US: Shaw’s, Star Market truck drivers who deliver to Massachusetts stores go on strike
Truckers who crisscross New England delivering food and other essentials to more than 100 Shaw’s and Star Market locations have gone on strike as they fight for a new contract. The 65 truck drivers and mechanics walking out on strike Monday morning will cause “an immediate effect” on 122 supermarkets across the region, said Business Agent Joseph Piccone of Teamsters Local Union 340 in South Portland, Maine.
US: Harps holds Produce for Kids Fridays campaign
To mark its fifth Produce for Kids in-store cause marketing campaign, Harps Food Stores has kicked off Produce for Kids Fridays at Harps locations through the end of August. Along with in-store signage featuring healthy, easy meal ideas for families, the independent grocer’s produce teams are serving as campaign ambassadors at Harps stores, donning Fruits & Veggies & Giving Back T-shirts every Friday while doling out $1 produce bucks coupons, enabling families to try new fruits and vegetables.
US: GrubMarket acquires Vaccaro & Sons to expand to St. Louis, Missouri
GrubMarket announced it has completed the acquisition of Vaccaro & Sons, a highly reputable and well-regarded produce and diary provider to local grocery stores, caterers, country clubs, restaurants, schools and elder care facilities in St. Louis, Missouri. Vaccaro & Sons is a key sourcing channel for high quality fruits and vegetables and is known for its premium service.
Germany: REWE introduces cargo bike delivery
German retailer REWE Group has added cargo bikes to its delivery fleet for grocery delivery in Cologne, Berlin, and Hamburg. The German retailer has spent a year testing the concept in its pilot scheme in Cologne, racking up 40,000 kilometres during testing phase. The cargo bikes will be used for the last-mile of the delivery, the company added.
China: Alibaba to open 10 more Freshippo X stores
CEO of Alibaba’s Freshippo grocery retail chain, Hou Yi, has announced expansion plans to open 10 more Freshippo X Stores in 2021. The first X Store, Alibaba’s membership-only wholesale store, opened in October last year in Shanghai. Hou Yi revealed that the store is making profit by end of 2020, merely 2 months from the store opening. Average customer spend per trip is around CNY1,000 (US$155).
HelloFresh sets record quarter
HelloFresh saw the number of active customers in the past quarter grow to 7.3mln. In the coming months, the meal box delivery company wants to significantly expand its offer of individual products, which customers can order as an extra. HelloFresh provided its first insight into the quarterly figures in mid-April, when the company once again revised its annual forecasts upwards. The meal box supplier posted sales of 1.44bln euros in the first 3 months of the year, more than doubling year-on-year. The adjusted gross operating profit (aebitda) even increased by 152.3% to 159.2mln euros. In total, HelloFresh delivered over 29mln orders to 7.3mln customers.
France: One year later, Carrefour and Uber Eats are continuing to bolster their partnership
One year ago, Carrefour and Uber Eats decided to team up and make everyday life easier for people across France by enabling them to get day-to-day products delivered to their home in under 30 minutes. 12 months on, this strategic partnership is still growing and has been bolstered: by the end of this year, more than a thousand Carrefour stores will be accessible via the application, throughout France. Delivery is now available in 10 to 20 minutes.
UK: Tesco extends ambitious new health commitments to Central Europe and Booker
Tesco reported: "Tesco announces a further extension of its ambitious health strategy, with commitments to help customers in Central Europe eat more healthily, and to further improve access to healthy alternatives for Booker’s business customers. In March, we set out the latest step in our efforts to make our stores the easiest place for customers to shop for affordable, healthy, sustainable food. These commitments cover Tesco’s UK & ROI business, as our largest market and where our health work is currently most advanced".
Online grocery growth slows as shoppers spend £8bln in-store at UK supermarkets
Online grocery sales growth has slowed to 25%, as UK shoppers return to supermarket stores following the easing of the UK’s national lockdown, reveals new data. Data from NielsenIQ reveals that in the last 4 weeks, several of the categories that suffered most during lockdown have seen growth return as restrictions eased.
Holland: Jumbo opens tenth home delivery hub in Groningen
Dutch retailer Jumbo has opened a new home delivery hub in Groningen, which is also its tenth central home delivery location in the country. The new hub will allow for further distribution of groceries ordered via the jumbo.com website or the Jumbo app.
Belgium: Albert Heijn and Jumbo increase pressure on Colruyt in Flanders, higher prices in Wallonia
Colruyt remains the cheapest supermarket in Belgium, according to a new survey by Test-Aankoop, but the difference with Albert Heijn is marginal. Remarkable is the large price difference between Flanders and the southern, French-speaking, part of the country.
Germany: Wholesaler Metro sees sales down 11.9% in second quarter
Wholesale giant Metro has reported a 11.9% drop in sales in the second quarter of its financial year, adding that it has come through the most recent lockdown phase 'resiliently' despite continued restrictions in the HoReCa sector. The group noted that the drop in sales was largely due to a moderately strong Q2 last year, which was only 'slightly affected' by the imposition of pandemic-related government regulations. The group posted sales of €5.1bln for Q2 2020/21, with performance in Germany, France, Italy and Spain at 'above market level' and a 'continued positive performance' in Russia for the fifth quarter in a row.
Japan's retail sales rise at fastest pace in 5 months
Japanese retail sales rose at the fastest pace in 5 months in March as consumer demand recovered from the huge hit it took from the coronavirus pandemic last year. The world's third-largest economy has emerged from last year's slump on an export recovery, though a glacial vaccine rollout and a resurgence in infections are threatening household demand. Retail sales jumped 5.2% in March from a year earlier, government data showed, a larger gain than the median market forecast for a 4.7% rise.
Holland: Albert Heijn introduces electric minibuses for grocery deliveries
Dutch retailer Albert Heijn has introduced electric minibuses in Amersfoort for grocery deliveries. The retailer expects to roll out Light Electronic Vehicles (LEV) for grocery deliveries across the country over the next 2 years. The initiative is part of Albert Heijn's strategy to deliver emission-free groceries in city centres from 2025.