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News Briefs

  • 10/19/2022

    Natural Grocers Reveals Shopper Picks for Best Store-Brand Products

    Natural Grocers Best of the Best

    Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage went public to see what shoppers think of its private label products. The natural food retailer is out with the winners of its second “Best of the Best” customer survey, which polled consumers about their favorite store brand items.

    Customers got to pick their favorites across several categories, including grocery staples, health products and fresh foods. This year’s winners include the following Natural Grocers branded products:

    • Overall product (excluding bulk and supplement items): Organic Dark Chocolate Bar with Sea Salt
    • Bulk product: Fresh-Ground Almond Butter
    • Supplement: B 100 Complex
    • New product: Organic extra virgin coconut oil

    [Read more: "Natural Grocers Launches New Own-Brand Coconut Oil"]

    In addition, Natural Grocers queried shoppers about their favorite fresh foods. The overwhelming fresh produce winner for the second year in a row: organic Hass avocados. For the favorite organic product in general, shoppers chose the retailer’s organic pasture-raised eggs.

    "From our sales information, we know which products do well in stores, but this survey opens a direct conversation with our customers. That was how our first 'Best of the Best' customer survey originated — we wanted to hear directly from our communities,” said Raquel Isely, VP of marketing. "Last year we enjoyed the dialogue this survey encouraged so much, that we decided to make it an annual practice at the end of each fiscal year."

    Founded in 1955, Natural Grocers currently operates 164 stores in 21 states. The company is No. 95 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

  • 10/20/2022

    Women Grocers of America Holding 1st Executive Female Leaders Network Meeting

    Women Grocers of America Teaser

    The Women Grocers of America (WGA) will hold its first convening of the new Executive Female Leaders Network (EXFL), a professional peer group designed for female executives in the independent grocery sector, in Washington, D.C., on Oct. 23-24, ahead of the NGA Executive Conference & Public Policy Summit on Oct. 24-26. 

    Created by WGA and supported by the NGA Foundation, the EXFL Network provides the opportunity for women in the retail, wholesale, supplier, manufacturer and vendor communities to meet in person, share ideas and experiences, and discuss complex issues in the independent grocery industry. 

    The network’s inaugural meeting will offer an interactive leadership development workshop, high-level analysis of key trends affecting the industry, and an exclusive members-only education and networking event. The speaker lineup includes a female executive panel with Katie Hotze, founder and CEO of Charlotte, N.C.-based Grocery Shopii; Amy Nemetschek, president and CEO of Madison, Wis.-based Certco Inc.; and Stephanie Becker, SVP, general counsel and chief legal officer at Kansas City, Kan.-based Associated Wholesale Grocers.  

    Additionally, Natalie Johnson, co-founder of Lakewood Ranch, Fla.-based ViDL Solutions, will guide participants through a Dare to Lead training, an empirically based courage-building program designed for future leaders and developed by researcher and author Brené Brown. 

    Sponsors of the event are The Kellogg Co., The Coca-Cola Co., Fiserv, Rosie – An Instacart Company, Nestle-Purina PetCare, Badger Technologies and BRData.  

    Washington, D.C.-based NGA is the national trade association representing the retail and wholesale community grocers that comprise the independent sector of the food distribution industry. 

  • 10/20/2022

    NAMI, FMI Unveil New Look for Annual Meat Conference

    AMC Logo With Dates Teaser

    The North American Meat Institute (NAMI) and FMI – The Food Association have premiered a new look for the Annual Meat Conference (AMC) while promising a renewed high-impact forum to encourage strategic trading partner experiences and better deliver on the demands from the meat customer. 

    “Our pulse on the shopper has never wavered, but we recently made some new discoveries about our organizations, the businesses we represent, and how we deliver an event experience to support our members’ goals for innovation and growth,” the trade organizations said in a joint statement. “We decided that 2023 is our year to design a brand with the team at Midan Marketing that evokes a modern, personalized protein experience.” 

    AMC 2023 will delve into meat’s attributes and advantages according to attendees’ unique business needs by helping to define, market and sell brands and products; creating a forum and re-establishing connections with potential partners, contacts and opportunities throughout the industry; delivering data, trends and insights to differentiate and position attendees’ businesses; providing an extensive range of in-person food and sensory experiences, product demonstrations, and presentations; and featuring the “Power of Meat report, a key industry analysis of shoppers’ attitudes and purchasing decisions for meat.

    The Annual Meat Conference 2023 is scheduled for March 6-8, 2023, at the Hilton Anatole, in Dallas.

    Arlington, Va.-based FMI works with and on behalf of the entire food industry to advance a safer, healthier and more efficient consumer food supply chain, bringing together retailers, producers and companies providing critical services to amplify the collective work of the industry. 

    Washington, D.C.-based NAMI is the United States’ oldest and largest trade association representing packers and processors of beef, pork, lamb, veal, turkey and processed meat products. 

  • 10/20/2022

    Winn-Dixie Donates $40K for Cancer Research, Treatment

    WD cancer institute

    Following a recent register campaign across stores in Louisiana, the Winn-Dixie banner has revealed a $40,000 donation to the Ochsner Cancer Institute, in New Orleans.  Funds will go to the health system’s mission to provide state-of-the-art treatment and personalized care for cancer patients throughout the Gulf Coast area.

    Winn-Dixie has had a longstanding partnership with Ochsner Health, donating more than $435,000 to the organization over the years. “We are honored to continue our partnership with Ochsner Health in doing our part to support their incredible work that positively impacts the well-being of local patients, their families and the communities we serve,” said Lynn Rushing, the retailer’s regional VP. 

    Brian Moore, M.D., medical director at the Ochsner Cancer Institute, expressed his gratitude:  “Having the support and generosity of Winn-Dixie and its customers is invaluable, as their donations benefit the patients and programs of the Ochsner Cancer Institute. Ochsner Health is committed to collaborative, patient-centered care using the latest technology, innovative treatments and a compassionate holistic approach. We change and save lives every day, and community support makes it possible.”

    Jacksonville, Fla.-based Southeastern Grocers is one of the largest conventional supermarket companies in the United States, with grocery stores, liquor stores and in-store pharmacies serving communities throughout Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana and Mississippi. Its banners include Fresco y Más, Harveys Supermarket, and Winn-Dixie grocery stores. The company is No. 39 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

  • 10/19/2022

    Walmart Chooses GlobalG.A.P. as 3rd-Party Certifier for Pollinator Health

    GlobalG.A.P. Teaser

    The GlobalG.A.P. IFA (Integrated Farm Assurance) Standard has become the third-party certifier for Walmart U.S. pollinator health commitments.

    The retailer noted on its website that it will source 100% of the fresh produce and floral it sells in its produce departments from suppliers that adopt integrated pest management practices, as verified by a third-party, by 2025.

    According to Walmart U.S.’s new pollinator health commitments, the company has embedded biodiversity requirements into its supply chain policies. To meet these requirements, Walmart and the Madison, Wis.-based IPM Institute of North America are working with GlobalG.A.P. to ensure the suitability of the globally applicable IFA standard. 

    GlobalG.A.P. was pleased to have achieved acceptance of the IFA standard into Walmart’s biodiversity benchmark in 2021,” said Portland, Ore.-based GlobalG.A.P. North America Inc., a subsidiary company dedicated to serving the needs of the U.S. and Canadian markets. “With the recent release of GlobalG.A.P. IFA v6 for Fruit and Vegetables and for Flowers and Ornamentals, the updated IFA is also recognized by Walmart. Fruit and vegetable farmers supplying Walmart U.S. and choosing GlobalG.A.P. IFA with GFSI recognition meet Walmart’s food safety and biodiversity requirements with a single audit and certificate.”   

    Early adopters, including farms with GlobalG.A.P. IFA certification, will already be in compliance with Walmart U.S.’s new requirement to have IPM practices verified by a third party by 2025.

    More than 200,000 producers are under GlobalG.A.P. certification in 134 countries. 

    Each week, approximately 230 million customers and members visit Walmart’s more than 10,500 stores and numerous e-commerce websites under 46 banners in 24 countries. The Bentonville, Ark.-based company employs approximately 2.3 million associates worldwide. Walmart U.S. is No. 1 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

  • 10/19/2022

    Sendik’s Opens New Location Outside Milwaukee

    Sendik's Oconomowoc

    Sendik's Food Market, a family-owned legacy grocer in the Milwaukee area, has officially opened its latest store in the town of Oconomowoc, Wis.  On the northwest outskirts of Milwaukee, the 60,000-square-foot store at 1450 Olympia Fields Drive is the 18th location for the independent retailer. The grocer entirely revamped the space, which used to house a Kmart store.

    A highlight of the new Sendik’s is an in-store garden, where fresh leafy greens will be harvested for use in the self-service salad bar. The latest location also features a wide variety of made-in-Wisconsin products – a Sendik’s hallmark – as well as a broad selection of meats, seafood, gourmet cheeses, wine and spirits, and grocery staples.

    To mark the grand opening, Sendik’s is offering a special sweepstakes contest and will host live music performances, Halloween festivities and pet adoptions, among other activities, over the next weeks and months.

    “Oconomowoc is a beautiful and growing area. We are very excited to join this community and look forward to serving its citizens.” said Ted Balistreri, a third-generation co-owner of Sendik’s, which was founded in 1926.  “We are proud to bring true food innovation to the area and offer new food experiences to customers.”

    In addition to its Sendiks Food Market banner, the retailer operates smaller-format Fresh2GO c-stores in the Milwaukee market. 

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