chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on May 9, 2013 06:33 PM
Just several days after being called out by the Food & Drug Administration over concerns about caffeine in its Alert Energy Caffeine Gum, Wrigley folded the product and announced that it was going to take the gum off the market at least temporarily. However a caffeine purveyor that's already well established, Monster Beverage, is continuing its aggressive defense of its energy drinks over the issue of caffeine poisoning of American youth.
The Obama administration has grown increasingly restive over the extension of caffeine content to more and more functional foods beyond its traditional places in coffee (naturally), soft drinks (added) and energy drinks (fundamental). The proliferation of new types and food products introduced recently includes Cracker Jack'd, a line of new snacks by Frito-Lay based on the traditional brand but including two out of nine SKUs that contain ground coffee and caffeine; a variety of Kraft's MiO drink powder that contains caffeine; and Jelly Belly's Extreme Sports Beans.Continue reading...
brands under fire
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 9, 2013 05:47 PM
The death toll at Rana Plaza in Bangladesh has surpassed 900 as another factory fire has claimed an additional eight lives in the industrial district of Mirpur.
Fortunately, the fire in the 11-story building that manufactured mainly sweaters was closed for the night and workers had left the premises, according to Reuters. According to reports, the factory's managing director, a member of the board of the Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association was meeting with friends in the building when the blaze broke out. The fire was fueled by massive piles of acrylic products used to make cardigans, jumpers and pajamas for customers including Britain's Primark and Spain’s Inditex Group. The eight victims died of suffocation in stairwells trying to escape from the smoldering acrylic that produced immense amounts of smoke and poison gas. Among the victims were also two local government officials.
For what it's worth, the horrific state of factories in Bangladesh, magnified by global news coverage and relentless social media attention is finally starting to have an effect on those involved.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on May 9, 2013 04:23 PM
How low can you go? That may be the biggest question facing McDonald's, Wendy's, Burger King and other fast-food operators these days, in the US as well as around the world.
That's because cash-strapped consumers worldwide, struggling amid low-growth and slowing economies, are making business difficult for fast-food chains even though each brand is now emphasizing "value menus" and increasing low-priced offerings like never before. The QSR rivals are doing a lot of other things as well, including introducing higher-priced new menu items. But the most important competition, and the crux of their strategic dilemma, is found at the low end.
"That consumer that is getting hit hardest by the economy is locking in on a message that has a price, and when they see and hear 99 cents, Wendy's gets put in their consideration set," Emil Brolick, CEO of Wendy's, told the Wall Street Journal.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 9, 2013 03:42 PM
Trying to understand what’s actually in a cell-phone contract can get a little hairy, but consumers in Orlando, Tampa and Houston won't have to bother now that AT&T has launched its new, prepaid wireless phone service, Aio.
There is no annual contract involved in the new plan, which AT&T plans to roll it nationwide in mid-June, according to Fierce Markets.
According to AT&T's press release, the brand name (pronounced as a cheery "A-O") "encapsulates Aio’s brand promise: simply, delightfully, more."
“We talked with no-annual-contract customers and created our service around what they want. They want simple, easy plan choices with unlimited offers; first-class service at affordable prices; great devices; nationwide voice and data coverage; and no annual contracts. Today’s wireless customers don't want to compromise,” stated Jennifer Van Buskirk, president of Aio Wireless. “We are set up to win over value-conscious customers who are increasingly moving towards smartphones and mobile broadband."Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 9, 2013 02:26 PM
In the insanely crazy years of the California Gold Rush from 1849 to 1855, hundreds of thousands of people poured into San Francisco and the surrounding areas. Levi Strauss was one of them, but he didn’t come for gold. He came to establish his family dry-goods business and help clothe and outfit all those 49ers looking to strike it rich.
Strauss, of course, had hit on a formula that would make him and his family exceedingly wealthy. Now a whole different kind of 49ers will be benefiting from his legacy.
Word came Wednesday that the denim powerhouse Levi Strauss & Co. would shell out $220.3 million over 20 years to put its name on the new Santa Clara stadium that will be home to the NFL’s San Francisco 49ers starting next year. That price is one of the heftiest in pro sports and should help offset the $1.2 billion it is taking to build what will now be called Levi’s Stadium.Continue reading...
Posted by Mark J. Miller on May 9, 2013 01:37 PM
A generation of women crowed about Jennifer Aniston’s hair back in the days when she was on NBC’s Friends. Now Aniston is hoping her hair still looks good enough to inspire the buying habits of another generation. "I used to bring a picture of Valerie Bertinelli with me to my hairdresser to get that look,” Aniston told ModernSalon.com. “She had amazing hair, big, beautiful, very Farrah."
Now Aniston, the co-owner of Living Proof hair care products, is starring in a new show all about hair: a three-part web series, “The Good Hair Day,” about women’s stresses about their tresses. "We created this web series to show the very complex—and sometimes comical—relationship women have with their hair," Aniston stated, ModernSalon.com reports. "Having a good hair day shouldn't be so hard."Continue reading...
Posted by Abe Sauer on May 9, 2013 12:35 PM
A staggering 33-million-plus likes can be found at The Fast and Furious 6 Facebook page. By comparison, Iron Man 3's page has fewer than half of that. Star Trek: Into Darkness? Just 2.7 million. The much anticipated Superman reboot Man of Steel comes in with just 621,000. The Fast and Furious franchise isn't just a blockbuster, money-generating film series—its a lifestyle franchise. It's the perfect marriage of big balls, small bikinis, bad guys with good hearts and, most importantly, automobile porn. It is, in no understated terms, America's id.
Dodge is once again partnering with that id, continuing what might be one of the most successful product placement partnerships in film history. This time Dodge is hoping to rub some Furious id off on its Dart and Challenger models. And it might. But Fast and Furious will always be about the Charger.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on May 9, 2013 11:36 AM
Dove is not resting on its digital laurels. The latest installment in its ongoing Real Beauty and self-esteem campaign this time targets kids.
The Dove Self Esteem Project, working with Lisbon agency Torke+CC, created the Carbon Paper Ad campaign, placing an ad (and a pen) in a parenting magazine, asking adults in Portugal to write down the worst name they remembered being called as a child.
When the written page is turned, the hurtful name appears printed across the shirt of a child—through the use of secreted carbon paper—illustrating that, "Words mark children forever."Continue reading...