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Sprouts safety, gluten-free, humane conditions for pigs – news to February 19 2012

After several recent outbreaks of sickness from unsafe sprouts, uncooked sprouts have been removed from the menus of a number of food chains. Gluten-free has become one of the fastest growing nutritional movements in America. USA and Europe will recognize each other’s organic standards as equivalent. GMO seed companies have pulled out of Europe as Europe is not a viable market for genetically modified crops. McDonalds has followed a number of other large pork producers in announcing to stop using gestation crates for sows in the future.

Removing sprouts for safety

Removing alfalfa sprouts from sandwich restaurant Feb-19-12 QSR
Erbert and Gerbert’s Sandwich Shops have made the decision to remove alfalfa sprouts from their entire menu in all locations across the system. The decision to remove sprouts was prompted based on recent multi-state outbreaks of serious health issues associated with sprouts.

Restaurant chain permanently dropping sprouts from menu Feb-20-12 Food Safety News
Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwich franchise owners and customers are being told the chain is permanently dropping sprouts from the menu. Jimmy John’s restaurants are currently associated with a five-state outbreak of the rare O26 strain of E. coli.   It is the fifth outbreak involving sprouts traced back to Jimmy John’s franchises since 2008.

Gluten-free – trend and pizza

Gluten-free as a nutritional movement Feb-14-12 Food Processing
Nearly 21 million people have Celiac disease or some form of sensitivity to gluten. This new dietary awareness leaves a large opportunity in the marketplace as a gluten-free diet has quickly become one of the fastest growing nutritional movements in America according to the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA).

Retail store gluten-free pizza Feb-16-12 QSR
From the pizza crust to the cheese, all components of the pizza will be 100 percent gluten-free. In addition, the facility the pizzas will be produced in will be gluten-free. In addition, the Chef Anthony Russo brand will be offering a shelf stable pre-made gluten-free pizza crust for those interested in trying out their own pizza recipe.

Organic and GMO

USA and Europe recognition of organic standards Feb-15-12 NPR
The U.S. and the European Union are announcing that they will soon treat each other’s organic standards as equivalent.

Monsanto, BASF pull sales of GMO plants from Europe Feb-15-12 New Hope 360
The world’s largest seed and chemical companies—Monsanto and BASF—made announcements that Europe is not a viable market for genetically modified crops. They may be planning to concentrate their efforts even more strongly on the United States

Other – humane conditions for pigs, online menu for food-allergic school kids

No more gestation crates for McDonalds pigs Feb-13-12 Huff Post Food
In a joint statement with The Humane Society of the United States, McDonalds announced its intention to get out of the business of gestation crates for breeding sows in the United States. This announcement comes two months after Smithfield Foods, the largest pork producer in the world, recommitted to its pledge that it would phase out crates in its company-owned operations by 2017, and about a week after Hormel announced it would do the same, too.

Low-calorie cocktails Feb-13-12 Restaurant Management
Traditional drinks like the cosmopolitan, margarita and martini are being reinvented at restaurants all over the country. The goal for most is to maintain or improve upon flavor while cutting calories by half or more—ending up anywhere in the 99 to 250 calorie range.

Online menu helps food-allergic kids Feb-15-12 Education News Colorado
Parents of a child with severe food allergies register their child with the district’s Food & Nutrition Services. When they do, they’re given an identifying code that’s used to log into the district’s weekly menu website, allowing parents to see what will be served at each school each day and the exact ingredients in each menu item.

Restaurants debut fish dishes for Lent Feb-17-12 Nation’s Restaurant News
With Lent starting next Wednesday, a number of restaurant chains are introducing limited-time offers for customers avoiding meat during the 40-day period leading up to Easter.

Low demand for low-salt cheese Feb-17-12 Food Navigator-USA
While cheese makers remain committed to salt reduction, demand for low-sodium cheese remains pretty lackluster, according to the National Dairy Council (NDC).

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