Food prices fall again at the supermarket

Amazon receives 238 proposals for its 2nd HQ

US: launches private brand range
Walmart’s business has launched a range of private brand products. The initial range of around 60 products spans core consumable categories and are sold under the 'Uniquely J' brand, providing its shoppers with a premium-focused offer. The retailer is currently redesigning its core website and working on new partnerships which will bring a more premium assortment to its online offer. (

US: Associated Food Stores ups energy efficiency game
Associated Food Stores has implemented energy efficient technologies in stores across Utah and the Intermountain West in an effort to become more sustainable. The wholesaler added LED lighting, updated lighting controls and refrigeration upgrades to stores. The changes helped make lighting and cooling the stores more efficient and resulted in reducing energy use by nearly 3.9 million kilowatt-hours last year. (

US: food prices fall again at the supermarket
The latest price index report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics finds that consumer prices recorded their biggest increase (+0.5%) in eight months in September. Unfortunately, the tide didn’t lift all boats, with food prices remaining fundamentally flat. The food price index eked out a negligible 0.1% increase, led by inflation creeping back into the food-away-from-home (dining out) index, which rose 0.3% in September. The food-at-home index, on the other hand, remained unchanged in September after dropping in August. (

Growth of Mexican Walmart continues
Walmex has reported better than expected growth in Q3. Its revenue grew to MXP136.8bn (US$71.9m) a 7.8% increase. Sales in Mexico were up 8.9%, with same-store sales increasing by 7.2%. Sales in Central America increased by 10.2% with same-store sales up 6.0%. Sam’s Club delivered the highest same-store sales growth, with Supercentres and Bodega Aurrera also posting strong growth. In Q3 16 new stores were opened in Mexico, and 17 in Central America. In the future Walmex plans to accelerate expansion and open more stores. In Chile, Walmart has announced its plans to rebrand all 88 Ekono stores to the Lider Express format. (

US: Amazon receives 238 proposals for its 2nd HQ Inc has received 238 proposals from cities and regions across North America vying to host the company’s second headquarters, it said on Monday. The number of applicants underscores the interest in the contest, which Seattle-based Amazon announced last month. The world’s largest online retailer said it would invest more than $5 billion and create up to 50,000 jobs for “Amazon HQ2”. The deadline for submitting proposals was Thursday. (Reuters)

US: Amazon rivals turn to legal fine print to stem Whole Foods strategy
Whole Foods Market met a new foe this summer during talks to lease a top retail space in a San Francisco mall: the Target next door. As City Center mall’s largest tenant, Target Corp had a say over changes to the property. According to people familiar with the lease discussions, Target balked at sharing the mall with Whole Foods because it feared competition from the grocery chain’s new owner, Inc. (Reuters)

US: Aldi posts higher volumes in California: report
Perishables help drive sales, but WinCo remains low-price leader. Aldi’s stores in California are averaging higher volumes than many of its locations around the country as consumers are attracted to its expanded perishables offering, convenience and low prices, according to a recent report. Aldi stores in California are averaging volumes of about $20 million to $22 million annually, said Burt Flickinger III, managing director at Strategic Resource Group, New York, which recently conducted a pricing study in the market. (

US: Lidl debuts online shopping with Shipt in South Carolina
Lidl began offering online grocery shopping through Shipt in Greenville, South Carolina last week, according to Upstate Business Journal. Lidl’s two stores in the city cover 123,000 consumers, according to the report. Shipt is offering discounted annual memberships to Lidl customers. The memberships, which guarantee free delivery and normally costs $99, will be available for $49. (

Italy: Conad Del Tirreno aims to surpass coop in Tuscany

Italian regional supermarket chain Conad del Tirreno is aiming to surpass its rival Coop in Italy’s central region of Tuscany. In an interview with regional daily Il Tirreno, the CEO of Conad del Tirreno, Ugo Bladi, outlined the company’s plans, which include reaching a turnover of €3 billion over the next three to four years. According to Bladi, the retailer will invest €160 million over the next three years. Next month, new supermarkets will be opened in Viareggio, Arezzo and Cascina. (

Georgia: Spar continued expansion plan reaches 36 stores
Retail giant Spar is continuing with its expansion plan in Georgia, and has opened eight new stores in the past few months, bringing the total number of outlets in the country to 36. Spar Georgia says that with these openings it has penetrated three new local markets, and aims to open up to ten more stores before the end of the year. (

Ireland: Tesco and SuperValu tussle for victory in grocery war
Tesco and SuperValu are now neck-and-neck in the battle to be Ireland's biggest grocery chain. But Dunnes Stores is in hot pursuit as the busy Christmas buying frenzy approaches. New figures from research group Kantar Worldpanel show that Tesco has continued to claw back market share after being toppled from the top spot in 2015. (

UK shoppers chose best value supermarket
TESCO, Morrisons, Aldi and Lidl are all known to have excellent value for money, but which offers shoppers the best bang for their buck in Britian? Britain’s Best Value Supermarket has been announced at the Moneywise Home Finance Awards 2017. Aldi took the prize last year and the year before - but have they done it for a third year running? Tesco, Morrisons and Asda have all faced stiff competition in recent years from the German supermarket, which itself competes with Lidl. (

France: new Carrefour service lets customers deliver orders
Carrefour has introduced a new service in France, which allows customers to deliver orders to other customers. The ‘Merci Voisin’ (‘Thank you, neighbour’) app applies to online orders only, and lets customers select if they want their groceries delivered by other shoppers. Customers who want to offer their services as a courier have to register on the app, and will receive a small fee for their services, and also receive a rating. (

UK retail sales slump in September
High street sales slumped last month, pushing the UK retail sector to its lowest growth rate in four years for the three months to the end of September as the impact of rising inflation and sluggish wage growth dented consumer spending power. Official figures showed the amount of goods bought by consumers fell 0.8% in September and set the UK on course for a period of slow growth in the run-up to Christmas. (

UK: Supermarket sneak: bruised strawberries placed in punnets in war against food waste
Asda has started sneaking bruised and wonky strawberries into standard punnets in a war against food waste. For the past 20 weeks its packs of strawberries have contained a mix of "class 1" and "class 2" fruit instead of purely class 1. The supermarket said shoppers haven't noticed and that the trial was proving a big success. (

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