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He who hesitates is a damned fool.
Mae West

Leading Off  
Scientists 'teleport' lemonade by sending flavor and color online
"We can customise flavors according to individual preferences, share flavors remotely or invent new flavors digitally," says lead scientist Dr Nimesha Ranasinghe
- Scientists have developed a way of 'teleporting' lemonade by digitally sending the flavour and colour from one internet user to another - and the technology could be used to tackle the double burden of over and under nutrition, they say..... Led by Dr Nimesha Ranasinghe, a team of scientists at the National University of Singapore's Interactive and Digital Media Institute and the Georgia Institute of Technology have found a way to do so, developing a protocol for teleporting lemonade - also known as digitally sharing the flavour experience of a glass of lemonade among remote individuals. Read.

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- Ample Hills Creamery launches Star Wars Last Jedi Ice Cream
- Chobani Grows Business in 'Silicon Valley of Food'
- Empire Kosher Poultry Recalls Chicken Products
Millennial Consumers: Understanding Key Trends Driving Consumer Behaviors
PR Newswire (press release) - The millennial generation has been a much maligned one in terms of how the rest of society perceives it. However, the reality is very different from the perceived differences between it and the previous generations. Millennials want much of the same things in life; they haven't changed that dramatically from other ages of people and still have the same basic needs and life goals. However, they do have unique circumstances that they have evolved into, such as the widespread use of technology allowing people to be online at all times, reduced disposable incomes and underemployment compared to previous generations and better education on lifestyle, health and ethics. Many of these factors have led to all kinds of unusual trends in the business world as companies adjust and try to maneuver to cater for any drop off in sales to young people. Sometimes though, many of the new products and changes we see are solving a modern problem that millennials have, rather than being something that millennials actually want. Fundamentally millennials want the same things in life and in many situations minor tweaks to products and brands can prevent millennials leaving companies behind. Read.

Food Court Follies: Misled-By-Maple Class Action Against Quaker Oats Preempted
- In a series of recent suits against Quaker Oats Company, plaintiffs' lawyers took a shot at imposing controls on oatmeal-product labeling that went beyond what federal rules required. Perhaps they thought the Central District of California would give them a pass, or that they could convince the court through some legal slight-of-hand. Judge Philip S. Gutierrez, who is presiding over the consolidated class actions, wasn't buying it, however. On October 10, 2017, he dismissed the plaintiffs' claims as preempted by federal law. In re Quaker Oats Maple & Brown Sugar Instant Oatmeal Litigation. Read.
Around the Net    
Report: Amazon accounts for 18% of online food and beverage business
Food Dive - Amazon will account for an estimated 18% of online food and beverage sales, according to a press release from market research firm Packaged Facts. Walmart has the second-highest share in the market, with 9% of sales. Despite its overall sales dominance, Amazon struggles with selling fresh foods online, with its AmazonFresh service accounting for less than 5% of sales from online-only grocers. Even after the e-tailer's acquisition of Whole Foods, competing online retailers have an opportunity to distinguish themselves from Amazon through their fresh assortment, according to Packaged Facts. Read.
- Undercover video shows dairy farm worker kicking cows
Beverage Industry News & Trends       
Holiday Food, Beverage Blitz Includes (We're So Sorry) Pepsi Salted Caramel - PepsiCo on Thursday announced a slew of holiday-themed food and beverages that will either satisfy consumers' sweet tooth or leave them lurching for some Tums. Or maybe both at the same time. The limited-time products include Pepsi Salted Caramel, which the brand describes as an indulgent drink that "blends the refreshing taste of cola with a delicious caramel finish." Mtn Dew gets into the holiday act with a "Holiday Brew" variety that combines its flagship green Mtn Dew flavor with its Mtn Dew Code Red variety. But wait, there's more, including Izze Cranberry Spice. Read.
Companies, Categories  & Brands    
Four Loko is growing - and launching its first TV ad
Crain's Chicago Business - A few years ago it was questionable that Four Loko would survive, let alone have money to invest in new products and marketing as it confronted harsh scrutiny from health advocates. But seven years after its highly publicized run-in with regulators, the fruity boozy brand is in growth mode, not just in the U.S., but across the globe..... The TV ad won't get significant airplay; for now it is slated to run only on Viceland... But "if this is successful and goes the way we want, we will definitely look at other channels." Read.
Monster debuts espresso drinks to put jolt in lineup
Press-Enterprise - Monster Beverage Corp. is launching a pair of espresso beverages to give a jolt to its line of canned coffee drinks. Espresso Monster comes in 8.4-ounce cans that combine Italian elegance with the violence of Monster Energy's clawmark logo. It comes in two flavors: Espresso and Cream and Vanilla Espresso. The drinks include three shots of espresso blended with European milk and Monster's energy blend, according to the Monster Energy website. Read.
PepsiCo: Is zein the glycerin replacement PepsiCo is looking for?
Food Dive - PepsiCo is searching for a more clean-label alternative to glycerin, which is described in its ingredient glossary list as "a carrier/median used in manufacturing of flavors." The deadline for submitting ideas is December 29..... Robert Zeif from Flo Chemical Corporation came forward with a potential solution to PepsiCo's dilemma, according to Food Navigator. He asserted that zein -- a water-insoluble protein physically extracted from corn gluten -- can form odorless, tasteless, clear, hard and almost invisible edible films on food and other products and may be the answer. Read.
Foodservice Industry /News & Trends    
Why Panera's CEO Stepped Down
Fortune - During his more than 30 years in the food business, Panera CEO Ron Shaich (left) has focused his attention on big picture issues that extend beyond the company, including healthy eating and food access. Now he's stepping down as CEO of the fast casual restaurant company--in large part to focus on a problem that extends beyond the restaurant realm: what Shaich says is short-term thinking in capital markets and the national debate. "People used to own companies," he told Fortune. "Today they rent stocks." He added that with pressure from activists, "the life of a public company CEO is measured in weeks and months. How is that productive?" Read.
Wendy's to offer delivery in 2500 restaurants
Meat & Poultry - By year end, The Wendy's Co. expects to offer delivery in 2,500 restaurants after early results in test markets produced "some significantly higher checks," said Todd A. Penegor, president and CEO. The hamburger chain has partnered with food delivery service DoorDash as it treads into the tricky yet increasingly crowded battlefield of fast-food delivery. Read.
- What's Fueling the Fast Casual Boom
Research, Studies & Surveys    
Could Caffeine Be Affecting Your Sugar Cravings? Cornell Research Says Yes
Cornell Daily Sun - If you like to order a doughnut with your morning coffee, Cornell researchers would advise you to think twice before you make that decision. A new study published by the Cornell Department of Food Science has identified a link between consumption of coffee and sweet-taste perception. Prof. Robin Dando, food science, collaborated with Ezen Choo, Ph.D. '17, and Benjamin Picket '18 to publish the study in August..... "The caffeine, we believe, is causing sweet-taste perception to decrease, so when you are not able to taste the sweetness as well, that may drive one to crave sweets or want to eat a cookie or donut with their coffee," Choo said. Read.
World Report    
Saudi Arabia: Coca Cola Ad Featuring Saudi Arabian Women Driving Enrages Many
Gears Of Biz - Oppressed women finally got the right to drive in Saudi Arabia -- and Coca-Cola is calling shotgun. The beverage giant was under fire this week after releasing a politically insensitive ad that suggested that Coke was in the front seat for change in the repressive Middle Eastern kingdom, which announced only this September that women could get behind the wheel. The ad started off well enough, with a doting Saudi father smiling as he hands his daughter the keys to his luxury car. The teen initially struggles to maneuver the vehicle, but the father remains reasonably calm -- a universal image of passenger-seat anxiety. And then the ad goes off the rails. Read.

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