In the supermarket branch of food retailing, we're used to thinking about "alternate formats," a useful, if provincial, way to describe other channels of trade that appropriate for their own use any product line traditionally associated with supermarkets. It's probably time to retire that quaint phrase and get used to the fact that the day when supermarkets had a lock on its traditional product lines simply isn't returning. It's in that spirit that this week's SN offers a front-page feature ...

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