Hain Celestial Group of Boulder, CO, will celebrate 25 years of making Earth’s Best “better for baby” products, by sponsoring Playdate Parties around the country. Parents who qualify will be given Earth's Best products samples coupons, valued at up to $90, and party planning tips to host a playdate for up to nine guests.

Best Organics LLC of Boulder, CO, is entering into a 12-month cross-promotional marketing campaign with Bonterra Vineyards of Mendocino County, CA. Best Organics are providers of Boulder’s Best Organics and Colorado’s Best Organics premium organic gift box collections. Bonterra Vineyards is a producer of premium wines made from organic grapes. The two companies will promote each other’s products through a range of mediums, including online campaigns at their respective Web sites, e-newsletters, Facebook and Twitter.

Some 580 natural food retailers nationwide organized the first-ever Non-GMO Month this October. It coincides with the introduction of “Non-GMO Project Verified” seals for qualified retail products. Both efforts were organized by the Non-GMO Project, which is a non-profit coalition opposed to the introduction of genetically modified organisms into products and food.

The inaugural winner of the Simply Organic Scholarship Award is Evelyn Rosas, who is now enrolled in the Apprenticeship in Ecological Horticulture at the University of California, Santa Cruz. With this scholarship sponsored by Simply Organic, a brand of the Frontier Natural Products Co-Op of Norway, Iowa, Rosas is planning to use her experience at UCSC to help fulfill her dream of making organic foods accessible and affordable to low-income populations.

Crispy Green of Fairfield, NJ, invites fans of its new FruitziO fruit snacks to name a character and win a $200 cash prize in the FruitziO naming contest. Information is available at www.crispygreen.com/fruitzio-contest.html.

Mary's Gone Crackers, based in Gridley, CA, has become one of the first manufacturers to introduce pure coconut palm sugar into its product line. This low-glycemic cane sugar alternative is 100% natural and organic, and releases into the body slowly, avoiding spikes and dips in energy levels.

Published in WholeFoods Magazine, November 2010 (ahead of print on September 23, 2010)