Product & Promotion News

Dr. Phil McGraw of "Oprah Winfrey" and "The Dr. Phil Show" fame is the newest celebrity to be featured in a Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP) milk mustache advertisement. McGraw's ad will debut this spring as part of the weight loss program of MilkPEP's "got milk?" campaign. On a recent program, McGraw featured a segment on the shooting of the ad by photographer Annie Leibovitz. His studio audience voted by applause on which of two chosen poses they preferred.
Cacique Inc. co-founders Jennie and Gilbert de Cárdenas donated $1 million for diabetes research to City of Hope, a research and treatment center for life-threatening diseases. Cacique Inc., La Puente, Calif., celebrated its 30th anniversary by aligning with City of Hope and sponsoring a national Hispanic diabetes education campaign, Fighting Diabetes Together. The Mexican cheese maker's goal was to inform Hispanic consumers about the high incidence of diabetes within their community and give them ways
to potentially prevent the disease.
Heluva Good Dinosaur Bar-B-Que, Classic Ranch, Buffalo Wing and Bacon Horseradish dips were featured on NBC-TV's "Today Show" in a special feature on Super Bowl snacks with weatherman Al Roker. Supermarket analyst Phil Lempert praised the brand's products, and Roker commented he was familiar with the regional processor's dips from his college days in Oswego, N.Y., not far from Heluva Good's Sodus, N.Y., headquarters. Heluva Good is a division of Binghamton, N.Y.-based Crowley Foods.
Straus Family Creamery, the first wholly organic dairy processing plant in the United States that uses milk from its own family farm, celebrates its 10th anniversary this year. In February 1994, founder Albert Straus set up a small bottling line in a former commercial kitchen, bottled quarts of cream-top milk and churned small batches of butter with milk from the family dairy. The Marshall, Calif., creamery has slowly expanded its product line to include yogurt, cheese and new superpremium ice cream. The Straus family says it will continue its mission of finding markets for locally produced organic dairy products. The creamery plans to create new programs to increase educational outreach by offering regular tours on the dairy this summer.
Ice Cream University recently wrapped up its fourth annual Gelato Tour of Italy, with 19 representatives from U.S. and Australian ice cream retailers attending the annual gelato convention in Rimini, visiting gelaterias in Florence and Rome and touring the Fabbri Co., a gelato ingredients manufacturer in Bologna. The gelato tour was sponsored by Fabbri and Belizio Fine Foods, Maspeth, N.Y.
Domino's Pizza rolled out its Cheesy Domino's Dots™ in a national launch with a tie-in survey of the cheesiest reality show on TV (the winners were Fox's "Temptation Island" with 28 percent, NBC's "Joe Millionaire" with 22 percent and Fox's "Average Joe" with 12 percent). The Ann Arbor, Mich.-based pizza chain's newest side dish —named after the dots in the corporate logo — are small, round balls of bread covered with melted colby and Monterey jack cheeses and sprinkled with garlic and romano cheese seasoning. Cheesy Domino's Dots come 12 per order with a side of marinara sauce.
The Internet has proved to be a surprising outlet for selling Venezuelan-style cheese, as one Miami company discovered. A recent story in the Sun-Sentinel details how Venezuelan entrepreneur Julio Gonzalez saw slow results when he sold his family's cheeses door to door. But when he sent out e-mails via a Web site for Venezuelans abroad and revamped his company's Essential Foods Web site to sell its Don Kesso-brand cheeses online, the response was overwhelming, with orders coming from national and international customers. Since then, business has grown so much that Gonzalez and his partners are looking to expand their small factory beyond its capacity of about 500 pounds a day. By extending its appeal beyond Venezuelans, the company tapped into a booming market, as Latinos emerged as the largest U.S. minority and Americans overall are exploring more ethnic foods.