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Lidl said it would invest 4bln pounds ($5bln) in UK food businesses in 2023 is to close its e-commerce services in Indonesia and Thailand

UK: Asda faces prospect of strikes over plans that risk thousands of job losses
Asda is facing the prospect of strike action unless it makes significant concessions on its self-styled "efficiency" plans that have placed thousands of jobs at risk, a union source has told Sky News.

UK: Amazon opens new Fresh grocery store in Monument
Amazon opened a new Amazon Fresh store in London, adding to its collection of 19 stores in the UK. Located at 20 Gracechurch Street in Monument, the store opens its doors at 7am and closes at 11pm, available seven days a week. Offering grocery items including fresh meat, poultry, fish, dairy, fruit, vegetables and bakery products, the store also serves hot food throughout the day and on-the-go meals for breakfast, lunch and dinner.

China's to shut e-commerce sites in Indonesia, Thailand
China's is to close its e-commerce services in Indonesia and Thailand, retreating from Southeast Asia after a bruising year for China's retail and technology sectors. will end its services in Thailand from March 3 and in Indonesia from the end of the same month, its local websites showed. Both units will stop taking orders on February 15. A spokesperson for said in a statement that the company will continue to serve global markets, including Southeast Asia, through its supply chain infrastructure.

Spain: Barcelona bans grocery delivery companies' 'dark stores'
Barcelona's city hall approved a total ban on so-called "dark stores" - distribution hubs used by companies that provide grocery home deliveries - joining other European cities such as Amsterdam that announced restrictions in 2022. The ban will affect local delivery app Glovo - majority-owned by Germany's Delivery Hero - which has focused on the dark stores segment in recent years.

SPAR Scotland store reopens with a fresh new look in Ayr
Set not far from the crossroads of Holmston Drive and Hillfoot Road, in Ayr, Scotland, SPAR Hillfoot Road celebrated its relaunch following an extensive store refit. Steve Irons, SPAR Scotland Company Owned Stores Operations Director, said: “Our ambition is to bring everything that our neighbours in our local community would expect to see in their local store. Focus has been given to ensuring that our offer of chilled products, fruit and vegetables have been improved, along with snacking and ambient ranges to meet all meal requirements.”

Lidl GB to invest 4bln stg in UK food businesses in 2023
The British arm of German discount supermarket Lidl said it would invest 4bln pounds ($5bln) in UK food businesses in 2023, as it accelerates its spending plans. In 2019, Lidl GB committed to a 15bln pound investment in the UK food industry from 2020 to 2025. The new figure is expected to hit 17bln pounds.

China: Douyin Supermarket goes online
Douyin Supermarket has officially opened its doors to welcome customers in the Douyin app, and users from all over the country can experience online supermarket shopping in Douyin. Users search for "Douyin E-commerce" in the search bar or shopping portal, and they can enter the Douyin Supermarket for shopping.

Coles supports Aussie producers with grants of up to $500,000
Australian producers and manufacturers can now apply for financial support from the Coles Nurture Fund to help them develop new market-leading products and sustainable processes and technologies. Coles has opened a new round of the Coles Nurture Fund to allow small to medium size businesses to apply for grants of up to $500,000. To apply for Round 11 of the Coles Nurture Fund, log onto Applications close at 5pm AEST on Friday, 24 February 2023.

UK: Iceland boss will not step down from supermarket if elected MP
The executive chairman of Iceland, Richard Walker, has insisted he will not step down from the frozen food retailer, if elected as an MP. Describing the claims as “laughable”, Walker argued that “plenty of MPs have second jobs”. He told This is Money: “I think it is important that people know what the outside world is like - what it is like to pay the wages on a Friday. I’ll give it my all - but with regards to Iceland, nothing changes. It is important that politics has people who aren’t just inside the Westminster bubble.”

Amazon to start charging delivery fees on Fresh grocery orders under $150
Amazon will start charging delivery fees on Fresh grocery orders that are under $150, beginning February 28. Fresh grocery delivery is only available to Amazon Prime members who pay $139 a year to participate in the program. The e-retailer said it is adding fees to some orders so that it can keep prices low, according to a notice sent to customers.

US: Performance Food Group’s Foodcentric Experience: A recipe for success for the food service industry
Performance Food Group Company’s (PFG) food service division, Performance Foodservice, looks to build on its successful Foodcentric Experience events in 2022 as it prepares for a busy 2023.

US: Metropolitan Market to automate in-store processes
Pacific Northwest grocery store chain Metropolitan Market has teamed with retail automation provider Focal Systems on the deployment of the Focal Systems Operating System (FocalOS) to digitize and automate the food retailer via optimized ordering, inventory management, merchandising and in-store labor, with the goal of enhancing the overall customer experience.

US: Food Lion and Novant Health launch food pharmacy pilot program
Food Lion and Novant Health are collaborating to launch a food pharmacy pilot program at Novant Health New Hanover Regional Medical Center in Wilmington, North Carolina. A leading omnichannel retailer serving towns and cities across 10 states, Food Lion is committed to nourishing neighbors and families, setting them up for success in life.

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