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Retail View: 2017 retail predictions, part 2
(Earlier this year The Produce News, a handful of experts took a look at the retail sector discussing operational trends for 2017. Here, the same group looks specifically at the produce department.) The continued growth and expansion of value-added products, as well as a shout out for beets, topped the predictions a group of retail experts made for the fresh... Read more
Treasure Valley storm losses continue to mount
Severe winter weather continues to grip a significant swath of the West, with Idaho-Eastern Oregon’s Treasure Valley seemingly at the epicenter. A series of structure collapses from heavy snow and ice started rolling across the region on Sunday, Jan. 8, and by Thursday, Jan. 19, the count was in the dozens, affecting the onion industry to a large degree... Read more
3,000 pounds of marijuana disguised as watermelon discovered in watermelon shipment
A commercial shipment of fresh watermelons at the Pharr International Bridge cargo facility contained 3,000 pounds of alleged marijuana that was packaged to look like watermelons. “Smugglers continue to be creative as they attempt to introduce illegal narcotics into our country,” Efrain Solis Jr., port director of Hidalgo/Pharr/Anzalduas port of... Read more
ShopRite names new president
ShopRite Supermarkets, a wholly owned subsidiary of Wakefern Food Corp., with 34 stores in New York and New Jersey, has appointed retail veteran Brett Wing as president. He replaces Dave Figurelli, who retired earlier this month after 15 years with the company. Wing joined ShopRite in 2015 as executive vice president after serving as vice president of Food Maxx,... Read more
Sarah Davis has been named president of Loblaw, effective Jan 19. Additionally, Galen G. Weston, chairman and chief executive officer of Loblaw, has added the role of CEO of George Weston Ltd., Loblaw's parent company and one of North America's larger food processing and distribution groups. Davis will assume responsibility for the day-to-day operation... Read more
Christopher Ranch, one of the nation’s larger grower-packer-shippers of California heirloom garlic for the fresh market, announced its commitment to accelerate the $15/hour minimum wage bill passed by California legislation four years earlier than required by the state. Recently, California moved to increase the state-wide minimum wage to $15/hour by 2022.... Read more
AFM’s Super Bowl ad will tout nutrition
In its third consecutive Super Bowl ad, Avocados From Mexico is touting the “good fat” designation that avocados received recently from the U.S. Food & Drug Administration. The promotion organization was afforded many accolades for its 2015 and 2016 ads, and AFM President Alvaro Luque said humor will once again be front-and-center for the 2017... Read more
North Shore announces new director of sales
Greg Mooney has joined North Shore as Director of Sales. Mooney joins the company with nearly 30 years of industry experience. His past roles spanned sales, analytics and produce category management, including key positions with Kroger, Fresh Express/Chiquita and Dole. "Greg brings to North Shore Sales & Marketing perspective from both a retailer as well... Read more
Amid fanfare and banners, a load of avocados grown and packed in the Mexican state of Jalisco was headed for Texas the week of Jan. 16-21, marking the first time avocados from that region would have access to the U.S. market. While that truck was moving north on the Mexican highway, Potatoes USA and the U.S. National Potato Council issued a joint press release... Read more
Industry reacts to Trump's ag secretary nominee
President-elect Donald J. Trump will officially nominate former Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue for secretary of agriculture, multiple news outlets reported Jan. 19, rounding out the new administration’s cabinet a day before inauguration. Perdue, who is no relation to the family that runs the Perdue Farms chicken enterprise, served as a state senator in Georgia... Read more
Dament returns to Supervalu after overseeing Target's grocery business
Supervalu Inc. announced that Anne Dament has been named senior vice president of retail, merchandising and marketing effective immediately. In this role, Dament will lead the company's retail banner operations, oversee the retail merchandising and marketing functions, and report to Mark Gross, Supervalu’s president and chief executive officer.Anne Dament Dament,... Read more
The Ontario Produce Marketing Association and Value Chain Management International are partnering on a food waste reduction initiative tailored to Ontario’s produce industry. Running from now until October 2017, the initiative is the first of its type in North America. The purpose of the project is to raise industry awareness and create the skills required... Read more
Tighter window expected for California avocados
Despite some consumer media stories stating that California had a short avocado crop in 2016, the California Avocado Commission reported that last year’s harvest was above average in volume at 401.4 million pounds. It also delivered the third-highest California avocado crop value on record. However, for 2017 a smaller volume forecast will mean a tighter... Read more
Hy-Vee partners with Robinson Fresh to sell its Misfits ugly produce
To further combat the nation’s food waste issue, Hy-Vee Inc. recently began offering so-called “ugly” produce in nearly all of its 242 grocery stores. The retailer has partnered with Robinson Fresh, one of the larger produce companies in the world, to offer its unique line of Misfits produce. “Ugly” produce items are cosmetically... Read more
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has filed administrative actions under the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act against American Fruit & Produce Corp. and Fresh & Easy LLC. American Fruit & Produce Corp., operating from Florida, allegedly failed to make payment promptly to 38 produce sellers in the amount of $2.8 million from April 2015 through... Read more
Ahold USA makes leadership changes
Ahold USA announced Don Sussman, president of the Stop & Shop New York Metro division, has been appointed executive vice president of merchandising at Ahold USA. In addition, Bob Yager will be rejoining the Stop & Shop New York Metro division as senior vice president and division lead, and Nick Bertram, Ahold USA’s senior vice president... Read more
Overall Red River Valley red potato season going surprisingly well
For those Red River Valley red potato growers who lost three-fourths of their crop to rain and subsequent fields that were too muddy to yield spuds for harvest, there isn’t much that can happen to make the 2016 crop a profitable venture. But, on average, Red River Valley red potato growers managed to harvest about two-thirds of a normal crop.Ted Kreis On... Read more
Walmart, one of the nation’s largest private employers with nearly 1.5 million associates in the United States, plans to create U.S. jobs and invest in local communities across the country. The investments in the coming year will support an estimated 34,000 jobs through continued expansion and improvement in the company’s store network, as well as... Read more
CMI says branded apples now in peak season
A new analysis of the apple category revealed that the late-winter and early-spring months represent the peak season for distribution and sales of the top branded apples. According to the study, expanded distribution of premium branded apples and aggressive retail promotions during this period drive consumers' transaction size, increasing overall apple category... Read more
Scuse nominated as Delaware secretary of agriculture
Delaware Gov.-elect John Carney announced Friday, Jan. 13, his selection of Michael Scuse as the state's next secretary of agriculture. Nominations to the governor's Cabinet must be confirmed by the Delaware Senate, and confirmation hearings are planned for Jan. 18 and Jan. 25, according to the announcement. Scuse, whose confirmation is expected, would... Read more