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Anheuser-Busch brings back Brew Masters’ Private Reserve for holidays

BY Tara Smith

ST. LOUIS Anheuser-Busch on Monday announced it is bringing back its Brew Masters’ Private Reserve from Budweiser— a rich, malty Doppelbock that offers a special recipe and limited-edition packaging—as part of the company’s holiday and seasonal program.

First introduced in 2005, the Bavarian-styled beer with 8.5 percent alcohol by volume is brewed with four types of malts, giving it a toasted malt flavor and red-highlights. Now available in most states through the end of the year, Brew Masters’ Private Reserve comes packaged in a distinctive 46.5-ounce swing-top bottle, as well as in single-bottle versions or part of a gift set, which includes a bottle alongside two fluted pilsner-style glasses. The gift set sells for a suggested retail price of $21.99.

“Serve this beer chilled, alongside a hearty holiday meal,” suggested Anheuser-Busch brewmaster Eric Beck. “It complements the nutty flavors in stuffing, as well as a robust meat such as duck.”

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ConAgra to fortify Swiss Miss hot chocolate

BY Tara Smith

OMAHA, Neb. ConAgra Foods is expanding its Swiss Miss line of hot chocolates, targeting women with new, functional offerings.

According to a recent survey from ConAgra, 51 percent of women look to fortified foods to get their essential nutrients and more than a third would also like to get these from such indulgent foods as chocolate. The survey of 500 women between the ages of 25 and 44 also found that nearly three-quarters of the respondents want chocolate more that any other confectionary and consume caffeine at least once a day.

Looking to meet these intersecting needs, ConAgra’s new beverage offerings include Swiss Miss Pick-me-up cocoa swirls, which contain as much caffeine as a cup of coffee, as well as the amount of calcium and Vitamin D in a glass of milk. The company’s Swiss Miss Great Start cocoa is enriched with 15 vitamins and minerals. Additionally, the new cocoas have only 110 calories and two grams of fat per serving.

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Hershey’s VP of global operations steps down

BY Tara Smith

HERSHEY, Pa. Less than 18 months after joining candymaker The Hershey Co., senior vice president of Global Operations Gregg Tanner announced Friday that he is leaving at the end of the month.

The third high-level Hershey executive whose departure had been announced or confirmed in the last two months, Tanner, 50, is leaving to pursue “a business opportunity that he feels will be rewarding on a professional level and will enable him to be with his family,” according to Hershey spokesman Kirk Saville.

Tanner’s departure follows Richard Lenny, Hershey’s chief executive officer, chairman and president, who announced earlier this month that he will retire at the end of the year. In August, Christopher Baldwin, senior vice president and president of Hershey’s North American Commercial Group, left the company to become president of Kraft Foods Inc.’s U.S. Snacks and cereals operations.

Tanner had been closely involved in Hershey’s three-year manufacturing realignment to reduce costs by eliminating some production lines in the United States and Canada by shifting some production to a new facility in Monterrey, Mexico.

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