International

Farm work for welfare trial labelled a failure, demands for agriculture visa stepped up

[4 December/ABC] Influential lobby groups have declared a program to encourage welfare recipients to work on farms a failure, putting new pressure on the Morrison Government to create a dedicated agriculture visa to fix labour shortages in the rural sector. The $27.5m Seasonal Work Incentives Trial has only found placements for 333 people with six...

Soybeans Lead Gains in Agriculture on U.S.-China Trade Truce

[3 December/Bloomberg] The meeting between President Trump and President Xi of China saw an immediate reaction in commodity markets as traders expected to see a re-entry into markets from Chinese purchases as the two leaders deescalated the trade war that has broken out between the two countries.  Soybeans prices led advances among U.S. crop futures...

France tops Food Sustainability Index

[3 December/Food Navigator] The Food Sustainability Index (FSI) ranks countries on food system sustainability. It assesses the sustainability of food systems according to three categories – food loss and waste; sustainable agriculture and nutritional challenges through an environmental, societal and economic prism. For the third year running, France was praised for its regulatory environment that...

Donald Trump signs US-Canada-Mexico trade deal with Justin Trudeau and Enrique Pena Nieto

[2 December/NZ Herald] US President, Donald Trump, used the G20 meeting in Buenos Aires, Argentina, to sign a revised North American trade pact with Justin Trudeau and Enrique Pena Nieto, the leaders of Canada and Mexico.  President Trump declared the deal, which replaces the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), a major victory for workers....

Maxwell House’s labor-focused campaign drives purchase intent, ad awareness, analysis finds

[30 November/Food Dive] Kraft Heinz coffee brand Maxwell House has seen an increase in ad awareness and purchase consideration since launching a campaign over Labour Day weekend that celebrates hard work, a YouGov analysis found. Analysis shows that Maxwell House focusing its marketing messaging on hard work and featuring the American worker are paying off....

Small-scale farmers ‘need climate change backing’

[30 November/Fruitnet] The International Fair Trade Movement has called on the parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) to introduce transparent, fair and binding mechanisms for trade justice in order to achieve climate justice in their negotiations at COP24 conference being held in Poland. More than 500 million small-scale farms provide...

Kraft Heinz agrees to buy paleo mayo and dressing company Primal Kitchen

[29 November/CNBC] Kraft Heinz has confirmed that it plans to buy paleo dressing company Primal Kitchen.  Primal Kitchen makes paleo-friendly products including mayo, avocado oil and dressings. It says its products are without processed or artificial ingredients, added sugars, soybean or canola oils. Like many large food companies, Kraft Heinz is looking for platforms to...

UK sugar tax: GBP154 million raised since introduction

[23 November/Food Navigator] The Soft Drinks Industry Levy, or sugar tax, launched in April in the UK has collected GBP153.8 million during its first seven months in operation. The levy which is charged at two levies, a lower level of 18 pence per 100ml on drinks with 5 grams of more of sugar and a...

Costa launches sustainability initiative

[23 November/Fruitnet] Australian fresh produce group, Costa, announced that it is making sustainable, commercial farming a central element of its business model and practices moving forward to shareholders at its AGM. The initiative will focus the company on working for the long term to progressively improve the yield and quality of its products while simultaneously...

Bayer opens up glyphosate research

[21 November/Fruitnet] Bayer has indicated that it will soon provide safety study summaries relating to its glyphosate product on its transparency platform. The group launched a transparency initiative on 7 December last year with the goal of providing greater transparency to all interested parties around the crop protection safety studies that it performs for regulatory...

Déjà vu: Romaine lettuce is the source of another outbreak

[21 November/Food Dive] The US Centre for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is warning consumers against eating romaine lettuce as it has been linked to a new multi-state outbreak of E.Coli. There have been 32 cases of infection reported across 11 states with 13 people hospitalised as well as 18 cases in the Canadian states...

Tesco’s Derek Sarno partners BOSH! to create ‘vegan Christmas feast’

[21 November/Plant Based News] Tesco’s Director of Plant Based Innovation, Derek Sarno, is working with Vegan influencers BOSH! to host a special Christmas event for Tesco in London on 4 December. Tesco Vegmas is a five course plant based festive feast to provide people with ideas about how to cater for a Vegan or Vegetarian...

FDA and USDA will jointly regulate cell-cultured meat

[19 November/Food Dive] In a joint announcement the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have confirmed that they will be working together to regulate cell-cultured meat, a move that was widely expected after they hosted a joint meeting on potential regulations earlier this year. It is proposed that the...

EU announces push to promote domestic plant protein market

[23 November/Food Navigator] The European Commission has released a report setting out a range of new policies to boost the supply of plant based protein products by European farmers in response to the growing demand for the products from flexitarian eaters (those that are focused on reducing their meat intake). The policies will promote the...

Plasticor changes colour when food is not fit for consumption

[25 November/Dairy Reporter] A novel food wrap product, envisaged during a hackathon focused on Nano and Bio technology solutions at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, has evolved to the point where the team is now looking to raise seed capital through crowdfunding. The wrap is made of biodegradable plastic and it shows whether...

Wool they or won’t they? PETA ask Dorset, UK, village Wool to change name to Vegan Wool

[25 November/NZ Herald] British animal rights activists have asked the Dorset village of Wool to change its name to Vegan Wool. The village received a polite letter from PETA director Elisa Allen asking, via the Wool Parish Council, to change the name to Vegan Wool, offering “cruelty-free” woollen blankets to all 2000 village households if...

Australia’s food and grocery manufacturing sector falls to AUD131 billion, as electricity and drought bite

[26 November/ABC Rural] Sluggish demand, drought and rising electricity costs have resulted in the Australian food and grocery manufacturing sector see its revenue fall by AUD2.7 billion (around 2%) in the 2016/17 year according to the Australian Food and Grocery Council (AFGC). AFGC CEO, Tanya Barden, pointed to the 10.3% reduction in new capital investment...

Shearing contractors call for better workplace conditions amid shearing shortage

[20 November/ABC Rural] Historically New Zealand shearers have flocked to Australian wool sheds in search of higher wages however an increase in pay rates driven by the  has left Australian contractors unable to fill vacancies as the season reaches its peak.  It is the first time that shearers can earn more in New Zealand than...

Plant-based food maker Beyond Meat file for USD100 million IPO

[19 November/Food Dive] Beyond Meat has made preliminary filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission indicating its intention to go public.  The filings, which indicate the company will trade with the ticker BYND, is currently slated to raise USD100 million.  Beyond Meat posted a net loss of USD30.4 million on revenue of USD32.6 million in...

Australian milk supply could drop 7%

[19 November/Otago Daily Times] Dairy Australia are predicting that Australian milk supply could fall as much as 7% in the 2018/19 season which in a worst case scenario could see the national milk pool fall to 8.6 billion litres, a two decade low.  This contrasts starkly with New Zealand milk growth which has grown almost...

Perfect Day partners with ADM to make milk without cows

[16 November/Forbes] Perfect Day, the San Francisco start-up looking to produce milk without cows, has entered into a partnership with Archer Daniel Midland to scale up production of it product.  The cow-free dairy product is produced using a fermentation process to create the same dairy proteins found in cow’s milk.  Perfect Day claims that their...

Quorn opens ‘world’s biggest’ meat alternative production facility

[15 November/Food Navigator] Quorn Foods has opened an expansion to its production site at Billingham in the North East of England which will double the company’s ability to produce Quorn’s core products.  The expansion, part of a GBP150 million investment in the company by ultimate shareholder Nissin Holdings of Japan, has been made in response...

US Food Waste start-ups have raised USD125 million+ in 2018 as grant funding in the space grows 70%

[15 November/AgFunder News] A new report from ReFED, the non-profit organisation dedicated to decreasing the amount of food wasted in the US, shows that start-ups in the food waste mitigation space have raised USD125 million in the first 10 months of 2018, while grant funding from foundations reached USD134 million in the first three quarters...

Sustainability, healthy aging and convenience top Mintel’s 2019 global trends

[14 November/Food Navigator] Market Researchers, Mintel, have released their picks for the mega trends that will shape the food system in 2019.  They suggest that Evergreen Consumption is the emerging sustainability trend as consumers increasingly focus on the entire product lifecycle from farm to retailer to fork to bin and ideally to rebirth as a...