Starbucks Rolls Out New Rolls (and Sandwiches) To Win The Food Fight

The goal of the monthlong drive, launched for the first time in 2012, is to surpass last years 25,000 pounds collected. As of Friday, the drive had not reached even half of that goal, but organizers report last years effort received most of its donations during the final week. I would hope we would get a similar surge, said Frank Pinto, director of the countys Department of Human Services, which is coordinating the drive with the countywide Interfaith Food Pantry, local pantries and other nonprofit groups. Were running a little behind last year. The drive proved invaluable last year when Hurricane Sandy hit a month later and there was a big demand for food but few donations. There was a real need that we were able to meet, Pinto said. The exterior of the Interfaith Food Pantry, located near the old Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital in Parsippany.Courtesy of the Interfaith Food Pantry The initiative, known as the Morris County Municipal Action to Curb Hunger, or M.c.M.A.T.C.H., offers a friendly competition between towns to see which is the most generous. The towns are grouped into three divisions based on their population. Last years winners were Mount Olive, Rockaway Borough and Mendham Borough, with Mount Olive winning overall with 1,692 pounds of food and $2,750 in money collected. Although Morris is known as a wealthy county, that reflects a high cost of living, and a still sluggish economy means nearly one-third of residents fall below the level of self-sufficiency, said Carolyn Lake, the food pantrys director of community relations. A report issued by the United Way in 2011 said a family of four needs an income of $64,000 annually to pay for basic living expenses in Morris, Lake said. That means those making less are technically not in poverty but still having trouble making ends meet, Lake said. One car repair can put them over the edge, she said. By the end of the month, theyre coming in here for help. The warehouse at the Interfaith Food Pantry.Courtesy of Interfaith Food Pantry The interfaith pantry served 5,000 Morris County residents during the first five months of 2013, according to the pantrys executive director, Rosemary Gilmartin.

La Boulange’s key to success with the upscale, health-conscious crowd that frequents Whole Foods was eschewing preservatives in favor of simply baking products that froze well, and shipping freshly baked but frozen products to its retail customers. The strategy of distributing freshly baked, freshly frozen food to retail locations should suit Starbucks well, as its stores aren’t set up for on-location baking. Starbucks is now expanding a large research and development facility in San Francisco to work out recipes that can be frozen without loss of quality, that satisfy consumers, and that reflect regional tastes. Starbucks plans to cater to local cuisines by, for example, using local apples in its fruit pastries in the Northeastern markets, offering sausage rolls in Chicago, and selling pastrami sandwiches in New York. Part of the desire to offer more attractive food is, of course, the acknowledgement that many Starbucks coffee customers are going elsewhere for food, and those dollars could be captured in-store. However, Starbucks also hopes that adding food in stores will persuade more commuters to head to a Starbucks drive-through location. Not only would Starbucks like to attract some of the traffic that goes through fast food stores’ drive-throughs, but drive-through locations also boast higher margins than foot-traffic stores. Only about 40% of Starbucks’ U.S. locations offer drive-throughs today, but management hopes that prioritizing drive-throughs will allow locations in new places, with a goal that 60% of newly opened locations will offer a drive-through. Starbucks hopes to position itself as an attractive and reasonable breakfast-on-the-go alternative. If it can do that, it could see its domestic food sales become as remarkable, and as profitable, as its coffee sales. 3 more companies ready to rule retail The retail space is in the midst of the biggest paradigm shift since mail order took off at the turn of last century. Only the most forward-looking and capable companies will survive, and they’ll handsomely reward investors who understand the landscape.

With food allergies on the rise, lunch gets complicated for ASD

Nearly half of all district students are eligible for free and reduced lunch. By law, the district has to offer food alternatives for kids with restricted diets. Before last year, the district did a haphazard job of it, said LaDonna Dean, a registered dietician who is the district’s head of student nutrition. “I started getting these phone calls,” Dean said from her office at the district’s central kitchen. “Where the mom is saying, ‘My kid is on the free program and you have nothing on the menu that my kid can eat. And I can’t afford to send a lunch for my kid every day.'” Dean knows how scary it can be for a parent to send a severely food allergic child to school. Her own son has five food allergies that can trigger anaphylactic shock. She chose his preschool in part because it was a “peanut-free environment.” So she developed a menu of optional meals that were free of the eight most common allergens. (The district doesn’t ever serve anything with peanuts in it — or even buy from producers that can’t guarantee their products are peanut-free.) Most of it was easy substitution, she said, swapping tortillas for brown rice, say, or omitting a bun. Occasionally she has to get creative. She buys local markets out of bison for kids who can’t eat other proteins.