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Hi-Chew available to Anime Expo 2010 attendees

BY Allison Cerra

LOS ANGELES The makers behind Hi-Chew fruit chews will bring their confection to attendees at this year’s Anime Expo.

Sponsored by the Society for the Promotion of Japanese Animation, Anime Expo is the nation’s largest anime (film/video animation) and manga (comic books) convention, focusing on broadening awareness of anime and manga in the United States.

“Morinaga is a major supporter of the anime and manga artistic movement,” explained Toshiya Yasuda, president of Morinaga America. “We utilize the talents of anime and manga artists on our websites and in promotional materials to convey the ‘fun’ that our product line offers. Young and old enjoy this annual event and we’re thrilled to be able to tantalize convention goers with our Hi-Chew Fruit Chew flavors.”

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Cougar Mints are on the (market) prowl

BY Allison Cerra

RIVERSIDE, Ill. A new pheromone-infused breath mint is gearing up to be a top-selling product this summer.

Cougar Mints, a breath mint product geared toward women, contains pheremones to trigger human response from those who smell them, according to Promotionalproducts.org — specializing in trade show giveaways — which is considering the product among its “Summer Hottest Sellers” list.

“These mints have only been available for a couple of months and we can barely keep them in stock,” says Tim Mercer, general manager of Promotionalproducts.org. “Not only are the mints popular, but [many] businesses that are looking for a giveaway at conventions.”

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Consumers become more ‘calorie conscious,’ survey shows

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK Health and weight management are on the minds and plates of consumers nationwide, with 43% of surveyed consumers paying more attention to calorie counts than they were two years ago.

In the new Shopping for Health survey conducted by Harris Interactive on behalf of the Food Marketing Institute and Prevention, a Rodale Inc. magazine, more than 1,423 adult shoppers polled said sodium levels are the new top nutrition label concern (66%), tied with fat (66%) and followed closely by sugar/artificial sweeteners (65%) and calories (60%). Compared with last year, more than one-third of shoppers say they’re buying products with more grains (whole grain, 49%; multigrain, 40%), fiber (39%), low-fat (37%) and low-sodium (34%).

“This research is extremely valuable as supermarkets promote the health and wellness of their customers as a central part of their mission. Most important, it tells us what consumers need to learn about eating healthy foods and how we can best help them as company dietitians teach customers how to improve their diets through store tours, cooking classes and other educational programs,” said Leslie Sarasin, FMI president and CEO.

But while 25% of shoppers said it’s acceptable for the taxation of unhealthy foods, one-third of shoppers are attracted to utilizing grocery list apps and 24% are spending more time in the grocery store than before the economic crash, precision is not necessarily on the minds of consumers, the survey noted:

  • 9% actively count how many calories they consume
  • 50% say they just watch their calories
  • 41% don’t watch at all

“America’s calorie conundrum: more attention does not mean more precision,” said Cary Silvers, Prevention’s director of consumer insights. “While many American’s are paying more attention to calories, they have a long way to go towards knowing how many they consume in an average day. This is the next line of opportunity in calorie management.”

Click here to view or purchase the full report.

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