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Who is monitoring the nutritional value of our food?

We already have food standards, audits and certification to ensure food safety. But who is keeping watch over food’s nutritional value?

Futurologists foresee an important convergence occurring between food and health care.

With the degradation of public health systems, people will increasingly use food as medicine – both for cure and prevention. Fruit and vegetables will surely be at the forefront of this dietary approach, but are we properly preparing for it?

The reality is research shows a decline in the nutrients in our food. One study of 43 fruits and vegetables, for example, found that on average the level of vitamin C fell 20% and riboflavin 38% over the last half of the 20th century.

And there are other issues, too, such as excessive nitrogen in food.

It’s time to stop the loss of the nutritional value of our fruit and vegetables and instead start improving it.

We already have food standards, audits and certification to ensure food safety. But who is keeping watch over food’s nutritional value?

From the pen of editor Pierre Escodo in edition 146 of Eurofresh Distribution magazine. Read more from that issue online here.
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How to win in both online & conventional retail

Eurofresh Distribution editor Pierre Escodo's latest editorial looks at critical factors for success in both conventional and e-retail.

Fruit and vegetable consumption may be declining in Europe but as highlighted at the ‘Tomatoes, trends towards 2020’ conference in Antwerp in April, the market value of tomatoes has nevertheless risen.

The reality is that sales can be boosted via tastier, more convenient varieties that increase consumer satisfaction.

And more sales can also be achieved through online shopping.

In Europe, Denmark is one country where e-commerce is truly booming for fresh food, such as seen with the success of nemlig.com, and in Asia, Japan – where online sales are growing at double digit rates – reveals that it’s not just young people but also seniors that supermarkets should cater to with their online platforms, including mobile retail.

Adapting online shopping to consumer needs is crucial to success, and entertainment is a factor that also needs to be considered, advises Kantar WorldPanel in its recent report on the growth of e-commerce in FMCG. Interestingly, its data shows that in the UK, tomato products form the category with the second highest online share, and in France, soups are top-ranked.

From the pen of editor Pierre Escodo on page 3 of edition 143 (May/June 2016) of Eurofresh Distribution magazine. Read it online here.

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Multichannel distribution & the need to generate food “fashion”

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With consumption stagnant and margins shrinking, many European retailers have had to diversify their activities with online sales and dedicated lines for food service.

But exploring the different distribution channels to reach the end consumer is not enough, one must also create demand, in order to keep value in the supply chain.

There’s a need to generate food “fashion” and bring the consumer back to the kitchen, increase customer satisfaction and generate more loyalty.

Without imagining that consumers want to become Michelin star chefs and giving them clever cooking ideas and amazing vegetable varieties, or generating “addiction” with extra sweet tomatoes or succulent stone fruit, we will not grow business.

Items like berries, the Bimi, kale, crunchy cherries, flat peaches, seedless snack peppers, tree-ripened tropicals, sweet potatoes and wild mushrooms would generate greater sales if made more affordable and promoted more.

From edition 136 of Eurofresh Distribution magazine. Read it here.

From the pen of Eurofresh Distribution editor Pierre Escodo