US: H-E-B, Publix, and Costco supreme in customer satisfaction
Trader Joe's perch at the top of the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) has been cleaned out. The retailer spent the last few years as No. 1 in the grocery sector, but in 2024, Costco, H-E-B, and Publix tied for the top spot in customer satisfaction with scores of 85. H-E-B improved 5% year over year, while Costco and Publix were up 4%. Trader Joe's is No. 4 with a score of 84.
Source: supermarketnews.com

Record-breaking holiday shopping helps boost Amazon's Q4
Amazon has achieved meaningful revenue and operating income as reported in its fourth quarter ended December 31, 2023. Net sales increased 14% to $170.0bln in Q4 2023, compared with $149.2bln in Q4 2022. Operating income grew to $13.2bln, compared with last year's $2.7bln.
Source: progressivegrocer.com

US: Kroger, Bonton Farms team on free grocery pickup in South Dallas
Kroger Delivery is the power behind Grocery Connect, a new initiative from Bonton Farms that aims to address grocery access in South Dallas food deserts by providing fee-free delivery of groceries ordered online for pickup at designated staffed community centers.
Source: progressivegrocer.com

US: Massive Lidl supermarket slated for downtown Brooklyn
A new massive Lidl supermarket is slated to open in 2025 in Downtown Brooklyn after the grocery store signed a long-term lease on Fulton Street. The store will sit 30,000 square feet on Fulton Street near Bond Street, at a property that currently houses an Express Factory Outlet, Chase Bank, and Burlington. Another Lidl location is also slated to open in Crown Heights by the end of 2024 on Bedford Avenue between Sullivan Place and Empire Boulevard.
Source: patch.com

US: Dollar General adds fresh produce to newly remodeled Gulf Shores location
Dollar General has announced the completion of a recent remodel of its store located at 224 Gulf Shores Parkway in Gulf Shores. The remodeled store now features a produce section, expanding its offerings while maintaining the same categories, brands, and products that customers associate with Dollar General.
Source: gulfcoastmedia.com

US: Dollar Tree sued over recalled applesauce pouches
A North Carolina family is now suing WanaBana, which manufactures the applesauce pouches, and Dollar Tree, reports local affiliate Fox 8. The lawsuit says both companies should have made sure the food was safe before putting it on store shelves.
Source: supermarketnews.com

UK: Sainsbury's searches for more cost savings to compete on price
The next phase of British supermarket Sainsbury's strategy will aim to build on the momentum of a strong 2023, during which it said it drew customers back from German-owned discounters Aldi and Lidl with more competitive prices.
Source: reuters.com

Austria: SPAR opens a climate-friendly store
SPAR Austria is a pioneer in climate-friendly supermarkets and relies on technologies that ensure energy-efficient operation and minimize the climate impact in all new stores. An innovative, climate-friendly concept is seen with the opening of the new SPAR Supermarket Vollbadgasse in Vienna. Customers have access to a large selection of fruit and vegetables.
Source: spar-international.com

Supermarket shortages across Luxembourg due to farmer protests at the borders
Shoppers have been left without certain products over the last couple of days after farmers' protests led to blockades on roads entering Luxembourg, causing supermarket supply issues. Customers looking for fresh vegetables, fruit, or dairy products have been left empty-handed after demonstrations in neighboring countries blocked traffic on major roads this week. Luxembourg's budget supermarkets have been hit the hardest by the blockades, as Lidl spokesperson Julien Wathieu told RTL they had experienced major shortages of fresh food. Lidl branches in the Grand Duchy are supplied by the company's Belgian distribution centers, resulting in empty shelves for the last few days as supply lorries have been unable to make their deliveries.
Source: today.rtl.lu

UK: How will our eating habits change in 2024, according to Asda's Senior Director of Food Trends and Innovation
Asda's Senior Director of Food Trends and Innovation, Jonathan Moore, shares his forecast on the food and drink trends that customers should look out for this year: "Driven by the surge in plant-based eating, customers are increasingly seeing vegetables as the main event in a meal. They're particularly turning to veg with its affordability versus meat, as well as to improve health and eat less processed products. Asda introduced its new Fab 5 offer, meaning customers can purchase five fruit or veg products for under £1 each month. Such 'basket fillers' like onions, leeks, carrots, mushrooms, sweetcorn, and courgettes shine bright when they are prepared with time, skill, and care, with the biggest not-so-humble star being the potato".
Source: corporate.asda.com

Holland: PLUS appoints Aart van Haren as new general manager
The supervisory board of Dutch retailer PLUS has announced the appointment of Aart van Haren as the new general manager of the company, effective from April 1.
Source: esmmagazine.com

British Amazon sellers despair after payment freeze
Many British Amazon merchants are at a loss after the platform froze payments, leading to numerous questions and complaints from traders. Some of them claim to be in financial straits due to the situation.
Source: ecommercenews.eu

French food industry lobby sees 0-1% price cuts after talks with retailers
The head of French food industry lobby ANIA said that the latest round of negotiations between retailers and large consumer goods companies was likely to result in price cuts ranging from zero to 1% on average. "At the end of the negotiation, it looks like we will be between minus 1 and zero", Jean-Philippe André told RMC radio.
Source: reuters.com

Sweden: Axfood sees double-digit sales growth in FY 2023
Retailer Axfood has reported 10.4% year-on-year growth in net sales to SEK81.1bln (€7.2bln) in its full financial year 2023. Axfood Group's adjusted operating profit saw double-digit growth of 11.5% to SEK3.6bln (€320mln), while the adjusted operating margin was 4.4%.
Source: esmmagazine.com