UK: Asda launches first ESG report
Asda has published its first Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) report which sets out its commitments to a sustainable business strategy and outlines how the supermarket will make it easier and affordable for customers to shop sustainably. In launching its first report, Asda is recognising the growing importance of ESG issues to customers, investors, suppliers and the communities Asda serves. It brings together existing and new commitments and builds on Asda’s current Create Change for Better programme.
UK: Co-op Group unveils ten-point plan to hit zero-carbon by 2040
The Co-op Group has announced a 10-point action plan to drive its goal of net-zero emissions by 2040. The announcement – which comes as the retailer announces a decade of carbon-neutrality at its Funeral care business – includes pledges to remove carbon from its products, for low-carbon pension fund investments, and to step up its campaigning on the issue. It also aims to be the first supermarket in the world to sell fully carbon neutral own brand food and drink by 2025.
Holland: DekaMarkt parent company announces management changes
Detailresult Groep (DRG), the parent company of supermarket chains DekaMarkt and Dirk, has announced that the operational and commercial management of the 2 banners will no longer take place centrally. The decision is aimed at strengthening both retail formats and position them for future growth.
France’s E. Leclerc gains 1.9m more households, takes market share to 22.1%: Kantar
E. Leclerc has consolidated its position as France’s biggest grocer, gaining an additional 1.9mln households and increasing its market share by 1.4 percentage points to 22.1%, new data from Kantar has shown. According to Kantar data for the period March 22 to April 18 (otherwise known as P4), Lidl was another retailer to make significant gains, growing its market share by 0.9 percentage points to 6.5%.
SPAR Hungary expands e-grocery catchment area
To meet the rapidly rising demand for e-grocery options, SPAR Hungary has expanded the catchment area of its popular home delivery and click-and-collect service. After adding more areas, the e-grocery service is now available to almost 2.3mln customers in the country. SPAR Hungary in March also relaunched its popular taxi delivery service for online orders.
UK: Co-op tackles plant-based price gap with industry-first commitment
Co-op will save families choosing vegan alternatives over a hundred pounds a year after slashing prices in an industry-first move to match its plant-based GRO range to meat-based equivalents. The UK’s leading convenience retailer will invest over £1.7mln to reduce the price of 29 fresh, chilled and ambient vegan products, from 5 May 2021, to help the increasing numbers of shoppers adopting a “flexitarian” diet.
Holland: Ahold Delhaize teaches cooking and job hunting through a new platform
In the Netherlands, Ahold Delhaize is launching the educational app On Track, a digital platform with short videos, together with a whole range of partners – from Just Eat Takeaway to Unilever. The “mini-master classes”, as Wouter Kolk, CEO of Ahold Delhaize Europe, calls them, are taught by professionals in their field – including Dutch celebrities from the world of art, film and music.
US: David McInerney steps down as FreshDirect CEO
David McInerney, the onetime chef who co-founded the iconic New York e-grocery retailer FreshDirect 20 years ago, is departing as its CEO. McInerney is to be succeeded on an interim basis by Farhan Siddiqi, chief digital officer of Ahold Delhaize, the Dutch retailer that acquired the company earlier this year.
US: Autonomous shopping coming to San Diego high-rise community
Amazon Go has competition in the autonomous shopping arena. Checkout-free retail solutions provider Accel Robotics is launching its automated Valet Market store with Last Step Delivery within Brookfield’s luxury high-rise community, Vantage Pointe, in San Diego’s East Village.
US: Lucky rebrands, readies to open flagship store
Lucky California, part of The Save Mart Cos., is slated to open its newly remodeled flagship store on May 12 in Pleasanton, California. In addition to an extensive remodel, the store has been rebranded from Lucky to Lucky California. The flagship location will also serve as the company’s innovation lab, offering a variety of dynamic food and beverage experiences, celebrating local Tri-Valley purveyors and producers, and featuring produce from the heart of the agriculture-rich Central Valley.
US: Saladworks sees path to ‘hundreds’ more locations inside grocery stores
Fast-casual chain Saladworks aims to open “hundreds” of locations inside grocery stores over the next few years, said Kelly Roddy, CEO of parent company WOWorks, in an interview. He said Saladworks plans to open between 25 and 30 full-service salad shops inside stores this year, and upwards of 100 next year. It’s also ramping up its ghost kitchen locations, with 90 locations secured inside Walmart stores and a goal of getting to 400 across WOWorks’ portfolio of restaurant brands. Saladworks, which has locations inside Kroger, Giant and ShopRite stores, is cashing in on the recent struggles of self-service salad bars and the demand for fresh, healthy fare.
Canada: Loblaw beats estimates for quarterly revenue
Canadian retailer Loblaw Cos Ltd beat market estimates for quarterly revenue, as homebound consumers shopped more for groceries and other essentials online during the COVID-19 pandemic. Revenue rose to C$11.87bln ($9.67bln) in the first quarter from C$11.80bln a year earlier, surpassing analysts’ estimates of C$11.72bln, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
US: UNFI adopts emerging transportation technology to reduce emissions
United Natural Foods, Inc. announced it is adding 53 all-electric transport refrigerated trailer units (TRUs) to its fleet located at the company’s Riverside, California distribution center. This effort is in keeping with UNFI’s Better for All 2030 Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) agenda, and the company’s bold commitments to take innovative action on global social and environmental issues that help transform the future of food. The company is one of the first wholesalers to utilize the innovative technology and comes as the California Air Resources Board (CARB) announced plans in January to impose zero-emission requirements on TRUs sold or operated in California by December 31, 2029.
US: No pandemic slowdown at Ingles Markets
Southeastern grocery chain Ingles Markets continued to leverage pandemic-driven sales into increased revenue and profit during the second quarter. The company reported that net sales totaled $1.18bln for the second quarter ended March 27, an increase of 3.4% compared with $1.14bln for the quarter ended March 28, 2020. Gross profit for the second quarter of fiscal 2021 was $310.5mln, or 26.2% of sales. Net income was $52.2mln, compared with $40.3mln for the 3-month period ended March 28, 2020. Basic and diluted earnings per share for Class A Common Stock were $2.65 and $2.58, respectively, for the quarter.