News

  • 14 Sep
    US – Ruling on cranberry health claims

    US – Ruling on cranberry health claims

    The US Food and Drug Administration announced recently in a letter of enforcement discretion that it does not intend to object to the use of certain qualified health claims regarding consuming certain cranberry products and a reduced risk of recurrent urinary tract infection (UTI) in healthy women.

    The FDA responded to a health claim petition submitted on behalf of Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc. The petition requested that the FDA authorize a health claim regarding the relationship between the consumption of cranberry products and the reduced risk of recurrent urinary tract infection (UTI) in healthy women. A health claim characterizes the relationship between a substance and a disease or health-related condition.

    After reviewing the petition and other evidence related to the proposed health claim, the FDA determined that the scientific evidence supporting the claim did not meet the ‘significant scientific agreement’ standard required for an authorized health claim, and the petitioner agreed to have the petition evaluated as a qualified health claim petition.

    Based on the FDA’s review, the agency concluded that there is limited and inconsistent credible scientific evidence to support a qualified health claim for the consumption of cranberry juice beverages and limited credible scientific evidence to support a qualified health claim for the consumption of cranberry dietary supplements and a reduced risk of recurrent UTI in healthy women. Specifically, the FDA intends to exercise its enforcement discretion regarding claims for the association between consumption of cranberry juice beverages containing at least 27% cranberry juice (most commercially available cranberry cocktails contain this amount) and cranberry dietary supplements containing at least 500 milligrams (mg) of cranberry fruit powder (100% fruit) and a reduced risk of recurrent UTI. The claims do not include other conventional foods or food products made from or containing cranberries, such as dried cranberries or cranberry sauce.

    The following qualified health claims are included in the FDA’s letter of enforcement discretion:

    For cranberry juice beverages
    • “Limited and inconsistent scientific evidence shows that by consuming one serving (8 oz) each day of a cranberry juice beverage, healthy women who have had a urinary tract infection (UTI) may reduce their risk of recurrent UTI.”
    • “Consuming one serving (8 oz) each day of a cranberry juice beverage may help reduce the risk of recurrent urinary tract infection (UTI) in healthy women. FDA has concluded that the scientific evidence supporting this claim is limited and inconsistent.”
    • “Consuming one serving (8 oz) each day of [this identified cranberry juice beverage] may help reduce the risk of recurrent urinary tract infection (UTI) in healthy women. FDA has concluded that the scientific evidence supporting this claim is limited and inconsistent.”
    For More Information FDA

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 14 Sep
    Global – PepsiCo pilots invisible digital watermark

    Global – PepsiCo pilots invisible digital watermark

    PepsiCo is trialling products encoded with invisible digital watermarks for more effective recycling, say the company. The technology is seen as something that will revolutionise mechanical sorting. The beverage giant and other packaging stakeholders are evaluating how to industrialize this solution for a more streamlined waste stream in the EU. They note that watermarks can be used in consumer engagement, supply chain visibility and retail operations.

    “This technology has the potential to make life simpler for consumers because they will not have to separate their packaging and worry about which plastic polymer is which. Instead, through this trial, our product packaging will be encoded with these invisible digital watermarks, which contain information about the manufacturer, product, material type and whether the packaging is food safe,” Gareth Callan, PepsiCo’s Holy Grail Project Lead commented. “When scanned by a high resolution camera on a waste sorting line, this information helps to sort the packaging into the right stream – meaning more high quality material can be recycled, more efficiently.”

    The project ‘HolyGrail 2.0’ is steered by PepsiCo together with more than 85 companies and organizations, led by the European Brands Association (AIM). The consortium aims to launch an industrial pilot to prove the viability of digital watermarks technologies. FoodIngredientsFirst

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 14 Sep
    Iran – Over USD38m worth of juice exported in four months

    Iran – Over USD38m worth of juice exported in four months

    Iran exported nearly 48,000 tonnes of fruit juice valued at USD38.107 million to other countries in the first four months of the current Iranian calendar year (March 20-July 21), the spokesman of the Islamic Republic of Iran Customs Administration (IRICA) announced.

    As reported by IRNA, the exported products included fruit juices, mixtures of juice with vegetables, fruit extracts, fruit juice essential oils, non-alcoholic beverages, concentrated fruit juices, citrus juices including oranges, grapefruits, grape juice, apple juice, and pineapple juice, according to Ruhollah Latifi.

    More than 35 countries were the destination for the Iranian juice exports, including Germany, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Maldives, Australia, Canada, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Turkey, Pakistan, New Zealand, Russia, Norway, Turkey, and Kuwait.

    According to Latifi, Pakistan with more than USD9.665 million worth of imports stood in the first place among the top export destinations, followed by Turkey with more USD6.525 million, and Afghanistan with USD6.151 million. As reported, Iran also imported 2,111 tonnes of the mentioned products worth over USD2.101 million during the said four months.

    Turkey, Brazil, Belgium, UAE, Spain, Thailand, India, and Italy were the main exporters to Iran in the mentioned period. Thailand was the top juice exporter to Iran with 1,007 tonnes of pineapple juice and condensed pineapple juice worth USD2.106 sent to the Islamic country. TehranTimes

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 14 Sep
    US – OJ sales holding up well

    US – OJ sales holding up well

    According to the Florida Department of Citrus (FDOC), sales of 100% orange juice continue to show promising results. In the 4-week period ending Aug. 1, average year-over-year sales of total OJ increased 21% with 32.64 million equivalent gallons sold, per the latest Nielsen retail sales report. Sales of not-from-concentrate (NFC) OJ increased 27% for the period.

    Additionally, total OJ sales for the season beginning October 2019 are up by 12%. The increase in volume movement season-to-date is roughly equivalent to about 7 million grower boxes. The increase in NFC volume sold at retail captured by Nielsen is roughly equivalent to 4.3 million grower boxes.

    Total grapefruit juice sales were up by 4% for the season.

    In July, the FDOC launched its 2020-21 e-commerce campaign to drive sales of 100% orange juice through online retailers, with a shift to focus specifically on NFC OJ. To date, the campaign has driven more than USD1.06 million in attributed sales and 41.3 million impressions at a return on ad spend of USD5.19.

    In other FDOC news, Woman’s World and VeryWell Health published articles highlighting the FDOC-funded heart health study that showed 100% orange juice and hesperidin may help to lower blood pressure. Further promotion of the study and the benefits of hesperidin are ongoing. Source: Florida Department of Citrus & Citrus Industry Magazine

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 13 Jul
    US – New study shows that children and adults who consumed 100% orange juice had higher-quality diets with more bioactive flavonoids and no negative effects on body weight

    US – New study shows that children and adults who consumed 100% orange juice had higher-quality diets with more bioactive flavonoids and no negative effects on body weight

    A new population based study published in Frontiers in Nutrition reports that the consumption of 100% orange juice was associated with multiple dietary and health benefits for children and adults.  Orange juice consumers had higher quality diets, higher intakes of key nutrients, including bioactive flavonoids, and lower intake of added sugars.  There were no negative effects on body weight.

     

    Dietary data for almost 16,000 children and adults (>2 years of age) came from the nationally representative 2013-2016 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES). The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Washington and Albert Einstein College of Medicine and was funded by the Florida Department of Citrus.

    Orange juice consumers had diets with significantly higher amounts of vitamin C, potassium, calcium, and vitamin D (adults), when compared to non-consumers. No difference in dietary fibre intakes was observed, suggesting that 100% orange juice did not displace any fibre from the diet. Notably, orange juice consumers had diets with significantly less added sugars when compared to non-consumers.

    Focusing on the intakes of bioactive compounds from plants, the study found that orange juice consumers had significantly higher intakes of flavanones and total flavonoids (children), as compared to non-consumers. The flavanone, hesperidin, is provided in the diet almost exclusively by oranges and orange juice. Hesperidin may have antioxidant properties and help promote cardiovascular and brain health.  For children, 100% orange juice may be especially important as a key source of healthful bioactives since their diets do not typically include fermented black tea, the principal source of flavonoids in the American diet.

    Orange juice provides key nutrients, contributes to total fruit intake and may also serve as a marker of a healthier diet overall. For both children and adults, 100% orange juice consumers had higher-quality diets, measured using the USDA Healthy Eating Index 2015, which also tracks the consumption of grains, fruit, and vegetables, and the Nutrient Rich Food Index.

    “National data support the inclusion of 100% orange juice as part of an overall healthy diet for both children and adults.  We show that orange juice consumption was associated with better diets, less added sugar, and did not affect body weight” said Dr Adam Drewnowski, Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Washington and principal investigator on this study.  FloridaCitrus

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 13 Jul
    US – Frozen juice market sees growth beyond pandemic buying

    US – Frozen juice market sees growth beyond pandemic buying

    Old Orchard Brands, in the US reports seeing a renewed consumer interest in the frozen juice category, which has experienced triple-digit sales growth amid COVID-19 pandemic buying, according to data from Information Resources Inc. This information indicates consumers in the US are buying frozen juices at the highest rate seen in years.

    The reversal of trends marks a major change in buying habits, contradicting what the category has seen during the past two decades of steady declines. As states reopen and shopping behaviour patterns continue to shift, sustained double-digit sales increases in frozen juice concentrates suggest longer-term stabilization and revitalization of the category, the company says.  “While we have seen a tremendous spike in frozen juice sales over the past 12 weeks, we are optimistic that these levels will remain elevated as we move forward,” said Kevin Miller, Old Orchard vice president of marketing, in a statement. “We understand much of the initial category growth is a result of consumers’ ‘panic buying’, but the numbers have remained strong as stay-at-home orders have lifted, and restrictions have loosened. This leads us to believe that the frozen juice category, among others, has been reshaped by new consumer purchasing habits.”BevIndustry

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 13 Jul
    Brazil – FCOJ exports to EU increase, dip in exports to US short term as COVID-19 affects demand

    Brazil – FCOJ exports to EU increase, dip in exports to US short term as COVID-19 affects demand

    The Brazilian exports of frozen concentrate orange juice (FCOJ) Equivalent (2019/20 crop) are ending, and the volume sold to all destinations continues higher than that last season.

    From July/19 to May/20, Brazil shipped 1.03 million tonnes of juice, 13% more than that exported in the first 11 months of the 2018/19 season (913.4 thousand tonnes), according to data from Secex.

    To the European Union, specifically, Brazilian juice shipments totalled 723.7 thousand tonnes, 23% up compared to that in the same period last season (587.7 thousand tonnes). To the United States, Brazilian exports have decreased by 19% this season, to 154.5 thousand tonnes.

    Low demand explains the decrease in the volume sent to the US, due to the forecast for a recovery in the 2019/20 season in Florida for the second consecutive year. The state has faced several problems involving weather and plant health this season and in previous crops. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, juice sales in the American retail market have increased significantly – data from Nielsen indicate that, this season (from October/19 to April 11, 2020), the volume sold was 6.1% higher than that in the same period of the crop before.

    In this scenario, local juice stocks are being consumed. Although inventories are higher than that in the season before, projections indicating an increase in stocks are lower than those at the beginning of the year. Cepea

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 13 Jul
    US – Chinese citrus imports putting Florida crops at risk

    US – Chinese citrus imports putting Florida crops at risk

    Beginning in mid-April, the USDA authorized the importation of five types of commercially produced fresh citrus fruit from China into the continental US. According to the agency, after thorough analysis, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service scientists determined that pummelo, ‘nanfeng’ honey mandarin, ponkan, sweet orange, and satsuma mandarin fruit from China could be safely imported into the US under a systems approach to protect against the introduction of plant pests. Both industry leaders and growers criticized the move. While the imports were believed to have a small market impact, at least initially, most were concerned about the potential of invasive pest and disease threats it posed. The fact COVID-19 originated out of China only heightens the sentiment.

    Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried came out strongly in opposition to the move and called on USDA to reconsider. She argued that her opposition was two-fold. “After all that Florida’s industry has overcome and the current challenges facing our farmers, to put our agriculture industry at risk by allowing both the introduction of additional invasive species, as well as increased foreign competition, is beyond misguided,” she noted in a letter to the agency.

    The fear of invasive pests from China is not unfounded. A 2019 risk management assessment by USDA found that 22 pests and diseases of quarantine significance were noted from China that could follow the pathway of introduction into the continental US. These included three different mites, a leaf miner, eight different Bactrocera fruit flies, Asian corn borer, Asian citrus psyllid, a bacterial pathogen causing citrus greening, a bacterial pathogen causing yellowing, a complex of bacteria causing citrus canker, three different fungi (one causing citrus black spot), citrus bent leaf viroid, and Satsuma dwarf virus.

    All 22 are quarantinable pests and pose a significant risk to Florida’s citrus industry and other agricultural crops grown in the state including avocado, blueberries, citrus, peaches, peppers, persimmons, tomatoes, and many other valuable crops.  Multiple farm organizations have called on USDA to reverse the decision to allow the citrus imports from China. At press time, USDA had not responded to those calls or announced any changes to its decision. GrowingProduce

    By Caroline Calder News
  • 12 May
    Egypt –  Region reigns on orange production

    Egypt –  Region reigns on orange production

    Egypt recently announced its status as the world’s largest orange exporter, after citrus farms have been prospering in the North African country over the past few years.

    “Egyptian oranges have reached most of the world’s markets as Egypt now ranks first worldwide in exporting oranges, surpassing Spain that has been in the lead over the past few years,” said Ahmed al-Attar, head of the Central Administration of Plant Quarantine (CAPQ) which belongs to the Egyptian Ministry of Agriculture.

    Since the beginning of 2020, Egypt has exported 1.3 million tonnes of oranges amid a growing demand for Egyptian agricultural products, the exports of which have reached 2.2 million tonnes since January despite the global outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, according to a recent statement by CAPQ.

    At one of the farms of Maghrabi Agriculture (MAFA), the largest orchard in Egypt and probably in the world, Samy al-Sayyid, manager of CAPQ exporters service department, was supervising the stages of citrus processing from harvesting until packing and loading for exportation.

    “CAPQ inspectors are present all day at citrus farms for supervision. They are also present at sea, air or land ports to complete exportation procedures without any delay,” the CAPQ official told Xinhua at MAFA’s packhouse.

    Sayyid pointed out that nearly 100,000 tonnes of oranges have been exported to China this year. xinhuanet.com

    By Caroline Calder News
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