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LuLu Group is now entering northern India

Vegrow raised $25mln in a Series B funding

Central Retail to invest over 829mln USD in Vietnam in next 5 years
Thai retailer Central Retail Corporation has unveiled a five-year plan to invest more than 30bln THB (829.34mln USD) to expand its operations in Vietnam.

Buying alliances help 'significantly lower' consumer prices, INSEAD study finds
Buying alliances in the retail sector can help 'significantly' lower consumer prices, a new study by INSEAD has found. The study examined close to 140,000 SKUs from across 20 key food categories - including cheese, confectionery, chocolate, fruit and vegetables and frozen food - over a six-year period, equating to around 6mln product observations.

India: B2B fruits marketplace startup Vegrow raises $25mln in Series B from Prosus Ventures, others
B2B fruits marketplace startup Vegrow said it raised $25mln in a Series B funding round led by Prosus Ventures, the startup said. Investors, including Matrix Partners India, Elevation Capital, Lightspeed India, and Ankur Capital, also participated in the round.

UK: Brighton and Hove welcome Deliveroo Hop service
Deliveroo Hop has partnered with Morrisons to bring online grocery shopping to customers at a rapid rate, with deliveries arriving in as little as ten minutes, its website says. The delivery-only store has now opened in Brighton and Hove, and is packed with around 2,000 products - both branded and Morrisons’ own label.

UAE-based LuLu Group enters Uttar Pradesh with supermarket
Known for its sprawling business interests worldwide, billionaire Yussuf Ali-led LuLu Group is now entering northern India with one of the largest supermarkets in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, after having a prominent presence in the southern parts of the country for the past many years.

Fruit and vegetable prices soar at Coles and Woolworths: Study
Eating a healthy diet in Australia is increasingly becoming an expensive luxury, according to new research that tracked fruit and vegetable prices over the past three years. The report from Deakin University studied the changing prices of 28 staples at Coles and Woolworths supermarkets and found that healthy items were subject to the largest cost hikes. Prices for lettuce, tomatoes and broccoli all skyrocketed between 25 and 150% over three years, Deakin found. Other staples like bread (up 10%) and potatoes (up 13%) rose sharply, too. But the data also found that some fruits have become much cheaper, including bananas (down 29%) and oranges (down 17%).

JD incubates new professions: Technician for agricultural digitalization
As part of a new generation of farmers, Wen Ya’s job at JD Farm applies IoT, blockchain, AI and other technologies to the supply chain of agricultural industry, in order to make digitalized standards for farm production and management. To date, JD Farm has rolled out over 70 projects on nearly 400,000 mu (1 mu equals to 666.67 square meters) of plantation bases in over 10 provinces, municipalities and autonomous regions across China, digitalizing the farming process of 13 produce categories including rice, millet, apples, citrons, Chinese wolfberries and more, and adding brand and marketing value for the produce such as promoting dedicated channels like JD Farm’s flagship online stores.

Germany: REWE expands delivery service in Nuremberg
German retailer REWE is set to expand its grocery delivery service in Nuremberg with the addition of a new delivery service warehouse. The chain will offer an extended range of services, including same-day delivery. Customers can order from the usual selection of more than 12,000 products, including fresh products, such as fruit and vegetables, dairy products and meat, as well as private-label items and frozen products, among others.

Hema to double number of French stores
After a forced reduction of its number of French stores, Dutch chain Hema now wants to double its presence in France again by 2026. Franchising is not an option for that new target, while cost control is mandatory.

Germany: Metro AG reduces food waste, increases food donations
German wholesale giant Metro AG has reported a 15.3% decline in food waste and a 34% increase in food donations over the past three financial years. The company's first Food Waste Report, published in June 2022, highlights that it saved around 6,000 tonnes of food from being wasted in this period.

GS25 heads to Malaysia with plans to open next year
GS25 plans to tap into the Malaysian market by opening its first branch in the country next year. GS Retail, which operates the convenience store chain GS25, announced it signed a memorandum of understanding with Malaysia’s KK Group. KK Group will be operating GS25 chains in Malaysia through a master franchise contract, which means GS Retail will receive royalties for providing its brand.

Holland: Picnic distribution centre burns to the ground, fire brigade investigates
A fire which broke out on Sunday night has completely destroyed the premises of web-based supermarket Picnic in Almelo. The Picnic depot serves at Zeearend, Almelo and the surrounding region. Some 60 people work there.

Canada: Strike averted at Loblaw Cos.
Following months of back and forth actions, grocery and warehouse employees who work for Canadian retailer Loblaw Cos., Ltd. voted to accept a new labor agreement. Members of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) Local 247 ratified and accepted the company's latest offer by 58%.

US: Schnucks steps up meal delivery with DoorDash
Schnuck Markets has expanded its prepared foods delivery partnership with DoorDash to more stores and two more states. In March 2021, Schnuck announced it worked with last-mile delivery specialist DoorDash to provide prepared foods through the DoorDash mobile app or website, with five supermarkets in the St. Louis area fulfilling orders placed via DoorDash. The St. Louis-based grocer said DoorDash meal delivery has been extended to 25 stores in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana.

Canada: Goodfood partners with Pusateri’s for On-Demand grocery service
Goodfood Market Corp. (“Goodfood” or “the Company”) a leading meal kit and online grocery company is expanding its selection of high-quality products, fresh produce and everyday meal solutions by partnering with the leading gourmet grocer Pusateri’s Fine Foods.

US: SpartanNash’s corporate headquarters transformation prioritizes people and fun
Food solutions company SpartanNash (the “Company”) celebrated the re-opening of its Grand Rapids, Michigan-based corporate headquarters, which was reimagined and renovated to inspire creativity and meet the evolving needs of its Associates. Hundreds of SpartanNash Associates work out of the Grand Rapids Service Center (GRSC), located at 850 76th St., SW. The newly renovated building is also adjacent to SpartanNash’s Grand Rapids Distribution Center, the company’s largest distribution center.

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