NEWS ROUNDUP

Hannaford's Goulet HonoredPeter Goulet, director of produce for Hannaford Bros., has been honored as Produce Marketer of the Year, only the eighth time a retailer has received the award, which is presented during the annual convention of the Produce Marketing Association, Newark, Del. Goulet, who is the 27th recipient of the award, is also the youngest, at age 41. Goulet is a 26-year veteran of Hannaford

Hannaford's Goulet Honored

Peter Goulet, director of produce for Hannaford Bros., has been honored as Produce Marketer of the Year, only the eighth time a retailer has received the award, which is presented during the annual convention of the Produce Marketing Association, Newark, Del. Goulet, who is the 27th recipient of the award, is also the youngest, at age 41. Goulet is a 26-year veteran of Hannaford Bros., where he has worked in the produce area only since 1992. Officials who presented the honor to him described Goulet as "innovative, committed, unselfish, open-minded, respectful, creative, genuine and refreshing."

Fast Distribution Bolsters Program

CHICAGO -- America's Second Harvest here has announced first-year results for its Feeding Children Better program, launched last year in partnership with ConAgra Foods, Omaha, Neb. The anti-hunger organization reports the creation of a "Rapid Food Distribution System" has helped rescue millions of additional pounds of perishable foods that otherwise would have spoiled. There was a 40% increase in the amount of frozen fish delivered (1.4 million pounds), and a 104% increase in fresh produce deliveries (reaching 36.1 million pounds). The system, developed by ConAgra, uses computer software to track the movement of donations, and employs strategic trucking networks to deliver the food, said officials.

Fresh Express Initiative Debuts

SALINAS, Calif. -- Fresh Express has introduced a retailer initiative designed to maximize profit potential in the fresh-salad category by increasing the space devoted to such products and implementing programs to reduce out of stocks. According to officials, the category represents 53% of value-added produce profits, but receives only 39% of shelf space; likewise, it experiences 16% out of stocks, compared to 8% for traditional grocery. The program suggests retailers set up secondary promotional sections, increase shelf space by an average of 25% and reallocate existing space to faster-moving items to increase turns, and decrease shrink and labor.

FDA To Permit Irradiation of Juices

WASHINGTON -- The Food and Drug Administration is amending its food additive regulations to provide for the use of ultraviolet irradiation to reduce human pathogens and other microorganisms in juice products. The directive came in response to an earlier petition filed by California Day-Fresh Foods, Glendora, Calif., a juice company.

Company research cited by FDA found a reduction of specific pathogens (E. coli O157:H7, listeria monocytogenes and salmonella) in four types of sample juices: orange, apple, carrot and garden vegetable -- varieties most often consumed by the U.S. population. After irradiation, there were "significant reductions" in pathogens, an FDA statement said, leading the agency to conclude that treated juices will be "at least as safe as untreated juices currently on the market."