With brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…
• Invafresh, a fresh grocery platform offering AI-enhanced demand forecasting capabilities, has announced the acquisition of Whywaste, described as "a leading provider of end-of-life product solutions for grocery retailers and convenience stores."
The deal, terms of which were not disclosed, is designed to make it possible for retailers to reduce waste by having a stronger handle on what fresh products need to be available to shoppers at appropriate times, and then, at the end of the cycle, offer "end-of-life solutions including advanced date checking, markdown price optimization, and donation platform capabilities."
More than one-third of global food production, amounting to 1.3 billion tons of food valued at $1 trillion, is lost or wasted annually. That's not sustainable - no pun intended. I think all companies have to be more aggressive in dealing with these issues; I was impressed with what I saw of Invafresh's platform when I saw them at GroceryShop, and so I thought this acquisition worth noting.
• Consumer Reports writes that California Governor Gavin Newsom has signed "a landmark new law requiring baby food manufacturers to test their products for dangerous heavy metals and to post the results on their web sites. The first-in-the-nation law … aims to protect infants and toddlers from toxic levels of heavy metals that have been found in baby food products many parents rely on every day."
According to the story, "Beginning in 2024, the new law requires food manufacturers to test a representative sample of each of their products every month for arsenic, cadmium, lead and mercury and to provide the results to the California Department of Health upon request. Under the law, the test results must be made publicly available on the manufacturer’s website beginning in 2025 and disclosed through a QR code on the product’s label if the Food and Drug Administration establishes an action level limit for one of the toxic elements."
• From Axios:
"More Americans are making earlier dinner reservations, as in 5 p.m. early … 5 p.m. dinner reservations are more popular now than they've been in the last five years, according to Resy data.
"More than 15% of Resy reservations were made during the 5 o'clock hour this year. That time slot has seen the biggest jump since 2019."
Medical experts see this as a positive, since "eating dinner early could benefit your metabolic health," helping with both blood sugar control and weight management.