Charms, 8 other breakfast treats

(Newser) - General Mills is bowing to consumer pressure and cutting the amount of sugar in all of its cereals aimed at children, the third time in three years the food giant has taken its sweet breakfast treats down a notch. The goal this time is bring the amount of sugar per... More »

Pollan's 'Rules to Eat By' Hard to Swallow

'Wise ancestors' Pollan advises emulating would have loved a Whopper

(Newser) - Food industry critic Michael Pollan is compiling a book of "Rules to Eat By"—like "If you're not hungry enough to eat an apple, you're not hungry"—but his advice that you rely on your ancestors' wisdom for your eating decisions tastes a little off to... More »

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