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Wine, beer tie as top choices for U.S. drinkers

BY Allison Cerra

PRINCETON, N.J. — A recent Gallup poll found that more U.S. drinkers ages 18 to 24 years favor wine and beer as their alcoholic beverages of choice.

According to a survey of 1,016 adults, 64% of U.S. adults reported that they consume alcohol. Among those respondents, 35% named wine as their drink of choice, while 36% said they preferred to drink beer, a drop from 41% in 2010. Only 23% said they preferred to drink liquor.

Breaking down the statistics by gender, nearly half of male drinkers (48%) said they most often drink beer, followed by liquor at 26%, while 51% of female drinkers preferred wine. The research noted that the pattern is similar to years past, although the preference for beer is down slightly among both groups when compared with 2010.

Interestingly, the preference for beer among younger drinkers substantially dropped from 51% to 29%, while wine and liquor saw a 3% and 5% rise, respectively.

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GMA appoints food safety executive

BY DSN STAFF

WASHINGTON — The Grocery Manufacturers Association has named George Dunaif as its new VP food safety and technical services.

Dunaif most recently served as VP global food safety at Campbell Soup. In that role, he was responsible for the company’s worldwide food safety function, including toxicology, microbiology, process safety and analytical chemistry. He also served as vice-chairman of the Campbell corporate crisis management team.

“I am honored to join the GMA team,” Dunaif said. “The association plays an important leadership role when it comes to food safety, and I look forward to working with the GMA staff and the experts at its member companies to improve food safety in the U.S. and around the globe.”

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M&M’s celebrates birthday of pretzel chocolate candies in New York

BY Allison Cerra

HACKETTSTOWN, N.J. — To celebrate the first birthday of its M&M’s pretzel chocolate candies, Mars Chocolate said it is looking to break the Guinness World Record for the largest piñata.

Hosted at the 69th Regiment Armory in New York on Thursday from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m., the celebration will feature a candy-filled, 46-ft. replica of the orange M&M’s spokescandy, which will release thousands of bags of M&M’s pretzel chocolate candies to visitors. An official from the Guinness Book of World Records will be on-site to verify the piñata as the largest ever constructed, Mars Chocolate said. Also on hand to celebrate the first birthday of M&M’s pretzel will be Grammy-award winner Cee Lo Green.

"When M&M’s pretzel was recently named the ‘Product of the Year,’ we knew we’d have to throw an unforgettable birthday bash," Mars Chocolate North America chief consumer officer Debra Sandler said.

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