Coca-Cola profit leaps 19 percent in first quarter
ATLANTA The Coca-Cola Co. said that profits rose 19 percent on a 21 percent increase in sales in the first quarter of its fiscal year, beating Wall Street predictions.
Revenues leapt to $7.38 billion from $6.10 billion at the same time last year, the company said. Net profit totaled $1.5 billion for the quarter, compared with $1.26 billion in the first quarter of 2007. Per share, first-quarter profits came in at 64 cents, compared with 54 cents per share a year earlier.
Coca-Cola also reported that case volume saw an increase of 6 percent during the first quarter worldwide.
Coca-Cola holds its annual meeting in Wilmington, Del., today.
Tropicana launches lemonade, helps Habitat for Humanity
PALMETTO, Fla. Tropicana officials announced the launch of a 100 percent natural lemonade, Coastal Groves, Monday. The launch was tied in with the dedication ceremony of a recently constructed Habitat for Humanity home, build by Tropicana employees, and painted yellow for the occasion.
Dozens of Tropicana employees who helped build the home were present at the ceremony. In all, about 300 Tropicana employees put in time and labor into its construction.
Tropicana announced in January it will donate $1 million to Habitat for Humanity International during a three-year project to build houses along the Gulf Coast. Officials said construction of another seven homes is planned in that time.
Coastal Groves lemonade will be produced from lemons grown in California and transported to Bradenton, Fla., for processing. The juice will be available in three flavors; original lemonade, peach lemonade and raspberry lemonade.
Coastal Groves lemonade is already available in Manatee County and will debut nationwide during May, Tropicana’s manager of public relations, Karen May, said. Coastal Grove lemonade 12-oz. bottles retail for $1.79 and 64-oz. cartons for $2.99.
Cadbury-Schweppes to end use of artificial colors
LONDON Cadbury Schweppes said it will remove all artificial colors from its candies by the end of 2008 because of health concerns over the possible effects on child behavior related to artificially colored sweets.
“Cadbury can confirm that we have listened to consumers and are committed to replacing all artificial colors in our sweets by the end of this year,” Tony Bilsborough, Cadbury spokesperson, said.
Additives like artificial colors have garnered much public criticism lately, particularly following the publication of a Southampton Study last year that linked certain artificial colors to hyperactivity in children.
The UK Food Standards Agency last week urged voluntary removal of the additives and asked the European Food Safety Authority to eventually ban the colorings. Some European candy makers, such as Nestle Rowntree, have already omitted artificial colors.
Six colors have been named by the Southampton study linked to hyperactivity; they are were allura red (E129), carmoisine (E122), ponceau 4R (E124), quinoline yellow (E104), sunset yellow (E110) and tartrazine (E102).