Natural Foods Merchandiser

Frontier Natural Products Co-op, based in Norway, Iowa, is again distributing refunds to its customer-owners. Strong sales and operational efficiencies during 2003 allowed the co-op to recover from financial losses incurred two years ago. Chief executive Tony Bedard credits aggressive expense control and reorganization of Frontier?s management structure for the turnaround.

Sixteen organic and natural food vendors are new partners in the Lake Hughes, Calif., Painted Turtle camp?s Healthy Living Program. These companies agreed to support the camp by donating products to help feed the thousands of seriously ill children who will visit the camp beginning this spring. Painted Turtle, founded by actor Paul Newman, is a year-round medical camp and family care center that assists children who have life-threatening and chronic illnesses. The new partner companies are: Annie?s Homegrown, Annie?s Naturals, Applegate Farms, Bionaturae, Edward & Sons Trading Co., Florida Crystals, HomeGrown Natural Foods, Nature?s Path, Newman?s Own Organics, Our Family Farm, Rudi?s Organic Bakery, SG Naturals, Spectrum Organics, Stahlbush Island Farms, Stonyfield Farm and White Wave.

Following its launch into the Canadian market, Virox has begun a transition into the U.S. market with its range of natural, patented clinical health products. The company will be partnering with several brokers in the United States, including Maximum Marketing, Presence Marketing, Tozzi and Associates, Gateway Brokers, Naturally TLC and Naturally Specialty Sales. Several distributors are carrying Virox products.

Botanical Laboratories Inc., the Ferndale, Wash., supplements and herbal products company, has been awarded certification by NSF Int?l. for complying with NSF?s Good Manufacturing Practices.

Organic Valley, of LaFarge, Wis., is preparing more than 200 pounds of organic dairy products for a seven-month arctic educational journey. World-renowned polar explorer Will Steger will lead a six-person team that will use dogsleds for the 3,000-mile arctic expedition. Organic Valley is providing 50 pounds of organic butter, 50 pounds of organic cheese and 100 pounds of organic dry milk. The expedition, Arctic Transect 2004, is a two-year project that will feature a Web-based, K-12 curriculum focusing on global climate change and the indigenous cultures of Canada?s Northwest Territory.

Annie?s Homegrown, the Wakefield, Mass.-based maker of organic and natural pasta meals, has expanded its presence in the food-service market through new partnerships with vendors and universities. Annie?s will provide products to the dining operations at the University of Connecticut, University of Rhode Island, Smith College, Massachusetts Institute of Technology Faculty Dining Services, Rhode Island College, Yale University and Tufts University.

In January, Wild Oats Markets Inc. became the first U.S. food retailer to offer fair-trade-certified bananas. The bananas, which are certified by TransFair USA, are available in 70 Wild Oats Natural Marketplace stores in 23 states.

Clemens Family Markets is the first store chain to feature the new Healthnotes EasyAnswers Touchscreen kiosks in-store. The touchscreens run Healthnotes? Healthy Living program in 20 of Clemens? 21 stores. Healthnotes Healthy Living program offers customers health and nutrition information, as well as recipes.

Cantox Health Sciences Int?l. is opening a European office to serve the global food and ingredients industry on European scientific and regulatory matters. Headed by Nigel Baldwin, the office will offer services such as scientific and global regulatory strategies, novel foods, ingredients and additives, supplements and herbal medicines, as well as safety assessments, dietary exposure estimates, and health and nutrition claims.

Cargill, of Minneapolis, and its joint-venture partner Shandong Huanghelong Group of Beijing, will be expanding the capacity of their xanthan gum production facility in Shandong Province, People?s Republic of China. The first phase of the project will increase production capacity to more than 5,000 metric tons by mid-2004 and will include a state-of-the-art analytical laboratory, a new wastewater treatment plant and other modifications to improve efficiencies. It will also incorporate U.S. good manufacturing practices standards.

Also, Cargill has acquired The Duckworth Group, a U.K. flavors company with alcohol, confectionery, dairy, savory and soft drinks divisions.

Nordic Naturals, of Watsonville, Calif., has received patents for its vegetarian capsules and proprietary manufacturing processes. The patents apply to capsules used for fatty acids, fish oils and other products. Nordic Naturals makes a line of fish oil and fish-oil blend products. The capsules use natural flavorings, including lemon, strawberry and grape.

The National Institutes of Health awarded a $100,000 research grant to Benicia, Calif.-based InterHealth Nutraceuticals. The money will be used to study the potential benefits of the company?s trans-resveratrol ingredient, Protykin, for use as a pharmacological preconditioning agent in the treatment and prevention of heart attacks. InterHealth will partner with the University of Connecticut School of Medicine to conduct the research.

BI Nutraceuticals has acquired the dietary supplement business unit of Hauser Inc. BI, of Long Beach, Calif., is a supplier of dietary supplement ingredients.

Pharmaca Integrative Pharmacy has again worked with the international aid groups Doctors Without Borders and Vitamin Angel Alliance to raise money to fight malnutrition and blindness in children around the world. Boulder, Colo.-based Pharmaca matched donations from customers made at its eight stores during the holidays and throughout January. Vitamin Angel is a nonprofit, nonsectarian organization created in 1994 to fight malnutrition and childhood blindness around the world.

SourceOne Global Partners of Chicago, which provides proprietary nutritional ingredients to manufacturers and marketers, has entered a special agreement with Seltzer Nutritional Technologies, a division of Seltzer Chemicals Inc. Seltzer will be allowed to manufacture and provide distribution services for Sytrinol, SourceOne?s cholesterol-lowering product.

New York-based OrganicWorks Marketing has been hired by Whole Foods Market to conduct the marketing and public relations campaign for the launch of Whole Foods? Columbus Circle store in Manhattan. OrganicWorks is also a member of the marketing and creative team for the upcoming LOHAS 8 conference in Los Angeles.

The Council for Responsible Nutrition has added these companies to its membership roster: Amerilab Technologies of New Hope, Minn.; PROSAR of St. Paul, Minn.; Shionogi Qualicaps of Whitsett, N.C.; and Unigen Pharmaceuticals of Broomfield, Colo.

Univera Pharmaceuticals is moving its corporate headquarters in July from Colorado to Washington, where it will operate a 40-acre, state-of-the-art research and manufacturing campus.

Super CitriMax, InterHealth Nutraceuticals? ephedra-free hydroxycitric acid weight-loss ingredient, has been affirmed as Generally Recognized as Safe for use in functional beverages. The evaluation was made by the Burdock Group, which specializes in evaluating the safety of food and beverage ingredients.

General Nutrition Companies Inc. and NSF Int?l. have entered an agreement to ensure that all GNC-branded products meet the requirements of NSF?s independent testing and certification programs.

Green & Black?s, a British producer of organic chocolate, has been awarded a $360,000 grant from the Department for International Development of Great Britain to develop a fair trade cocoa market in southern Belize. Green & Black?s has been buying cocoa from the Mayan people of Belize and the Toledo Cacao Growers Association for 10 years.

NSF Int?l. has formed a new alliance with the STAR-K Kosher Certification organization to meet the growing kosher food certification demands of consumers and businesses worldwide.

The Council for Responsible Nutrition has hired the lobbying firm of Bergner, Bockorny, Castagnetti & Hawkins to help with congressional lobbying focused on the positive health benefits of supplements and the need for fuller implementation of the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act.

Irvine, Calif.-based Cyvex Nutrition Inc. is celebrating its 20th anniversary in the supplements and functional foods industry with a new advertising and publicity campaign. The company plans to launch several new nutraceutical products during 2004.

Los Angeles-based Jarrow Formulas received one of Nutrition Business Journal?s 2003 Business Achievement Awards. Jarrow was named a silver award winner in the Investment in a Tough Climate category. Recently, Jarrow Formulas opened a 45,000-square-foot class 10,000 capable, ultra-low humidity-control contract manufacturing facility, Jarrow Industries Inc., and expanded its corporate facility 50 percent.

Mannatech Inc. of Coppell, Texas, fulfilled the company?s 10-millionth product order in December 2003. The company has been in business 10 years.

Natural Alternatives Int?l., the San Marcos, Calif.-based supplements maker, has donated adult multi-vitamin/minerals for low-income families to The Healthy Foundation and VNW Circle of Care of Temecula, Calif.

Chatsworth, Calif.-based Essentially Pure Ingredients, a nutraceutical ingredients company, was recognized as supplier of the month in the December 2003 issue of Nutrition Industry Executive. EPI was acknowledged for its leadership and innovation in providing nutraceutical ingredients to private-label customers, including parent company Natrol Inc.

James Finlay Ltd., the Morristown, N.J.-based tea products company, has reorganized. Two new divisions, leaf tea and tea extract, will be under the new corporate structure, Finlay Tea Solutions. The Leaf Tea division will be managed by Richard Darlington. Andrew McKay will manage the Tea Extract division. Also, James Finlay Overseas Ltd. in London will change its name to Finlay Tea Solutions UK Ltd., and James Finlay (US) Inc. will change its name to Finlay Tea Solutions USA Ltd.

Teeccino Caff? Inc. received the 2003 Veggie Award for Coffee Substitutes from VegNews magazine. Also, Teeccino appointed Sunrise Brand Management Specialists to head new sales efforts. Robert Tepper, president of Sunrise, is national sales manager for natural and specialty foods and will expand Teeccino?s distribution into grocery and specialty channels. Candace Stuart-Findlay of Results Marketing was appointed food service manager for natural foods and will launch the company?s food service program.

Natural Foods Merchandiser volume XXV/number 3/p. 160, 162, 166

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