US: Kroger named most-visited grocery store in 2023
Data analytics firm Placer.ai released its 2023 end-of-year recap report, identifying Kroger as the most popular grocery banner in the country in terms of foot traffic. The report, which chronicles store popularity, customer demographics, market share, and a number of additional data points, noted that Kroger captured 18.8% of the annual foot traffic to the top 10 most frequented supermarket chains in the country.
Source: supermarketnews.com

US: Dollar General surpasses milestone of 5,000 stores nationwide offering fresh produce
Dollar General has surpassed its latest milestone, now offering fresh produce options in more than 5,000 stores across the country. With this achievement, the retailer has more individual points of produce distribution than any other U.S. mass retailer or grocer. DG stores that carry produce provide consumers with a curated assortment of fresh fruits and vegetables, including tomatoes, onions, apples, strawberries, potatoes, sweet potatoes, lemons, limes, salad mixes, and more.
Source: businesswire.com

Canada: METRO reports 2024 first quarter results
METRO INC. announced its results for the first quarter of Fiscal 2024 ended December 23, 2023. Sales in the first quarter of Fiscal 2024 ended on December 23, 2023 were $4,974.2mln, up 6.5% versus the first quarter of the prior year which ended on December 17, 2022.
Source: newswire.ca

US: Instacart makes over a dozen grocers SNAP eligible for online orders
Participants in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) have more options for online orders via Instacart, the last-mile delivery service announced. Grocers added to the list include Food City, Gordon Food Service, Hy-Vee, and Schnucks. The Kroger banners now eligible for online SNAP orders via Instacart include Baker’s, City Market, Dillons, Fred Meyer, Gerbes, Harris Teeter, King Soopers, Marianos, Metro Market, Pick n’ Save, Smith’s, and QFC.
Source: supermarketnews.com

US: FreshRealm acquires meal kit company Marley Spoon for $24mln
Meal kit company FreshRealm has acquired rival Marley Spoon for $24mln, the company announced. FreshRealm will integrate all of Marley Spoon’s U.S. and supply chain infrastructure into its own business network, the company said. That includes Marley Spoon’s three production and fulfillment facilities in Newark, New Jersey, Tracy, California, and Dallas, Texas.
Source: supermarketnews.com

US: Walmart announces 3-for-1 stock split as shares hover below all-time high
Walmart announced a three-for-one stock split on Tuesday. The company said the additional shares will be payable after the market closes February 23 to shareholders of record as of the previous day.
Source: cnbc.com

US: Jif® is on a mission to save millions of neglected celery stalks
Every year, America eats over 1bln wings during the Big Game, according to the National Chicken Council. Unfortunately, this leaves millions of celery stalks heartlessly neglected, thrown away, and left to languish. Because while the celery is served as a side out of tradition, a 2020 survey from the same National Chicken Council shows that only 14% of people prefer it. That's why, this February, Jif is on a mission to Save the Celery - reminding peanut butter lovers, football fans, and those who go wild for wings that they can change the fate of celery by eating it with irresistible Jif Peanut Butter. In other words, they can make a snack to make a difference.
Source: prnewswire.com

Black Friday, holiday sales spur demand at South Africa's Shoprite
Shoprite, South Africa's biggest supermarket group, reported a nearly 14% jump in its half-year sales, supported by a record Black Friday and festive season as cash-strapped shoppers and upmarket consumers went after food deals. The retailer, with more than 2,900 stores across Africa, said group sales for the six-month period ended December 31 rose to 121.1bln rand ($6.44bln). Sales in the company's second quarter, which include November and the Christmas holiday period, rose 14.6%.
Source: reuters.com

Australia: Urgent plea as Woolworths warns of major change to bananas
Woolworths has issued a new plea to customers over a major change to its banana supply over the coming weeks. The supermarket has revealed that bananas sourced from Queensland farmers may have more dark marks than usual, the result of adverse weather conditions. However, Woolies is urging shoppers to not be discouraged from buying the blemished bananas, saying that once the skins have been peeled back they’ll be the same quality as normal.
Source: 7news.com.au

UK: MFG and Morrisons announce forecourts partnership and EV expansion
Motor Fuel Group (“MFG”) and Morrisons announced that they have entered into an agreement relating to the proposed acquisition by MFG of 337 Morrisons petrol forecourts (including fuel, convenience retail kiosk and ancillary services) and more than 400 associated sites, across the UK, for Ultra-Rapid electric vehicle (“EV”) charging development. The proposed £2.5bln transaction forms a new strategic partnership between the two companies.
Source: morrisons-corporate.com

UK shop prices rise at slowest pace since May 2022: BRC
Prices in British shops rose at the slowest annual pace since May 2022 this month, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) said, adding to signs of easing inflation pressures ahead of this week's Bank of England (BoE) policy decision. The BRC said shop price inflation dropped to 2.9% in January from 4.3% in December, driven by heavier discounting of goods in January sales this year than in 2023.
Source: reuters.com

Aldi announces increased investment with British suppliers
Aldi spent an additional £1.3bln with British suppliers in 2023, the supermarket revealed. In a year in which it opened its 1,000th store and recorded its strongest Christmas ever, Britain’s fourth-largest supermarket invested more than ever before in British suppliers and growers, meaning they now provide more than three quarters of all items sold in its stores.
Source: aldipresscentre.co.uk

“Belgian supermarkets now cheaper than French counterparts”
In the period between 2018 and 2022, average prices for almost all product categories in Belgium rose less fast, or fell faster, than in the three neighbouring countries, the Belgian Competition Authority (BCA) said. “New players have entered the Belgian market, and there have been shifts in the market position of existing players”, the BCA’s chief economist Griet Jans told news agency Belga. “A different dynamic has emerged on the Belgian market.”
Source: retaildetail.eu

Carrefour Polska partners with Foodsi to tackle food waste
Carrefour Polska has announced it will join forces with the Polish start-up Foodsi to help fight food waste. Foodsi is an application in which users can buy full-value products, with a short expiration date, provided, among others, by restaurants, shops or bakeries, the retailer added.
Source: esmmagazine.com

Glasgow social enterprise Locavore in administration
A business described as "Scotland’s first social enterprise supermarket" has been placed in administration. Blair Nimmo and Geoff Jacobs from Interpath Advisory were appointed joint administrators to Glasgow-based Locavore Community Interest Company. It is understood part of the business and most of the staff transferred to a separate CIC before the administration.
Source: heraldscotland.com