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Full speed ahead in fresh foods

Although it was another strong year for the perimeter, retailers need to be in tune with customer trends and tastes to keep increasing fresh sales. “Understanding and catering to consumer preferences and providing value will be key for maintaining upward movement in the space, whether it’s in the form of convenience, health or products with global appeal,” said Sarah Schmansky, director of retail programs at Nielsen Perishables Group. Supermarket dairy aisle dollar …

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Supermarket News

NIOSH Study: Line Speed Not an Issue in Poultry Inspection Overhaul

Extended full-time work in the poultry industry does come with the risk of carpal tunnel syndrome and other musculoskeletal disorders and injuries, but line speed does not appear to contribute all that much to the problem, according to a report from the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

The new report about the physical toll on workers at a South Carolina poultry plant includes recommendations for both management and employees for staying physically fit while on the job. Those NIOSH recommendations are included in a 46-page report in which the nation’s top worker-safety researchers found no link between increased line speeds and employee injuries.

NIOSH evaluated the poultry workers at the company’s request so it would be able to obtain a waiver under USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) Salmonella Initiative Program. Two lines with speeds of 90 birds per minute in August 2012 were compared to one line of 175 birds per minute in June 2013.

The number of birds per employee did not change, and the move to a single higher speed line did not result in an increase in hand or wrist injuries or disorders by the workers, the report stated.

The NIOSH study was comprehensive. Researchers had access to all employee personal and health records. They interviewed 318 workers currently on the job at the plant, and the researchers identified 67 job tasks involving “repetition and force.”

NIOSH found that 42 percent of the workforce “had evidence of carpal tunnel syndrome.”

The NIOSH study helps USDA with its long-time goal of movingto a more pathogen-based poultry inspection system. It created the HACCP-based Inspection Models Project (HIMP) 15 years ago. Unions representing meat inspectors opposed HIMP from the day it began and blocked any inspection overhaul from spreading beyond the HIMP plants.

Now on the eve of publishing a final rule, USDA is once again under enormous political pressure to back off its HIMP-based Modernization of Poultry Slaughter Inspection program from unions, mostly liberal House Democrats, and even some food safety groups which see prospective gains from the change as being too modest.

Previously, FSIS fell back on the fact that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and NIOSH, not USDA, are responsible for worker safety. This time, FSIS has invited in OSHA and NIOSH.

“Worker safety in the poultry industry is being addressed in ways it never has before,” one source told Food Safety News.

Much of the NIOSH report and its recommendations deals with specific job tasks such as how knives are handled and sharpened, how employees stand on platforms with the correct height, and how frequently workers doing repetitive tasks need work breaks.

Al Almanza, who started as a meat inspector on the line and now holds the top administrative job at FSIS, said, “We’ve been having the wrong conversation.”

He called on poultry industry leaders to look at the recommendations for dealing with worker safety found in the new report.

Food Safety News

Plants convert energy at lightning speed

A new way of measuring how much light a plant can tolerate could be useful in growing crops resilient to a changing climate, according to scientists from Queen Mary University of London.

“This is the first time we have been able to quantify a plant’s ability to protect itself against high light intensity,” said Professor Alexander Ruban, co-author of the study and Head of the Cell and Molecular Biology Division at Queen Mary’s School of Biological and Chemical Science.

Professor Ruban added: “A changing climate will lead to fluctuations in temperature, humidity, drought and light. Knowing the limits of how much sunlight a crop can happily tolerate could be valuable information for farmers or people who breed new plants.”

Publishing in the journal Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B today (Monday 3 March) the scientists demonstrate a novel method that enables them to relate the photoprotective capacity of a plant to the intensity of environmental light by measuring the fluorescence of the pigment chlorophyll, which is responsible for absorbing sunlight.

Co-author Erica Belgio, also at Queen Mary’s School of Biological and Chemical Science said: “The plants we used to measure the light varied in their capacity to protect themselves against high levels of intensity. We exposed them to gradually increasing levels of light, from the sunlight more common on a rainy day to the light you would find at noon on summer’s day in the south of France and recorded the responses.”

The researchers found the plants grown without the ability to respond quickly to high light intensity had a reduced capacity to protect themselves from damage.

“The photosynthetic apparatus in the plants is like the retina in human eyes — it is sensitive to how much light can be soaked up,” commented Professor Ruban.

Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Queen Mary, University of London. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.

Agriculture and Food News — ScienceDaily

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Baloian Farms increases packing efficiency and speed with new mini pepper equipment

As a leader in West Coast pepper product, Baloian Farms has recently expanded its production possibilities with a new line of equipment designed to process mini peppers.baloian2

The new equipment, purchased in the spring of 2013, can serve multiple purposes — its main position will be for packing mini sweet peppers, but will also work for packing baby Bells and hot chilies as well.

“Making these necessary upgrades and capital investments in new machinery will help us to grow our leadership position in pepper production, and continually provide high-quality, competitively priced products to consumers year-round,” Jeremy Lane, sales manager of Baloian Farms, said in a press release.

Lane also said the new equipment will also greatly improve the speed and efficiencies of packing.

“All across our company we are attempting to increase efficiencies in everything from farming to packing,” he said. “And while these new machines came as a big initial investment, we are already experiencing increased return on investment at the packing level, and have ordered additional equipment to continue this momentum.”

The new equipment is intended to pack Baloian’s value-added mini sweet peppers and baby Bell peppers. Using the bridged production areas of Culiacan, Mexico, and California, Baloian Farms offers year-round supply of mini sweet peppers, baby Bell peppers, squash and other mixed vegetables.

Baloian Farms is a fourth-generation, vertically integrated family farm with year-round operations specializing in peppers and mixed vegetables grown in California and Mexico.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

The Lempert Report: Online Delivery Is a Battle for Speed (Video)

Marketing analysis, issues and trends from Supermarket Guru Phil Lempert View Weekly Videos About New Products Phil Lempert produces weekly videos and comments on product marketing analysis, issues and trends and reviews the impact on the food and retail environments. View Videos Read recent Viewpoint columns from Phil Lempert  

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