The food companies say we are on the brink of a sugar shortage that will wreak havoc on your candy bars and all that. According to the WSJ several large food companies including Kraft Foods Inc., General Mills Inc., Hershey Co. and Mars Inc. sent a letter to Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack warning that the US could run out of sugar if we don’t get rid of some tariffs.
Chad, who sent this in, says he tried to decipher this Kool Aid‘s expiration date using the cheat sheet we posted last December, but nothing on this container matches the code format on the sheet. It can’t be that hard to print an unambiguous human readable expiration date on a product. Who else needs to read the date, other than a human? Why should the average consumer have to worry about deciphering a date? We thought we’d all pretty much agreed on some basic rules for how to keep track of the days.
Every time Kevin unscrews a new bottle of Kraft salad dressing, the sharp plastic hinge cuts him. This is good to know if you’re in a supermarket and need to show another shopper that you’re not to be messed with. It’s also good to know if you’re trying to unscrew a Kraft dressing bottle, we guess.
Kraft has apparently changed their recipe for Ranch dressing and reader Bobby thinks the new stuff is “bad,” so he emailed to let Kraft know.
Gone are the days of pushing “premium” food offerings, says the Wall Street Journal– big food manufacturers like Kraft and Campbell are going to be pushing “cheap” foods like tomato soup and cheese singles — foods which are thought of as “easy on the wallet” but are still hugely profitable for the manufacturers.
Kraft is making money by raising prices. Forbes reports, “Kraft said price increases, which were a response to rising commodity costs, accounted for more than 7.0% of the revenue gain.” [Forbes]
The notorious Grocery Shrink Ray was supposed to help prevent this, or so we were told by apologists for it, but Datamonitor is reporting that Kraft Foods, Kellogg’s, ConAgra, Sara Lee, and Tyson “are all expected to announce a hike in the prices of their products” in the near future. Here are some of the hikes you can expect, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
Reader Max writes in to let us know that Kraft’s Zesty Italian Dressing has (allegedly) not been hit by the dreaded grocery shrink ray– a fact that they proudly display right on the bottle!
As several readers have pointed out, Kraft’s new “Bagelfuls” (aka Bagel Twinkies) are not without precedent: A small New York company has been making the same thing, called “Bagelers,” since at least 2003. As depicted in the picture at left, (the company tried to make a splash at the 2004 Teen Choice Awards, scoring pictures and other stars on the red carpet holding boxes of Bagelers. Why it takes $100 million to steal someone’s idea is an answer best left to the masters of corporate America.
Ever toast, spread cream cheese on, and eat a bagel, and be like, damn, this is taking too long? Kraft’s Bagelfuls, essentially, a bagel Twinkie, are for you. A “Bagelful” is a frozen bagel tube with cream cheese inside. They’re kept in the refrigerator and then toasted, microwaved, or even eaten straight from the box. If you’ve given up on life, be sure to try one of these delicious “Baglefuls.”
If you drink Folgers or Maxwell House, the coffee can on your shelf is the subject of a patent war between Kraft and Procter & Gamble. Both are accusing the other of stealing the innovative technology used to contain your precious morning fuel in a resealable plastic can that can “withstand the pressure changes that occur between the factory and the consumer’s home.”
Kraft is recalling 23,000 cases of Baker’s Premium White Chocolate Baking Squares after FDA testing “detected the presence of salmonella in some 6-oz. packages.” So far no illnesses have been reported, so if you’re the opportunistic con-artist type, you’ve got a shot at being first-to-media on this one. [Reuters
Recently, after numerous complaints of serious illness from popcorn workers and one complaint of illness from a consumer, ConAgra and Pop Weaver removed diacetyl from its microwave popcorn and now proudly announce to their customers that their product is diacetyl free. Kraft, on the other hand, decided that now would be a good time to introduce a brand new diacetyl-based butter flavor into the market.
Kraft Macaroni & Cheese Spirals cost 37 cents more per box than regular Elbow variety, despite the former weighing 1.75 oz less than the latter, reports the thoughts on technology blog. This breaks down to a difference of $.06/oz, vs $.14/oz. That’s 24% fewer noodles, with a 133% price increase.
Kraft foods is recalling all Oscar Mayer/Louis Rich chicken breast strips on fears they may be infected with Listeria monocytogenes.
Kraft, like many food makers, often walks a fine line with its marketing, testing the limits of federal labeling regulations that are often vague or confusing.
Then, on Friday, January 12, Cadbury Schweppes announced that it, too, would stop calling HFCS-filled 7UP “all natural.” This announcement culminated several months of negotiations between Cadbury and CSPI.
High-Fructose Corn Syrup is a complicated substance that takes a lot of processing to produce. —MEGHANN MARCO