Archive for the ‘food’ Category

Published November 27, 2013

FoxNews.com
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The manager of an Indiana Pizza Hut claims he was fired for refusing to open the restaurant on Thanksgiving.

Tony Rohr, who worked his way up from cook to manager at the restaurant, in Elkhart, Ind., over 10 years, said the company that owns the store dictated it be open for the holiday, and he refused.

“I said, ‘Why can’t we be the company that stands up and says we care about our employees and they can have the day off,?'” Rohr told WSBT 22. “Thanksgiving and Christmas are the only two days that they’re closed in the whole year and they’re the only two days that those people are guaranteed to have off to spend with their families.”

Pizza Hut rep told the station that the decision to remain open on Thanksgiving wasn’t up to Rohr, and that it came from the corporate level.

Rohr wrote a letter venting his frustrations, saying: “I do not resign. However, I accept that the refusal to comply with this greedy, immoral request means the end of my tenure with this company.” He added, “I hope you realize that it is the people at the bottom of the totem pole that make your life possible.”

Later, the station got in touch with the director of operations for the local chain and he told the news station that Rohr did not get fired, but rather, he quit.

Pizza Hut is owned by Yum! Brands, which also owns Taco Bell and KFC.

End of last month the head of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO),Graziano da Silvatold participants at the Global Green Growth Forum (3GF) in Copenhagen that every year an estimated one-third of all food produced for human consumption is lost or wasted – around 1.3 billion tons. This costs around $750 billion per annum.

According to da Silva this would equal additional food to feed 2 billion people! This is unbelievable, isn´t it?

Reality, however, is that per capita food waste is around 100 kilograms in Europe and North America per year. At the same time FAO estimates that nearly 870 million people of the 7.1 billion people in the world, or one in eight, were suffering from chronic undernourishment in 2010-2012. Almost all the hungry people, 852 million, live in developing countries, representing 15 percent of the population of developing counties. There are 16 million people undernourished in developed countries. In general children are the most visible victims of undernutrition. Poor nutrition plays a role in at least half of the 10.9 million child deaths each year-five million deaths! Undernutrition magnifies the effect of every disease, including measles and malaria.

Conclusion: The world produces enough food to feed everyone. At least in theory!

World agriculture produces 17 percent more calories per person today than it did 30 years ago, despite a 70 percent population increase. This is enough to provide everyone in the world with at least 2,720 kilocalories (kcal) per person per day according to FAO. The principal problem is that many people in the world do not have sufficient land to grow, or income to purchase, enough food.

Possible Actions

1. Fighting Food Loss In A Holistic Manner

FAO noted that most food loss takes place in post-production, harvesting, transportation and storage. In developing countries, food waste is mainly related to inadequate infrastructure, while in more developed countries it is largely a problem in the marketing and consumption stages. Consequently investments in developing countries are needed in areas such as infrastructure, roads, and cold chains. Also improvement is needed in delivering more and better know-how to farmers on how to properly grow and market their products. In developed countries one priority should be to educate both companies and consumers to apply more responsible consumption patterns.

Fighting food loss and waste is clearly one area in which a strong partnership between governments and various organizations (companies, NGOs) is needed. Developing a global protocol can help provide clear measurements and indicators on which guidance on how to reduce food loss and waste can be based. FAO is working on such a protocal.

2. Stimulating Responsible Economic Growth

Besides climate change, political conflicts and certain political systems, poverty is the main cause of hunger. As a result economic growth plays a key role in reducing undernourishmnet. It is most effective in reducing poverty and hunger when it increases employment and income-earning opportunities that the poor can take advantage of. Sustainable agricultural growth is often effective in reaching the poor because most of the poor and hungry live in rural areas and depend on agriculture for a significant part of their livelihoods. However, growth will not necessarily result in better nutrition for all. Policies and programmes are required that will ensure “nutrition-sensitive” growth include supporting increased dietary diversity, improving access to safe drinking water, sanitation and health services and educating consumers regarding adequate nutrition and child care practices.

Economic growth takes time to reach the poor, and may not reach the poorest of the poor. Therefore, social protection is crucial for eliminating hunger as rapidly as possible. Furthermore, when properly structured, social protection also promotes economic growth by building human capital and helping farmers manage risk so that they can adopt improved technologies. Finally, rapid progress in reducing hunger requires government action to provide key public goods and services within a governance system based on transparency, participation, accountability, rule of law and human rights.

3. Behaving And Acting Responsible Ourselves

Firstly, and most importanly, all of us can and should adjust their consumption behavior, i.e. thinking at least twice when shopping (what is really needed, who will consume it, by when should it be consumed, etc.) and before throwing anything away. We should act as role models and should try to positively influence our environment, our families, friends, colleagues, and others we´re inter-acting with. No need to blame others, if we´re not doing what we should be doing.

Have you ever heard of The Food Recovery Network in the US? It´s an organization which unites students at colleges and universities across America to fight food waste and hunger by recovering surplus perishable food from their college campuses and surrounding communities that would otherwise go to waste and donating it to people in need. Founded in September of 2011, it has since expanded to reach 23 college campuses and recovered over 160,000 pounds (72.75 metric tons) of food that would otherwise have been wasted.

Very similar, and much more known, is the Food banking system which exist in many countries in the world. Food banks acquire donated food, much of which would otherwise be wasted, from farms, manufacturers, distributors, retail stores, consumers, and other sources, and make it available to those in need through a network of community agencies. These agencies include school feeding programs, food pantries, soup kitchens, AIDS and TB hospices, substance abuse clinics, after-school programs, and other nonprofit programs that provide food to the hungry.

Have you ever supported your local food bank or any similar institution?

Finally, and from a company perspective, the concept of Corporate Social Responsibility is not new. Still, there is significant room for many more organizations getting involved, donating money, providing know-how, and “ walking their talk“ in regards of being serious about helping our society and our planet. In other words: How many companies do you know which have teamed up with organizations such as the SAVE FOOD project, WRAP (Waste and Resources Action Programme), Think-Eat-Save, or with any other programe targeted to change wasteful practices, to fight hunger, and to promote responsible consumption habits?

What do you think? Looking forward to receiving your feedback. Join the discussion!

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Andreas von der Heydt is the Country Manager of Amazon BuyVIP in Germany. Before that he hold senior management positions at L’Oréal. He´s a leadership expert, management coach and NLP master. He also founded Consumer Goods Club. Andreas worked and lived in Europe, the U.S. and Asia.

Source:http://www.linkedin.com/today/post/article/20131107110059-175081329-what-a-shame-one-third-of-food-is-wasted?trk=tod-posts-recentPosts-psum

You heard it here first: the billionaire behind Starbucks SBUX -1.2% is watching his caffeine intake. Howard Schultz, CEO of the java giant, won’t drink coffee after 5pm.

He’s more of a tea man these days, having taken a liking to the Maharaja Chai Oolong blend sold at Teavana, the mainly mall-based tea retailer Starbucks bought for $620 million last November.

On Wednesday, Schultz sipped a $4.95 cup of his new favorite at the first ever Teavana tea bar, which opens Thursday morning in New York City. Next up: a Seattle outpost, opening just before Thanksgiving.

Schultz says to expect 1,000 such tea bars — complete with zen decor, grey walls and dim lighting — in the next five years as Teavana aims to do for tea what its parent company has done for coffee.

The location of the first Teavana Fine Teas + Tea Bar couldn’t be more perfect: on Manhattan’s super-wealthy Upper East Side at 85th St and Madison Ave, steps from a branch of cult yoga outfitters Lululemon (“you’ve got to give us some credit,” Schultz said laughingly of the canny real estate grab) and blocks from Central Park.

Starbucks will slowly add tea bars to its 300 or so existing Teavana stores, which until now sold loose-leaf tea (two ounces of the Silver Needle blend goes for $17.98, for instance) plus gifts and accessories like ceramic teapots and stainless steel infusers. As well as drinks like Matcha Lattes, the new tea bars will sell food to appeal to a health-conscious customer (an egg-white frittata is $5.95).

Schultz is angling for a piece of a hot and iced tea market worth $90 billion worldwide, according to recent Euromonitor data, with Starbucks-saturated countries like Japan, China, Canada and the U.K. leading the trend. Globally, tea is the second-most consumed beverage besides water. While Americans still consume coffee at a far greater rate than tea, their taste for leaves versus beans is growing. Data from the Tea Association USA says America’s interest in tea has grown by 16% over the past five years.

Schultz isn’t concerned about cannibalizing his current business, however, noting that caffeine junkies who jones for a Starbucks to start their day are unlikely to be big tea drinkers. To that end, there’s no Starbucks branding in this first Teavana bar, nor will there be. There’s no coffee on offer, and the drinks are sold as either 12- or 16-ounce servings rather than “tall” or “grande”.

“Don’t you think that’s the right choice?” asks Schultz, gesturing around the chai-scented room, its back wall home to a stenciled quotation mentioning “alchemy”, “wisdom” and “a tea journey.” Teavana’s zen branding extends to its logo: a yogi, cross-legged, holding a mug of tea.

Analysts aren’t convinced Starbucks can do for tea what the company has done for coffee since its 1971 debut, but they’ll be watching closely. “This is Starbucks trying to make a boring category — tea — interesting,” said Brian Sozzi, CEO of Belus Capital Advisors.

“I don’t believe Teavana will ever grow into what the Starbucks brand has become for one simple reason: tea lacks the major caffeine count,” he added. “That sounds silly, but the bottom line is that in this day and age of frantic tech-driven lifestyles, people want to run on 100 mg of caffeine, and they will trade taste to make that happen.”

Wedbush Securities analyst Nick Setyan is slightly more bullish on Starbucks’ big move. “If anyone can create a demand for a product, it’s Starbucks,” he said, noting that tea has higher gross margins than coffee.

Schultz still has a way to go if he’s going to sell New Yorkers on tea, as he learned on Wednesday, when he was asked whether Teavana’s tea is kosher. “It will be. It hasn’t been certified,” he said. “No rabbi has come in to bless it yet!”

October 12, 2013 by webnerbob

 

The continuing saga of the federal government’s Affordable Care Act website is worth following, because it is telling us a lot about how modern government works, and doesn’t work, and what we should believe.

Most people, including me, have focused on the access issues with the Healthcare.gov website — that is, the fact that there are ongoing reports that people simply cannot get on the website and use it as intended, and whether the design of the system in fact works against that.  But there are other issues, too.

For example, how complete and accurate is the information the website is collecting?  Anyone who has filled out a health-care application knows that a mass of information must be provided.  Arecent article quoted industry sources who estimated that only one in 100 applications completed on the website contain enough information to actually enroll someone in a plan — which of course is the entire point.  As the article notes, much more serious problems could be coming if people believe they have successfully enrolled, only to be told later that the information they provided was insufficient or lost.

And speaking of information — how secure is the data those lucky people who have been able to use the website have provided?  Health care information and financial information is extraordinarily confidential.  Given the apparent design flaws with the website, why should anyone have great confidence that the designers at least got system security right?  Given the coverage of the problems with the website, are legions of hackers around the world targeting it as an easy potential source for personal information, like Social Security numbers and credit card data?

And finally, there is cost.  Some sources have tried to piece together government contracting data to determine how much the Affordable Care Act websites have cost the taxpayer.  The Washington Post says about $400 million has been committed to the health care exchanges.  The Digital Trends website estimates the cost so far is more than $500 million, with a total cost of more than $2 billion expected.

With costs like this, it’s fair to ask whether we are really getting our money’s worth.  On Thursday, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius visited Pittsburgh as part of a nationwide campaign to tout the exchanges.  She assured the audience that the “glitches” were being addressed and the system is getting better every day.  Event planners had brought more than 20 certified health care application counselors to meet with uninsured people, but even the certified counselors couldn’t access the Healthcare.gov website.  So, who do you believe — the bureaucrat who says the system is improving, or the fact that even computer geeks can’t get it to work?

What’s in a chicken nugget? If you think it’s all white meat and some breading, an American scientist is suggesting you’re wrong.

 

TORONTO – What’s in a chicken nugget? If you think it’s all white meat and some breading, an American scientist is suggesting you’re wrong.

After conducting his own “autopsy” into chicken nuggets from two unnamed fast food restaurants, Dr. Richard deShazo says that the finger food is actually made with only 40 to 50 per cent meat. The rest? It’s all fat, skin, connective tissue, blood vessels, nerves and bone fragments.

“I was floored. I had read what other reports have said is in them and I didn’t believe it. I was astonished actually seeing it under a microscope,” deShazo, a medicine and pediatrics professor at theUniversity of Mississippi, said.

“What has happened is that some companies have chosen to use an artificial mixture of chicken parts rather than low-fat chicken white meat, batter it up and fry it, and still call it chicken,” he said in a statement.

White chicken meat is a great source of lean protein. Chicken by-product, which deShazo claims is used in nuggets, is high in calories, salt, sugar and fat.

“Even worse, it tastes great and kids love it and it is marketed to them,” he said.

Read more: Measuring meals by exercise, not calories helps consumers eat healthy: study

His complete findings were published in the American Journal of MedicineRead the study here.

DeShazo collaborated with a pathologist, Dr. Steven Bigler, for his study. They stained, sliced and analyzed the nuggets. They wouldn’t say where the nuggets came from, though.

What’s in a chicken nugget? If you think it’s all white meat and some breading, an American scientist is suggesting you’re wrong.

(Supplied photo)

In a statement to Global News, McDonald’s said that the study is not referring to its McNuggets.

“The fact is McDonald’s Chicken McNuggets are made using white breast meat chicken. We do not use dark meat, organ meats, cartilage or bone in our Chicken McNuggets,” a spokesperson said in a statement.

She said the only chicken in the nugget is white breast meat, with a bit of chicken skin for flavour. The breading is a crunchy tempura batter. She couldn’t tell Global the “exact recipe for competitive reasons.”

Read more: How much sugar is in Nutella? Canadian doctor decodes what’s in the hazelnut spread

Its website says McNuggets are made with “USDA-inspected white meat.” Meanwhile, Burger King says its nuggets are made with “premium white meat” and Wendy’s also says “our nuggets are made with all white-meat.”

The National Chicken Council in the U.S. told Reuters that nuggets are an “excellent source” of protein, especially for picky eaters.

“This study evaluates only two chicken nugget samples out of the billions of chicken nuggets that are made every year,” Ashley Peterson, vice president of the organization told the wire service.

Read more: 5 tips for packing healthy, kid-friendly back to school lunches

DeShazo said fast-food chains aren’t necessarily misleading their consumers, it’s just that diners need to consider what’s on their plate when they’re eating out.

“We just don’t take the time to understand basic nutritional facts – this is a health literacy issue – and to push back when our kids and grandkids, who do not know the risks of being obese, beg for unhealthy foods,” he said.

carmen.chai@globalnews.ca