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Food news briefs this week

Zoom in font  Zoom out font Published: 2018-11-08  Views: 9
Core Tip: Malaysia will for the first time impose an excise tax of MYR 0.40 ($0.10) per litre on sweetened beverages starting April 1, 2019.
Malaysia will for the first time impose an excise tax of MYR 0.40 ($0.10) per litre on sweetened beverages starting April 1, 2019.

This will be on beverages that contain sugar exceeding 5 grams per 100ml, as well as juices that contain more than 12 grams per 100ml. The tax follows a study conducted by the health ministry which found that nearly one in two Malaysians are overweight or obese.
COCA-COLA has been on an acquisition spree: buying coffee shop chain Costa, French fruit drink Tropico, and Australian kombucha Mojo; alongside minority investments in sports brand Bodyarmor and smoothie and juice company Made Group.

PEPSI Co has acquired Health Warrior – a US-based company that makes plant-based products including nutrition bars and on-trend offerings.
The transaction will further expand the company’s nutrition portfolio and move to position itself at the forefront of changing consumer preferences and trends.

Through acquisitions, the company best known for its signature soda has been branching into healthier snacking. This has been a strategy for years, though the company seems to be accelerating more into this space now.

After all, PepsiCo bought Quaker Oats in 2001 and has jointly owned hummus and dips company Sabra since 2008. More recently, it bought baked fruit maker Bare Foods earlier this year and acquired probiotic drink maker KeVita in 2016. On an earnings call earlier this year, former CEO Indra Nooyi estimated PepsiCo has grown its business of good-for- you and better-for-you products from 38% of revenue in 2006 to about 50% last year.

THE 2018 Australian Craft Beer Survey has crowned Balter Brewing as the best craft brewery in the country.

7-Eleven has rolled out a mobile self-checkout feature called Scan & Pay at 14 of its stores in the US. If the pilot is successful, 7-Eleven plans to expand the program to additional cities next year.

Shoppers can use the 7-Eleven app to scan their own products and check out using a smartphone without having to wait in line. Customers who have the app and are in the vicinity of a self-checkout enabled store will receive a notification.

Concern over animal welfare is driving demand for ‘pastured’ eggs as an alternative to caged and free range production.

Some farmers are riding the boom created by a backlash against new free range stocking density rates in Australia.

British MasterChef critic and magazine editor William Sitwell is battling backlash over a comment he made about “killing vegans, one by one”.

BuzzFeed reported that Sitwell, the former editor of Waitrose Food magazine, made the statement in an email to freelance writer Selene Nelson, who had pitched a series on plant-based cooking.

In his response, Sitwell reportedly wrote to her: “How about a series on killing vegans, one by one. Ways to trap them? How to interrogate them properly? Expose their hypocrisy? Force-feed them meat? Make them eat steak and drink red wine?”

Following an uproar, Sitwell, who is also a food critic on BBC’s MasterChef, apologised and said that he was resigning from his position at the magazine, which states it features “recipes and articles from the world’s best chefs and food writers”.

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