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Uncle Ben’s announces third annual cooking contest

BY Ryan Chavis

RANCHO DOMINGUEZ, Calif. — Uncle Ben's brand is teaming up with celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson for the third annual Ben's Beginners Cooking Contest, which is aimed at inspiring healthy eating habits by encouraging parents and kids to cook together.

Starting Wednesday, Aug. 13, parents with children in grades K-8 can submit home videos of their families preparing a rice-based meal and discussing the experience together, the company said.

The bond that can blossom between parents and their children when cooking together is enormous," said Tim Snyder, VP of sales and marketing, Mars Food North America, the parent company of the Uncle Ben's brand. "It's our goal to instill this bond in families and at the same time, get kids to learn about healthy eating."

Participants will have the chance to win one of five grand prizes, which include $15,000 in cash, a hometown celebration and a $30,000 cafeteria makeover for their child's school. Submissions will be accepted until 11:59 p.m. on Oct. 10. Families can go to UncleBens.com for the official rules of the contest.

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Guinness to kick off Discovery Series with new lager

BY Ryan Chavis

LATROBE, Pa. and DUBLIN — Guinness, a brand from Diageo, announced the debut of Guinness Blonde American Lager, which incorporates American hops and Guinness yeast.

The brand's newest beverage is the first release in the Guinness Discovery Series, which showcases a range of "fusion brew" beer options, all of which will be released under the Guinness trademark. The series will release these brews bi-annually, beginning with Guinness Blonde American Lager.

"Beer drinkers' tastes are evolving and people are looking to try different flavors and styles, and we're excited to show what Guinness is capable of beyond the traditional dark stout with Guinness Blonde American Lager," said Doug Campbell, Guinness brand director. "The beauty of this beer is that we're able to produce a characteristically American-style lager, while fusing the standards of quality and taste expected of Guinness with a taste profile and color characteristics long loved by traditional American beer drinkers."

Guinness Blonde American Lager will be available in a 12-oz. bottle 6-pack, with a suggested retail price of $8.99. The beverage will hit shelves in mid-September.

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MinuteClinic opens its doors in Sacramento area

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I. — The first MinuteClinic locations in the Sacramento metropolitan area opened their doors on Wednesday inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in Sacramento and Elk Grove. A third clinic is slated to open in Fair Oaks in October.

With the openings, there are now more than 50 MinuteClinic locations in the Golden State in the San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange County/Inland Empire and Bay Area markets. The first clinics opened in Southern California in 2007.

Nationwide, CVS Caremark’s MinuteClinic has more than 850 clinics in 29 states and the District of Columbia.

Most major health insurance is accepted, including some of the plans offered to employees and retirees from local schools, agencies and California state government through the California Public Employees' Retirement System.

"The addition of these new clinics in the Sacramento market expands MinuteClinic's presence in Northern California following the Bay Area launch in fall 2013," said Andrew Sussman, president of MinuteClinic and SVP/associate chief medical officer of CVS Caremark. "There is a need for more accessible and affordable health care in California, and the demand for MinuteClinic services will grow due, in part, to the shortage of primary care physicians, the aging Baby Boomer population and the influx of newly insured patients through the Affordable Care Act."

Sussman noted that MinuteClinic is committed to helping patients find a medical home and believes it can play a complementary role in working with primary care providers.

"About 50% of MinuteClinic visits occur on evenings, weekends and holidays when patients may not be able to get an appointment with their primary care provider," Sussman said. "And about half of the patients seen at  MinuteClinic are 'medically homeless' and do not have a personal physician."

Patients who visit MinuteClinic without a primary care provider are provided a list of physicians in the area who are accepting new patients.

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