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No 'organic' label for some foods

Bombarded with a record 150ꯠ comments to its organic labeling proposal, most of them critical, the U.S. Department of Agriculture apparently will rule that genetically engineered and irradiated foods, and crops fertilized with sewage sludge, may not be labeled "organic." Agriculture Secretary Dan Glickman had received letters from members of Congress criticizing the organic labeling proposal.
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Mexican regs update

A new guidebook purports to help packagers exporting to Mexico comply with that country's food labeling regulations. "Food Products Labeling Guide: Mexican Standards," published by the National Food Processors Assn., contains clarifications of key standards that took effect in 1997.
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Stronger alcohol labeling?

Sen. Strom Thurmond (R-SC) introduced legislation to amend the Alcoholic Beverage Labeling Act to include more information in the message warning of negative health effects associated with drinking alcohol.
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Packages test 'new waters'

Infused with supplementary oxygen, new oxygenated bottled waters are said to enhance physical endurance and offer a fresh taste akin to mountain water.
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Self-chilling cans

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed a ban on two hydrofluorocarbon gases, including HF3-134a, used as refrigerants in self-chilling beverage cans.
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PET egg 'carton' is a tri-fold

Rarely can a food marketer afford to switch to new packaging costing 20¢/unit when the packaging being replaced costs 8¢. But that's exactly what Egg Innovations of Port Washington, WI, did last summer when it replaced molded pulp egg cartons with clear tri-fold containers thermoformed of polyethylene terephthalate.
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Color-coded fragrances

Since introducing potpourri items last summer, Candle-lite's Fragrance De-Lite(TM) line now includes six products each available in eight different fragrances.
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Inventing a super-premium category

Upscale packaging is being put to the test by Corby Distilleries (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) in a launch of three new super-premium Canadian whiskeys.
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Coming to a package near you

Two new symbols we'll be seeing on packaging in the future are those developed by The 100% Recycled Paperboard Alliance (RPA-100%), New York, NY, and the Gravure Assn.
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Flea market law contested

A revised version of New Jersey's new flea market bill is moving through the state legislature after a vigorous public campaign by New Jersey flea market vendors.
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Pregnancy labeling changes

FDA plans to revise its regulatory requirements for the pregnancy section of pharmaceutical labeling. An advanced notice of proposed rulemaking will put forth "preliminary proposals for changing the current requirements and will invite comments on all aspects of the notice." This is a long-term action and FDA gave no timetable.
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From soup to sauce, easy-grip PET

Hot-filled plastic jars with pinched-grip sides took center stage in May as Seneca Foods and Campbell Soup both unveiled intriguing new containers with similar-looking grips.
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Eat-in tray for single-serve cereal

Spotted by PW editors at the recent Food Marketing Institute show in Chicago was a 1.7-oz microwavable single-serve paperboard tray with integral lid for hot cereal from Nature's Path Foods, Delta, British Columbia, Canada.
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Fresh juice warnings

FDA is accepting comments on a proposal that would require juice manufacturers to put warning labels on unpasteurized juices saying the product can contain hazardous bacteria and could be harmful to children, the elderly and those with weak immune systems.
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California eases up

It seems like almost the impossible has happened in California, where both industry and environmental organizations have praised a new plan adopted by California regulators aimed at increasing the state's plastic container recycling rate.

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