In Brief…

Irish food and ingredients firm Kerry Group, opens US$50m innovation and technical centre in Wisconsin, US to provide product solutions for America’s food and beverage industries.

The Coca-Cola Company wins Point of Sale category award at the 2009 Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival for its new interactive video vending machine, developed in partnership with Samsung.

At this year’s Eu’Vend, the International Trade Fair for the Vending Industry, Sept. 10 to 12 2009 in Cologne, Germany, new vending concepts will be presented, once again providing the sector with a seal of quality for being an indispensable 24-hour service provider.

Diageo announces plans to cut up to 900 jobs in Scotland as part of a restructuring plan that will see the closure of the Port Dundas distillery and a packaging plant in Kilmarnock.

Highland Spring partners with the Lawn Tennis Association to launch The Hot Shots Tour UK roadshow to encourage children’s interest in tennis.

In the UK, Britvic sponsors a new children’s television series called Skillicious With Fruit Shoot H20, which aims to introduce children to new activities.

US-based RTD iced tea producer Sweet Leaf Tea rolls out an 8oz canned version of its Original, Peach and Mango flavoured teas, announcing the launch via Twitter.

PepsiCo appoints Microsoft to produce a global nine-month long online marketing campaign for the Pepsi Max brand.

Nestlé Waters Direct opens state-of-the-art home and office delivery (HOD) water bottling facility in Coruche, Portugal.

In the Netherlands, Coca-Cola, Vrumoma, Refresco and United Softdrinks agree to a 2% annual reduction in energy use.

Coca-Cola Company publishes research showing that consumers are becoming increasing concerned about the environment and recycling, despite the recession.

Britvic posts a 5.9% rise in Q3 2009 revenue to £249.1m, despite Britvic Ireland sales volume declining 20.3% due to a ‘particularly challenging’ trading environment in May and June.

Skinny Nutritional Corporation completes its acquisition of ‘Skinny Water’ and other related `Skinny` trademarks from Peace Mountain Natural Beverages Corporation.

Coca-Cola is voted the leading brand in Israel for the seventh consecutive year in the annual ‘Globes’ brands survey.

According to reports, Indian subsidiaries of global food and beverage companies, such as Coca-Cola Company and PepsiCo, are planning to adopt common nutritional labelling standards.

Tata Tea Group expresses interest in acquiring international soft drink brands in order to diversify away from tea and offer a wider range of beverages such as smoothies, juices and functional drinks.

San Miguel Brewery reports a 4.2% rise in H1 2009 revenue to Pesos 24.8bn, with sales volume reaching 86m unit cases.

Frucor Beverages signs agreement to acquire New Zealand fruit juice producer Simply Squeezed, subject to approval by the New Zealand Commerce Commission.

Tetra Pak inaugurates its new aseptic carton packaging plant in Hohhot, Northern China that operates on 100% ‘green’ electricity.

Coca-Cola Enterprises announces it is to take over the marketing, distribution and sales of the Capri-Sonne juice drink in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg.

Danone appoints Jordi Constans and Felix Martin as joint Chief Executive Officers of its fresh dairy products division.

Austrian juice manufacturer Rauch teams up with the UK-based KoolaKing to distribute its fruit juices, RTD tea and coffee direct to offices.

China’s Ministry of Commerce announces importers of fresh milk, milk powder and whey will have to apply for import permits as from August.

Australian brewer Lion Nathan announces a 3% rise in sales for the nine months ended June 30, with net sales revenue up 6%, driven by strong demand in Australia.

Aspartame producer Ajinomoto loses High Court battle with Asda regarding its accusation that the supermarket’s publicity for its ‘Good for you’ range claimed its sweetener aspartame was ‘nasty’.

According to reports, Wal-Mart plans to develop an index to measure the social and environmental impact of the products it sells in its discount stores.

Food Standards Australia New Zealand permits the addition of fluoride into non-carbonated packaged water following lengthy appeals by the Australian Bottled Water Institute.

Dairy Crest reports a 3% decline in Q1 2009 sales in the Dairies division despite strong growth in the FRijj brand and announces Simon Oliver will retire as Chairman on 1 January 2010, to be replaced by Anthony Fry.

International Bottled Water Association (IBWA) expresses support for the maintenance and improvement of the US water infrastructure system and opposes tax on water-based beverages.

Bottling and packaging line manufacturer Krones launches its new ultra-light PET bottle, containing 6.6 grams of PET making it the lightest PET bottle on the market for the 500ml size.

In the US, coffee chain Starbucks pilots café serving alcohol and offering live entertainment, such a s music and poetry readings.

According to reports, PepsiCo is in negotiations to acquire Brazilian coconut water manufacturer Amacoco – Água de Coco da Amazônia.

According to reports, Coca-Cola Company is to launch a range of fizzy milk drinks named Vio in Europe, following trials of the new product in New York.

In the UK, Cott Beverages is to relaunch its Ben Shaws range of soft drinks in new ‘retro’ packaging with old photographs from the Ben Shaws archives, supported by a marketing campaign.

In the UK, Coca-Cola Company teams up with Transport for London to provide commuters with travel update service on Piccadilly Circus sign, as part of Coke’s ongoing ‘Open Happiness’ campaign.