Natural Foods Merchandiser
Smart Balance aquires Udi's, Sprout Foods adds products and more industry news

Smart Balance aquires Udi's, Sprout Foods adds products and more industry news

Catch up on the latest company, people and product news with the monthly Industry Insider column.


Smart Balance has reorganized after acquiring Udi’s Gluten Free Foods. It will move its headquarters to Boulder, Colo., and make its corporate name Boulder Brands. In addition to the move, the company structure will now have two operating segments: Smart Balance and Natural.

Herbal supplements producer Savesta announced that it appointed Pacific Pioneers Brokerage to represent Savesta national accounts and independent retailers.

Roche Bros., a Massachusetts-based supermarket chain, has launched a program to increase traceability of its seafood products in partnership with Foley Fish. Using a QR code on select products, customers can verify the seafood they’re buying was harvested sustainably and not processed before reaching them.

Charitable Giving

Consumer-owned retail grocer PCC Natural Markets pledged $100,000 to support citizens’ Initiative 522 in Washington. The initiative calls for mandatory labeling of genetically-modified ingredients.   

Annie’s announced support and sponsorship of the FoodCorps Fellows mentor organization as a part of its larger Gardens of Goodness Initiative. Annie’s is the seed funder for the nationwide FoodCorps Fellows, it also provides a Grants for Gardens initiative, a Sustainable Agriculture Scholarships program and a downloadable Annie’s Garden Resource how-to guide.

Probiotics manufacturer UAS Laboratories awarded two scholarships to dairy science students at South Dakota State University. UAS also provided an endowment for probiotic research to SDSU.

For the third time, New York and New Jersey ShopRite Supermarkets raised money for five local veteran organizations. ShopRite donated $300,000 this year to the organizations assisting service men and women and their families.

Onward, Upward and Outward

Organic and natural foods retailer Healthy Living Market and Cafe started construction on its second location. The South Burlington, Vt.-based company is building a 35,000-square-foot store that will employ about 140 people.

Colorado-based Dazbog Coffee announced plans for expansion to 25 states in the Midwest and East regions of the U.S.

Natural and organic retailer Lazy Acres of Santa Barbara, Calif., announced it would open a second store in Long Beach, Calif., by early November. Lazy Acres is a subsidiary of Bristol Farms.

Wausau, Wis.-organic retailer Downtown Grocery announced plans to double its size at its current location. The new store will expand from 1,500 square feet to 3,000 square feet.


3D retail simulation research company InContext Solutions announced its partnership with eye tracking research and analysis company Tobii Technology. The two companies plan on supplementing InContext Solutions’ virtual research of consumers with Tobii’s eye tracking capabilities.


Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods won the Specialty Trophy at this year’s 19th Annual World Porridge Making Championship. Laurie Figone competed on behalf of the company, submitting the dish that won the trophy.

Organika’s Organic Virgin Coconut Oil took both a silver and bronze medal in the Alive 2012 Awards Poll. The silver medal was for Consumers’ Choice in the Functional Foods category, and the bronze medal was for the outright Functional Foods category. Its Organic Coconut Vinegar and Coconut Vinegar with Raw Wild Honey were both voted Top Ten Innovative Products at Grocery Show East 2012.

Product News

Carlson Laboratories announced the release of Carlson for Kids Chewable DHA supplement. The soft gel supplement is bubblegum flavored and provides 250 mg of DHA per serving. The company also introduced its newest fish oil supplement, Salmon Oil Complete.

Equal Exchange, an organic and fair trade advocate, launched a new three-product line of chocolate bars. The line consists of: a dark chocolate fruit and nut bar, a milk chocolate crisp bar and a milk chocolate peanut butter bar.

Boulder, Colo.-based Celestial Seasonings added Enerji Green Tea Energy Shots to its Natural Shot line. The shots come in three flavors: berry, citrus and pomegranate.

Udi’s Gluten Free Foods introduced five products at Natural Products Expo East. The new products included its Plain Tortillas, Everything Inside Bagel, Harvest Crunch Muffins, Mighty Bagel and Double Vanilla Muffins.

Organic baby and toddler food company Sprout Foods launched more convenient packaging for its products and added new toddler puree snacks to its product line. The new puree flavors include acaí, raspberry, blueberry and black currant.

Sartell, Minn.-based company FitPro Real Milk Protein launched its line of natural gluten- and lactose-free protein drinks in major Eastern U.S. markets including New York. The company plans to complete a national rollout of its products by 2013.

Natural sweetener company Truvia introduced a multimillion marketing campaign called “From Nature. For Sweetness” in September. Truvia is a stevia sweetener

Papa Ben’s Kosher, Eastern European inspired Mandelbroyt (almond bread), will now be available across Los Angeles, Orange and Santa Barbara counties at any Gelson’s Supermarket.

Lonza, a Switzerland-based manufacturer, introduced a daily immune supplement called Alomune. The supplement is available in Chocolate Chewable Tablets and Mixed Berry Stick Packs.

InBalance Health, a type 2 diabetes food bar and supplement specialist, introduced a product line called INBar.

In The Raw launched its new zero-calorie sweetener called In The Raw Monk Fruit. The sugar substitute is made from the vine-ripened monk fruit native to Asia.

Upfront Nutty Granola, made by Upfront Foods is now carried by Whole Foods’ Florida Region. Upfront Foods is headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., and produces granola that is Kosher certified as well as Non-GMO Project verified.

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