May 25, 2018

Today's News Summary:

Leading the headlines today is a focus on how the global beef complex is looking strong. Production is up, consumption is up, and prices are favorable. But is there more to this than meets the eye? RaboResearch's latest Beef Quarterly report examines the outlook for the global beef sector.

In other news, Cargill announced that Mike Robach, Global Vice President of Food Safety, Quality and Regulatory (FSQR), will be retiring on Aug. 1, after nearly 15 years with Cargill. Post retirement, Robach will continue his involvement with GFSI as Chairman of the Board through 2020 and will continue to speak to food safety, quality and regulatory issues across the industry. Sean Leighton, who has served as a food safety and quality leader at Cargill since 2017, will assume the role of Global Vice President of FSQR upon Robach's retirement.

Loyal fans of McDonald's breakfast can now celebrate early morning meetings, as the fast-food giant recently announced plans to introduce a new catering service, beginning at first in Orlando, Florida. The restaurant chain is using Orlando as a testing ground before plans to expand to other cities.

Some executive appointments to announce include SpartanNash Company announced that Douglas A. Hacker has been elected Lead Independent Director by a unanimous vote of the board’s independent directors, succeeding Timothy O’Donovan, who, along with Mickey Foret, retired from the board.

Meanwhile, a new president has been unveiled at poultry and prepared foods supplier Moy Park succeeding Janet McCollum, who has led the business since 2014. Pilgrim's Pride, which acquired Moy Park for $1.3bn last year, has appointed Chris Kirke to the role. Kirke, who most recently led the US division of Greencore Group, brings more than 26 years of food industry experience, operational expertise, and a record of customer engagement and business transformation in the UK and the US to Moy Park.

Finally today, our weekly retail column reports that of the $1.5 billion in spending on meat and seafood purchases for Memorial Day, as reported by WalletHub, grocers are offering numerous discounts as they take advantage of one of the biggest grilling occasions of the year. Let’s take a look at how 2018 holiday protein features compare to Memorial Day pricing a year ago:
Burgers are undoubtedly one of the top favorites for Memorial Day grilling. And this year, consumers will find ad prices on ground beef to be lower in many cases. 80% lean ground beef is featured at $3.05 per lb. on average, down nearly 18% from Memorial Day week last year. Leaner varieties are also lower year over year, with 93% lean averaging $4.22, down from $5.00 per lb. in 2017.

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By Linda Lindner

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