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Pepsi Bottling Group reports surge in profit during Q2

BY Anna Mcgrath

SOMERS, N.Y. The Pepsi Bottling Group reported a net income spike of 21%, compared with the year-ago period.

Despite a difficult economy, PBG reported second-quarter earnings of $211 million, or 96 cents per share. Its net income during second quarter 2008 was $174 million, or 78 cents per diluted share.

“PBG delivered a strong set of results during the second quarter. Our ability to execute an effective global pricing strategy, achieve robust cost and productivity savings and deliver solid execution at the point of sale has fueled our success through the first half of 2009. We’re also benefiting from improved carbonated soft drink trends in the United States, as well as encouraging developments in the commodity and foreign currency markets,” said PBG chairman and CEO Eric Foss.

“As we look towards the future, we continue to focus on our three strategic priorities for growth,” Foss continued. “We’ll strengthen and reposition our brand portfolio, transform our performance through operational excellence and pursue geographic growth opportunities. We believe that our work in these three areas will unlock significant new growth opportunities and position us well for long-term success.” Last month, PBG, the largest bottler of PepsiCo beverages, raised its financial outlook for its second quarter and full-year forecast.

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Bear Naked introduces all-natural granola bars

BY Allison Cerra

LA JOLLA, Calif. Bear Naked, the natural foods innovator, is expanding its premium, all-natural granola family to include a new line of granola bars that offers active consumers a unique, on-the-go snacking alternative.

Soft and chewy in texture and available in three enticing flavors (Chocolaty Cherry, Tropical and Fruit and Nut) Bear Naked 100% Pure & Natural Grain-ola bars provide a new way to satisfy cravings for delicious, “bearly” processed snacks.

Made with 100% ingredients straight from nature and minimally processed, they do not contain any preservatives, artificial flavors, trans fats, cholesterol, hydrogenated oils or high fructose corn syrup.

Chocolaty Cherry combines rich chocolate with cherries, pecans and almonds. Tropical features exotic fruits including mango, papaya, pineapple and coconut. Fruit and Nut replicates the popular Bear Naked all-natural granola flavor with a blend of raisins, cranberries and hearty pecans and almonds. Bear Naked 100% Pure & Natural Grain-ola bars are now available in grocery stores nationwide for the suggested retail price of $1.69 per bar.

“We are thrilled to introduce our 100% Pure & Natural Grain-ola bars, a perfect fit for the Bear Naked family of foods that provide multi-sensory combinations of pure and simple ingredients,” said Ryan Therriault, senior manager, brand marketing and innovation. “Bear Naked is dedicated to providing great-tasting, nutritious snacks that compliment a naturally inclined, modern lifestyle. These Grain-ola bars are an innovative solution that strikes the perfect balance of exciting flavor, healthy indulgence and simple nutrition that nourishes the body, mind and spirit without sacrificing great taste.”

KelloggsDRSNhttp://www.centerstoregrowth.com

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Barilla gives consumers a taste challenge with contest

BY Allison Cerra

CHICAGO Finding a simple way to eat healthier without sacrificing taste just got easier.

With the Barilla “That’s Whole Grain?” Taste Challenge, pasta lovers are invited to discover the great taste of Barilla Whole Grain. From now until Dec. 31, anyone who tries and is not completely satisfied with Barilla Whole Grain will receive a free box of his or her favorite regular Barilla pasta.

To participate in the challenge, consumers simply need to purchase a box of Barilla Whole Grain. Consumers who are not completely satisfied can receive a free box of their favorite regular Barilla pasta by submitting a completed redemption form, original store receipt and original UPC symbol. For easy-to-make recipes, nutritional information and challenge rules visit www.TryBarillaWholeGrain.com.

“At Barilla, we take great care to develop better-for-you pastas that not only provide the benefits of healthy eating but also deliver the great taste and quality you have come to expect from Italy’s No. 1 Brand of Pasta,” said Kirk Trofholz, president of Barilla America Inc. “We are confident that people will embrace Barilla Whole Grain as a delicious and nutritious way to incorporate whole grains into their mealtime.”

Offered in six shapes — rotini, penne, medium shells, linguine, spaghetti and thin spaghetti — Barilla Whole Grain is available nationwide.

KelloggsDRSNhttp://www.centerstoregrowth.com

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