Natural Foods Merchandiser

Natural food news briefs

Organic java sales jump
U.S. retail sales of organic coffee increased 24 percent to $110 million in 2006, according to the Organic Trade Association's 2007 Organic Manufacturer Survey. "The dramatic increase in organic coffee sales mirrors the continuing growth in the overall organic sector and reflects consumers' increasing awareness of these products, their high quality and the availability of these beverages in venues ranging from small coffee shops to ?big box' stores," said Caren Wilcox, OTA's executive director, in a statement.

Boiling peanuts boosts their health benefits
A new study, published in the November issue of the American Chemical Society's Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, found that boiled peanuts have up to four times more disease-fighting phytochemicals than raw, dry or oil-roasted nuts. Lloyd Walker, the study's co-author, said the water and heat from boiling penetrate the nuts, releasing beneficial chemicals.

Organic foods more nutritious, says EU study
Preliminary findings from a four-year, $25.8 million study at England's Newcastle University indicate what many in the organic industry have been waiting for: solid evidence that organic food is more nutritious than nonorganic varieties. According to the research, organic fruit and vegetables have up to 40 percent more antioxidants than conventional produce, and organic milk contains 60 percent to 80 percent more antioxidants, along with higher levels of vitamin E, than its conventional counterpart. Carlo Leifert, the study's coordinator, told UK newspaper The Guardian that more research is needed to understand why this variation exists.

Honey's healing power generates new buzz
Move over antibiotics: Honey is a wound-care therapy surgeons are being advised to reconsider, according to a review of 18 studies covering more than 60 years of research that appeared in the October issue of the International Journal of Clinical Practice. "Honey is one of the oldest foods in existence and was an ancient remedy for wound healing," said lead author Dr. Fasal Rauf Khan, in a statement. "Now, concerns about antibiotic resistance, and a renewed interest in natural remedies, has prompted a resurgence in [its] antimicrobial and wound-healing properties." The study also found that honey is especially helpful when wounds become infected or fail to close or heal.

Natural Foods Merchandiser volume XXVIII/number 12/p.32

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