Mark Alexander has been named president Campbell North America, effective Jan. 16. He succeeds Sean Connolly, who joins Sara Lee Corp. as CEO of the company's North American Retail and Foodservice business. Connolly will serve as CEO of MeatCo, Sara Lee's North American Meats business following that company's planned spinoff of its international coffee and tea business ... Sara Lee Corp. has completed the sale of the majority of its North American Foodservice coffee and tea operations to The J.M. Smucker Company in an all-cash transaction. The two companies have entered into a licensing and support agreement tocooperatively develop liquid coffee technologies to drive long-term growth ... Sara Lee Corp. acquired Tea Forte for an undisclosed sum. "Tea Forte's expertise in ultra-premium teas complements our existing business with leading brands across Europe and boosts our innovation capabilities in the tea category," said Michiel Herkemij, CEO of Sara Lee International Beverage, Utrecht, the Netherlands ... The Coca-Cola Co. announced partnership agreements with Virent, Gevo and Avantium to help make its PlantBottle packing 100% from plant-based materials. The PlantBottle packaging is currently made with 30% MGE and 70% PTA. "While the technology to make bio-based materials in a lab has been available for years, we believe Virent, Gevo and Avantium are companies that possess technologies that have high potential for creating them on a global commercial scale within the next few years," said Rick Frazier, vice-president of commercial product supply for Coca-Cola. "This is a significant R&D. investment in packaging innovation and is the next step toward our vision of creating all of our plastic packaging from responsibly sourced plant-based materials." ...Charlie Trotter "quirky perfectionist, will be closing his eponymous Chicago restaurant after 25 years, reports The New York Times. Trotter says he will travel, attend graduate school in philosophy and political theory, and maybe return to open a new restaurant ... Walgreen plans to eliminate some private labels and add others, reports Supermarket News. The chain will add Nice!, a 300-item brand of groceries and household items costing as much as 30 percent less than national labels. Another brand, yet to be named, will be identified by a graphic of a sun with a smile ... The Seattle School Board is considering whether to ease a strict policy that bans snacks in vending machines after student governments complained that a drop in revenue has cost them thousands of dollars used to fund activities and athletics, reports The Seattle Times. Opponents of the ban said it doesn't accomplish the goal of promoting health because some students use the district's open-campus policy to buy snacks from convenience stores ... Kraft Foods is campaigning for a nationwide truck-weight limit of 97,000 pounds, up from 80,000, on interstate highways, saying heavier trucks would be more efficient and trim 33 million miles a year, reports Bloomberg. Vermont and Maine allow the higher weight ... Heinz introduces products in smaller sizes, priced between 99 cents and $1.99, to appeal to consumers seeking to cut their grocery bills, reports Forbes. The products include a 10-oz Heinz ketchup and a 9-oz. yellow mustard ... Data from the 2010 National Youth Physical Activity and Nutrition Study revealed that teens consumed fruits and vegetables an average of 1.2 times a day, reports WebMD. A survey of 10,765 high school students found that boys ate fruits 1.4 times a day compared with 1.2 times a day for girls ... PepsiCo, is being sued by Ronald Ball of Wisconsin, who claims in a 2009 lawsuit that he opened a can of Mountain Dew from a vending machine, tasted something foul, and spat out a dead mouse. PepsiCo says that is impossible. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/01/03/mountain-dew-dissolves-mice_n_1180994.html?ncid=wsc-huffpost-cards-headline... Dans Le Noir, a dining-in-the-dark concept that started eight years ago in Paris and expanded to London, Barcelona and Russia, plans to open a location in New York City's garment district this month, reports the New York Times' Diner's Journal blog. Visually impaired waiters serve guests at communal tables in a dark dining room that's designed to heighten other senses during the meal ... British engineer Stephen Lennie said he has created chocolate that can be molded into shapes, but stays flexible and does not melt, reports DNA (India)/Indo-Asian News Service. He created it for his children, but more than a million pounds were sold over the holiday season.