Food News Today Transcripts for the week of April 23rd, 2012

April 27, 2012

Green tea for your breath, Marion Nestle sets us straight on pink slime and her new book, and how are shoppers changing their meat shopping habits?

Good morning, Food News Today is sponsored by ConAgra Foods, who shares with me the desire to provide the most current, interesting, and unbiased food news.


>Next up is a candid interview with Marion Nestle, Professor in the Department of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health and Professor of Sociology at New York University. The New York Times called Marion Nestle "the nutrition and policy guru and an all-around heroine." And I would have to agree, she is a friend and I consider her one of the smartest all around people that I know- so earlier I spoke with her about everything from pink slime to of course her book, WHY CALORIES COUNT:  FROM SCIENCE TO POLITICS


Thanks so much Marion – and everybody should go out and get a copy of her book Why Calories Count: from Science to Politics – If you want to know about food from top to bottom and learn how to eat right and separate diet fad from fact -this book is for you!


>We’ve been hearing for a long time the many benefits of green tea but the latest from a team at Israel's Institute of Technology found that antioxidants in green tea, can (called polyphenols,) destroy a number of compounds in the mouth that can lead to bad breath, tooth decay and even mouth cancer.  I can think of a few people I’d love to serve up a cup of green tea to. Anyway… green tea is truly a super drink, previous studies have suggested that green tea helps prevent cancer and heart disease, lower cholesterol - and even ward off Parkinson's and Alzheimer's.

EGCG is the component that has been studied the most and researchers commented that, “All together, there is increasing interest in the health benefits of green tea in the field of oral health.”  Just as a reminder, green tea is made from the same plant as black tea but processed in a different way - it retains less caffeine and more polyphenols. It has been consumed in China and the Far East for thousands of years and is gaining popularity here in the US.

>There are a few factors that may be contributing to today’s shoppers changing their meat buying and consumption habits. Meat prices, environmental awareness, health and nutrition trends as well as a growing adventurous foodie culture looking for more choices in the meat department. But, how well do consumers actually understand the different meat cuts?

In an exclusive SupermarketGuru quick poll, we set out to see if consumers are confused by the meat case. When asked, “Do you feel confused or confident when buying meat in the supermarket?” 18 % say they feel confused, 26% feel confident, and 57% feel like they are somewhere in the middle.

Here are some other specific behaviors we found out: 

• 42% think they are two to three dozen different cuts of meat in the meat case, 24% think they are a dozen or less, 36% think there are four or more dozen.

• 36% do NOT understand the differences between top round, bottom round, loin, shoulder, etc., how these cuts should be cooked and eaten, and what they're worth. Thirty-five percent say they DO understand these differences, and 29% are not sure.