SodaStream and Le Cordon Bleu Partnership Promotes Healthy Cooking

Sodastream, sparkling water
Photo: SodaStream

AIRPORT CITY, ISRAEL — Healthy cooking, with sparkling, flavored water, is getting a push with the recent partnership between SodaStream International and the culinary arts school Le Cordon Bleu.

Both companies will create new flavors, made solely from naturally-derived ingredients, that will be used with SodaStream Sparkling Water Makers. Additionally the companies will develop a joint recipe booklet promoting the use of sparkling water in healthy cooking for a fluffier texture in breads and the retaining the true colors of vegetables while cooking.

Le Cordon Bleu, culinary art school, healthy cooking
Photo: Le Cordon Bleu

“SodaStream is committed to promoting healthy hydration by providing consumers with the ability to easily create their own sparkling water at home and add great tasting natural flavors to them,” said Daniel Birnbaum, CEO of SodaStream. “By partnering with the world-renowned Le Cordon Bleu culinary school, we will now have the opportunity to incorporate the benefits of SodaStream into this thought-leading community as well.”

Washington Redskin QB Colt McCoy’s Football Camp Hydrates with Coconut Water

MOUNTAIN VIEW, CA — Washington Redskins quarterback Colt McCoy and Coco Libra organic coconut water team up to “wet the whistle” of young football players at the Baylor Scott & White Health Colt McCoy Football ProCamp, which will be held in Austin, TX, June 29-30, 2015.

Coco Libra will not only be the drink of choice for participants but the beverage company will also offer two camp scholarships to youth aged 6 to 13 who attend the Punt, Pass, and Run competition at Austin’s Southwest Family YMCA’s Family Fun Night event on June 19.

Pepsi to Ditch High Fructose Corn Syrup in New Craft Soda Line

PURCHASE, NY — Soda giant PepsiCo is looking to forgo high fructose corn syrup in a new line of craft fountain drinks, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Pepsi’s new fountain soda, Stubborn Soda, will be made with real sugar and come in several flavors: black cherry with tarragon, orange hibiscus, pineapple cream and agave vanilla cream.

This is not the first Pepsi product to use real sugar instead high fructose corn syrup. Sierra Mist, a PepsiCo brand launched in 1999 is made with real sugar, although recently the company replaced some of its sugar content with a stevia leaf abstract.

Also, both Pespi and Coke launched two products late last year that are made with real sugar: Coca-Cola Life and Pepsi True, according to published reports.

These real sugar, low calorie drinks are part of the soda giants’ commitment made at the 10th Annual Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) to reduce beverage calories consumed per person in America by 20 percent by 2025.

“I am excited about the potential of this voluntary commitment by the beverage industry. It can be a critical step in our ongoing fight against obesity,” said President Bill Clinton in a statement released during the 2014 CGI summit.  “Our work with beverage companies to reduce the number of calories shipped to schools by 90 percent demonstrates the power of creative cooperation. We look forward to continuing to work together to achieve the goals outlined in this commitment.”

Pepsi’s Stubborn Soda line could be available for release this summer.

High Protein, Non-GMO Gourmet Pasta Line Debuts in Los Angeles Market

LOS ANGELES — Gourmet food trucks have long passed the trendy stage and can be found on just about any L.A. street and near sporting events and festivals as well as studio sets of popular T.V. shows like ABC’s “Scandal”:

scandal abc, gourmet food truck, kerry washington, bellamy young
Scandal’s Bellamy Young tweeted a thank you to co-star Kerry Washington for bringing Recess Ice Cream gourmet food truck to the set.
A new food truck celebrating the U.S. debut of skinnypasta appeared in Los Angeles on Tuesday, June 2. Operated by Canadian-based Gabriella’s Kitchen, the gourmet food truck offered locals free samples of its high protein, non-GMO and gluten-free pasta made on traditional Italian pasta machines.

Gabriella's Kitchen, skinnypasta, gourmet trucks
Gabriella’s Kitchen celebrated the launch of its skinnypasta line in the Los Angeles market with a food truck offering free samples of the product.
With more than 600 retailers across Canada, skinnypasta is now available for purchase in Los Angeles at PINK Dot on Sunset Blvd or through the store’s delivery service at www.PINKDot.com.

“With the success of Gabriella’s Kitchen in the Canadian market, we are thrilled to be in Los Angeles where we can further our mission of changing the way the world eats,” said Gabriella’s Kitchen CEO Margot Micallef. “We hope to contribute to the Better-For-You revolution and empower consumers to encourage local retailers to carry healthier options like our nutritious and delicious skinnypasta.”

Gabriella’s Kitchen offers three lines of fresh and frozen, artisan-style pastas: skinnypasta High Protein, skinnypasta Gluten-Free and skinnypasta Superfood.

Online Organic and Gourmet Flavored Nut Store Opens

Kraze Foods
Photo: Kraze Foods

STERLING HEIGHTS, MI — Nuts consumed in small portions are not only delicious but offer numerous health benefits. Consumers now have a new way to access raw, organic and gourmet flavored nuts with the opening of Kraze Foods online retail store.

On Kraze’s website, it states that its “goal is to provide you with high quality, nutrition-dense foods that are healthy and bursting with flavor.” The company also says its organic nuts are soaked and dehydrated for five days to activate enzymes that aid in digestion and absorption of nutrients.

Consumers have the choice of several flavors including: Chocolate Orange Walnuts, Maple Mesquite Pecans and Spicy Cashews. The nuts are available in 3-ounce packages and 1-ounce snack packs.

Although Kraze’s Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign, launched in March, did not reach its goal the company pressed forward anyway to make its products available to a larger market.

“We are determined now more than ever to get our quality products into everyone’s hands,” said President Sheryl Burns, “and [we] are convinced we will have repeat customers. That’s how confident we are in our process and the taste of our three uniquely flavored nuts.”

Kraze Foods, located in Sterling Heights, MI, was founded by David Adinarayan and Sheryl Burns.

Online Healthy Grocer Takes Aim at Chronic Diseases

Sitraa Healthy Marketplace
Source: Sitraa

EDISON, NJ — Combating chronic diseases just got a little easier with the debut of an online healthy grocery marketplace.

Edison, NJ-based Sitraa Inc.,  a technology and healthcare company, launched the Sitraa Health Market Platform to provide users with an online grocery market and to connect them with registered nutritionists.

“We need to change our eating habits,” said Sekhar Divakarun, Sitraa’s co-founder and CEO. “Sitraa Health Platform focuses on the western diet, which is the root cause of chronic diseases. Research shows that food is a key driver of chronic conditions. The current retail market model that just automatically sells every conceived food product, without having a qualified dietitian to advise the buyers, is not working.”

The Sitraa online marketplace is geared toward changing the eating habits of its subscribers and providing them with healthy options and access to expert advice. Site features include personalized advice from nutritionists, tips on shopping lists, advice on dining out, the ability to search for individual products and receive recommendations based on your profile, and much more.

Membership plans start at $9.95 a month.

Healthcare Company Offers Discounts for Healthy Food Choices

Source: UnitedHealthcare
Source: UnitedHealthcare

MILWAUKEE, WI — More Wisconsinites will now have access to healthier food options at a discounted price with the expansion of UnitedHealthcare’s Healthy Savings program. The expanded program is available to nearly 550,000 participants in either BadgerCare Plus, select self-funded employer and individual exchange plans.

According to the company, Healthy Savings offers discounts of more than $150 on select healthy foods from over 140 food and beverage brands.

“Healthy Savings gives people the opportunity to make healthier food choices and improve their diets, which will enhance their health and well-being,” said Dustin Hinton, president and CEO, UnitedHealthcare of Wisconsin. “The feedback from our plan participants during the first few months of the program has been tremendous, and demonstrates that people want to eat healthier. By expanding Healthy Savings we are able to deliver healthy options to a wider audience at a lower cost.”

UnitedHealthcare did a limited launch earlier this year, offering the program to approximately 100,000 fully insured employer-based and Medicaid SSI plan participants in Wisconsin. The successful launch, which resulted in more than 400,000 visits to the Healthy Savings website, encouraged the company to expand the program to additional plan participants statewide. BadgerCare Plus members gained access May 1, and people enrolled in self-funded employer and individual exchange plan participants will have access beginning July 1.