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Period: August 1, 2016 to August 15, 2016
Comment & Opinion or Companies, Organizations or Consumers or Controversies & Disputes or Deals, M&A, JVs, Licensing or Earnings Release or Finance, Economics, Tax or Innovation & New Ideas or Legal, Legislation, Regulation, Policy or Market News or Marketing & Advertising or Other or People & Personalities or Press Release or Products & Brands or Research, Studies, Advice or Supply Chain or Trends

E.U. Bans Food Claim “Suitable For Diabetics”

New regulations from the European Union prohibit food manufacturers from labeling products as “diabetic” or “suitable for diabetics.” The U.K. is still under the jurisdiction of the E.U. until it leaves (due to the Brexit vote), at which time the country will need to decide which laws and regulations it will keep. Diabetes U.K. welcomed theban, noting that the labels incorrectly suggested a health benefit for diabetics, though many contain polyols and are not lower in fats or calories than standard products. The organization advises diabetics to check ingredient labels for polyol sweeteners such as sorbitol, maltitol, xylitol, isomalt and mannitol, even if the foods are no longer labeled “suitable for diabetics.” Such products are higher in calories, more expensive, and can act as laxatives.

"‘Suitable For Diabetics’ Labels Off The Shelves From Today", News release, Diabetes UK, July 20, 2016

Meat Producers Angry About Turin’s Embrace Of Veganism

The meat producers of Italy’s Piedmont region are upset with Chiara Appendino, the new mayor of Turin and a major figure in the anti-establishment, populist, environmentalist Five Star Movement (M5S). Appendino has pledged to make vegetarianism and vegan diets a priority in her administration, though meat dishes have formed the foundation of northern Italy’s cuisine for hundreds of years. Details of the mayor’s strategy are few and far between, but observers expect the city to create educational programs in schools to teach students about animal welfare and nutrition. Last year, Italian meat producers fumed over the World Health Organization’s labeling of cured meats such as ham, sausage and salami as carcinogenic, calling it “meat terrorism.”

"Five Star mayor of Turin to Create Italy’s First ‘Vegetarian City’", The Guardian, July 21, 2016

Nestle Launches Initiative Encouraging Innovative Projects In Health, Wellness, Nutrition

Nestlé has launched its Henri@Nestlé open innovation platform to expedite entrepreneurial solutions that respond to social and business challenges, especially in nutrition, health, and wellness. The platform, open to startups worldwide, allows young companies to collaborate with Nestlé teams to tackle projects that “matter both to Nestlé” and millions of customers. The program is designed to streamline innovation, making it faster, more transparent and less bureaucratic. Four new projects are posted on the platform for startups to review and offer their solutions to. Each project will be open for 45 days, after which the Henri@Nestlé teams will review submissions within 30 days and pick five startups to pitch their ideas.

"Open innovation! Henri@Nestlé is live", News release, Nestlé, July 22, 2016

Adding Nuts To Diet Reduces Inflammation That Worsens Chronic Diseases

Inflammation tends to worsen the impact of chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. U.S. researchers report that eating nuts three to five times a week reduces the biomarkers of inflammation and, in turn, the effects of those diseases. Though the researchers aren’t sure which ingredients exactly are responsible for the improvement, peanuts and tree nuts contain magnesium, fiber, L-arginine, antioxidants and unsaturated fatty acids. All are known to protect against inflammation. The study analyzed data from food-frequency questionnaires and plasma biomarkers from 5,013 participants.

"Regular Nut Consumption Linked To Less Inflammation", United Press International, July 29, 2016

New Federal GMO Labeling Law Gives Food Companies A QR Code Option

The new federal GMO labeling bill signed into law recently by Pres. Obama requires food manufacturers to list GMO ingredients either in plain writing, via an FDA-created icon, or through a digitally-readable QR (quick-response) code requiring a smartphone app. The app would link the shopper with more detailed information on GMO ingredients. Food manufacturers are happy about the QR code option. But non-GMO advocates argue that looking up GMO ingredient info on a smartphone is an unwieldy process that shoppers are likely to ignore. Consumer research seems to support the contention: a poll of 1,011 U.S. adults found that 59 percent weren’t likely to use their phones or an in-store scanner to find GMO data. Forty percent said they were likely to do so. Eighty-one percent approved of the push to disclose GMO ingredients on labels.

"Consumer Advocates Wary of Digitally Coded Food Labels", The Wall Street Journal, August 03, 2016

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