Zale Q2 profit better than expected
Dallas — Zale Corp. on Thursday posted a better than expected second quarter profit as sales rose at its namesake chain and it cut selling and administrative costs. The company restated its forecast that it will return to profit for its current fiscal year, which ends in late July.
Net profit in the quarter ended January 31, 2012, rose to $41.2 million, compared with $28.8 in the year-ago period.
Revenues rose 1.1% to $671 million. Overall same-store sales increased 2.8%, with a 3.6% increase at Zales and Zales Outlets.
Selling, general and administrative were down to 41.6% of sales, from 42.5% a year earlier.
Sam Adams unveils the Sam Can
BOSTON — Early this summer, you can expect to see Sam Adams Boston Lager in what the company is calling the Sam Can: a can two years in the making that beer manufacturer Sam Adams said it believes offers a slightly better drinking experience than the standard beer can.
Over the past two years, the company thoroughly researched the can’s design, putting it through considerable ergonomic and sensory testing in order to develop a new kind of can that tastes more similar to drinking from a glass. Sam Adams worked with can manufacturer Ball Corp. to understand can design, technology and hot o package premium beer in cans; then they teamed up with a design team at IDEO, a recognized global design firm; and finally, they consulted with GEI Consultants’ Roy Desrochers, a beer flavor expert for the Master Brewer’s Association of the Americas.
While Sam Adams said in a press release that the difference between its Sam Can and a standard can is modest, it believes the new design offers enhanced flavors and a more comfortable drinking experience. The new product can be taken where glass bottles sometimes can’t, such as the beach, sporting events or the golf course.
"I worked with Jim and the other brewers at Sam Adams on an ergonomic and flavor study to understand the benefits of the new can," Desrochers said. "The flared lip and wider top of the new Sam Can work in concert to deliver the beer in a way that makes the flavor closer to drinking out of a glass. Although subtle, this can delivers a more pronounced, more balanced flavor experience — something that was very important to the brewers. The extended lip of the can also creates a smoother, more comfortable overall drinking experience."
Sam Adams Boston Lager will be available Sam Cans in 12-packs this summer for a suggested retail price of $14.99 to $17.99.
Kashi heats up product line with steamed meals
Kashi, a natural food and lifestyle company, announced its new Kashi Chicken and Chipotle BBQ Steam Meal and Italian Vegetable Medley Pasta Steam Meal, two additions to Kashi’s Steam Meal line. The new entrees provide a meal for two people in each bag.
Like Kashi’s existing single-serve varieties, microwave steam is used to preserve the quality of the ingredients. Each features the Kashi Seven Whole Grain blend and offers 42 g or more of whole grains per serving:
Kashi Chicken and Chipotle BBQ Steam Meal: A combination of juicy mangoes, roasted green beans, red onion, and red and green peppers is paired with tender white-meat chicken, mixed with a sweet chipotle BBQ sauce, and served over Kashi Seven Whole Grains and Sesame Pilaf. The meal offers 43 g whole grains, 15 g protein, and 6 g fiber per serving.
Kashi Italian Vegetable Medley Pasta Steam Meal: The savory combination of oven-dried tomatoes, edamame, crisp broccoli, red peppers, carrots and yellow squash is blended with a creamy marinara sauce and tossed with a perfectly-cooked Kashi 7 Whole Grain Rotini Pasta. The meal provides 42 g whole grains, 14 g protein and 8 g fiber per serving.
"The Kashi Steam Meal is designed for those who want to make nutritious food choices, but whose busy schedules may hold them back from eating right," said Jeff Johnson, senior nutritionist and natural food and lifestyle expert at Kashi. "With the new Steam Meals for two, people can enjoy a tasty, flavorful meal together that’s ready in just minutes."
The Kashi Chicken and Chipotle BBQ and Italian Vegetable Medley Steam Meals join the existing line of single-serve Steam Meal options, including chicken fettuccine, sesame chicken, roasted garlic chicken farfalle, and spinach and artichoke pasta. All Kashi Steam Meals are now available in the frozen aisle of grocers and natural food retailers nationwide for a suggested retail price of $6.95.