Kroger will soon test one-way aisles in its stores as another way to help with social distancing, protect its shoppers and employees and slow the spread of coronavirus. Kroger, which usually tries new ideas in select markets before rolling them out to all of its 2,757 stores, has not yet announced where the aisle test will take place.
Walmart has opted not to pursue efforts to sell its majority stake in the UK grocer Asda for the time being, instead focusing its full attention on managing the coronavirus pandemic, according to people familiar with the matter. First-round offers from private-equity firms indicate that Asda's valuation is near the $9 billion mark.
H.E. Butt Grocery has joined with several local restaurants in San Antonio to sell fully packaged meals, with the proceeds going back to the restaurants. The grocer is also taking new steps to limit the number of shoppers allowed in its stores at a time to help with social distancing efforts.
Independent winemakers are trying to sell directly to consumers as revenue dries up amid widespread restaurant closures and a flurry of cancellations by distributors they rely on to get their vintages in front of a broader swathe of consumers. However, "[i]f a winery doesn't already have [DTC permits] in place, it's really hard to just turn that on and ship outside of your home state," said Martha Stoumen, a Calif.-based indie winemaker with national distribution, of the fact that DTC isn't an across-the-board solution for all wineries.
Some farmers are hoping their supply chains will be back to normal by harvest time but a growing number are working to find new buyers for the produce they would normally be selling to regular foodservice customers. The Chesapeake Farm to Table, a collective that typically sells its produce to local chefs via an online portal, has been selling a growing amount of produce to consumers curious about the origins of their food.
Pandemic-related news dominated this week's list of most-read food and beverage stories, including stories of how grocers and CPG manufacturers are coping with the coronavirus outbreak. Dairy Farmers of America's acquisition of Dean Foods Assets, the temporary closure of See's Candies and the sale of Lucky's Market assets also made news.
Front-line workers at grocers around the nation are getting pay raises to acknowledge the vital roles they are filling during the coronavirus outbreak. Ralph's and Food 4 Less have given $2 an hour pay bumps for hourly workers, while Harris Teeter employees will also see a $2 per hour increase through April 21 in what the grocer is calling a "hero" bonus.
With Europe several weeks ahead of the US in dealing with the impacts of the coronavirus outbreak, analyzing shopper behavior there can help US grocers be prepared for rapidly fluctuating demand and new shopping trends that could be coming. This article examines some key takeaways from the experience of European grocers and how those lesson can be applied here in the coming weeks.
A new report from the Food Waste Reduction Alliance -- a collaboration between FMI, the Consumer Brands Association and the National Restaurant Association -- offers a guide to keeping food that's still good from being wasted. The report features tips from grocers, manufacturers and foodservice operators on how to create and sustain effective food waste reduction programs, and FMI's Andy Harig said the three groups "all share a common goal to showcase practical application of proven food waste mitigation strategies and reduce operational costs. This guide adds color to the process."
The coronavirus outbreak has opened up new opportunities for independent contractors in the grocery industry, with some companies now using gig workers to fill openings in stores and at distribution centers, expanding freelance roles that were formerly limited to personal shoppers and delivery drivers. Meijer, for example, is working with a company called Hyer, which uses an app to hire, train and track on-demand workers.
- Page 1