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5@5: Independent meat processors rise to the occasion | COVID-19 prompts consumers to switch grocers

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.

As COVID-19 disrupts the industrial meat system, independent processors have a moment to shine

Small-scale and pasture-based farmers and their processors have largely been driven out of business by Big Meat, but those remaining are having a hard time keeping up with demand as large-scale meatpacking plants continue to shut down and slow down operations in the wake of COVID-19. And many experts are pushing for this localized meat production system to continue after the pandemic subsides in order to avoid the drastic drop in supply that occurs when large meatpacking plants are shut down. Read more at Civil Eats

 

Shoppers flee their primary grocer, some for good

A new survey of 1,500 shoppers reveals that 20% of them have changed primary grocery stores since the COVID-19 crisis began. The main reasons for this? Consumers are seeking out well-stocked retailers with established delivery and e-commerce options. Shoppers that reside in urban areas were also found to be more likely to make a switch in terms of where they shop for food. Read more at Grocery Dive

 

USDA limits review requirements of some biotech farm products

USDA recently introduced a rule that will waive agency reviews of some biotech farm products, such as plants and seeds that have been genetically modified. What this means is that food companies can now use biotech methods to create a product with traits that could have been achieved through traditional plant breeding in a quicker and cheaper way, and they would no longer have to go through pre-market USDA reviews before going to retail. Read more at Reuters

 

Why Mark Cuban invested in a vegan company with pay-what-you-can pricing that the other Sharks hated

Mark Cuban's investment in a vegan, non-GMO soap and body care company that offers a sliding price scale had his fellow investors bemused to say the least. But Cuban was attracted to the company's transparency with its consumers and stated that "when a mission discloses something unique, that is worth the effort, then OK, particularly when it’s [only a] $60,000 [investment].” Read more at CNBC

 

With new revenue streams and marketing efforts, Recess tries to become a national beverage brand

CBD-infused sparkling water brand Recess is ramping up its online presence with a redesigned website, new subscription models for consumers and a new ordering system for wholesale vendors. Founder and CEO Benjamin Witte states that these and other efforts are necessary because although the e-commerce side of the business is up 400%, its retail business has been slashed in half. Read more at Modern Retail… 

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