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[email protected]: Coconut shortage continues | From 23andMe to fighting food allergies

Each day at 5 p.m. we collect the five top food and supplement headlines of the day, making it easy for you to catch up on today's most important natural products industry news.

The world appears to be running out of coconuts

Grocers and brands are being affected by a global coconut shortage caused by increased demand and declining productivity from aged palms, pests and disease. Coconut prices hit a record high earlier this year. Coconut production, which is concentrated in Indonesia, the Philippines and the Caribbean, totals about 16 million metric tons. Read more at St. Louis Post-Dispatch...

 

Nearly 6 million kids in the U.S. have food allergies. This woman is trying to change that.

Ashley Dombkowski, the former chief business officer of 23andMe, has a new venture with a mission to reduce food allergies in children. She co-founded Before Brands with Stanford pediatrician Kari Nadeau and recently launched a daily supplement powder called SpoonfulOne that contains small amounts of 16 common food allergens, along with some vitamin D. The company was founded on research that suggests that early introduction of potentially allergenic foods may help prevent allergies. Read more at The Lily…

 

DNA-based diet advice is big business with little scientific support

Vitagene, Habit, Viome–these personalized nutrition companies look at stool, spit or blood samples for clues into a person’s genetic or microbiome makeup that could dictate certain nutrition needs. But are these companies based on solid science? Critics point to a 2015 meta-analysis which concluded that there’s a lack of evidence that certain people respond better to certain diets based on their genetic composition. And as far as the microbiome goes, the director of the Human Microbiome Project says even she doesn’t know what a healthy microbiome looks like just yet. Habit, for its part, says it’s conducting two clinical trials on the impact of its diet recommendations on people’s health. Read more at Fast Company…

 

Whole Foods chicken supplier plans to triple its output with organic booming

Bell & Evans will triple its organic poultry production with a new processing facility in Pennsylvania that’s scheduled to open in 2020. It will also transition to a slower-growing breed of chickens as it hopes to improve its animal welfare and flavor. Chickens are the third-largest organic agricultural commodity, and farm sales of organic chickens grew 78 percent last year, according to the USDA. Read more at Bloomberg…

 

Brookline resident boosts brain power with the power of nutrition

IQ Bar is a new functional food bar launching on Kickstarter that contains healthy fats and just 8 to 9 grams of carbs. Read more at Wicked Local Brookline…

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