Mike Wheeler

Appetite for plant-based milk prompts HRS to launch Direct Steam

Directly injecting steam as a means of sterilising and diluting liquid drink products is a well-established technique for beverages such as plant-based milk products, which are experiencing a boost in popularity. According to reports, sales of vegan-friendly, plant-based milks have surged  over the past two years. In response to this increased customer demand, HRS Heat Exchangers has added a new Direct Steam Injection System to its established range of pasteurisation and sterilisation systems.

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Olam Food Ingredients acquires chili supplier

Olam Food Ingredients (OFI), the new operating group created after the reorganisation within Olam International Limited (OIL), is expanding its spices portfolio (Olam Spices) to meet the rising demand for authentic flavours with the acquisition of a supplier of premium green chilis, jalapeños and enchilada sauces.

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Crop losses due to insufficient labour

Crop losses across the country directly as a result of ongoing labour shortages have continued to mount over the festive season, and have now topped $38 million.  The National Lost Crop Register was launched in mid-December to capture the true cost to industry and the national economy from a lack of seasonal workers available to harvest fresh fruits and vegetables.

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Rosy future for wine sector

The Australian wine sector is projected to grow from A$11.3bn (US$7.9bn) in 2019 to A$12.7bn (US$8.7bn) in 2024, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.4 per cent, says GlobalData, a data and analytics company.

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New farm database delivered

A new secure database of Australian farms has been constructed as part of a multi-year collaboration between the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Sciences (ABARES) and the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

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Limited edition whisky released

Westward – a single malt reimagined in the American Northwest – has created a new limited-edition Pinot Noir Cask Finish exclusively for Australia biggest whisky community, The Whisky Club. Following an outstanding response to 2019’s exclusive release Westward and The Whisky Club are excited to present: The Single Barrel Selection of Westward Whiskey Pinot Noir Finish at Cask Strength.

 To create a truly unique and unfettered new offering, Westward Whiskey’s head distiller, Miles Munroe, has chosen four of the most exceptional single barrels to produce a bigger and bolder version of the 2019 small-batch release. With an ABV of 62.5, this whiskey is bottled straight from the barrel, reflecting the robust flavours built in every step of Westward’s long, slow process.

The Single Barrel Selection of Westward Whiskey Pinot Noir Finish at Cask Strength is made from scratch at their Portland distillery using Pacific Northwest two-row barley, brewed with American pale ale yeast for outstanding flavour, double pot distilled for exceptional character, and matured in 2-char, kiln-dried 53-gallon lightly charred new American oak barrels. Once fully matured, the batch is finished for 19 months in French Oak wine casks that had previously held Pinot Noir from Dominio IV Wines.

Created in partnership with Dominio IV Wines, a renowned family-grown producer from the Willamette Valley – Oregon’s esteemed winemaking region – the Single Barrel Selection of Westward Whiskey Pinot Noir Finish at Cask Strength is bound to sell out to The Whisky Club members who will be the only people in the world able to taste these four single barrel expressions.

The Whisky Club members will be the only people in the world able to taste these four single barrel expressions, a robust product that is the delicious next step up in the ongoing collaboration between Australia’s biggest whisky club and the legends of American Single Malt.

New offering from Bundaberg

The team behind Bundaberg Ginger Beer is taking the opportunity to highlight its wider range of naturally brewed beverages in a variety pack made for Amazon.

Available in time for Christmas and summer entertaining the Bundabergt Brewed Drinks Variety Pack features the iconic Ginger Beer along with other popular cocktail-mixing brews including Guava, Pink Grapefruit, Pineapple & Coconut, Traditional Lemonade and Peach.

“People tell us they love our iconic Ginger Beer, but they’re often surprised to learn of some of the brews in the wider range. The new pack gives us the chance to introduce flavours people may not otherwise try” said Bundaberg Brewed Drinks CEO, John McLean. “It’s a great opportunity for people to treat themselves to an affordable indulgence that reminds them of yesteryear.”

The brews included in the Variety Pack follow the same traditional brewing methods as the iconic ginger beer. Each flavour is brewed using real fruit and locally grown cane sugar, consistent with the high-quality beverages consumers expect from the brewers. Just like the Ginger Beer, all brews featured in the pack are great mixed with your favourite spirit or ice-cold as a soft drink.

Record sales for seafood industry

Seafood Industry Australia (SIA), the national peak body representing the Australian seafood industry, has applauded consumers for supporting their local seafood industry over the festive season and driving a 30 per cent growth in December seafood sales.

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SPC rebrands for the future

Australian food and beverage manufacturer SPC has launched its new corporate brand and vision, It’s Time For Better, in line with the company’s strategy to become a global business with best in class products.

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Business booster comp from Unleashed Software

Unleashed Software has launched the Business Booster competition to give Australian-based product businesses the chance to win a cash boost, software licenses, and ongoing mentorships to fast-track business growth. Any product-based business with growth ambitions can enter. There will be three winners and a People’s Choice winner, which will each get a share of $20,000 cash, a subscription to Unleashed and Xero, and mentorship from various industry experts. The winners will be announced on 25 January 2021. 

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Vegan Champagne released

Champagne Lanson is a vegan option for a celebratory drink. Hailing from Reims, the range of Lanson Champagnes come from the Maison Lanson, which was established in 1760 and therefore one of the world’s oldest Champagne Houses and the British Royal Family’s Champagne of choice, making it perfect for the festive season and impressing even the most critical of family and guests.

Milk on tap at Harris Farm Markets

Harris Farm Markets officially opened its Clayfield store with – for the first time anywhere – milk from Queensland’s multi-award-winning Maleny Dairies on the Sunshine Coast hinterland on tap.

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The Future of Food – do we need to re-engineer food?

Dr Julian McClements has an impressive resumé. He is a distinguished professor at Department of Food Science at the University of Massachusetts; adjunct professor, School of Food Science and Bioengineering at Zhejaing Gongshang University, China; and a visiting professor at Harvard University. He has more than 1,000 articles published, with 80,000 citations in other peoples’ papers, as well as 12 patents. He also published the book Future Foods: How Modern Science is Transforming the Way We Eat. When he talks, people listen.
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US FDA briefs Asia Pacific on Smarter Food Safety

At a recent global briefing, Frank Yiannas, the US Food and Drug Administration’s deputy commissioner for Food Policy and Response, addressed more than 200 attendees from 33 countries on the importance of traceability and transparency in food systems.

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