SNAC Hosts Excellence in Marketing Program with Kellogg Management School This Week
45 sales and marketing leaders from the SNAC membership attended the three-day workshop this week, which focused on customer insights, collaboration, and effective visual storytelling using data. As part of SNAC’s commitment to professional development, the program was free for SNAC members.
Thank you to Kellogg faculty and all SNAC members who attended this week!
Executive Leadership Forum – Early Bird Deadline Next Friday, July 28!
Taking place Oct. 15-17 at The Broadmoor, Colorado Springs, CO, the 2023 Executive Leadership Forum features added thought leadership as well as recreation opportunities enabling leaders to forge strong relationships. Included on the agenda: Jim Stengel, Global Marketing Officer, Procter & Gamble (2001-2008); Brian Belski, Chief Investment Strategist, BMO Capital Markets; Sally Lyons Wyatt, EVP and Practice Leader, Circana; Frank Yiannas, Former Deputy Commissioner, FDA, and many more. View all confirmed speakers here and register before next Friday to save $300 on registration.
WinS Webinar: Mastering the Art of Conflict Management, 8/30 at 1pm EDT
Conflict is a natural part of any workplace. As customer solutions become increasingly complex, collaboration amongst teams and key stakeholder groups is paramount. Participants will learn how to design strategies to minimize dysfunctional conflict, maximize constructive conflict, and work effectively for both men and women. Join Shami Anand, a seasoned executive with over 30-years’ experience developing, transforming, and leading high performing global teams for this free WinS (Women in Snacks) webinar. Register now.
Webinar: 2023 State of the Industry: Snack and Bakery, August 15, 2023
Presented by Snack Food & Wholesale Bakery, this webinar will provide top-level snacking perspectives discussing key developments within the category over the past year. Speakers will address big picture issues like workforce development, supply chain, and cost increases while offering a deep dive into consumer purchase behavior across top snack categories. Featured speakers include SNAC President & CEO Christine Cochran, Circana EVP and Practice Leader Sally Lyons Wyatt, Circana Client Insights Principal Melissa Altobelli, and American Bakers Association CEO Eric Dell. Register now.
The Popular SNAC Tank Pitch Competition Returns at SNX 2024!
SNX, held April 14-16 in Dallas, TX, is SNAC’s education and collaboration forum featuring one-to-one meeting opportunities, an interactive experience zone, and thought leaders discussing the most important industry trends. Start-up snack brands will have the chance to pitch their products and take home a $10,000 cash prize, plus invaluable industry connections to help scale-up. SNAC Tank will feature guest Judge Daymond John, Founder of FUBU and Star of ABC’s hit reality series, “Shark Tank”. Startups can learn more and submit their applications here.
Regulatory and Legislative News:
Department Of Labor Announces Rule Expanding Submission Requirements For Injury, Illness Data Provided By Employers In High-Hazard Industries
This week, the U.S. Department of Labor announced a final rule that will require eligible organizations to submit injury and illness information to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Any company with over 100 employees would have to submit OSHA Forms 300, 301, and 300A to OSHA, while companies with 20 or more employees would have to submit OSHA Form 300A. Food manufacturers, including those in fruit and tree nut farming, sugar and confectionary, bakeries and tortilla, beverages, and in animal food manufacturing, would all fall under this new rule. OSHA will publish some of the data collected on its website to allow potential and current employees and the public to use information about a company's workplace safety and health record to make informed decisions. The final rule will take effect on January 1, 2024.
Wheat Prices Surge After Russia Ends Grain Deal
Russia announced that it will not renew the Black Sea Grain Initiative, which had allowed Ukraine to ship grain through the Odesa ports. The agreement reduced food prices by over 23% in the past, and termination of the agreement would stifle grain exports preventing food aid and shipments to neighboring countries. Wheat, corn, and soybean prices have since risen, with wheat prices at the highest level since June. Ukrainian wheat will continue to be shipped through Europe and the Black Sea, but inability to utilize the ports in Odesa will cause additional upward inflationary pressures on food.
Majority Of Voters Want SNAP Increased, Not Cut: Poll
The Hill received a survey from the Save the Children Action Network finding that the majority of Americans want higher amounts of food assistance to struggling families. About 85% of participants indicated that the government should do more to help those struggling with food insecurity, while 53% of participants said that policymakers need to do “much more.” On average, survey participants noted SNAP recipients should get $20 a day for food. The study also found that over half of Republicans in the poll agreed that benefits were too low and could look unfavorably on representatives that wanted to reduce them further.
USDA Releases Study on Ultra-Processed Foods Diet
Researchers at the USDA Agricultural Research Service's (ARS) Grand Forks Human Nutrition Research Center recently published a study showcasing it is possible to build a healthy diet with 91 percent of the calories coming from ultra-processed foods (as classified using the NOVA scale) while still following the recommendations from the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA). The study highlights the versatility of using DGA recommendations in constructing healthy menus. Details of the study were published in The Journal of Nutrition.
SNAC Member News:
Campbell Snacks’ George Vindiola’s Journey to R&D
A lifelong athlete, George Vindiola, VP of R&D at Camden, NJ-based Campbell Snacks, knows that rigorous training is the key to improvement. But more than that, proper training involves not only expanding outside one’s comfort zone but also tearing down muscles so they can build back stronger. Read about George’s journey that started down the path to chemical engineering, but veered toward his current role heading up R&D for Campbell Snacks. Read the full article on Commercial Baking.
The Hershey Company Investing in Innovation
The Hershey Company has been building a “snacking powerhouse” over the last few years, featuring both sweet and salty options, and innovation will continue to be a focus for the company in 2024.
Allison Mason, Hershey’s strategic communications manager, talked with The Griffin Report of the Northeast’s Maggie Kaeppel during the recent Sweets & Snacks Expo at McCormick Place in Chicago. Mason said Hershey has an insights team that tracks trends. While people want to focus on a healthy lifestyle, “we’re finding the No. 1 thing they want to reduce is sugar, and the No. 1 thing they want to add is protein.” Read full article on The Shelby Report.
CRACKER JACK® SPOTLIGHTS YOUNG WOMEN WHO ARE CHANGING THE FACE OF THE GAME WITH FIRST-EVER ATHLETE ON CRACKER JILL® PACKAGING
As part of its mission to increase the visibility of girls and women in sports to inspire the next generation, Cracker Jack® is recognizing nine young women today with the I Am Cracker Jill® Award. These recipients are changing the face of the game one goal, one run or one point at a time and will receive $5,000 from Cracker Jack to support their sports endeavors. The grand prize winner, Lindsey Zurbrugg, was also selected to represent aspiring female athletes across the country by being the first athlete to join the Cracker Jill roster and appear on special-edition Cracker Jill packaging. Read News
FOCKE & CO to Host Snack Event, August 22-23, Greensboro, NC
SNAC member company and Diamond Sponsor, FOCKE & CO is excited to host a snack industry-focused event this summer in Greensboro, NC. August 22nd will feature networking opportunities, a golf camp and pickle ball at the Sedgefield Country Club. August 23rd will include live machine demonstrations, speaker sessions about automation, processing and trend, and a workshop for pack styles. View the full agenda here, and contact firstname.lastname@example.org for questions and registration information.
Conagra Brands Announces Sizzling Summer Line-up of New Products
Conagra Brands, Inc., one of North America's leading branded food companies, has unveiled more than 50 new products this summer across the company's frozen, grocery and snacks divisions. As consumer needs evolve, Conagra's iconic brands have crafted new recipes that deliver contemporary, flavorful food in dynamic ways. Press Release
Industry News and Trends:
How AI is Driving Supply Chain Advancements for Food Manufacturers - CPG companies can use the technology to see which investments are most effective — particularly with product development and sustainability. Jonathan Darling believes the technology can be used to bring CPGs closer to their consumers. Darling, the industrial automation market segment leader for Schneider Electric, said the ultimate goal of his company is to bring tools like AI to companies to streamline their supply chains in an effective way. Read on Food Dive.
Mercedes-Benz Brings ChatGPT to Its Factories - The automaker’s chatbot pilot will use data queries to help employees make production planning decisions faster. Read...
Study: Dollar Stores Drew Lots of Visitors in Q2
Even as inflation cools, dollar stores and deep discounters—especially Dollar Tree—continue to see increased traffic while grocery visits hold steady, according to a second quarter analysis released Monday by Placer.ai. Foot traffic to discounters and dollar stores rose 4.7% during the period from April to June, while grocery visits held steady and trips to superstores fell 2.4%. Read more.
Microsoft Hardens Key Issuance Systems after State-backed Hackers Breach Outlook Accounts
Microsoft is still investigating how a China-linked hacking group managed to acquire an inactive Microsoft account consumer signing key and forged tokens to steal emails from the U.S. State Department. The threat actor also accessed data from about two dozen other organizations. Read on Cybersecurity Dive.
Snack Brand CRAVE Forced to Rename Products Following Infringement Notices From Major Brands - CRAVE, a vegan and gluten-free snack brand based in the UK, is facing infringement notices after three of its products were deemed too similar to those made by major brands. Read...
Russia seizes Danone Assets, Upending Dairy Giant’s Exit from the Country - Brewing company Carlsberg also lost control of its subsidiary as Russia makes it harder for Western companies to offload operations. Read on Food Dive.
Nestlé to Expand Regenerative Agriculture for Wheat in DiGiorno Pizza - Read...
Aspartame May Cause Cancer, but is Safe Within Specific Limits, WHO Says - Conflicting information from two groups at the health organization is likely to sow further confusion over whether it’s safe to consume the sugar alternative used in about 6,000 products globally. Read on Food Dive.
Six Steps to Appealing to Gen Z Consumers - As a consumer group, Gen Z has very specific preferences and expectations – and the cohort’s young members aren’t afraid to let businesses know exactly how they feel. This tech-savvy and socially conscious generation has increased purchasing power with each passing day. The food and beverage industry must cater to Gen Zers’ unique needs to improve customer satisfaction. Read on The Food Institute.
Costco Chooses California as Site of Largest Club
Costco Wholesale Corp. is proposing a new club in Fresno, Calif., according to a published report in The Fresno Bee. At 241,000 square feet and taking up 22.4 acres of land, it would be the retailer’s largest location to date. The average size of a Costco warehouse is around 146,000 square feet. Issaquah, Wash.-based Costco currently operates more than 850 warehouses, including 590 in the United States and Puerto Rico and 107 in Canada. The company is No. 3 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. Read more.
John Ruane Officially Becomes Giant Co. President
Ahold Delhaize USA has revealed the appointment of John Ruane as president of The Giant Co. He had become interim president of the grocery chain following the departure of Nick Bertram in September 2022. Read on Progressive Grocer.
Dollar General Store Violated Federal Law by Attempting to Stop Union Efforts
A Dollar General store in Connecticut violated federal labor law and interfered with worker rights in efforts to block unionization efforts, a National Labor Relations Board judge said. Read on Supermarket News.
DoorDash Fired an Employee for Trying to Organize a Union, NLRB Alleges - The National Labor Relations Board says DoorDash has illegally interfered with workers’ unionization efforts in Arizona and accuses the company of unlawfully firing an employee. Read...
Also see: How Sustainable Is Grocery Delivery? - Researchers at Pittsburgh’s Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) College of Engineering recently examined the impacts of grocery delivery on energy use, emissions and traffic congestion, and whether there might be a better way to manage and optimize deliveries. As reported by CMU, the study found that grocery delivery was less energy efficient than people shopping for themselves. Read news.
Also see: 'Pickup' Continues to Make Gains in Grocery E-commerce, Reach 49% of Online Grocery Sales - Read...
Walmart+ Assist Launches - Walmart has added to its Walmart+ membership platform Walmart+ Assist, which offers customers who receive government assistance 50% off a monthly or annual Walmart+ paid membership plan. Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart operates more than 10,500 stores and numerous e-commerce websites in 20 countries. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on Progressive Grocer’s 2023 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America. Read more.
Regional Grocers Will Continue to Face Online Challenges with Walmart - Competing against Walmart online will only get tougher for regional grocers, as Walmart continues to ramp up its low pricing engine, according to research from grocery ecommerce software company Mercatus. Read...
Kroger says Boost Membership Enrollment has ‘exceeded’ Expectations - The grocer said its e-commerce membership program, which rolled out nationwide last year, has so far saved members more than $115 million. Company News
Why Kroger’s Retail Media Business Puts the Customer First - Kroger Precision Marketing (KPM), the retail media business of Kroger powered by 84.51°, is taking its advertising platform in-house to improve the platform for brand partners, Kroger itself, and most importantly, shoppers. Kroger is leveraging grocery’s unique perks and its own data science expertise to forge its own path forward in the retail media network space. Read on The Food Institute.
Grocers Recorded a $300M Margin Hit on their Digital Business in 2022, Report Says - Improving product availability and fulfillment operations are top priorities for retailers to improve profitability, per new findings. Read more.
Giant Food Executive: Theft and violence is a ‘spiraling problem’ - Ira Kress, president of regional supermarket chain Giant Food, sounded the alarm on the escalation of theft and violence in his stores and said a law enforcement solution is needed. Read news.
June Online Grocery Sales Dip 1.2% - The U.S. online grocery market is down 1.2% when compared to last year’s total sales, according to a joint report from analytics firm Brick Meets Click and ecommerce technology software company Mercatus. Read...
ICYMI - In Case You Missed It:
SNAC Joins Industry in Submitting Comments on Dietary Guidelines Draft Protocols
SNAC and industry allies submitted comments to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on the published draft protocols for the scientific questions for the 2025-2030 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA). The comments highlighted industry concerns with the unnecessarily early date set for the inclusion of scientific publications in certain draft protocols, which would ultimately limit what is considered in the various DGAC evidence reviews. Industry asked that the DGA be based on the latest and best information and highlight that past practices support a May 31, 2024, end-date for the inclusion of relevant scientific publications in the DGAC evidence review process. View the comments on SNAC’s public comments page.
PepsiCo Chooses 10 Hispanic-Owned Food & Bev Startups for Accelerator Program
PepsiCo Inc. has revealed the 10 finalists chosen to take part in the Greenhouse Accelerator Program: Juntos Crecemos (Together We Grow) Edition. For the first time in the program’s history, its focus is on supporting new Hispanic businesses that provide products, services and technology solutions for the food and beverage industry. Read on Progressive Grocer.
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