Welcome to Food Week May 29 The inflationary word of the week is monopsony – a market with only one buyer – as opposed to a monopoly. While not true monopsony, having just a few retailers (Walmart, Costco, Kroger) gives them power over suppliers, thereby allowing them to control costs and protect (raise) margins. Also, liquid coffee (again), slider recipes, mezes, mushrooms, lobster rolls and digesta (urp!). Enjoy!
No interest rate hike in June.
If you think food is expensive here, you should see Europe. Inflation much worse there.
Are labor costs driving inflation? The SF Fed says no.
RETAIL AND CONSUMER
Monopoly or monopsony? Inflation for food prices has yet to come down – a lack of competition in many sectors probably to blame. But control of suppliers also helps the big retailers protect their margins.
As a not, black coffee drinker, this Smuckers/Dunkin’ mash up leaves me cold. But with substantial amounts of the population drinking coffee as an ingredient in a comfort mocktail, perhaps liquid concentrated has more traction this time.
Overall, however, coffee consumption has recovered from its pandemic lull.
Overcoming Board of Director recommendations, the Dollar General shareholders passed a resolution to improve worker safety.
RESTAURANTS AND FOODSERVICE
The performative outrage over the DEI (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion) at Chick-fil-A.
The National Restaurant Association (NRA) opposes California’s FAST act because improving conditions and pay for workers costs restaurant chains money. The rest is spin.
Speaking of which, the greatest vector of food-borne illness outbreaks is sick staff. But most restaurants have limited or no paid sick days.
However lunch sales are healthier than ever.
Slider recipe contest from White Castle.
FOOD SUPPLY CHAIN
Are Beyond Meat insiders dumping stock?
Learn the term upcycling – using otherwise discarded food stuffs to make products – as you will be hearing a lot about it sooner.
Texas the latest state to set hurdles for alt-protein labeling.
Is the reason Americans don’t eat mushrooms (as much) packaging? Opinions vary.
Dude, where’s my container? The port jams have been mostly resolved but for produce people – who use specialized containers – life still isn’t back to normal.
FOOD WEEK MAY 29 LAGNIAPPE
Studying gas stove emissions.
During the pandemic, school lunches were free nationwide. Congress stopped that but some want to bring it back.
The meze platter, a staple of Mediterranean cuisine. How to meze.
The paleo diet versus archeologists. Also learn about digesta, a food trend I don’t think will catch on.
The food highlights of New England. I mean besides lobster roll.