Whole Foods Market offers a new line of certified kosher chicken and turkey that is now available at select U.S. locations. The products are provided by Kosher Valley, a new certified kosher brand from Hain Celestial Group (Hain Pure Protein), and are certified by Rabbi Yechiel Babad and the Orthodox Union. Kosher Valley's antibiotic-free kosher line is one of the first of its kind in the United States.

"Interest in kosher meat continues to grow," said Theo Weening, global meat buyer for Whole Foods Market. "We're excited to be able to offer a variety of superior chicken and turkey products to our customers for Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur."

According to Kosher Valley, many steps in kosher poultry processing are still performed by hand. Specially trained rabbinical inspectors check each bird ensuring that it is of the highest quality and processed in accordance with the kosher standards of cleanliness, purity and wholesomeness. All Kosher Valley poultry is hand-salted, inside and out, to remove blood since meat with blood in it is considered non-kosher. After salting, each bird is soaked three times in icy water to thoroughly cleanse the bird and remove the salt.

Like all meat sold at Whole Foods Market, the new Kosher Valley products must meet the Company's strict animal welfare standards which require that all poultry offered in its stores comes from animals that are raised on a vegetarian diet with no antibiotics or added hormones.

Source: Whole Foods Market

Pilgrim's Pride moving forward on exiting bankruptcy in 2009

With rumors of an impending acquisition by JBS SA, Pilgrim's Pride filed notice with the U.S. bankruptcy court in Ft. Worth, Texas, that it expects to emerge from bankruptcy protection by the end of the year. The company stated it was in the final stages of developing a reorganization plan and expects to file it this month, according to Reuters. The report did not mention JBS, and the company has not commented since reports surfaced last week that the Brazilian corporation was looking to acquire it.

The company requested an extension for its “exclusive” period to file a plan without interference from other plant from Sept. 30 to Dec. 31. According to the company, the extension “will increase the likelihood of a greater distribution to the debtors' stakeholders by facilitating an orderly, efficient and cost-effective plan process for the benefit of all creditors.”

Should the acquisition happen, several antitrust specialists told Reuters that the deal should pass through U.S. antitrust scrutiny, because JBS does not have a presence in the U.S. poultry industry.

Source: Reuters

Chunky sirloin steak soup recalled

Bay Valley Foods LLC, a Pittsburgh, Pa., establishment is recalling approximately 6,490 pounds of a chunky grilled steak with vegetables canned soup product due to possible underprocessing, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service announced.

The product is subject to recall is 18.6 - oz. metal cans of Stater Bros. brand, "Chunky Grilled Sirloin Steak with Vegetables" Ready to Serve Soup. The front of each label bears the USDA mark of inspection. Additionally, the "Use By/Sell By" date "11/10/10," and the establishment number, "EST. 108," are printed on the top of each can. Each case contains a total of 12 cans and may be identified by the code "70411108."

The canned soup products were produced on November 10, 2008 and were distributed to retail establishments in California. The problem was discovered by the company. FSIS has received no reports of illnesses from consumption of these products.

Source: FSIS

McDonalds to give away train fare, Angus burgers

Beginning September 13 and running throughout the month of September, McDonald's will offer commuters in Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, and Washington, D.C. a free transit pass and a coupon for a free Angus Third Pounder while supplies last. Details will be made public the day of or before each "Try Free, Ride Free" event. That information will be unveiled exclusively onwww.mcdepk.com/TryFreeRideFree.

"At a time when everyone can appreciate a great value, 'Try Free, Ride Free' gives busy commuters a free ride and an offer for a great-tasting, high-quality, premium burger at the quality, value and convenience that only McDonald's can deliver," said Neil Golden, chief marketing officer, McDonald's USA. "Once you taste one of our Angus Third Pounders, you'll know why they've become so popular with people who know a premium burger when they taste one."

In addition to the six cities participating in "Try Free, Ride Free," several other communities throughout the United States are reaching busy commuters through various on-the-street promotions, with the chance to win one-of-a-kind apparel and coupons for free Angus Third Pounders.

Source: McDonalds