The US chocolate market is anticipated to grow 1.8% annually through 2025, at which point the category will pass the $20 billion mark, according to a report from IndexBox. The research firm expects to see higher demand for premium, organic, sugar-free and dark chocolate as consumers place a stronger emphasis on healthy products.
Georgia-Pacific has launched a campaign for Quilted Northern to let shoppers know that the brand is "just really nice toilet paper." The simple message is repeated in nine 15-second ads designed to convey the product's strength and quality.
Clean-label beverages with engaging brand stories and innovative flavors are finding fans in the beverage community, writes Donna Berry. New products such as Purpose Tea's single-source bottled tea and Sunup's canned coffee brewed from unroasted beans aim to capture consumers seeking transparent ingredients.
COCO5 plans to increase its in-store sampling activity following a $1.5 million infusion. "If you don't taste it -- and I don't care how pretty the bottle is -- how are you going to know to buy it?" CEO Scott Sandler said of the sports-drink brand's demo-centered strategy.
New England Confectionery said it may have to lay off nearly 400 workers and close its Massachusetts manufacturing plant unless a buyer comes forward for the company by May 6. NECCO said that although the company has been negotiating with buyers, there is no guarantee a sale will be finalized.
Starbucks has teamed with Closed Loop Partners in a challenge to inventors to develop a more sustainable coffee cup. The chain's customers account for about 1% of the 600 billion paper and plastic cups used annually around the world, and the $10 million NextGen Cup Challenge will seek a fully compostable cup over the next three years.
General Mills may raise prices to offset rising transportation and food costs, said CEO Jeff Harmening. In addition, Harmening expressed interest in divesting the company's weaker brands and acquiring new businesses that have stronger potential for growth.
Cargill has begun producing a zero-calorie sweetener made from Reb M and Reb D stevia leaf compounds. EverSweet will help Cargill meet the demand for "a low-calorie, high-intensity sweetener option," said Andrew Ohmes, Cargill's global stevia business leader.
Theo Spierings will step down from his position as CEO of New Zealand dairy cooperative Fonterra at some point in 2018. "Theo and the board have now agreed that Theo will leave us later on this year, and the board is currently in the process of shortlisting a replacement for Theo," said board chair John Wilson.
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