chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on November 6, 2012 05:08 PM
For a while, the notion of regulating genetically modified organisms (better known as GMOs) included in food seemed like a good idea, and anti-Big Food advocates in California attracted a lot of support in a state where residents like to be on the cutting edge of just about everything. Calfornians have never minded serving as a bellwether on new regulatory initiatives that end up sweeping the rest of the country, such as automotive emissions.
But the closer today's vote on Proposition 37 loomed, the more that initial support of the idea waned. And this U.S. Election Day, even backers of the anti-GMO initiative seemed resigned to its defeat, although it's still being closely watched. (Update: Prop 37 was indeed defeated at the polling booth.)
What happened? Well, a combination of huge contributions by moneyed CPG brands battered Prop 37's drive to label GMOs in a massive advertising and PR blitz with a "No on 37" drive. And backers of the added regulation alleged dirty tricks by the competition as they sought to sway voters (despite scientific evidence to the contrary) that GMO-containing products are hardly the stuff of "Frankenfood" that really harms consumers.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on November 1, 2012 01:16 PM
Here's to the many brands that have been stepping up in the wake of Hurricane Sandy's devastation on the U.S., providing everything from money to food to power and their employees, products and services to help disaster relief efforts. A partial list of charitable first-responders follows (and if we miss any, please let us know in the comments):
AT&T will extend late-payment windows for wireless and wireline customers, waive late payment fees and not disconnect services because of non-payment, and in an unprecedented open-network arrangement with T-Mobile, will enable roaming to customers of both companies in the impacted areas. AT&T wireless customers can make a $10 donation (up to $50) for Hurricane Sandy relief by texting to relief organizations. AT&T and T-Mobile also joined forces on a wireless roaming agreement, while Verizon Wireless is offering free charging for all cellphones.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 1, 2012 09:03 AM
Pfizer drops on weaker sales of specialty care drugs and emerging market slump, plans to buy back up to $10B in shares.
UK lawmakers prepare to grill Starbucks, Amazon and Google on taxes.
Con Edison makes progress in restoring NYC neighborhoods' power, while MTA offers free fares in bid to get New York moving again.
Apple's Cook fields his A-team before a wary Wall Street.
Avon sees sales drop in China and the U.K.
Barclay's hit with record U.S. fine.
Burger King tests delivery service in Florida.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 11, 2012 09:04 AM
Activision goes bigger with Skylanders line extension and marketing effort.
AIG pays $1.7 billion for ING Malaysia.
ANA conference poised to set attendance record.
Android robot is a hit with 3-D printers.
Audi and BMW starting to leave behind Mercedes-Benz in global premium-auto race.
BAE in play for U.S. buyers as report says EADS merger failed because of discord among participating European governments.
BP moves closer to overall settlement of Gulf spill as Louisiana blames company for perma-sheen.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 18, 2012 09:06 AM
Apple shares reach $700 as iPhone 5 shatters sales record.
Belvedere owes Bruce Willis for years of representing Sobieski vodka.
Burberry says strategy won't change as brand brings capes to London Fashion Week.
Chrysler and GM will get a chance at deal similar to new labor accord between Ford and Canadian Auto Workers.
Conde Nast plans French Vanity Fair.
Dole Food to sell businesses to Itochu.
Dos Equis finds some fans unimpressed with Obama endorsement by its "most interesting man" actor.Continue reading...
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on September 17, 2012 01:11 PM
The vast majority of American consumers don't care whether their foods contain genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Food executives and think tanks will tell you that and cite, for example, how Indiana local bakery Aunt Nellie's bombed when it introduced a specifically labeled "non-GMO" bread a couple of years ago.
But California isn't most of America, with a more health-conscious outlook than most states. That's why mainstream food companies are in a hot and heavy contest against GMO opponents over Proposition 37, The Right to Know Genetically Modified Food Act, a piece of state legislation that, if passed in November, would require GMO-containing products to disclose that on labels, and make California the first state to mandate genetically modified food.
Similar to what happened to automakers after California took an extreme position on cutting emissions, essentially imposing that higher standard on cars sold all over the country, food and beverage companies are concerned that California will serve as a bellwether in GMO labeling regulation as well.
In a particular bind in this fight are the many mainstream food conglomerates that now own organic brands, which by definition don't include GMOs: Kellogg, owner of GMO poster brand Kashi; General Mills, owner of the Cascadian Farm, Muir Glen, Larabar and Food Should Taste Good brands; Coca-Cola, owner of Odwalla and Honest Tea; PepsiCo; and Dean Foods, owner of Horizon Organics.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on September 14, 2012 02:04 PM
Kellogg has been working on a comprehensive brand overhaul during the last several months, and now one of the first significant fruits of its efforts is coming out: A new campaign promoting some of its classic cereals, focused on their simplicity and goodness.
Running under the tagline "Goodness of a Simple Grain," the new campaign extols Corn Flakes, Rice Krispies and Raisin Bran in a farm-to-table positioning that is so popular these days (see: McDonald's farmer spots and Chipotle's Willie Nelson video) and combines it with simplicity messaging, emphasizing that there are only four ingredients, for instance, in Corn Flakes. One spot says Kellogg takes these products "from the seed to the spoon."
"We have a number of brands like this that we've been making for a hundred years," Doug VanDeVelde, Kellogg's SVP of morning foods, marketing and innovation, told Adweek. "But consumers weren't really aware of that, and we need to, in a very simple way, remind them."Continue reading...
sports in the spotlight
Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 31, 2012 10:06 AM
A peak audience of 11.2 million watched Channel 4's broadcast of the rousing opening ceremony for the London 2012 Paralympic Games, titled “Enlightenment.” An average 7.7 million tuned in to see the four-hour show on August 29th. (Not coincidentally, the Queen entered the stadium at 8:45pm, when viewing peaked.)
The British broadcaster reported that it was its largest audience in more than 10 years. "Last night's opening ceremony was a spectacular start to the London 2012 Paralympic Games," said Channel 4's Jay Hunt. "I'm delighted that so many viewers enjoyed it with us."
The ceremony, inspired by Shakespeare’s The Tempest and following on from the "pandemonium" of the London 2012 Games Opening Ceremony, focused on the story of scientific discovery and education.
Sir Ian McKellen danced to a stirring version of "I Am What I Am," as the stadium was transformed into a representation of the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in Switzerland. Accompanied by narration from physicist Stephen Hawking, a new musical piece based on Newton’s Principia Mathematica underscored the theme of the Games: ability and achievement come in many forms.Continue reading...