Industry News

Top 10: Halloween safety, restaurant relief bill, Prime Day discounts

The beginning of October means that candy is top-of-mind for the consumer packaged goods industry, and the subject took the No. 2 spot on this week’s rankings of SmartBrief food and beverage news. This year’s Halloween season will have to be adjusted amid the coronavirus pandemic; however, health experts, government officials and candy manufacturers agree that the holiday does not need to be canceled. Trick-or-treating can still happen in 2020 safely, and more consumers are now planning to celebrate Halloween compared to the levels in July, according to the National Confectioners Association.

In other CPG news, the Cream of Wheat brand from B&G Foods announced its choice to remove the Black chef mascot from its packaging, similar to a recent move from Mars to rebrand its rice product line to Ben’s Original. Both revamps were undertaken following issues of racial insensitivity with brand mascots. B&G Foods is also launching a culinary education support program for Black and Latinx students in conjunction with its decision.

Topping the list of most-clicked stories was the proposed coronavirus relief legislation introduced by House Democrats this week. The package would provide $120 billion in grant funding to foodservice businesses such as restaurants, bars and food trucks. 

Also amid the pandemic, restaurants are looking for more guidelines about virus transmission in the air. The National Restaurant Association is tackling the concerns by conducting more research and plans to issue its findings and update safety protocols about indoor air circulation.

A major news story this week was the Glass Fire in California that began Sunday and threatened Napa and Sonoma counties. The story also made the food and beverage Top 10 list, noting that the blaze burned down the historic Chateau Boswell Winery in St. Helena, Calif., with many other local wineries and vineyards reporting significant damage.

The sole food retail item on the most-clicked list was about Amazon’s postponed 2020 Prime Day. This year’s Oct. 13 and 14 event will include grocery deals at all of Amazon’s affiliated grocery brands: Whole Foods Market, Amazon Fresh, Amazon Go and Amazon Go Grocery. Prime members can already start earning rewards to use during the retailer’s popular discount event.

Check out the complete list of this week’s top 10 most-clicked stories in SmartBrief's food and beverage briefs:

  1. House unveils new restaurant relief package
  2. US leaders, consumers prepare for a safe Halloween
  3. Nestle CEO: Pandemic prompts plant-based interest
  4. Restaurants seek clear guidance on indoor air dangers
  5. Pillsbury, Kellogg, Nestle, Danone release products
  6. Fazoli's ghost kitchen wing test takes flight
  7. Cream of Wheat to discontinue Black chef image
  8. Amazon highlights Prime Day grocery discounts
  9. New Napa fire razes winery, threatens Silverado Trail
  10. Lawmakers ask FTC to look into 3rd-party delivery

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