Romaine’s Woes Are Great News for Other Kinds of Greens

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“Prices for iceberg, green leaf and other types of lettuce are soaring as demand surged in the wake of the romaine recall. A carton of iceberg lettuce at wholesale markets in California fetched as much as $60 this week, U.S. government data show. That’s up from as low as $24 on Nov. 19, the day before the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued a warning to consumers about romaine.

The same holds true for other salad staples: the price of Boston lettuce surged 175 percent, while green leaf lettuce gained 160 percent, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data. Even kale, a member of the same family as cabbage, was not immune, rising to as much as $16 a carton from a low of $12.

“It’s uncertain how long it will last,” said Trevor Suslow, the vice president of food safety for the Produce Marketing Association, referring to the price spike. “I would imagine it will stay high for a while because of the understandable disruption.”

See more here.

Hass Avocado Board reports strong US sales growth

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“The Hass Avocado Board reported that retail avocado sales for the month ending Sept. 9 grew 8.6% compared with year-ago levels. That was more than double the gain of total produce sales, which were up 3.7% for the period compared with year-ago levels, according to a news release.

The board said the Northeast topped the regional rankings in dollar growth rate at 16.2% higher than the same period a year ago. The Northeast was boosted by the three fastest growing markets: Pittsburgh (+42.6%), Albany (+36.2%), and Northern New England (+26.6%). The board said Northeast dollar growth was driven by a significant gain in volume (+42.7%), despite a decline in average selling prices(-18.6%).”

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NYC’s New Restaurant Openings

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Oath Pizza
Oath is a pizza place on the UWS that grows some of its own produce in an on-site hydroponic garden. You can get 11-inch pizzas for $11, or half pies for $7. Come for a casual group hang with all your houseplants.

See more Restaurant openings here.

Green Giant Debuts Riced Cauliflower Stuffing

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“Thanksgiving will always be a day of over-eating, but there are ways to make your meal a smidge healthier and still enjoy all the holiday favorites. Our kitchen team has come up with plenty of paleo, keto, and vegan-friendly Thanksgiving recipes, if you follow one of those particular diets. And now, Green Giant is throwing low-carb eaters a bone with their new Riced Cauliflower Stuffing.”

“Green Giant confirmed the new, healthy side will be coming to select retailers in November, and will roll out nationwide in January. According to the brand, it is “an ideal way to cut carbs and reduce calories by 45 percent.” Best of all, it can be cooked in just eight minutes, making meal prep ridiculously easy.”

Read more here.

Rice, bean bowls have become fan favorites

“Bowl builds are a powerhouse on menus today, fueled by a number of significant drivers. First, consumers love them so the demand is high. Thanks to a halo of wholesomeness, a promise of satiety and a bowlful of intriguing flavor combinations, that demand doesn’t look like it’s subsiding any time soon.

Second, bowls play well in a number of dayparts, from breakfast and lunch to that all-important snacking segment. “Bowls are easy to eat, they tend to look very pretty and for some reason, they open the door for people to be more adventurous with their menu choices,” says Jorge Cespedes, culinary creative director with Marlin Network, based in Springfield, Mo.”

“From an operator perspective, bowls have a place on every menu and in every daypart, playing into so many different trending flavor combinations.” They also are an ideal delivery system for the plant-forward trend, offering a perfect format for greens, grains, beans and legumes.”

Read more here.