Dow hits 13,000
The dollar edged up against the euro in the wake of a euro-zone agreement to approve a long-awaited bailout for Greece, reports MarketWatch. U.S. stocks gained and bonds fell, indicating the deal made investors feel more confident shifting to riskier from safer assets, which initially boosted the euro. However, analysts cautioned that the deal may undermine Greece's ability to grow out of its debt burden ... Yesterday, the Dow hit 13,000 for the first time since May 2008, although it closed slightly lower ... Reps. Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), and Rosa DeLauro, (D-Conn.), presented a bill that would require the FDA to set safety standards on the levels of arsenic and lead in fruit juices within two years, reports FoodSafetyNews.com, noting that both chemicals can affect children's brain development. "We must ensure that the juices our children drink are safe," said DeLauro. ... Unilever and Ben & Jerry's will roll out climate-friendly ice cream freezer cabinets in the U.S. later this year. The cabinets consume at least 10 percent less energy and replace harmful "F" gas coolants with hydrocarbon (HC) refrigerants. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently approved the technology behind the cabinets for use in the U.S., which Unilever has used for several years across Europe and Asia, and the new freezers will be labeled with "Greener Freezer" stickers. "It's a great day when Ben & Jerry's and Unilever's efforts to introduce innovative technology positively impacts the environment," said Jostein Solheim, CEO of Ben & Jerry's. "Since 2008, we have worked alongside Greenpeace in pursuit of a more responsible freezer for the U.S. For us, this sweet success is an environmental victory." ... We've all heard of cocktails that taste like dessert, but how about alcohol-infused ice cream? Bars and liquor stores in Arizona serve SnöBar, alcohol-laden ice pops and ice cream, reports MediaPost. The brainchild of entrepreneur Eddie Masjedi, who came up with the idea after mixing alcohol and ice cream together at home, he partnered with mixologists, chefs and food scientists to perfect the product. A serving costs roughly the same price as a cocktail or top-shelf alcohol, and flavors include Cosmopolitan and Margarita ice pops and Pink Squirrel, Grasshopper, Brandy Alexander, and Brandy Alexander chocolate chip ice creams, with some 50 additional flavors currently in development http://www.youtube.com/user/SnoBarMedia ... Speaking of alcohol, sales in the U.S. were 67 percent above average during the week before Christmas and 39 percent higher than average in the week before New Year's, according to Nielsen, reports Progressive Grocer. Pinot noir and Rieslings were the top choices in wine ... By an overwhelming vote of 417 to 2, The House of Representatives passed legislation to curtail insider trading of securities by lawmakers and officials in the executive branch, including a provision inspired by an alleged trade made by the husband of House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi ... There are magazines, TV shows and books about food, so why not a social network? Online lifestyle publisher Glam Media launched Foodie.com, a social network devoted entirely to the gastronomic crowd, reports Reuters. Users can create profiles for the service with their existing Facebook or Twitter credentials, and once signed on they can follow some 100 food writers, chefs, share their views and find recipes ... A century ago in Sao Paulo, Achilles Izella, the Swiss Consul in Brazil, introduced a locally-made, Swiss-inspired chocolate Lacta, a Kraft Foods brand, to Brazilians. This month, Lacta celebrates its 100th birthday, reigning as the undisputed top-selling chocolate brand in Brazil with about 37 percent of the market ... WikiCells, edible food packaging developed by Professor David Edwards and a team at Harvard University, "comprises a membrane consisting of charged particles (of edible substances) bound by electrostatic forces; this surrounds a liquid, foam or solid food and is then wrapped in an edible or biodegradable hard shell," reports FoodProductionDaily.com. According to Edwards, this sustainable packaging is the way of the future ... Hershey, which is working on creating a protein drink, has acquired a 69 percent stake in protein drink manufacturer Tri-Us, up from its 49 percent stake in the company, reports Central Penn Business Journal ... First lady Michelle Obama traveled to Little Rock Air Force Base in Arkansas to announce new nutrition standards and an obesity education campaign for all branches of the U.S. military, reports Reuters. "It's happening because our military leaders know it's not just a diet issue, it's not just a health issue. This is truly a national security issue," she said ... P.F. Chang's China Bistro will acquire a 51 percent interest in Scottsdale, Ariz.-based True Food Kitchen, a four-unit healthy-dining concept launched by Fox Restaurant Concepts and health guru Andrew Weil, reports American City Business. P.F Chang's made a loan to launch the concept in 2009, with the option to convert the debt to equity ... Beautiful Brands International (BBI) s announced the official franchise launch of its new fast casual concept, Sushi Freak, reports FastCasual.com. The create-your-own sushi concept is in a franchise campaign targeting all 50 states and select nations around the world. BBI expects 50 stores open and operating by the end of the first quarter 2013.