News Briefs

  • 3/10/2022

    AFFI Announces New VP of Comms

    Mary Emma Young teaser

    Fittingly enough during National Frozen Food Month, the American Frozen Food Institute (AFFI) announced that it has named Mary Emma Young as its VP of communications.

    Young is tasked with leading AFFI’s integrated communications strategy, overseeing media relations, social media, executive communications, crisis management and online and internal communications. She takes over the role from Adrienne Seiling, who was elevated to SVP of industry affairs and member services at AFFI.

    The new communications leader most recently worked for the Pet Food Institute, where she was senior director of communications and strategic planning. Young also served as director of communications and marketing at CropLife America and was a senior account executive at the TheWadeGroup, Inc.

    “I am pleased to welcome Mary Emma to the AFFI team,” said Alison Bodor, president and CEO of the Arlington, Va.-based AFFI. “Sharing frozen food’s compelling story with policymakers, influencers, journalists and the entire frozen food chain is an essential part of our mission and in her new role Mary Emma will work with AFFI and its members to develop and execute an impactful communications strategy that informs and educates those key audiences about the benefits of frozen food.”

    Young said she is looking forward to working in the industry at a time of reinvigoration across many frozen food categories. “In the midst of these challenging times, the frozen food industry’s role in feeding millions of consumers in the U.S. and around the world has never been more important and I look forward to being part of this unique industry sector and advancing the AFFI mission,” she remarked.

  • 3/10/2022

    ShopRite of Yardley Debuts Large Selection of Alcohol Beverages and Café

    ShopRite of Yardley Beer and Wine

    ShopRite of Yardley will hold the grand opening of its new beer and wine department and in-store café on Saturday, March 19.

    The grand opening of the newly remodeled section will be commemorated with wine and beer tastings, along with cheese pairings from the  store’s cheese department. The new department will feature nearly 200 kinds of beers and wines for shoppers to choose from, including domestic, imported and craft beers, as well as top-selling wines, wines produced by smaller and organic producers, and kosher wines.

    “We look forward to offering our customers a special collection of wines and beers that have been carefully selected by our knowledgeable staff and beverage manager,” said Joe Colalillo, president of ShopRite of Hunterdon County and the owner and operator of the ShopRite of Yardley, located at 1603 Big Oak Road in Yardley, Pa.

    The new department also includes an adjacent café that allows customers to enjoy a snack or meal from the store’s food offerings, along with a beer or glass of wine.

    Visitors can check out the bottle shop and tasting event during the grand opening, which will take place from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m.

    The largest retailer-owned grocery cooperative in the United States, Keasbey, N.J.-based Wakefern comprises nearly 50 members that independently own and operate 361 supermarkets under the ShopRite, Price Rite Marketplace, The Fresh Grocer, Dearborn Market, Gourmet Garage and Fairway Market banners in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. Together with its member companies, Wakefern employs nearly 80,000 people. The company is No. 23 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 listing of North America’s top food and consumables retailers in North America.

  • 3/10/2022

    Sam’s Club Introduces Sam’s Cash

    Sam’s Club Introduces Sam’s Cash

    Sam’s Club has recently launched a new member rewards program called Sam’s Cash. It combines previous member rewards programs, Sam’s Club Mastercard Cash Back Rewards and Plus Cash Rewards, into one simplified platform that allows members to consolidate all of the rewards they’ve earned and are eligible to spend.

    Members can spend their Sam’s Cash in the club, online or cash it out. Beginning in April, additional Sam’s Cash will be awarded to members monthly, as opposed to annually.

    All Sam’s Club members can earn Sam’s Cash by:

    • Shopping at Sam’s Club as a Plus member: Plus members earn 2% Sam’s Cash on purchases in club, including Curbside Pickup and Scan & Go checkout.
    • Using a Sam’s Club Mastercard: Cardholders earn 5% back in Sam’s Cash on fuel, 3% on eligible purchases at Sam’s Club for Plus Members, 3% on dining, and 1% on other eligible purchases.

    Sam’s Club, a division of Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart Inc., operates nearly 600 clubs in the United States and Puerto Rico. Walmart operates about 10,500 stores under 48 banners in 24 countries, and e-commerce websites. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America, while Sam’s Club ranks ninth.

  • 3/10/2022

    Walmart Backs Program to Aid At-Risk Youth

    WalmartOrg Unlock Potential Logos Teaser

    The Responsible Business Initiative for Justice is launching a program made possible by Walmart that aims to confront economic immobility at the source by offering meaningful, long-term career opportunities for young people at high risk of criminal justice involvement. In doing so, the international nonprofit organization aims to advance racial equity, prevent youth from entering the criminal justice system and help create future corporate leaders.

    Rolling out at the South by Southwest festival, which runs March-20 in Austin, the Unlock Potential program calls on major U.S. employers to use hiring and other resources to give vulnerable youth and young adults economic opportunity, thereby providing more routes to help them reach their full potential.

    Walmart’s support of Unlock Potential is part of the Center for Racial Equity’s creation of national networks to kick-start criminal justice prevention initiatives across the United States. 

    “We must be more intentional about creating meaningful opportunities for at-risk youth so we can break the cycle of incarceration for these groups of young people, particularly Black young adults,” explained Marvin Carr, director, Center for Racial Equity. “The Unlock Potential program adds to a network of community leaders, nonprofits and policymakers working together to advance criminal justice prevention initiatives, made possible by the Center for Racial Equity.”

    Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart operates approximately 10,500 stores under 46 banners in 24 countries, and e-commerce websites, employing 2.3 million-plus associates worldwide. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2021 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

  • 3/9/2022

    Gelson’s to Hold Virtual Wine Tasting

    Gelson's Online Wine Tasting

    Gelson’s Markets will host a virtual tasting with Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars, an iconic Napa Valley wine producers, on March 24 at 6 p.m. Participants in the interactive live experience will be tasting two bottles: Stag Leap Wine Cellars Karia Chardonnay and Artemis Cabernet Sauvignon, paired with Gelson’s Beef Filet and Creamy Horseradish Canapes; Shrimp and Pesto Canapes; Artichoke and Boursin Bites served with Brie, Gouda, and Roquefort cheeses; fresh grapes; and berries.

    Featured wines will be specially priced to buy in-store on March 23 and March 24, the Chardonnay for $26.99 and the Cabernet Sauvignon in the $59.99.

    Attendees can RVSP and pre-pay to attend the virtual tasting online. The last day to RSVP is March 20.

    Encino, Calif.-based Gelson’s operates 27 full-service specialty grocery stores in Southern California. Each Gelson’s features the full amenities of a traditional supermarket, with the local flavor of a neighborhood market.

  • 3/8/2022

    New Fresh Food Store Arrives in Chicago Food Desert

    Food desert teaser

    Some notable growth is sprouting in a food desert on Chicago’s South Side. This week marked the grand opening of the Go Green Community Fresh Market in the Englewood neighborhood.

    The two-level store at 1207 W. 63rd Street includes a variety of fresh foods and prepared meals for individuals and families in the area who have long faced food insecurity. Locally-made and produced products are available as well, and the store will offer a membership plan with benefits for residents and vendors.

    Go-Green Community Fresh Market is the result of a joint effort between various community groups, spearheaded by the Inner-City Muslim Action Network as part of its flagship Corner Store Campaign. This store – said to be more than 25 years in the making – is part of a broader revitalization of that particular stretch of 63rd Street through an initiative known as Go Green on Racine.

    Mayor Lori Lightfoot was on hand for the ribbon cutting. “While I am ecstatic to be here, while we should continue to be celebrating, I think it’s important for us to reflect on what it is that we’re celebrating,” said Lightfoot. “How much blood, sweat and tears it took to get to this moment, and what we can do to commit ourselves so that it doesn’t happen again.”

    According to Chicago media reports, the store was $5 million project funded by an array of nonprofit organizations, foundations and state agencies. The City of Chicago invested more than $1.5 million in the effort.

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