April 24, 2018

Today's News Summary:

Leading the news is word that Restaurant Brands International Inc’s first-quarter profit topped analysts’ estimates on Tuesday, vindicating the company’s strategy of cheaper meals and more breakfast options at the Burger King chain. The company, which is striving to better compete with McDonald’s Corp and Yum Brands Inc’s KFC, said same-store sales at Burger King rose 3.8 percent in the three months ended March 31, under its new accounting standards.

In other news, dozens of Mountaire Farm employees watched and waited as crews worked around the clock to contain a fire that broke out at Mountaire's Chicken Plant in Selbyville. Officials say when they arrived at the plant around 3:40 Monday afternoon, fire and heavy black smoke were coming out of the building. More than eight different fire departments responded to the blaze, and were quickly able to get the fire under control.

Elsewhere, uncertainty in global markets – due to disease risk, trade disputes, and feed availability – will create opportunities and challenges for the pork industry in the coming months. That was the key message of the latest global Pork Quarterly, published by RaboResearch, part of Rabobank. In a press release, it was explained that impacts of the China/US trade dispute will distort markets and weigh on pork values in North America, while creating some potential upside for producers in Asia, Europe, and South America.

Walmart Inc. is reportedly close to finalizing a deal to buy a majority stake in India’s leading e-commerce company for at least $12 billion and may complete the agreement in the next two weeks, according to people familiar with the matter. All the major investors in Flipkart Online Services Pvt are now on board with the Walmart purchase, after an earlier debate over an Amazon.com Inc. acquisition, said the people, asking not to be named because the matter is private.

Meanwhile, Walmart US retail corporation said is ready to use Blockchain technology in its live food business, Bloomberg reported April 23. Yiannas said that Blockchain was able to shorten the time it took to track produce from six days to two seconds. Walmart is getting suppliers to put food on a Blockchain, which it says will reduce waste, as well as improve contamination management and transparency.

Finally, scientists looking for alternatives to antibiotics to keep poultry healthy will have a state-of-the-art facility for their work, thanks to a $150,000 donation from Cargill, as part of the company’s focus on safely, responsibly and sustainably producing food. The 4,200-square foot facility will be located on the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture farm north of the Fayetteville campus. The facility will be named the Cargill Poultry Research Center.

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By Linda Lindner


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