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News Briefs

10/28/2022

H-E-B Location to Anchor Mixed-Use Community Near Houston

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H-E-B Teaser Sign

An H-E-B store will be part of a new master planned community northwest of Houston. According to real estate owner and developer the Howard Hughes Corp., the grocery store will anchor the Village Green at Bridgeland Central in Bridgeland, within the city of Cypress, Texas.

H-E-B will serve the nearly 70,000 future residents of the Bridgeland community, along with those who live in the greater northwest Houston area. The 100,000-square-foot store will include H-E-B’s typical offerings and also feature a pharmacy, fuel station and curbside pickup and delivery services.

[Read more: "H-E-B to Open Location in Fort Worth"]

"Our Houston region remains a priority for H-E-B, and we continue to make significant investments expanding our footprint to serve all of our neighbors," said Armando Perez, EVP, H-E-B Houston. "We are excited to bring a store to the Bridgeland community to meet the needs of this growing area."

The H-E-B in Bridgeland will be built next year and is expected to open in 2024. Several H-E-B stores are under construction right now in Texas, including at least four stores in the Dallas-Ft. Worth Metroplex.

The largest privately held employer in Texas, San Antonio-based H-E-B has more than 420 stores and 145,000 employees in Texas and Mexico. The company is No. 16 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

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10/28/2022

Walmart Reveals 2022 Sustainable Packaging Innovation Award Winners

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Packaging Teaser

Walmart has joined the U.S. Plastics Pact at GreenBiz’s VERGE 2022 conference, held Oct. 25-17 in San Jose, Calif., to reveal the inaugural slate of Sustainable Packaging Innovations Award winners. The retailer donated the use of its recently launched Circular Connector platform to help capture innovations for the awards. The honorees cover four categories – recycling, reuse, composting and reduction – with each winner spotlighting scalability, low-cost efficiencies or a customer-first proposal.

The winners are Smile Compostable Solutions, for Compostability; Amcor, for Recyclability; The Clorox Co., for Refill; and Deliver Zero. for Reuse.

In phase one of the Circular Connector launch this past April, innovators could submit their solutions for Walmart’s consideration. “Solutions are screened against Walmart’s Sustainable Packaging goals, and those that are aligned featured in the Connector,” noted Ashley C. Hall, director, strategic programs at Walmart, in a recent blog post. “Last week, we made the Circulate Connector available for free to everyone via Walmart’s Sustainability Hub. And now, nearly 150 solutions are publicly available on the Circular Connector.” 

Added Hall: “Our hope with making Circular Connector open source is that it propels companies to move faster to make design changes that will help create a circular economy for plastics, even our direct competitors. Sustainable packaging changes can’t happen in a silo and require lifecycle thinking. Today, we still have packages that can cause confusion for customers.”

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.

10/28/2022

Save Mart Teams With Amazon for 2-Hour Delivery

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Faster grocery delivery is coming to The Save Mart Cos. thanks to a new partnership with Amazon. Two-hour delivery is now available through two Save Mart stores in California’s Central Valley, with more stores to be added in the near future.

Customers can order Save Mart grocery delivery through the Amazon app or at amazon.com/savemart, starting at $4.99 for Amazon Prime members. The retailers are celebrating the partnership with a limited-time special offer of 15% off orders over $50 for first-time customers. 

“The Amazon partnership represents The Save Mart Cos.’ ongoing digital transformation to serve our shoppers and fulfill their needs with innovative and affordable solutions,” said Tamara Pattison, SVP, chief digital officer, Save Mart.

Continued Pattison: “We are proud of Save Mart’s reputation of exceptional quality fresh and local produce and meat and seafood all at low prices the shopper needs more than ever. We are committed to enhancing the personalization of our customers’ shopping experience across all of our stores including Lucky and FoodMaxx.”

Based in Modesto, Calif., The Save Mart Cos. operates more than 200 retail stores under the banners of Save Mart, Lucky California and FoodMaxx. In addition to its retail operation, the company also operates SMART Refrigerated Transport and is a partner in Super Store Industries, which owns and operates a distribution center in Lathrop, Calif., and the Sunnyside Farms dairy-processing plant in Turlock, Calif. Save Mart is No. 55 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North AmericaSeattle-based Amazon is No. 2 on The PG 100.

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10/28/2022

Bloomreach Adds New Feature for Maximum Conversion Rates

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Bloomreach teaser

In time for the holiday season, Bloomreach is rolling out a new feature designed to drive maximum conversion rates across digital channels. The Contextual Personalization feature helps marketers tap into missed revenue opportunities that can happen with more simple and randomized A/B testing, according to the commerce experience Cloud provider.

Instead of testing several messages and choosing one with the highest total engagement, this feature uses historical customer data and demographic data to reach every consumer with relevant content. This way, messages are chosen that are most likely to engage a particular shopper. In addition, the Bloomreach Engagement platform can learn the context in which the consumer performs or doesn’t perform the action and adapts in real-time to make sure that the person sees the most relevant message based on their past and in-session actions.  

[Read more: "Instacart Extends Ad Offerings to More Brands"]

Ultimately, this level of personalization helps marketers get the most out of their campaigns through improved click-through rates, site traffic, customer lifetime value and conversion rates.

“We’re very excited to launch Contextual Personalization, especially knowing how significant of an impact it can have for our customers during the coming holiday season,” said Anirban Bardalaye, chief product officer at the Mountain View, Calif.-based Bloomreach. “Using AI and machine learning, this feature ensures that marketers can build every web campaign with the customer and their preferences at the forefront. This is a scaled, 1:1 extension of A/B testing that adjusts to customer activity in real-time, providing them with more relevant content and driving revenue.” 

10/27/2022

Marley Spoon Finds Recipe for Revenue Gain in Q3

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Martha box

Subscription-based meal kit provider Marley Spoon closed out its third quarter with a 26% net revenue boost compared to 2021 and announced that it is on track to deliver its full-year guidance, despite ongoing inflation, volatile marketing conditions and a consecutive (albeit smaller) slide in its quarterly global EBITDA.

That track has been bumpy in parts, as the company recently embarked on a turnaround plan for is European business. Among other changes, Marley Spoon hired a new head of production for Europe and tapped CEO Fabian Siegel to take over from exiting EU business leader Ebony Morczinek.

[Read more: "Meal Kits Moving to the Mainstream"]

In the U.S., the maker of brands including Marley Spoon, Martha Stewart, Dinnerly and Chefgood has fared comparatively well. The company reported that its overall net revenue growth in the latest quarter was fueled by a 37.2% revenue bump in the American market, which also delivered on profitability with a positive EBITDA.

As Marley Spoon works to firm up its total earnings, it has boosted its active subscriber base and basket sizes through efforts like new premium recipes and a market initiative offering up to 200 additional grocery items to customers.

Looking ahead, Siegel said that the business will tighten up in the last quarter to meet its targets. “We are carefully managing our marketing investment to deliver results in the second half in-line with our internal plan and 2022 guidance. Achieving our growth goals while carefully managing costs underscores the reliability of our business model,” he said.

10/27/2022

NFRA Elects New Officers and Directors

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NFRA Kevin Schwab 2022 Teaser

The National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA) has revealed its association officers and members of its board of directors for 2022-23. The elections took place at the trade organization’s annual board of directors meeting on Oct. 15.

Kevin Schwab, EVP/CCO sales and marketing at The Pictsweet Co., in Bells, Tenn., was elected to serve a second term as chairman of the board. Schwab (pictured) has served on the board from 2003 to 2005 and again from 2012 to 2022, and was as chairman-elect 2019-2021. Schwab is also a member of the Honorable Order of Golden Penguins. 

Other officers elected at the meeting were Neil Ritchey, InnovAsian Cuisine Enterprises, chairman-elect; Tracy Aquila, Southeastern Grocers, secretary; Mark Tarzwell, Ateeco Inc./Mrs. T’s Pierogies, treasurer; Tye Anthony, Associated Wholesale Grocers (AWS), vice chairman frozen; and Joey Bates, Harris Teeter, vice chairman refrigerated.

Newly elected to the board were Bryan Chartrand, Acosta Sales & Marketing; Parag Shah, The Giant Co.; Clinton Wilson, Sargento Foods; Shawn Darmody, Target Corp.; and Teresa Whitney, Albertsons Cos., while Jim Buchta, Crossmark; Tony Caloroso, Schraad Sales & Marketing; Angie Christos, Tyson Foods; Derek DeMuth, Ajinomoto Foods North America; Joe Mueller, Kellogg Co.; and David Panter, Associated Food Stores were all re-elected.

Harrisburg, Pa.-based NFRA is a nonprofit representing all segments of the frozen and refrigerated foods industry. It’s the sponsor of March National Frozen Food Month, June Dairy Month, the June/July Ice Cream & Novelties promotion, and the Cool Food for Kids educational outreach program. NFRA also provides consumer information such as food safety guidelines, meal preparation tips, recipes and sweepstakes opportunities at http://www.EasyHomeMeals.com.