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NYT: Candy icon Forrest E. Mars Jr. dies at 84

BY Gina Acosta

Forrest E. Mars Jr., who helped build Mars Inc. into the world’s largest confectionary company, died on Tuesday in Seattle. (New York Times)

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New coconut water brand coming to shelves

BY Gina Acosta

SAN CLEMENTE, Calif. — As coconut water grows in popularity, a new brand is looking to leverage the juice trend.

An athlete startup called Villager Goods plans to launch a packaged coconut water line this fall.  Villager Goods says it will introduce three coconut water flavors – original, pineapple and chocolate – delivering a premium organic, not-from-concentrate product priced in line with mainstream non-organic competitors.

"As a brand and as individuals, we want to use our power of influence for something good," said Ryan Kingman, president of Villager.  "Our goal is to build a global community that inspires individuals to lead a healthier lifestyle."

Villager Goods plans to introduce additional organic food, beverage and consumer goods products in the future. The company says its initial products will be available online at villagergoods.com and at retail locations nationwide.

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Justin’s extends Snack Pack product line

BY Gina Acosta

BOULDER, Colo. — Natural foods brand Justin's has unveiled the first extension of its Snack Pack product line.

The world's first non-perishable fruit and nut butter pairing, Justin's Peanut Butter and Banana Chip Snack Pack comes in two flavors: Classic Peanut Butter + Banana Chips and Honey Peanut Butter + Banana Chips. The latest innovation in the brand's extensive portfolio adds a unique twist on a classic duo with one side Justin's Peanut Butter and one side organic banana chips. Ideal for enjoying at work, school and on-the-go, this portioned, gluten-free snack contains 5-6 grams of protein, 3 grams of fiber and over 200 milligrams of potassium, all for just 200-210 calories per serving. 

"After a successful launch of the Snack Pack last summer, we knew this conveniently nutritious snacking line had growth potential," said Justin Gold, founder of Justin's. "Peanut butter and bananas are the ultimate pairing. When we realized there was nothing on the market like it, we went bananas (literally) and made it happen!"

Justin's all-new Peanut Butter + Banana Chip Snack Packs are a part of the Made to Matter – Handpicked by Target product collection, which brings together 20 purpose-driven brands to make natural, organic and sustainable products more accessible for consumers. This year, the program has developed into a portfolio of new innovations that meet at least one of the five product criteria including: reduced waste and packaging, reduced sugar, dietary and allergen restrictions, clean label products and closed loop systems. Made to Matter is designed to provide better choices for all and introduces Target's guests to new products from some of the most innovative brands.

Justin's newest Snack Pack innovation is made without chemicals, additives, artificial flavoring or preservatives, and is packaged in recyclable trays. It is available initially at Target stores nationwide for an SRP of $1.99.

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