WGC Monthly Newsletter
In This Issue
Media Opportunity at WGC Conference
Final WG Sampling Day Plans
Regulatory Updates
Connect with Supermarket RDs
Quick Links

An Oldways Family Program

Oldways is a nonprofit food and nutrition education organization, inspiring good health 
through cultural food traditions and lifestyles.
March 2014

Dear Whole Grains Council members,

Now that Spring has sprung north of the equator (on the calendar, if not yet on the ground where you are), we know we're just half a year away from Whole Grains Month in September. For companies marketing whole grain products, Whole Grains Month offers the perfect hook for a contest or sweepstakes, a new product introduction, or any kind of whole grain promotion, so be thinking now about what your company can be doing in September. In our April WGC Member Newsletter, we'll tell you more about what we're doing for Whole Grains Month, and how you can take part. Stay tuned!

In the meantime, if you have a whole grain discount coupon on your website, or you're running a contest or sweepstakes any month of the year, tell Danita Boyce ([email protected]). She'll put a link to your special deal in the Deals and Discounts section of "Just Ask for Whole Grains," the WGC's monthly consumer newsletter.

Hot Media Opportunity for Your Company
Speaking of clever and effective whole grain promotions, we have a great media opportunity for a handful of WGC member companies. It's the chance to be on a panel at our upcoming conference, Whole Grains: Breaking Barriers, to be held November 9-11 in Boston.

We'll have a great group of top-level media at the conference, so this will be a special opportunity for your whole grain successes to be in the spotlight. Already, journalists from outlets including U.S. News & World Report, WebMD, SHAPE, Food & Nutrition, and Parents have committed to attending, with more signing on daily. 

What has your company done to introduce more people to more whole grains? Have you ... Criss-crossed the country driving a giant bagel? ... Donated 20 tons of whole grain cereal to local food pantries? ... Created a whole grain pizza for schools that never ends up in the trash can? ... Set your whole grain prices equal to the prices on their refined-grain equivalents? ... Filmed a video about the benefits of whole grains that went viral with tweens? Tell Danita your story ([email protected] or 617-896-4880) and we'll find ways -- at the conference and/or elsewhere - to help you get the applause you deserve.

Now that we've reminded you of our upcoming conference, here are some links you may find useful:
Link to register (first registration from each WGC company is free!)
Information about sponsoring, for extra visibility

A big thanks to our first committed conference sponsors: Weetabix/Barbara's Bakery, Bay State Milling, Riviana, and supporter Carl Brandt/Mestemacher.
The Best Whole Grain Sampling Day (April 2) Ever!


Next week's annual Whole Grain Sampling Day is set to be a big success, thanks to a long list of major national partners participating. Several major restaurant chains (Dunkin' Donuts, California Pizza Kitchen, Rubio's) are offering special WGSD discounts, and others (McDonald's, Denny's, Genghis Grill) are promoting whole grain choices through social media. Grocery stores are handing out samples (HyVee, Whole Foods), and special whole grain promotions will be taking place in food trucks and in vending machines. The National Restaurant Association, Healthy Dining Finder, and the American Institute of Cancer Research all signed on as partners, and a corps of Whole Grain Ambassador bloggers will also be talking up whole grains on April 2.

We're delighted that so many WGC members stepped up to the plate to take part in the many opportunities we created for this once-a-year extravaganza. Participating members include: Among Friends, Attune Foods, Barbara's Bakery, Barilla, Bob's Red Mill, Carl Brandt/Mestemacher, ConAgra Mills, Dr. Kracker, Dunkin' Donuts, Freekehlicious, Goose Valley, h.u.m.a.n. Healthy Vending, HomeFree, Jovial Foods, Late July, Lotus Foods, Mary's Gone Crackers, McDonald's, Mondelez, New World Pasta, Pamela's Products, Panos/Sesmark, Popsalot Gourmet Popcorn, Real McCoy's Snax, Rhythm Superfoods, Roman Meal Bread, Skeeter Snacks, Sun Valley Rice, Sunnyland Mills, Teeccino, Upfront Foods and Way Better Snacks.

In the final ramp-up to April 2 we're doing lots of media interviews. If you have plans that aren't yet on our Partners List, email Cynthia Harriman ([email protected]) today and we'll add your promotion, to help spread the word. 

Whole Grains and Updated U.S. Regulations
WGC member companies selling whole grain products to U.S. schools are urged to download the new Whole Grain Resource released last month by USDA's Food & Nutrition Services. There's a link in the blog we wrote at the time this very useful support document was made available.

In other government news, on February 27 FDA unveiled a proposal for updates to the Nutrition Facts Panel found on almost all foods sold in the U.S. We suspect all of you have already read details of the proposed changes; if not, we invite you to read the blog we wrote for The Oldways Table outlining key points.
Oldways News: Supermarket RD Symposium
Supermarket dietitians play a key role in influencing the food purchasing decisions of shoppers across the U.S. Oldways, the parent organization of the Whole Grains Council, has two special programs to help supermarket RDs and food manufacturers work together. Our Oldways Nutrition Exchange is a 24/7 online resource for dietitians in supermarkets and elsewhere, while our Supermarket Dietitian Leadership Symposium is a sought-after annual event for advancing the role of supermarket dietitians.

This year's Symposium is taking place April 2-4 in Scottsdale, AZ, where 48 supermarket RDs from 43 major chains will exchange ideas with marketing and nutrition executives (many themselves RDs) from 20 food companies. With fewer than 100 attendees, this event is the premier opportunity for companies to learn about communicating with and meeting the needs of supermarket RDs. Interested in having your company take part in 2015? Georgia Orcutt, Program Manager for the Symposium, is signing up 2015 sponsors now. Space is limited and we already have commitments for next year, so contact her now ([email protected] or 617-896-4861).

Best regards,

Cynthia Harriman
Director of Food and Nutrition Strategies

Mallory Cushman
Stamp Program Manager

Danita Boyce
Program Manager

Anders (Andy) Nicolajsen

... and from all of the Oldways and Whole Grains Council staff