Posts Tagged “fresh vegetables”

Lettuce Takes Big Hit Due to E. coli Outbreaks, Report Says

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Two E. coli outbreak investigations linked to romaine lettuce in 2018 took its toll in overall lettuce per capita availability. One of those probes led to a six-day hiatus of all romaine sales helping lead to a plunge of 20 percent, according to a new report.

Dragged sharply by lower lettuce availability, the latest per capita numbers on fresh vegetables reveal a reduction of 8 percent in 2018 compared with 2017.

Not counting potatoes and melons, the USDA reported 2018 fresh per capita vegetable availability was 144.81 pounds, down from 157.45 pounds a year ago.

The biggest fresh vegetable per capita declines from 2017-18, by percentage, were:

  • Squash: 4.43 pounds, down 22 percent.
  • Head lettuce: 12.33 pounds, down 19 percent;
  • Leaf lettuce: 12.29 pounds, down 19 percent;
  • Onions: 20.39 pounds, down 19 percent; and 
  • Broccoli: 5.93 pounds, down 17 percent.

With the decline in availability — what growers have shipped — and consumer reluctance to purchase romaine the wake of the E. coli outbreaks, romaine sales were down 18 percent by value and 17 percent by volume in 2018, according to IRI/Fresh Look Marketing, 

Compared with 2017, the USDA said the top 5 gains in per capita availability for 2018, by percentage, were:

  • Carrots: 8.53 pounds, up 16 percent;
  • Asparagus: 1.76 pounds, up 9 percent;
  • Snap beans: 1.68 pounds, up 8 percent;
  • Cucumbers: 7.99 pounds, up 8 percent; and 
  • Celery: 4.98 pounds, up 5 percent.

The change in per capita consumption over the last decade shows winners and losers in a bigger context. Total fresh vegetable per capita availability in 2018 of 144.81 pounds is 1 percent higher than 2008.

Compared with 2008, the fresh vegetables with the biggest gains in per capita availability in 2018, by percentage, compared to 2008, were:

  • Southern greens: 2.89 pounds (2018), up 64 percent;
  • Cauliflower: 2.44 pounds (2018), up 55 percent;
  • Asparagus: 1.76 pounds (2018), up 48 percent;
  • Cucumber: 7.99 pounds (2018), up 25 percent; and 
  • Bell peppers: 11.16 pounds (2018), up 18 percent.

Biggest reductions in per capita availability over 10 years, from 2008 to 2018, according to the USDA, were:

  • Head lettuce: 12.33 pounds, down 27 percent;
  • Sweet corn: 6.75 pounds, down 26 percent;
  • Cabbage: 5.71 pounds, down 29 percent;
  • Celery: 4.98 pounds, down 20 percent; and 
  • Snap/green beans: 1.68 pounds, down 15 percent.

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Dole and Marvel Equip Parents in Their Heroic Battle for Healthier Families

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A1by Dole Food Company, Inc

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. — Powerful news for families fighting the good fight of nutrition in the home: Super Hero help is on the way.

Starting March 1, Black Panther, Captain America, Black Widow and other Avengers will team-up on new products to help moms, dads and all citizens win more of their daily battles to adopt a healthier lifestyle including a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables. The program continues through April 30, right before the epic release of Marvel’s Avengers: Infinity War on May 4.

“Powering the Hero Within” is an eight-week healthy-eating alliance between Dole and Marvel that combines original Marvel character-inspired recipes and healthy eating tips with character images on millions of DOLE® Bananas and Pineapples in U.S and Canadian supermarkets continent wide.

Weary meal planners will find relief in the form of 30 original Dole fruit and vegetable recipes directly inspired by Black Panther, Captain America, Iron Man, Hulk, Black Widow and Thor. Created by Dole Chef Mark Allison and registered dieticians at the Dole Nutrition Institute (DNI), each recipe links to the powers and personalities of the character – from “Liberty Banana Sushi” for Captain America, “T’Challa Teriyaki Kabobs” for Black Panther and “Mighty Mini-BLT Bites” for Thor to “Power Punch Smoothie” for Hulk,“Stark Industries Banana Pie Oatmeal” for Iron Man and “Widow Bite Spider Rolls” for Black Widow.

“Dole is taking its cue from the Marvel Universe to honor some of the biggest superheroes of all – the moms, dads, grandparents, teachers, coaches and others committed to making the home a healthier place,” said Bil Goldfield, director of corporate communications for Dole. “Since we know that getting kids to eat healthy can often seem like a hero-sized challenge, we’re arming those on the front lines with the reinforcements they need to change family eating habits one great-tasting healthy snack, entrée or dessert at a time.”

In addition to those iconic Marvel characters featured on DOLE produce, the program includes a dedicated Dole microsite offering recipes, character details and a celebration of the healthy-living collaboration between Dole and Marvel.

For recipes and other information about “Powering the Hero Within,” go to

About Dole Food Company, Inc.

Dole Food Company, Inc., is one of the world’s largest producers and marketers of high-quality fresh fruit and fresh vegetables. Dole is an industry leader in many of the products it sells, as well as in nutrition education and research.

About Marvel

Marvel Entertainment, LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Walt Disney Company, is one of the world’s most prominent character-based entertainment companies, built on a proven library of more than 8,000 characters featured in a variety of media over seventy-five years.  Marvel utilizes its character franchises in entertainment, licensing and publishing.

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Mann Packing Breaks Ground on New Processing Facility

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Mannby Mann Packing Company

SALINAS, Calif. – Mann Packing,  an industry leading supplier of premium fresh vegetables, broke ground in August on its new processing facility in Gonzales, California. The groundbreaking ceremony featured company representatives, local government officials and business leaders.

Headquartered in Salinas, California, Mann’s selected the City of Gonzales for its 130,000 square foot expansion project because of its convenient location and zoned industrial area.  The company has a further land base at the same location to accommodate future expansions. 250 people will be employed at the new facility.

Sixty-five percent of the company’s manufacturing volume will relocate from Salinas to the Gonzales facility. Mann’s location at 1250 Hansen Street in Salinas will continue to process fresh-cut vegetables, but will mainly serve as the company’s central warehouse, cooling and shipping facility.

Construction of the facility is targeted for completion in early 2018, with production beginning in spring. The facility was designed with the goal of achieving electric sustainability and will utilize a windmill turbine to supply energy for heating and cooling.

“We are proud to announce our new home in Gonzales and excited to be part of this thriving business community,” said Lorri Koster, chairman & CEO at Mann’s. “This project represents the beginning of a partnership and a culmination of years of planning to create a facility which will serve as an anchor for the company’s fresh processing needs,” she added.

About Mann Packing Company

Founded in 1939, Mann Packing is an industry leading, third-generation supplier of premium fresh vegetables. Headquartered in Salinas, Mann’s is one of the largest suppliers of western vegetables, Broccolini® and sugar snap peas in North America. The firm holds the distinguished Women’s Owned Business Certification from the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council – the most widely recognized and respected certification in the United States for women’s business enterprises. Leading the way in product innovation, environmental sustainability and green supply chain management practices, Mann Packing is consistently vigilant in food safety, employee wellness and quality assurance, making for one of the most trusted brands in the industry.


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Per Capita Use of Fresh Vegetables in U.S. Shows a Decline

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DSCN3922New USDA estimates say U.S. per capita use of fresh vegetables dipped 5 percent in 2013 and imports claimed a record share of the total supply.

Preliminary numbers show per-capita use of fresh vegetables (excluding potatoes and melons) in the U.S. totaled 138.8 pounds in 2013, down 5 percent from 145.5 pounds in 2012 and off 5 percent from 146.8 pounds in 2000, according to the USDA’s Economic Research Service.  That preliminary number is the lowest per-capita use of fresh vegetables since 1998’s tally of 136.1 pounds.

Imports accounted for a record 27.3 percent of fresh vegetable use in the U.S. in 2013, up from 25.1 percent in 2012 and double the import share of 13.2 percent in 2000. U.S. vegetable exports accounted for 7.1 percent of the domestic supply, up from 7 percent in 2012, but down from 7.8 percent in 2000.

The report reflects a decline in most of the major fresh vegetables tracked in 2013 compared with the previous year, including tomatoes (-3 percent to 19.6 pounds), head lettuce (-12 percent to 12.5 pounds), carrots (-4 percent to 7.6 pounds), bell peppers (-10 percent to 10.3 pounds) and sweet corn (-4 percent to 7.4 pounds). Other less consumed vegetables also showed declines, including asparagus (-5 percent to 1.6 pounds) and snap/green beans (-5 percent to 1.7 pounds).

Fresh vegetables that showed stable per-capita use included cabbage (7.1 pounds) and cauliflower (1.2 pounds).

Fresh potato and broccoli per-capita use was higher in 2013, according to the USDA.

Broccoli rose 8 percent from 6.3 pounds in 2012 to 6.8 pounds in 2013, while potato per-capita use in 2013 rose 5 percent to 36.1 pounds.

The change in per-capita use doesn’t mean that much for a single year, said Desmond O’Rourke, president of Belrose Inc., Pullman, Wash.  Weather events and yield differences can create swings, he said. O’Rourke said USDA Agricultural Marketing Service shipment data shows 2013 vegetable volume was flat compared with 2012, though the USDA includes pumpkins in their total volume numbers for vegetables.

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