Cynthia “Cie” Nicholson has resigned as chief marketing officer of Pepsi-Cola North America, ending an 11-year career with the company. A statement said she resigned to pursue personal interests.

Del Monte Foods is about to complete construction of a distribution center adjacent to its 400,000-square-foot pet food manufacturing plant in Topeka, Kansas. Completion is scheduled for early fall.

The Sholl Group II, marketer of selected Green Giant Fresh produce products, has named Cheryl Rinnan as business development analyst. Rinnan will be responsible for managing the Wal-Mart account to support growth via analytical and financial reporting, as well as supporting additional retail accounts.

J.M. Smucker Co. has purchased the Folgers coffee business from Procter & Gamble. The $2.95 billion stock deal won approval from federal antitrust authorities in July. Smucker previously has bought P&G’s Jif peanut butter and Crisco shortening brands.

Nearly half of consumers in a Nielsen survey said the declining economy has made no difference in their spending on alcoholic beverages. Less than 20% indicated a significant impact.

Poultry processor Pilgrim’s Pride has announced plans to move tray-pack chicken operations out of its facility in El Dorado, Ark. The operation will be consolidated into six other case-ready facilities.

Sales of frozen novelties grew 7.2% from 2002 to 2007, while conventional ice cream sales fell 3.9% in that time period, according to a report from Mintel. However, ice cream constituted 60% of the frozen dessert market, compared with 36% for novelties.

Sales of “health and wellness” consumer packaged goods, including organic and natural foods, reached $102.75 billion in 2007, according to the Natural Marketing Institute. This constituted a 15% rise over 2006.

PepsiCo has reduced the plastic in some of its half-liter bottles for non-carbonated beverages by 20%. The change includes PepsiCo brands Lipton Iced Tea, Tropicana juice drinks, Aquafina FlavorSplash and Aquafina Alive.