June 20, 2012 |
Multinational food corporations have a growing influence on the health of people around the world, including obesity, and their actions need greater scrutiny, according to an editorial Tuesday in the journal Public Library of Science Medicine. The editorial kicks off the journal's three-week series looking at what it calls “Big Food.” The first articles, and the editorial, criticize not just the food companies but also officials charged with protecting public health. “The big multinational food companies control what people everywhere eat, resulting in a stark and sick irony: one billion people on the planet are hungry while 2 billion are obese or overweight,” the editorial says.
January 14, 2013
In addition to the 3,000 deaths it causes each year, contaminated food is very expensive. The cost of food poisoning in this country comes to $14 billion a year, according to a July 2012 study published in the Journal of Food Protection, including the medical expenses of the 128,000 who are hospitalized annually. That figure does not include the millions of dollars that each food recall costs the company involved, the legal expenses from victims' lawsuits or losses incurred by other companies when consumers hear, for example, about contaminated cantaloupes and then avoid all cantaloupes, including those that are perfectly safe.
December 21, 2012 |
Marketers selling food to children and teens spent 20% less in 2009 than they did in 2006 and are making "modest nutritional improvements" to the products they promote, according to a new government report. Advertisers shelled out nearly $1.8 billion to target consumers ages 2 to 17, down from the $2.1 billion they allocated three years earlier, according to the Federal Trade Commission. But most of the decline came from a switch to online commercials from expensive television spots.
November 28, 1993 |
The office gang isn't the only group putting heat on brown-baggers. Fast-food restaurants and major food companies are also looking to entice the homemade-lunch crowd. Competing for a chunk of the estimated $800-million-a-year prepared-meal market, Stouffer's, StarKist and Oscar Mayer have unveiled prepared meals.
August 9, 1985 |
A revolution--well, perhaps that's too strong a word--has been taking place in the ketchup business. When you went to the grocery store in the old days, you would find the standard 14-ounce glass bottle of regular ketchup. Now you find new-and-improved ketchups, a low-calorie version, numerous sizes and even plastic squeeze bottles. What has happened to this 100-year-old, oh-so-American industry over the last several years?
May 4, 2000 |
Long-dormant U.S. food companies are suddenly being appraised like so much fine wine. An $18.4-billion offer by international food conglomerate Unilever for Bestfoods, with brands including Skippy peanut butter, Hellmann's mayonnaise and Knorrs soups, has rekindled interest in the sleepy U.S. packaged food industry. Investors were so enthusiastic Wednesday at the proposition of a wave of food company takeovers that they bid up the stocks of virtually every well-known U.S. food company.
September 25, 2012 |
BACON AND PORK SHORTAGE "NOW UNAVOIDABLE" A British trade group is predicting a pork and bacon shortage next year , blamed on the drought conditions that hurt the corn and soybean crops this year. [Los Angeles Times] MARKETING TO KIDS: SO HOW IS THE FOOD INDUSTRY DOING? The FTC is revising a 2008 report that looked at how food companies market products to children, expected to be released by the end of 2012 . [ABC News] NO MORE JUNK FOOD AT THE HOSPITAL...
December 5, 2012
Re "Safe peanut butter, and more," Editorial, Nov. 29 As someone who has eaten several brands of peanut butter made at the now-shuttered Sunland Inc. plant in Portales, N.M., I easily could have been one of the 40-plus people sickened by the salmonella-tainted peanut butter the plant sent out. The blame for not fully implementing last year's Food Safety Modernization Act may rest with E. coli conservatives in the Republican Party, so-called...
April 28, 2002 |
Forget dinner. These days most food companies are moving right on to dessert, pumping up the sugar in many of their new products--even diet food--in hopes of attracting new customers and boosting sales of tired brands. Even frozen french fries are getting a chocolate and cinnamon sugar makeover. Sweet sells, judging by the top-selling products of last year.
May 21, 2008 |
If Americans are feeling frustrated about food, who can blame us? It's not just the bugs in the burger or the hormones in Chinese seafood -- or even the skyrocketing prices. It's that most of us feel powerless to fix things. We may be a nation of do-it-yourselfers when it comes to deck repair or tax returns, but even as our industrial food system grows less reliable, our reliance on that system has never been higher. What's to be done? Growing our own isn't a solid option anymore.