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09/19/2022

Shoppers Spending More on Halloween Candy This Year: Report

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halloween family

As grocers eye the upcoming holiday season, new research from Advantage Solutions shows that, following two unconventional years affected by autumn surges of COVID-19, many shoppers are getting back to pre-pandemic behaviors. For the first big fall holiday of Halloween, a quarter of survey respondents indicate that they will spend more on candy and treats this year and a third will shell out more for costumers and decorations.

According to Advantage Solutions’ poll of more than 1,000 consumers conducted earlier this month, 85% plan to buy Halloween candy, 54% expect to buy decorations and 71% of those with children say they will purchase costumes. Nearly half (48%) plan to spend more than $25 on candy for the Oct. 31 holiday and 47% will spend more than $25 on other Halloween-themed edible treats.

Similar to other consumer research conducted ahead of Halloween 2022, inflation is replacing the pandemic as an influencer of buying behavior. Price is the top factor impacting expected Halloween candy purchases, followed by type of candy and brand of candy, this survey found. More than half of grocery shoppers believe mass merchandisers have the best prices on Halloween candy and plan to shop that channel for candy and other food treats for Halloween. Grocery is the second most popular retail channel for such purchases.

Price-conscious consumers will be on the lookout for savings. The survey showed that 70% of consumers shopping for Halloween are influenced by on-package coupons, and nearly half are swayed by secondary displays.

Additional survey findings are available online.

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09/19/2022

Hannaford Deepens Ties in Maine

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hannaford teaser

Hannaford Supermarkets revealed plans to open a new store at the intersection of Payne Road and Route 114 in Scarborough, Maine  the second store for its home city. Hannaford will continue to operate the Oak Hill Hannaford Supermarket and Pharmacy at its existing location. 

The approximately 58,000-square-foot store at 417 Payne Road will offer the high-quality, fresh food and variety for which the grocer is known, including thousands of natural and organic products, as well as unique store-brand offerings such as Taste of Inspirations, Hannaford and Nature’s Promise. The new supermarket will also feature a full-service pharmacy; Hannaford To Go curbside pickup and delivery; and a vast selection of ready-to-cook and ready-to-eat items.

[Read more: "Hannaford Supermarkets Unveils Easy Meal Options in New York"]

“Growing our business in our own backyard is a huge point of pride. We look forward to making it even easier for Scarborough-area customers to do their grocery shopping for the week or pick up that one item they need,” said Todd Bullen, VP of operations for Hannaford. “We are proud to invest further in our state, bring new jobs to the area and strengthen our relationship with the community.”

Hannaford expects to begin construction in early 2023 and open the store in the summer of 2023. The store is expected to employ about 150 full- and part-time associates.

“The new store will be an active member of the Scarborough community, contributing to local nonprofit organizations, civic groups and hunger-relief efforts,” added Bullen.

The Payne Road Scarborough store will mark Hannaford’s 186th store when it opens, including 65 in Maine.

Hannaford operates in five Northeast states, employing nearly 30,000 associates. Parent company Ahold Delhaize USA, a division of Zaandam, Netherlands-based Ahold Delhaize, is No. 10 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

09/16/2022

New Partnership Connects Brands With Consumers Via Mobile Shopping Lists

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AdAdapted

At a time when consumers are weighing purchases carefully and increasingly using digital tools, two tech companies are teaming up to enhance the online shopping experience. Marketing and insights platform AdAdapted and tech platform Flipp have entered into a new partnership to assist shoppers in finding and adding products to their lists while simultaneously helping CPGs bolster their reach.

Through this collaboration, AdAdapted's add-to-list technology will be utilized on Flipp’s shopping app platform. CPGs can advertise their branded products on the app, spurring shoppers to add items to their lists in a single click.

“In this inflationary environment, shoppers are increasingly using digital pre-shopping tools to decide what to buy — digital circular readership in the U.S. is at a four-year high,” explained Sam Rosenbaum, director, brand platform for Flipp. “By partnering with AdAdapted, we’re helping brands shape purchase decisions in this incredibly high-intent context while providing a non-disruptive, relevant experience for our users.”

Molly McFarland, AdAdapted’s co-founder and CRO, said the partnership is another solution for consumers in a continually-shifting marketplace. “Flipp is used by millions of shoppers every week to make better purchase decisions for their grocery lists, while saving time and money. We’re looking forward to bringing AdAdapted’s technology to the platform, helping CPG brands engage and influence shoppers where it matters most,” McFarland remarked.

This is the latest partnership between AdAdapted and industry providers and platforms. The company is also linked with apps including Tasty, Our Groceries, Buy Me A Pie, BigOven, Listonic and Prepear, among others. In August, AdAdapted introduced new shoppable video ads that help brands create e-commerce campaigns on the shopping list mobile ad platform.

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09/16/2022

Next Stop for Pop Up Grocer: Denver

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Pop Up Grocer Interior Teaser

Pop Up Grocer has revealed that its next location will be Denver, where the company will set up temporary shop on Friday, Sept. 30.

The location will remain in place at 2645 Walnut Street in the city’s RiNo neighborhood until Oct. 30, during which time it will showcase more than 100 brands, including national brands like Christie’s ChipsThe Hampton Grocer and Courtside, in addition to several Colorado-based brands, among them Hazlo tequila mixer, Rowdy Mermaid kombucha and vegan Byte Bars. It will be open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. 

“Denver is an active, wellness-minded city that has welcomed a lot of new residents in the last few years,” noted Emily Schildt, founder and CEO of New York-based Pop Up Grocer. “We’re thrilled to meet their enthusiasm for adventure with a like-minded array of products that are the perfect complement to their lifestyle.”

Other cities recently visited by Pop Up Grocer include Chicago and Washington, D.C.

In addition to its temporary stores, the recently rebranded company has revealed that it will soon open a permanent flagship location in the Big Apple. 

09/16/2022

BJ’s Now Accepting SNAP EBT Payments Chainwide

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BJ's Sees 'Remarkable' Q3 Performance

BJ’s Wholesale Club is expanding its reach in more ways than one. As the warehouse club operator adds to its footprint by opening several new stores this year, it is also widening its service by accepting SNAP EBT payments across all of its U.S. locations.

Club members now can use their government assistance to purchase items at BJ’s club stores and online at BJs.com or via the retailer’s mobile app. Flexible options are available, including free pickup, shipping and same-day delivery; shoppers can also split their payments at checkout between their EBT card and debit or credit card, if desired.

“Over the course of the last few months, we’ve been actively working to expand our online SNAP EBT payment options for our members across all the states we currently do business in,” said Monica Schwartz, EVP and chief digital officer at BJ’s. “We’re excited to announce that SNAP EBT payments are accepted online chainwide, allowing us to offer even more flexibility and convenience to all of our members.”

The expansion of SNAP EBT payments comes as more people are joining the BJ’s club. The club store chain recently opened its fourth new store of 2022 in Michigan and, in August, reported a strong second quarter performance marked by high gains in traffic and market share. Total comp sales grew by nearly 20% in the second quarter on a year-over-year basis.

Westborough, Mass.-based BJ's operates 230 membership warehouse clubs and 160 BJ’s Gas locations in 17 states. The company’s common stock is traded on the New York Stock Exchange. BJ’s is No. 26 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

09/15/2022

Nearly 30% of Pet Parents Can't Afford Their Fur Babies Amid Inflation

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Cat food teaser

Online financial services marketplace LendingTree has released a consumer survey finding that more than 75% of pet owners believe that inflation is making pet ownership more expensive, and 26% are struggling to afford the four-legged members of their families. By generation, Millennials (32%) were most likely to say that they're having trouble paying for pet expenses amid inflation.

Overall, 87% of pet owners said that they've experienced increased pricing on key pet-related expenses, especially pet food (74%) and veterinary services (33%). This increase in cost has forced pet owners to make financial sacrifices for their pets, with nearly one in four (23%) having taken on debt for their furry friends, and some even limiting their retirement savings contributions (10%).

Other key survey findings included:

• While pet owners reported spending an average of $1,163 annually on their pets in a 2021 LendingTree survey, in 2022, owners say they're spending just $984 per year — a nearly $180 difference.
• 44% of pet owners are making financial sacrifices for their pets. 
• 30% of owners who've been in pet-related debt have owed $1,000 or more. 

Charlotte, N.C.-based LendingTree commissioned Provo, Utah-based Qualtrics to conduct an online survey of 1,017 U.S. pet owners, ages 18 to 76, on Aug. 12-18. The survey was administered using a nonprobability-based sample, and quotas were used to ensure that the sample base represented the overall population. All responses were reviewed by researchers for quality control.