News Briefs


Albertsons Cos. Relaunches Private Seafood Brand

Albersons seafood

To mark National Seafood Month, Albersons Cos. is relaunching its Waterfront Bistro brand of seafood products. Each item in the line is responsibly sourced and traceable, and also features the Responsible Choice logo indicating that it meets Albertsons’ Responsible Seafood Policy.

Additionally, Albertsons’ Waterfront Bistro brand is third-party audited to ensure every fish, shrimp or shellfish has been raised or caught in ways that help safeguard future supplies and keep ecosystems thriving. The private brand was originally launched in 2009, and product options range from frozen fin fish and shrimp to heat-and-serve meals and jarred sauces.

“We’re excited to reintroduce Waterfront Bistro as an elevated and responsible option for our shoppers,” said Katie Ceclan, VP of own brands for Albertsons. “With Waterfront Bistro, we’re making it easier than ever to access affordable, high-quality and responsibly sourced seafood ingredients so our customers can create restaurant-worthy dishes in the comfort of their own kitchens and feel good about the ingredients they’re using.”

Many Waterfront Bistro products include recipe ideas on the packaging, and additional inspiration can be found on the Albertsons website and through its Meal Plans tool. Customers can also scan a QR code for meal solutions, as well as helpful seafood tips, tricks and serving ideas.

Boise, Idaho-based Albertsons operates more than 2,200 retail stores with 1,700-plus pharmacies, 402 associated fuel centers, 22 dedicated distribution centers and 20 manufacturing facilities. It has stores across 34 states and the District of Columbia under 24 well-known banners, among them Albertsons, Safeway, Vons, Jewel-Osco, Shaw’s, Acme, Tom Thumb, Randalls, United Supermarkets, Pavilions, Star Market, Haggen, Carrs, Kings Food Markets and Balducci’s Food Lovers Market. Albertsons is No. 9 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.


Kroger Health Intends to Terminate Contract With Express Scripts

How Food as Medicine Drives Value at Kroger

On Sept. 29, the health care division of The Kroger Co. provided Express Scripts, Inc. written notice of its intention to terminate their pharmacy provider agreement for commercial customers. According to Kroger Health, it has attempted on dozens of occasions since February to negotiate in good faith with Express Scripts – seeking a more equitable and fair contract that lowers cost, increases access, and delivers greater transparency – but there has been little to no progress to date.

"Kroger is doing everything possible to deliver greater value for our customers and navigate this ongoing period of record inflation. We do not believe Kroger customers should have to pay higher costs to increase Express Scripts' profits," said Colleen Lindholz, president of Kroger Health.

"We took the necessary step of announcing our intention to terminate our contract with Express Scripts because the current arrangement does not enable Kroger to improve health access, deliver greater pricing transparency, and keep prices affordable for our more than 17 million patients," continued Lindholz. "So far, our efforts to negotiate in good faith have not delivered an agreement in the best interest of our customers – especially members of the military and their families receiving benefits through Tricare – that protects them from rising costs amid record inflation. Kroger remains willing to negotiate any contract with Express Scripts that results in a fair, transparent agreement at a rate that benefits everyone – particularly our customers – and prevents any disruption of services."

If a new agreement is not reached by Dec. 31, most Express Scripts' commercial customers around the country will no longer be able to fill prescriptions at pharmacies within the Kroger family of companies.

Serving 60 million households annually nationwide through a digital shopping experience, and almost 2,800 retail food stores under a variety of banner names, Cincinnati-based Kroger is No. 4 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.


Blue Apron CFO Stepping Down


Blue Apron CFO Randy Greben has resigned from his position, which he was named to in January 2021, effective Oct. 17. The meal kit company has appointed Mitchell Cohen to serve as interim CFO while it identifies a permanent replacement.

“Randy has played an important role at Blue Apron as we developed our new strategy to pursue growth alongside a path to profitability,” said Linda Findley, Blue Apron president and CEO. “I’d like to thank him for his contributions on behalf of everybody at Blue Apron. We wish him the very best in his future endeavors.”

[Read more: "Behind Blue Apron’s Strategic Path Forward"]

According to Blue Apron, Cohen has more than 30 years of financial, operations and general business experience and will immediately start working with the company and Greben to facilitate a smooth transition. Spencer Stuart will conduct a search for the company’s next CFO.

“Mitch will be an asset to Blue Apron during this transitional period given his extensive public company experience, and understanding of subscription and ecommerce models,” said Findley. “As we continue to balance growth, our planned path to profitability and managing through inflationary periods, Mitch’s decades of experience can help us continue to execute The Next Course strategy outlined earlier this year."


Northgate González Market Honors Associates, Community Leaders

Northgate Market Juntos Awards Honorees 2022

Hispanic grocery store Northgate González Market recently honored 12 store associates and community leaders for embodying the same generous spirit and community commitment as the founders of Northgate Market. Part of the grocer’s Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15) observances, the Juntos Awards recognize individuals while awarding a total of $24,000 in grants to local nonprofits designated by the honorees. 

“When my family opened the doors to Northgate Market in 1980, we committed to give back to our customers,” said Co-President Miguel González. “We have been blessed to have store associates, vendors and other community partners who go above and beyond in helping us be there for the Southern California community.”

This past year, Northgate Market teamed with more than 200 community organizations to address food security, provide free health screenings, and offer chronic-disease and nutrition education. The retailer’s Familia González Reynoso Foundation also gave more than $2 million in community donations and scholarships.

Each honoree of the 2022 Juntos awards chose a nonprofit or community organization to receive a $2,000 grant to continue its community work.

The 2022 recipients of the Northgate Market Juntos Award are:

• Albert Ayala, store team leader, Northgate Gonzalez Market
• Hon. Al Rios, mayor of the city of South Gate
• Cheryl Kennick, senior director of corporate philanthropy, City of Hope
• Hon. Doug Chaffee, chairman, Orange County Board of Supervisors
• Lupillo Ramirez, senior director of innovation and product development, Northgate González Market 
• Linda Franks, executive director, Kid Healthy Orange County
• Manuel Martinez, key account manager, Constellation Brands
• Kevin Mattson, CEO, San Ysidro Health
• Richard Streza, managing partner, Brown & Streza LLP
• Soledad Rivera, director of business development, Families Together of Orange County
• Hon. Nora Vargas, San Diego County Board of Supervisors
• Wendy Robinson, director of sales for the Southwest, Mission Foods

The organizations each receiving $2,000 grants are City of Hope, Families Together of Orange County, Hispanas Organized for Political Empowerment (HOPE), Joya Scholars, Kid Healthy, Nueva Esperanza, Olive Crest, Orange County Rescue Mission, San Ysidro Health, South Gate Kiwanis Club and St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital

Anaheim, Calif.-based Northgate Market operates 43 stores in Orange, Los Angeles, Riverside, and San Diego counties. 


Gopuff Introduces Goodnow Private Label Health-and-Wellness Line

Goodnow Gopuff Private Label Health & Wellness

Instant-needs platform Gopuff has launched Goodnow, a private label line of health-and-wellness products designed to help customers feel better faster for less money.

“Health and wellness – an $80-plus billion market in the U.S. – has been one of Gopuff’s fastest-growing categories,” noted Jessica Glendenning, director of private label at Philadelphia-based Gopuff. “As consumers become increasingly interested in private label products, Gopuff is uniquely positioned to develop new brands curated specifically for our customers. Informed by data, insights and feedback, … Goodnow is an inherent fit for our customers and the Gopuff platform.” 

When surveyed, customers identified over-the-counter medications as a great fit for Gopuff. They also expressed interest in getting pain relievers, cold and flu remedies, allergy medications, and first aid from the platform. Now Gopuff customers can order Goodnow pain (ibuprofen, acetaminophen, naproxen, headache relief); allergy (loratadine, cetirizine, diphenhydramine); cold; flu and sinus congestion relief; sleep aid products; and at-home diagnostic test kits (UTI, BV, herpes) for delivery in minutes. Additional Goodnow products, among them electrolyte drinks, bandages, antihistamines and antacids, will launch nationwide over the coming months. 

All Goodnow products are produced and controlled in accordance with quality standards and manufactured in a third-party GMP-certified facility.

Goodnow builds on the early success of Gopuff’s first private label offering, Basically, which came out in January and is consistently among the platform’s top 10 brands for Gopuff. 


Philadelphia-based Gopuff is No. 79 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.


Too Good To Go Launches in Los Angeles

To Good To Go Teaser

Following successful launches in 12 other major U.S. cities, Too Good To Go is now available in the greater Los Angeles area to help residents save money on surplus food. The free mobile app saves consumers one-third of the retail price for meals and groceries.

The Too Good To Go app connects users with grocery stores, restaurants, bakeries, cafes and more, so that excess food doesn't go to waste. App users can browse, reserve and pay for a Surprise Bag on the app. Then, they go to the store during the pick-up window to collect their surprise.

[Read more: “Longo’s to Offer ‘Surprise Bags’ to Combat Food Waste”]

The content of each Surprise Bag purchased through the Too Good To Go app varies and users can expect to get a range of products, always at one-third of the retail value. Depending on the store chosen, the bags can contain anything from fresh produce or pantry items to ready-to-eat foods.

Presenting an ideal alternative for businesses with surplus food, the marketplace app helps its partners contact more users, find a new showcase for their products, reduce their losses, optimize their resources, and play an important role in the food rescue ecosystem.

Founded in 2016, the certified B-Corp company has already saved over 164 million meals across 17 countries, which is the equivalent to 361-plus million pounds of food.

"In a reality where food prices are a huge challenge for people, Too Good To Go offers a meaningful and sustainable alternative to get delicious food at accessible prices all while slowing global warming through the reduction of food waste, which accounts for 10% of all GHG emissions globally," said Chris MacAulay, U.S. managing director. 

Following its launch in Los Angeles, Copenhagen-based Too Good To Go has further plans to expand to other major U.S. cities.