Organic, natural and specialty food distributor United Natural Foods, Inc. (UNFI) has partnered with Buyer’s Best Friend (BBF), a direct vendor network and catalog company, to present retailers with a unified ordering system. Stores will now be able to order from BBF direct vendors with a new iUNFI iPhone app or a scanning device, which the companies say will save buyers time and make it easier to work with specialty, artisan and local brands.

Membrell LLC of Carthage, MO received a Natural Product Number (NPN80032238) from Health Canada for JOINThealth Plus Antioxidants containing the ingredient NEM (Natural Eggshell Membrane).

The Natural Products Association of Washington, D.C. had a 30% increase in certifications through its Natural Seal program from March to June. Some 1,100 products and ingredients now carry the seal. In related news, the MelanSol 100% Natural Sunscreen and Moisturizer line now bears the NPA’s Natural Seal. This line is made by Oceana Naturals, LLC of Panama City Beach, CA.

Vitamin Angels of Santa Barbara, CA received its fifth consecutive four-star rating from Charity Navigator.

The Gluten Intolerance Group of North America of Auburn, WA sponsored the Gluten-Free Health and Wellness Experience in June in Seattle. The event combined educational presentations, exhibits and free health screenings.

Threshold Enterprises, Ltd. of Scotts Valley, CA will offer donations to and sponsor promotions for Vitamin Angels. In other news, Threshold has earned GMP certification from NSF International.

Retailer Tunie’s of Coral Springs, FL will open a second location in Palm Beach Gardens, FL in November. The store will be 15,000 ft2 and will offer an expanded organic produce department, bulk foods, beer/wine and other departments.

Bloomingdale, IL-based NOW Foods was recognized by the National Association for Business Resources as one of Chicago’s 101 Best and Brightest Companies to Work For. This is the fifth year in a row NOW Foods has received this distinction, which honors companies that “demonstrate an exceptional commitment to their employees and exemplify the best human resource practices.”

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, August 2012