Food waste: a $22.5bln opportunity for US retailers

Walmart may acquire a 15 to 20% stake in India's Flipkart

US: Walmart tightening supplier delivery schedule
Walmart is asking its suppliers to improve their on-time delivery performance for both full and partial truckloads or face a fine as part of its effort to reduce out-of-stocks on its shelves and improve the customer shopping experience in the process. As of April 1, full-truckload suppliers will have to ensure 85% of their orders are received on-time, up from the 75% requirement that was implemented in August; half-truckload shipments will have to meet a 50% on-time threshold on that date, up from 33% currently.

US: Food waste: a $22.5bln opportunity for US retailers
Currently, around $270bln worth of food is wasted each year in the US. This 63mln tons of food represents a $22.5bln opportunity for grocery retailers according to ReFED, a multi-stakeholder non-profit organisation committed to reducing food waste. ReFED has partnered with the Food Waste Reduction Alliance (FWRA) to release the Retail Food Waste Action Guide to support grocery retailers in developing and implementing food waste reduction strategies. Major retailers such as Ahold Delhaize USA, Albertsons, Kroger, Publix, Safeway, Target, Wegmans, Walmart and Whole Foods all contributed to the guide, which presents a set of proven prevention, recovery and recycling solutions to help the industry prioritise and accelerate waste reduction activities.

US: Walmart may take a significant minority stake in Flipkart in India
Walmart may acquire a 15 to 20% stake in Flipkart, which would give the latter a boost for its fight against Amazon in India. It was reported that Walmart is in advanced talks to acquire a 15 to 20% stake in leading Indian ecommerce marketplace Flipkart. The news came after Doug McMillon, the Chief executive officer of Walmart led a delegation to visit Flipkart's Bengaluru office early last week.

AUS: David Jones is launching a mini-supermarket chain

Next year Australian retail giant David Jones will open its first mini-supermarket in South Yarra. The standalone food store, David Jones Food, will come in the Capitol Grand retail precinct currently under construction on the corner of Toorak Road and Chapel Street from 2019. “We are confident the new David Jones Food proposition will resonate strongly with the local customer, delivering a new level of food quality and experience to the area,” David Jones chief executive David Thomas said in a statement.

France to ban 'buy one, get one free' offers on food products
France plans to ban “buy one, get one free” offers on food products in supermarkets to guarantee better income to struggling farmers, in a move that could also test President Emmanuel Macron’s free-market credentials. The move is part of a wider food and farming bill, presented to cabinet on Wednesday, which aims to raise regulated minimum food prices and limit bargain sales in France, the European Union’s largest farm producer.

Spar increases exports of Croatian products
The value of Croatian products marketed abroad last year by the Spar Austria retail chain reached 63mln euro, as against 60mln a year before, the Spar Croatia company said in a press release. The highest increase, of 75%, was registered in the marketing of Croatian products via Spar to Italy. The retail chain says it plays a significant role in marketing products of Croatian food and beverages companies to EU member-states Austria, Hungary, Slovenia and Italy.

German retailer Aldi set to build 2,000 homes above its Berlin stores
Amid intense rivalry in the grocery business, Aldi Nord says it wants to put apartments above some of its supermarkets. Real estate in the German capital is at peak demand, amid high immigration and a lack of new homes. "This is our idea: an Aldi store on the ground floor and flats above it," said a spokesman for the northern German division of the budget grocer.

Marks & Spencer plans further UK store closures
UK retailer Marks & Spencer has announced that it is closing six stores across the country, with plans to shut a further eight branches. M&S stores in Birkenhead, Bournemouth, Durham, Fforestfach, Putney and Redditch are all set to close by the end of April, with all staff moving to nearby stores. The retailer has also proposed the closure of stores in Andover, Basildon, Bridlington, Falmouth, Fareham, Keighley and Stockport, and an outlet in Denton.

Coop Danmark expands food-to-go range
Coop Danmark has announced it is expanding its food-to-go range, with the rollout of dedicated Måltidsmarked ('Meal Market') areas in its stores. In what it calls ‘Måltidsmarked 2.0’, the retailer will offer breakfast, lunch and snacks at over 400 stores, including Kvickly, SuperBrugsen, Dagli'Brugsen and Irma outlets. For its breakfast range, the Danish retailer will offer raw vegetables, yogurt drink or rye bread, while lunch will feature sandwiches, wraps, pasta salads and various other meals. Additionally, Coop Danmark will also sell snacks, tapas and fruit, as well as hot and cold beverages.

France: Retailer Leclerc eyes Paris food delivery service
Privately-held French supermarket operator Leclerc said it planned to launch a food delivery service in Paris this year, in the face of competition from Amazon. The new service will be called ‘Leclerc Chez Moi’ (Leclerc In My Home) and will price its food products at 15-20% below those of competitors.

China: Gogo unmanned supermarket has gone

After just four months, Chengdu’s first unmanned supermarket, Gogo Nobody, has reportedly shut down. This follows the unmanned shelf project Gogo Small, run by the same Chengdu-based startup Xiao Mang Guo Technology, closing down in November. A Xiao Mang Guo spokesman says the unmanned supermarket is only “temporarily closed” and will be re-opened after its facial-recognition system has been upgraded. However, he did admit the company had misjudged the market, forcing it to terminate the unmanned shelf project. “In hindsight, the project expanded way too fast.”

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