Caught My Attention 012 (170609)

Continuing on from my notes, catching up and posting a double header.
In the news a lot lately, Whole Foods has a lot of pressure on it. They are no longer the only game in the health conscience grocery segment. And this article points out that they have been good in the segment but now with more players coming in and other things competing (like online commerce), they have to play a careful balancing act to survive. They can’t dumb down their focus but they also need to expand other areas. I have seen in many of their stores (and in the new 365 concept) that a lot of energy is being put into prepared foods too. They need to be able to keep their longtime customers, as well as attract new shoppers.
(link to Bloomberg: The Future of Whole Foods Isn’t About Groceries)
Here in Los Angeles, there are many mom’n pop independent donut shops. And the pink donut box has become an icon here. Here is an interesting story about the history and how the pink box came to be.
(link to LATimes: Why are doughnut boxes pink? The answer could only come out of Southern California)
As mentioned above, Whole Foods is expanding on the prepared foods area including trying out full on restaurants. Here is an article on the first one that is on the same property but detached from the grocery store.
(link to Atlanta Journal-Constitution: Whole Foods to open first standalone restaurant next week)
Small food companies have been getting a lot of attention, which also attracts investors. And in trying to get a jump on other competitors, several large organizations (companies like Pepsi and Chobani, not just venture funds) are starting business incubators to help the start-ups get going and I imagine helps the investors get a good insight on them earlier than others. Here Ikea is starting an incubator in Sweden for food businesses.
(link to Quartz: Moving beyond meatballs, IKEA wants to be an incubator for food innovation)
There is a lot of nostalgia and connection when I remember foods from when I was a kid. I think many feel the same. There have been times recently where I might find some retro version of some product packaging that brings back memories, but then the product inside just isn’t what I remember. Maybe not the same, or maybe my memory is what I want to believe and not how reality was back then. Here is an article on how General Mills is taking out artificial colors and flavors but trying to keep the feeling that you might remember. They describe artificial as something “derived from something other than a plant, spice, or another substance found in nature”
(link to Bustle: Why Did Trix Change Colors? The Reason Why Is Actually To Your Benefit)

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