Editor's choice: the highlights on just-food this week
This week saw the debate around the food industry's role in the obesity epidemic come to the fore once again, as the UK Government warned that the industry must do more or face the possibility of legislation. The inauguration of Barack Obama for his second term in office gave us a timely opportunity to look at what has been achieved under his administration - and what could be in store for US food makers. Meanwhile, news that Christine Tacon has been named UK Groceries Code Adjudicator put supply chain relationships firmly in the spotlight. We were able to delve a little deeper into Tacon's take on the subject when we interviewed her shortly after her appointment.
Consuming Issues - Childhood obesity: The Obamas' legacy?
Today (21 January) sees Barack Obama's second inauguration as President of the United States, an appropriate juncture to look ahead to what the next four years may have in store in terms of US food policy.
INTERVIEW: Warburtons plots free-from drive
Warburtons has unveiled an ambitious plan for its free-from business. The UK baker intends to double sales of free-from products during 2013. Katy Askew caught up with Warburtons free-from director Chris Hook to find out how this can be achieved.
UK: Do more on Responsibility Deal or face legislation - Minister
Public health minister Anna Soubry has told UK food industry leaders they must engage more companies in the Responsibility Deal on health or risk the government imposing regulation
INTERVIEW: Responsibility Deal food chair Dr Susan Jebb
UK ministers and food industry leaders are keen to expand the reach of the Responsibility Deal in 2013 to show its many doubters that voluntary pledges can help to deliver healthier diets for consumers. Step forward Dr Susan Jebb, who, as chair of food portion of the deal, has the dubious honour of trying to keep everybody happy, at least some of the time.
INTERVIEW: Groceries Code Adjudicator Christine Tacon
The UK's first Groceries Code Adjudicator, Christine Tacon, is determined not to clip the wings of the free market and expects to use her investigative powers sparingly. Chris Mercer spoke to the woman with the power to fine retailers, following her appointment this week.
On the move: Sir Stuart Rose parachutes in to Ocado
Sir Stuart Rose brings a dose of glamour, prestige and experience to the chairman's seat at Ocado, but don't expect miracles, analysts have warned.
Just the answer: Plum Organics CEO Neil Grimmer, Plum UK CEO Scott Wotherspoon
US and UK baby food makers Plum Organics and Plum UK have more than their names in common. Both start-ups were founded by parents seeking an alternative to mainstream baby foods. Both group's share a passion for providing quality products that meet the needs of young children and their parents. Both have come to a high growth area of the baby food category as challenger brands to then expand quickly using clever marketing and a fresh approach to innovation. The similarities are so striking that yesterday's (24 January) announcement that US-based Plum Organics has acquired Plum UK seems almost written in the stars. Katy Askew caught up with Plum Organics CEO Neil Grimmer and Plum UK CEO Scott Wotherspoon to discuss how the tie-up will act as a platform for growth
Talking Tech: The development of technology in mobile couponing
The concept of couponing in grocery retail is nothing new. For decades, retailers have used coupons to entice customers and drive footfall. The use of digital technology in couponing is growing, but admittedly is in its infancy in the UK. Michelle Russell takes a look at the increasing use of mobile and digital technology in couponing, what is driving this growth and what retailers are having to do in order to stay ahead of the competition.
On the money: Unilever eyes gross margin improvement for food
Unilever has said it expected its food business to have performed better in 2012 and said innovation will be an important source of gross margin improvement in the division in the new financial year.
UPDATE: RUSSIA: Magnit seen overtaking X5 as largest Russian grocer
The release of X5 Retail Group's sales figures has prompted pundits to suggest that Magnit could overtake X5 as Russia's largest retailer this year.
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