The Kroger Technology & Digital Innovation Lab, a partnership between the retailer and Northern Kentucky University, will officially open today, store officials said. The lab, which is designed to drive digital innovation and also includes scholarships for students, is the latest in a series of Kroger's initiatives with colleges in and around its hometown, Cincinnati, aimed at boosting the store's digital and technological capabilities.
Whole Foods Market is revamping the look of its 365 private label brand, with changes that include using a black background instead of the current multicolor label and changing the tagline to say simply: "Whole Foods Market." The changes were reported by the IGD research firm at one of Whole Foods' stores in New York City and the updates, which are expected to start rolling out in other areas soon, would be the brand's first in several years.
UK supermarket chain ASDA is adding refill stations at one of its stores, where customers can use their own containers to buy rice, pasta, cereal and tea. The trial period will begin in May and last for a minimum of three months.
Starbucks will open or renovate 85 stores in low-income urban and rural communities over the next five years, bringing the total number of these community stores to 100. The chain will also work with the United Way to create job training and education programs in each store.
Coca-Cola's Powerade brand is adding two zero-calorie lines: Powerade Ultra with 50% more electrolytes than the original launching Jan. 20 and Powerade Power Water set to debut Feb. 10. The brand is also redesigning the bottle and label for all Powerade products.
Coca-Cola has taken 100% ownership of dairy brand Fairlife after acquiring the remaining stake from Select Milk Producers, its joint venture partner, for an undisclosed amount. "Our innovative product lines will continue to grow and improve with the strength and scale of The Coca-Cola Co.," said Fairlife CEO Tim Doelman.
Cafes across the country are putting their own spin on the affogato, such as Caffe Panna in New York City, which turns the simple pairing of espresso and gelato into a sundae with the addition of whipped cream and other toppings. In San Francisco, Sightglass Coffee branches out with ice cream flavors such as candied honey lavender and sea salt caramel.
Chefs that were ahead of the curve in offering traditional vegetarian burger alternatives are seeing a greater demand for those offerings as plant-based burgers gain popularity at fast-food chains. A number of chefs have created meatless burgers made with whole foods such as potatoes, quinoa or beans as an alternative to processed plant-based patties.
The best wines have a point of view, and the best California syrahs in particular strongly reflect the people and the places where they were produced, Eric Asimov writes. Three of the best examples of these intriguing wines, which tend to surprise even sophisticated wine drinkers with their unusual flavors, are the Ojai Vineyard Santa Barbara County Syrah 2016, the Stolpman Vineyards Ballard Canyon Estate Grown Syrah 2016 and the Arnot-Roberts Sonoma Coast Syrah 2015.
As master taster for Brown-Forman's Old Forester bourbon, Jackie Zykan balances her time between in-house tastings and product development and on-the-road trainings and events. "It's still a male-dominated landscape, but the consumer base is increasingly female and you're starting to see a shift more and more in the different types of roles that women are playing in the bourbon industry," she notes.
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