The long shelf life of canned goods and packaging innovations like ring-top cans aren't expected to keep the category safe from the growing popularity of fresh, chilled and frozen alternatives , according to the Food Marketing Institute, Washington. Reports from grocers, however, are mixed. For some, the events of Sept. 11 impacted sales in this category as fearful shoppers stocked up on nonperishables much like they did prior to Y2K. And canned items are being purchased for family meals as ...

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