Business Bites: Organic food safety questioned

On this week’s plate: Glove supplier Eagle Protect releases study showing potential cross-contamination in the organic food industry; Food & Beverage Insider to moderate dairy-focused webinar this week; and more.

Heather Carter, Associate editor

April 24, 2023

4 Min Read
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The organic food industry could be a potential victim of unsanitary conditions even if food handlers are wearing gloves. A new study unveiled some shocking results about new and unused gloves. Learn more, as well as what dairy experts forecast for the industry during Food & Beverage Insider’s first webinar of the year, in this week’s edition.

Study shows gloves cause cross-contamination

Gloves are essential in ensuring sanitary food handling and processing. That may not be working well for the organic food industry, however, according to a new study from Eagle Protect. The global glove and personal protective equipment (PPE) supplier conducted a five-year study on the risk of glove contamination, testing 2,800 new and unused U.S. glove imports from 26 different brands. Results revealed fecal indicators on up to half of the gloves, as well as foodborne pathogens (i.e., harmful bacteria), which are all capable of causing cross-contamination in organic food products. To help resolve this issue, Eagle Protect recently launched the Delta Zero program, which uses a third-party company to verify the quality and safety of its gloves.

Dairy-focused webinar moderated by Food & Beverage Insider

A team of experts will convene for Food & Beverage Insider’s first webinar of the year, “Great Innovations in Dairy.” The hour-long, free event will focus on the latest developments and market strategies, offering valuable insight into the industry. The session is moderated by Food & Beverage Insider Content Director Audarshia Townsend, who will be accompanied by Hayley and Stephanie Painter, founders of Painterland Sisters Organic Skyr Yogurt; Vivien Sheehan, Ph.D., VP of business development at Kerry; and Scott Dicker, director of market insights at SPINS. Townsend will monitor what’s certain to be an engaging discussion with topics ranging from the industry’s response to environmental and animal welfare concerns to new technologies changing the industry. It occurs on Thursday, April 27, at 1 p.m. ET. Register here.

Apparo’s sunflower protein ingredients earn Upcycled Certified classification

As plant-based diets become increasingly popular, Apparo's Solistein 001 and Solistein 002 isolates offer a novel solution. With a protein content of more than 90%, and sweet and neutral flavors, the isolates are a versatile ingredient that can be used in various plant-based foods, including ice cream, meats, bakery items and nutrition bars. The company’s Sunflower Protein product is free of gluten, soy and GMOs; is suitable for vegans/vegetarians; and recently earned Upcycled Certified status from Upcycled Food Association. The certification recognizes Apparo’s Total Crop Utilization platform, an innovative approach to reducing waste and promoting sustainable practices through upcycling on a large scale. The technology maximizes the nutritional outputs from sunflower seed meal and repurposes for human consumption agricultural materials previously used as animal feed.

Caramels get the plant-based treatment from Ocho Candy

Plant-based chocolate is a growing category. Organic chocolate brand Ocho Candy, which produces dairy and animal-free chocolate, recently expanded its nondairy offerings with four flavors of plant-based caramels. The vegan treats feature Miyoko’s Creamery European-Style Plant Milk Butter, which is made using organic cashew milk, coconut oil and mushroom extract. The USDA organic butter is also free of palm oil, an ingredient commonly seen in plant-based confectioneries.

Protein-packed chickpea burger joins food company’s alt-meat offerings

Israeli food tech startup Meat.The End (MTE) is expanding its lineup of alt-meat products. The company, which created plant-based Whoppers and “chicken nuggets” for an Israeli Burger King franchise in 2022, recently announced its new texturized chickpea protein burger. According to MTE founder and CEO Yishai Mishor, Ph.D., the chickpea burger has the taste, smell and texture of meat. In summer 2023, the alt-meat company plans to establish what it calls the “only” extrusion pilot plant in Israel to further its operations.

Heather Carter and Tedi Delashmet are Food & Beverage Insider's associate editor and content producer, respectively.

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About the Author(s)

Heather Carter

Associate editor, Food & Beverage Insider

With over a decade of diverse professional experience under her belt, Heather has journeyed from the bustling world of local news reporting to the intricate realms of trade publishing. She has covered a wide array of topics, ranging from architecture and design to the food and beverage industry.

During her illustrious career, Heather also ventured into the realm of public relations, where she gleaned invaluable insights into the art of strategic communication and brand storytelling. Yet, her heart has always been anchored in the vibrant world of F&B, a passion deeply ingrained in her roots as the daughter of a seasoned chef. She has always held a profound appreciation for the role food plays in shaping cultures and connecting people.

With each story she tells, Heather seeks to illuminate the profound impact of food and beverage on people’s lives, celebrating its ability to evoke emotions, foster connections and weave the fabric of our shared human experience.

As Food & Beverage Insider's associate editor, she co-publishes a weekly news column, Business Bites, which showcases the latest industry news, highlighting key business updates, food and beverage innovation, industry events and more. Some of her other articles touch on important topics, such as ultra-processed foods, plant-based foods primed to change the food landscape, international flavors and ingredients, as well as better-for-you CPGs. She also frequently covers top trends at various industry events and has moderated first-of-their-kind education sessions at Informa events.

She can be reached at [email protected].

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