Natural Foods Merchandiser

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Lycopene health claim approved—sort of

The U.S. Food & Drug Administration issued a qualified health claim that states, ?Very limited and preliminary scientific research suggests that eating one-half to one cup of tomatoes and/or tomato sauce a week may reduce the risk of prostate cancer. FDA concludes that there is little scientific evidence supporting this claim.? As for lycopene itself, the FDA stated, ?There is no credible evidence to support a qualified health claim.? The claim for lycopene has been pending since early 2004.


Phthalate increase linked to men?s cologne
A new study has added more fuel to the anti-phthalate fire, finding higher concentrations of the chemical in the urine of men who reported using hair products, cologne and deodorant.

Phthalates are used as plasticizers, solvents and stabilizers for colors and fragrances. They appear in products ranging from personal care items and medications to paints, adhesives and polyvinyl chloride plastics. A 2003 study linked the chemicals with DNA damage and lower motility in human sperm. Another study, published earlier this year, associated prenatal exposure to phthalates with shortened genitals in male infants.

In the latest study, researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston interviewed 406 men about personal care products they used, then tested their urine for concentrations of phthalate monoesters. By one measure, men who had used cologne or aftershave within 48 hours had median levels of monoethyl phthalate twice as high as those who did not, rising 33 percent with each additional type of product used.

The study was published in the November issue of Environmental Health Perspectives.

SuperValu to launch Sunflower Market
Minneapolis-based SuperValu will step into the natural and organic retail marketplace with the launch of a new retail format, Sunflower Market, selling ?value-priced organic foods.? The first Sunflower Market store is scheduled to open in Indianapolis in January 2006.

SuperValu Chairman and Chief Executive Jeff Noddle told an investor conference that a 100-item organic private label line will be developed for use at the company?s Cub Foods and Save-a-Lot stores as well as the new Sunflower stores. The stores will range from 12,000 to 15,000 square feet and carry 8,000 to 12,000 SKUs.

?Sunflower Market draws on our expertise in small-box formats, and leverages our supply chain expertise, which enables us to deliver outstanding natural and organic products at a price point consistent with consumer expectations,? Noddle said.

The format has the same name and many of the same features as Sunflower Markets of Longmont, Colo., which was started three years ago by Wild Oats founder Mike Gilliland. Although the companies are not related, Gilliland?s 11-store chain licenses the Sunflower name from SuperValu for use in the Southwest, where it advertises ?Serious food at silly prices.?


Natural Foods Merchandiser volume XXVI/number 12/p. 7, 9

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