March 2024

FTC Sues to Block Kroger and Albertsons Merger

The Federal Trade Commission sued to block Kroger’s $25 billion dollar bid for Albertsons. The move puts the largest supermarket deal in history into an uncertain fate. In a lawsuit filed in federal court on Monday, February 26th, the FTC said the deal would lead to higher food prices and harm union workers. Kroger and Albertsons plan to address the government’s concern was to sell hundreds of stores in Washington, Colorado, Illinois, and other states. 

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Harmons Tops Progressive Grocer’s 2024 List of Best Independent Grocers

Originally established as a fruit stand in 1932, Harmons has evolved into the oldest locally owned and operated grocer in Utah. The store now boasts extensive offerings, including handmade artisan breads, gelatos, specialty foods, gourmet cheeses, local meats, honey, salt, and a variety of unique products.

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H-E-B Ties with Publix and Costco for Top Spot Customer Satisfaction Index

H-E-B is again topping the list of customer-preferred grocery stores, according to a recent survey by the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI).

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Remembering Bob Moore

The passing of Bob Moore prompted a widespread, bittersweet response across industry, news, and consumer networks. An abundance of shared memories, heartfelt tributes, and personal photographs were exchanged.

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SPINS 2024 Channel Redefinition Overview

SPINS is updating channel definitions to reflect evolving consumer values, encompassing not only natural and organic products but also those related to health, wellness, planetary health, animal welfare, and social impact. 

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Sprouts Sees Stock Price Jump

Sprouts Farmers Market witnessed a substantial 60% surge in its stock price over the past year. The company has demonstrated robust growth in the fresh, natural, and organic food sectors.

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Natural Grocers Reports Strong Q1 Sales

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage reported positive results for the first quarter of fiscal 2024, which concluded on December 31st, 2023. 

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Amazon’s Fresh Refresh

Amazon has struggled to penetrate the physical grocery format over the last few years closing several stores. But they are not giving up! They are working to adjust their approach and model by refreshing two stores in Chicagoland.

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Leadership Changes at Getir

Grocery delivery service Getir has announced leadership changes in its U.S. operations, appointing Hatice Evren as the Group CEO for Getir and FreshDirect, and Sloan Eddleston as the CEO of FreshDirect, effective immediately.

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Whole Foods Market Store Coming to the Sunshine City

On February 28th, Whole Foods Market debuted its new 40,100 square-foot store located at 201 38th Avenue North in St. Petersburg, Florida. 

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New CEO Announced for The Fresh Market’s Parent Company Cencosud

Cencosud, the parent company of The Fresh Market, has announced the appointment of Rodrigo Larraín Kaplan as its new CEO, effective March 1st.

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H-E-B Katy Park Grand Opening Marks 94th Store in Houston

H-E-B held ribbon cutting to celebrate the grand opening of its newest store in the Houston area on February 21st. The 117,000-square-foot store in Katy Park, located at 24924 Morton Ranch Drive, is the 94th H-E-B in the Houston area.

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New Upscale H-E-B To Open in Central Texas

A new H-E-B is opening on the far Northside of Bexar County near Fair Oaks Ranch on March 6th. 

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KeHE Summer Show

The KeHE Summer Show took place in Salt Lake City, Utah, February 7th to 8th, 2024 and virtually on KeHE CONNECT platform from February 1st to 15th, 2024. 

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KeHE Holiday Show

The KeHE Holiday Show that will take place in Chicago, Illinois, June 12th to 13th, 2024 and on the KeHE CONNECT platform from June 10th to 21st, 2024.

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DPI Specialty Foods Integration Update

At the end of June, KeHE announced as part of their Food. Forward. Strategy, the completion of its acquisition of DPI Specialty Foods.

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UNFI Integration Update

UNFI is continuing towards transforming how they do business. The end goal is to be the distributor of choice, while providing less complex and more transparent partnerships. Reaching this goal will require significant technological enhancements and consistent engagement with external partners.

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Giant Eagle Garnered New Corporate Office

Giant Eagle has officially established its new headquarters in Cranberry Township, Pennsylvania, situated approximately 20 miles north of Pittsburgh. Spanning 100,000 square feet, the new facility boasts various amenities for employees, including an on-site gym and cafeteria.

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Strike Averted – PCC Workers Approve New Contract

Following a nearly yearlong negotiation, workers and the UFCW local 3000 ratified a two-year deal with Seattle-based PCC Community Markets. The agreement came just days after UFCW members voted to authorize a strike, rejecting the retailer’s previous offer.

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PCC Named One of the Best Independent Grocers of 2024

PCC is 1 of 21 nominees to make the 2024 Outstanding Independents list. Few retailers have established the level of neighborhood integration and local vendor support as PCC. 

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Save Mart Companies Appoints a new Chief Merchandising and Marketing Officer

The Save Mart Companies has announced the appointment of Chris Hooks, an industry veteran, to its C-Suite as the new Chief Merchandising and Marketing Officer. 

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The California Grocers Association Supports Legislation to Ban Single-Use Plastic Bags

During a press conference held on February 8th at the California State Capitol, the California Grocers Association (CGA) announced its endorsement of a proposed bill aimed at prohibiting the distribution of single-use plastic film reusable bags by grocery retailers. 

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Good Food Holdings Launches First Private Label Brand

West Coast grocery operator, Good Food Holdings, has launched their first company-wide private brand line, New Coast Foraging Company.

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Thrive Market Becomes the First Exclusively Online Retailer to Accept SNAP EBT

Membership-based online retailer Thrive Market has revealed plans to accept SNAP EBT, becoming the first of its kind to receive USDA approval for this service.

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H-E-B Launches Annual Quest for Texas Best Competition

The 11th annual H-E-B Quest for Texas Best competition is officially underway to find the best Texas-made food, beauty, and household products. Submissions will be accepted from February 21st to April 4th.

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Peggy’s Legacy at Peggy’s Natural Foods

Peggy’s Natural Foods in Hobe Sound, Florida recently announced the passing of Peggy Ranger, the beloved founder and leader of the store, on January 27th, 2024. 

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Natural Grocers Reports on ESG Progress

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage Inc. has unveiled its third annual “Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) Report,” outlining its endeavors in sustainability, human health, and community welfare.

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Down to Earth is Focusing on Sustainability and Climate Change

Down to Earth strive to consistently inform their customers about the significant impact their dietary choices can have on climate change and preserving our environment.

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Oliver’s New Staff Recommendation Program

Oliver’s team of dedicated employee-owners boasts extensive experience in product selection, trend monitoring, and culinary expertise.

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Alberta Co-op Ice Storm Challenges

In the storm Alberta Co-op lost power, causing pipes to freeze. Once the thaw began, the pipe sent water draining into the store from residential units located above. 

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The United Family to Host Local Product Discovery Showcase

The United Family is gearing up for its inaugural Discovery Showcase, an event designed to establish connections between the grocer and local/regional vendors looking to engage in business at its Texas and New Mexico locations.

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Are You Expo Experienced? Insiders Share Tips for the Best Expo West

For business leaders, founders, entrepreneurs, retailers and others in the natural channel, attending Expo West is considered essential. However, as it can be costly, time consuming and a bit overwhelming, we asked industry insiders and colleagues their favorite tips to make the most of the show.

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March 2024 Update from New Hope

In less than 10 days, thousands of natural products enthusiasts will be flocking to Anaheim, California for the industry’s flagship event of the year: Expo West! 

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Beacon Discovery by New Hope Network – March 2024

We created Beacon Discovery as a way to help buyers navigate the many booths at Natural Products Expo. Now, Beacon Discovery is available for retailers, investors, and service providers to connect with brands like yours all year round.

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Calling All Emerging Brands! Let Market Ready Help Put Your Brand on the Map!

Market Ready is our division of PRESENCE that is focused on helping emerging brands develop their go to market strategy and execute a great retail plan.

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Milestones March 2024

PRESENCE New Hires and February 2024 Anniversaries

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Help Wanted March 2024

March 2024 PRESENCE Job Opportunities

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