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U.S. soft drink market sees drop in volume; rise in dollar sales

BY Jenna Duncan

BEDFORD HILLS, N.Y. Carbonated soft drink volumes in the United States slumped in 2007, but total dollar sales were up, according to a recent Beverage Digest report.

The report stated that the volume of national soft drink sales was down by 2.3 percent from the previous year. That figure is nearly four times the rate of decline in 2006 (0.6 percent) and about 10 times the drop in 2005 (0.2 percent). The total volume of soft drink sales for 2007 was just more than 9.9 billion cases, the report stated.

For 2007, Cadbury’s volume was down 1.6 percent, while Coke was down 0.5 percent, but PepsiCo’s volume crawled up 0.1 percent.

Total U.S. CSD market sales were up by 2.7 percent from 2006, totaling $72 billion.

The data provided by Beverage Digest covers fountain drinks, retail and vending machine sales and energy drink sales, but it does not include bottled water, sports drinks and ready-to-drink teas.

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Chex introduces strawberry-flavored breakfast cereal

BY Jenna Duncan

MINNEAPOLIS General Mills has announced the launch of a new flavor to its line of Chex breakfast cereals—Strawberry Chex.

According to the company, Strawberry Chex cereal is a blend of rice and corn squares that are coated in strawberry flavoring. The company says that one ?-cup serving of Strawberry Chex cereal is a good source of whole grains, vitamins and minerals, and contains eight grams of sugar.

General Mills’ global brand portfolio also includes Cheerios, Betty Crocker, Nature Valley, Pillsbury, Yoplait and more. General Mills holds about 100 U.S. consumer brands, and 30 of them generate retail sales of more than $100 million per year.

Suggested retail price is $2.99 for 13.5 oz.

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Researchers find link between white bread, diseases

BY Jenna Duncan

SYDNEY, Australia Researchers at the University of Sydney, Australia, have determined that white breads and other foods with a high glycemic index (GI), lead to a higher risk of certain health problems.

According to a recent study, high blood glucose led to a higher risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and was linked to other internal problems, like gallstones and certain types of cancer.

Blood glucose levels increase quickly and stay higher for longer periods in people who regularly consume foods with high GIs, such as carbohydrates, which the body breaks down faster than other foods, the researchers say.

Researchers recommended whole- or multi-grain breads, fruit, and other low GI foods, to maintain a healthy diet.

Recently, the number of whole grain products being launched has doubled each year—from 64 in 2003, to 140 in 2004, to 346 in 2005, to 620 in 2006, researchers say.

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