94% of U.S. consumers still worried about the cost of food

Kroger drives delivery with memberships as grocers boost omnichannel adoption
In a keynote interview Tuesday for the annual Groceryshop conference, Kroger chairman and CEO Rodney McMullen spoke to the success of the grocer's Boost membership, according to Progressive Grocer.

"When you become top of mind, you're able to gain share," McMullen said, according to the report. "Well over half of our delivery business is from Boost members. For us, it's just part of that overall equation and our aspirations for people to fall in love with the experience, fall in love with our associates, and have incredible value."

The news speaks to the effectiveness of the grocery delivery membership model, which companies ranging from Walmart to Amazon to Instacart have leveraged. Overall, consumers order delivery directly from grocers significantly more often than from third-party channels, according to PYMNTS Intelligence from the study "12 Months of the ConnectedEconomy™: 33,000 Consumers on Digital's Role in Their Everyday Lives."

Source: Pymnts

Former Sobeys Chairman CEO David Sobey dies
David F. Sobey, chairman emeritus of Canadian food and drug retailer Sobeys Inc., has died at age 92.

Parent company Empire Co. Ltd. announced the passing of Sobey, a former chairman and CEO of the Stellarton, Nova Scotia-based supermarket retailer, on Tuesday. One of Canada's "big three" grocers, Empire operates its food retail business under its Sobeys Inc. subsidiary. The company's grocery retail footprint encompasses over 1,900 food, drug, and convenience stores in all 10 provinces under such banners as Sobeys, Safeway, IGA, Foodland, FreshCo, Thrifty Foods, Farm Boy, Longo's, and Lawtons Drugs.

Source: Winsight Grocery Business

94% of U.S. consumers still worried about the cost of food
The share of all meals that were prepared at home averaged 76.8% in August, according to a recent category update from 210 Analytics (with data provided by Circana). "We typically see a drop in the share of home-prepared meals during the summer months," said Jonna Parker, team lead of fresh with Circana, "However, 76.8% marks a multi-year low in our monthly shopper survey, and restaurants saw strong engagement with on-premise dining (53% of consumers), takeout (50%), and delivery (20%)."

"A few of the consumer attitude questions we've been tracking since March 2020 finally moved a few points in the right direction: Slightly less concerned about the present and slightly more optimistic for the future," said Anne-Marie Roerink, president of 210 Analytics LLC, a San Antonio-based market research and marketing strategies firm which put out the report, which surveyed 1,000-plus primary grocery shoppers.

Source: Supermarketnews

Non-traditional grocery retailers pose 'existential threat' to supermarkets
Supermarket operators wondering who's sponging up grocery retail market share shouldn't spend much time looking at each other, according to Scott Moses, partner and head of the grocery, pharmacy, and restaurants advisory group at New York-based Solomon Partners.

In a session this week at Groceryshop 2023 in Las Vegas, Moses presented an in-depth analysis showing that non-traditional grocers—mass merchants and supercenters, warehouse clubs, limited-assortment discount grocery stores, dollar stores, drug stores, and online grocery retailers—have steadily absorbed share from conventional supermarkets over the past 20 years.

"For many years, I've been sounding the alarm about the rise of national/discount grocers—Walmart, Target, Costco, Amazon, Dollar General, Family Dollar, and Dollar Tree—and the existential threat that they pose to supermarket grocers, just as we've all seen over the last 20 years how department stores have been marginalized," Moses said.

Source: Winsight Grocery Business

Belgium: Jumbo: "Not leaving, but expanding in Belgium"
Dutch supermarket chain Jumbo has had a slower start in Belgium than expected, but that is no sign of retreating from the country. Rather, the general planning is slowed down a bit to fifty Belgian stores by 2025.

Jumbo had imagined its Belgian expansion quite differently, CEOs Ton van Veen and Peter Isaac had to admit. Things are going more slowly than expected, but there is no question of giving up: "Last year, we took another look at everything and then said a resounding yes to further growth in Belgium, "they say in an interview with Belgian newspaper HLN. "We are here to stay!"

"Conditions in Belgium are more obstinate than we thought four years ago," company CEO Van Veen adds. Jumbo had counted on better prices and margins here, but the margin profile in Belgium is still quite similar to that in the Netherlands. He also admits that his supermarket chain is still making a loss in Belgium (4.1 million euros last year) but says that does not worry him. Rather, Jumbo is focusing on the long term: "The moment when we start making a profit is not years away," he says.

Source: RetailDetail.eu

Why Aldi's produce is packaged differently than other stores
One other unexpected way Aldi saves money is through its produce section. Frequent Aldi customers may have noticed that the chain only sells produce in bags rather than individually. Well, there's a reason why Aldi's produce is packaged differently than other stores, and it all comes down to affordability. Aldi sells its produce in packages because it takes away the need for scales at the store. This means shopping trips are faster for customers, and Aldi employees can also be speedier at checkout.

Source: DailyMeal

UK: Co-op stores take £33m hit in just six months as shoplifting cases surge
Executives say store workers have been verbally abused or have had knives or syringes pulled on them - with almost 1,000 incidents a day in the first half of 2023. Executives have warned shop looting perpetuated by prolific offenders and organized criminal gangs "is becoming genuinely one of the most significant issues facing U.K. communities."

Matt Hood, the managing director of Co-op Food, said police officers currently attended just two in 10 thefts - meaning thieves have to be let go. He added: "One of the things that makes me most angry is those that claim this is a victimless crime - it is fundamentally not, as my store colleagues who have been verbally abused, or have had knives or syringes pulled on them, can all vouch for."

Source: Sky News

Ireland: Aldi Ireland signs new contracts worth €26M with four Irish suppliers
Aldi Ireland has agreed to four major new deals with Irish-based suppliers worth more than €26 million. The new and extended contracts continue ALDI's long-standing commitment to its Irish supplier network, which is now more than 330 strong, with whom Aldi will spend in excess of €1.1 billion this year, bringing the finest quality Irish produce to its 160-store network across Ireland.

The four suppliers, some of whom have been supplying Aldi for more than twenty years, produce fruit and vegetables, dairy products, and coffee, and some of the contracts will see ALDI open up new international markets for their producers. The new contracts were announced at the National Ploughing Championships today, at which Aldi is showcasing the produce supplied to its 160 stores by its nationwide network of suppliers.

Source: Retail News

Ukraine: Spar Ukraine supports local entrepreneurs
In the city of Boryslav, residents can now enjoy access to a new EUROSPAR Supermarket. The modern store layout, convenient range of foods on offer, and attention to shopping experience set the store apart. Additionally, SPAR Ukraine launched a new program targeting producers with a view to expanding the variety of local products available in-store.

Meeting the needs of not only residents but also neighboring towns, the new EUROSPAR in Boryslav is one of the largest of the local retailer's stores. With a sales area of almost 1,000m², it has many different departments in the instore. The retailer's investment of over €600,000 is reflected in the outstanding shopping experience. In addition to providing extensive support to local independent retailers, SPAR Ukraine now has a program offering strong support to local producers. A new six-month competition was launched in August 2023, highlighting the support the company offers entrepreneurs, including training and expert advice about developing locally produced products suitable for the retailer's store network.

Source: Spar

Australia: Aldi named Australia's best supermarket in 2022, according to Roy Morgan
Aldi has again been named supermarket of the year in Roy Morgan's Customer Satisfaction Awards after saving customers an eye-watering $3.1 billion in 2022. The popular supermarket chain — which has won the prestigious award six times — had an average customer satisfaction rate of 96.16 percent, proving shoppers get quality and affordability when visiting Aldi. The company's group buying director, Simon Padovani-Ginies, said one simple yet consistent commitment made the award possible.

"We are thrilled Aldi has won a spot in the hearts and back pockets of Aussie shoppers to be named Australia's Best Supermarket of the Year by Roy Morgan for the third consecutive year," he said.

Source: Perth Now

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