Stanford University's Dara Silverstein, sustainable food manager, knows her salmon. She buys more than 27,000 pounds of it a year to feed the hungry scholars at the prestigious California school. As her title implies, sustainable practices are important. Working with a family fishery in Alaska, Silverstein buys fresh salmon in season and frozen salmon the rest of the year. "If people really want fresh salmon, wild Alaska salmon is only available in summer," she says. "So to support a sustainable fishery like we do, you have to buy frozen salmon. Frozen does not equal bad.” What about farmed salmon? “Some farmed fish is OK, and there are places that do it in a sustainable way, but I think it’s really an inefficient system,” Silverstein says. “Sometimes they are feeding them fish meal and there can be issues with the genetics, diseases and a lot of waste.” Do it in a sustainable way," she says, "but I think it’s really an inefficient system.” Bottom line? Check out your sources and learn more about their sustainability practices.
Eggs Prices Take Flight
Thanks to the Avian flu sweeping across 16 states, egg prices are now soaring, with wholesale prices for whole eggs up some 38% in a month, CNBC reports. Liquid egg prices have nearly doubled, Urner Barry, a commodities firm, says. So far, nearly 30 million chickens and turkey have perished due to Avian flu, and that number is expected to increase.
Mondelez is shutting down nine of its 16 manufacturing lines at its Chicago bakery facility and is considering adding four new high-tech lines there or adding them instead to its newer Mexican bakery, The Chicago Tribune reports. The decision is expected to lead to 300 layoffs at the plant made famous as the home of Oreo and Chips Ahoy cookies. The company already shuttered a Philadelphia facility and is spending $130 million to update baking facilities in New Jersey and Virginia. Mondelez, formerly Kraft Foods, says that the majority of its business is now from Europe as American consumers are cutting back on snacks.
Nestle To Recycle Water
Nestle's Modesto, CA, plant manufacturers more than 630 million gallons of condensed milk a year for consumer and food service use. Now the company says it plans to recycle the water it extracts from the condensed product for use in the plant, eventually cutting its municipal water use to near zero, a company spokesperson says. The $7 million project is expected to be complete by 2017 and comes as a result of California's ongoing water crisis due to a prolonged drought and rising water prices, The Modesto Bee reports.
Blue Bell Creamery Shuts Operations
Reeling from a recent listeria outbreak, Blue Bell has laid off some 2,800 workers at its production and distribution centers in 10 states with no mention of a reopening date, Today in Food reports. Company president Paul Kruse called the action "an agonizing decision" affecting a truly great workforce. The Listeria scare was the first recall the company suffered in its 108-year history. Twelve people are known to have contracted the bacteria from Blue Bell products, and three have died, the CDC says.
Lamb Weston Launches Tracing Your Fries Initiative
Talk about a gutsy move. Lamb Weston, a producer of potato products, recently launched a campaign for its customers to trace the origins of Lamb Weston products right back to the farm, Smartbrief reports. The campaign is based on a recent survey that the majority of consumers want to know where their food comes from. In this instance customers simply need to enter. A 20-digit code from the bag or box of its products to learn all the details. Pure genius.
Top Food Trends From The 2015 NRA Show
What are the top trends being talked up at the NRA Show in Chicago?
1. No GMO foods
2. Power Gyros packed with meats and veggies
3. Craft beers and spirits, including vodka distilled from hemp and Mead
4. Better tasting gluten-free foods
5. Frozen imported pastries from Europe
Senators Hope To Delay Label Law
Citing that restaurants across the nation are ill-prepared for the new labeling law, 32 U.S. Senators are petitioning the FDA to withhold the enactment of the new labeling law until after the upcoming Presidential elections are past. The current regulation is set to go into effect in December, thehill.com reports.
Restaurants Go With Small Plating
While the trend has been around a while, small plating in restaurants has taken a new, creative turn: chefs are using such items as Mason jars, mini crockpots, and small ramekins to serve a variety of dishes that customers love for their nostalgic factor and kitchen managers like it because it helps them better manage portions and control costs.
Danny Meyers To Open New Restaurant
Danny Meyers of Shake Shack fame is opening a new 40,000 sf restaurant hall at the Related Cos. 10 Hudson Yards development on the West Side of Manhattan. The yet-to-be named restaurant will be one of several eateries occupying 100,000 sf of the one million sf mall in lower Manhattan.
The Colonel Is Back
For its 75th anniversary, KFC is reintroducing a new generation to Colonel Sanders, the company's founder, who passed away 35 years ago at the age of 90. The "new" Colonel is none other than Saturday Night Live alum Darrell Hammond, who adds a little humor to the new rebranding campaign. "In my line of work I've been able to do impressions of a lot of interesting people. But Colonel Sanders? He was a really fascinating guy," Hammond told ADWEEK.