June 22, 2017




Today's News Summary:

Today's news opens reporting that a Brazilian judge stopped Brazilian meatpacker JBS, which is embroiled in the country’s latest scandal, from selling $300m of its assets to competitor Minerva. The argument, Reuters reported, is that the sale could interfere with a corruption investigation. The company said in a brief statement that it “will file the appropriate appeals..

In other news, Tyson Foods has sent a shipment of beef to China, making it the second meatpacker with operations in Nebraska to say it has done so under new trade rules. The company shipped the meat last week, a Tyson spokeswoman told The World-Herald on Wednesday. Tyson’s Lexington, Nebraska, plant is one of four U.S. meat processing locations approved to send beef to China under the rules.

Elsewhere, a lawyer for the American Broadcasting Corp. introduced a series of internal company emails from Beef Products Inc. on Wednesday that showed increasing concern by 2011 about the use of “pink slime” to describe the company’s signature product. BPI hired a crisis public relations firm in the spring of 2011 after a popular food show host referred to BPI’s Lean Finely Textured Beef as “pink slime,” and by June of that year the PR firm was recommending the production of videos to “combat the negative portrayal” of the company’s use of ammonia gas to kill illness-causing bacteria in its beef.

Ground Round® Grill & Bar is expanding their location footprint from nine to eleven U.S. States, and opened their newest restaurant in Rutland, Vermont in late May. The Rutland location was a conversion of a former Ponderosa Steakhouse, and the first of five newly signed franchises gearing up to open under the Ground Round brand over the next few years.

The German supermarket chain Lidl just opened its first US stores last week, and it's already dominating America's largest grocer, Walmart, on prices. Lidl is about 9% cheaper than Walmart, according to a price check on a basket of 20 items by Jefferies analysts. The price check also revealed that Lidl was 3% cheaper than its German rival Aldi and 16% cheaper than Food Lion.

Finally: today, a historical feat is taking place, one that will wow space and fried chicken aficionados alike: a Kentucky Fried Chicken sandwich is traveling to the edge of space aboard a balloon. The fried chicken will float in the upper atmosphere for a few days, before traveling back to Earth at a speed of 2,000 feet per minute.


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By Linda Lindner

llindner@foodmarket.com


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