New from Nutiva are Organic Shortening and Organic Buttery Spread. Each vegan product is made from organic red palm and coconut oils blended together without any dairy, trans-fats, soy or canola. The shortening can make crispy cookies or flaky pie crust, and the buttery spread can be used as a 1:1 replacement for butter while providing antioxidants from vitamins A and E.

News from industry food companies.

The chocolate game has changed. Today, gourmet chocolatiers are adding exotic fruit, spices and cacao nibs to their premium bars and they are flying off the shelves.

In a move sure to stir up the sector, Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. has debuted Wild Oats, a line featuring low-cost organic food products. The move represents a partnership between Wal-Mart and Wild Oats, a preexisting brand, which will see around 100 products hit the shelves of every Walmart store that sells groceries.

Leicester, England—Soil in urban farming allotments is healthier, and therefore better for farming, than more intensively farmed soils, according to recent research. The study, conducted in the United Kingdom and published in the Journal of Applied Ecology, shows the benefits of local, small-scale farming.

Nunda, NY—Over 21,000 pounds of peanut butter were donated in April to the charity Feed the Children by seed and nut butter manufacturer Once Again Nut Butter. The 44 drums of peanut butter, weighing in at 480 pounds each, are being put to use in supporting victims of natural disasters in the Philippines and elsewhere.

Montpelier, VT—The Vermont legislature overwhelmingly passed a law requiring foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs) to say so on the label. The state’s governor, Peter Shumlin, vowed to sign the bill, which will become the first to independently require GMO labeling in the country. Connecticut and Maine have passed similar laws, but those will only take effect once neighboring states also pass GMO-labeling laws.

The Organic Center held its annual VIP dinner at Expo West, with the overarching theme of organic research.

News from industry food companies.