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FreshRealm announced the expansion of its operational facilities nationally

Aldi U.S. plans to hire more than 20,000 new store and warehouse employees

Walmart Canada breaking ground on distribution centre in Moncton this week
Walmart Canada is breaking ground on its first distribution centre in Atlantic Canada later this week. The $56mln facility in Moncton will ship fresh and frozen groceries to the retailer's 43 stores in the region. It is slated to open in the fall of 2022. Walmart says building a stronger supply chain will get products to customers faster, whether they’re shopping in store or online.

US: Multicultural online grocer delivers new shopping service to San Antonio
San Antonio shoppers who are a wee bit frustrated when they can’t find specialty grocery products can now source such goodies from the comfort of home, thanks to the largest and fastest growing Asian and Hispanic e-grocer in the U.S. Weee! - a company headquartered in Fremont, California, founded in 2015 originally to make hard-to-find and authentic Asian ingredients easy to access and affordable for shoppers - has launched in San Antonio.

US: Albertsons launches Amazon Prime-style membership program
The Albertsons Cos. has become the largest traditional grocery retailer in the United States to launch a subscription service for unlimited free delivery. The company announced the launch of its new FreshPass membership as part of an omnichannel "reintroduction" to shoppers. Its new FreshPass initiative joins 2 additional launches: a free Deals & Delivery app and an “Albertsons for U” shopper loyalty program.

Aldi to add over 20,000 U.S. workers in hiring push
Gearing up for the upcoming holiday season, Aldi U.S. plans to hire more than 20,000 new store and warehouse employees. Aldi said that it plans to host a National Hiring Week from September 20 to 24, in which stores and warehouses will hold interview events to fill jobs. Available positions include store associate, cashier, stocker and warehouse associate at the hard discount grocer’s 2,100-plus stores and 25 warehouses in 37 states.

US: FreshRealm expands operational facilities to produce more than 100mln fresh meals annually to address growing consumer and retail demand
FreshRealm, a leading fresh meals solution provider, announced the expansion of its operational facilities nationally as part of the company's continued strategy to optimize its position in the high growth fresh meals category at retail. The facilities, which are slated to be fully operational from fall 2021 through mid 2022, will allow the company to generate more than 100mln meals per year across the company's complete range: ready-to-cook, ready-to-heat, and meal kits.

Swedish retailers expect strong trading in autumn
Confidence in the future of retail trade for August 2021 is at historically high levels in Sweden despite a slight decline, new data from retail and wholesale trade organisation Svensk Handel has revealed. Confidence in the future of retail trade for the month fell by 1.5 units to 106.4, reflecting an increase of just over 20 units compared to the same period last year with future expectations well above the so-called neutral level of 100.

Walmart closes stores as Chinese households embrace online grocery shopping
Supermarket chains must explore new business lines to counter loss-making fresh food e-commerce upstarts. Walmart shut down a 15-year-old store in Beijing last week. The supermarket chain is experiencing business shrinkage at a time when online grocery operations are gaining popularity across the country. Walmart didn’t state the reason behind the store’s shuttering, but it has closed 80 locations in the past 4 years, according to a report by Sina Finance.

New online supermarket set to redefine grocery shopping in Australia
A new online grocery delivery service has launched in Sydney with plans to expand to 200 locations globally by the end of 2021. Focused on delivering both local and big brand names in less than 20 minutes, Geezy Go has plans to rival supermarket giants, Woolworths and Coles. “We are redefining and revolutionising food and grocery shopping in Australia”, says Geezy Go Vice President of Growth and Strategy, Dhruv Kohli.

UK: Grocery sales fall as more shoppers return but basket size shrinks, says Kantar
Grocery sales fell by 4% during the latest 12-week period and also dipped in the most recent month, according to new figures from Kantar. The decline was just 0.5% in the 4 weeks to 8 August when consumers made an extra 108,000 shopping trips but the average basket size was 10% smaller as pre-pandemic buying habits returned. The new figures also reveal that cash is being used less often than ever in major retailers and the nature of online shopping is changing with a sharp drop in business in the latest period as more consumers decided to make their purchases in stores once again.

No lowest price guarantee: Colruyt turns out to be a local supermarket in France
Colruyt thinks it has finally found the winning formula to become successful in France. The retailer is trying to do so as a local supermarket, without the lowest price guarantee. "Retail is about details. What works in one country is not necessarily appreciated in another", says operations manager Marc Hofman to Belgian newspaper De Tijd on a visit to a French branch.

Tesco launches reusable plastic bags in Central Europe
Tesco has launched reusable shopping bags made with plastic waste from its operations, according to SOCR ČR, the Czech commerce and tourism confederation. The move will see the retailer use around 150 use tonnes of waste plastic annually in making shopping bags, with at least 20% of the material sourced from the company's operations. The new 51-micron bags with a maximum load capacity of 15 kilograms will replace single-use variants.

Amazon launches own-brand groceries on its UK website
Amazon has added own-brand groceries to its UK website as it amps up competition with Britain’s supermarkets. Never one to miss out on a lucrative business opportunity, the company capitalised on lockdown restrictions during the Covid-19 pandemic by expanding its online groceries service. Amazon Fresh expanded its next-day delivery service to customers across the UK driving a 51% uplift in sales during 2020 with the company’s UK revenues hitting $26.4bln - the fastest level of growth in all of Amazon’s major markets worldwide.

Ahold Delhaize: "Telling customers what to do is not our place"
The new climate report once again makes it clear that companies must do more to combat global warming. Although Ahold Delhaize Chairman Frans Muller advocates evolution rather than revolution, he agrees: "It will take time". Last year, the Dutch-Belgian multinational launched new sustainability targets, in which the company wants to halve its carbon emissions by 2030, for one. Emissions generated by products sold by other manufacturers must also be reduced - but only by 15%. Furthermore, the retailer promised to focus more on recycled packaging and intensify further the efforts to reduce food waste.

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