Mark Hamstra

Supermarket News
Gallery: Cubs and pubs at FMI Connect
Food Marketing Institute marked the final evening of FMI Connect with a party at Wrigley Field, the home of baseball’s Chicago Cubs.
Attendees support annual FMI conference 
Although some retailers and wholesalers said they thought attendance was a little lighter than they expected at FMI Connect and United Fresh 2014, they were broadly and enthusiastically supportive of the return to an every-year educational conference and trade show, and also appreciated having the event in Chicago again.
CGA’s Fong cites lessons from Prop 37 battle 
The California Grocers Association learned some valuable lessons about battling GMO labeling through its campaign against Proposition 37 in that state, said Ronald Fong, president and CEO of CGA.
Safeway makes pharmacy the center of health and wellness 
Safeway is taking a total-store approach to becoming a health and wellness destination for its customers, with pharmacy at the center, said Darren Singer, SVP of pharmacy, health and wellness at the Pleasanton, Calif.-based company.
Facebook’s role grows in the grocery aisle: Panel 
Social media is playing an increasingly important role in the grocery shopping process, said panelists at FMI Connect this week in Chicago.
Washington update: Politics trumps policy in 2014 
The looming election season, with control of the Senate up for grabs, means there will be little opportunity for action on some bills of importance to the industry before the lame-duck session in November and December.
Supplier diversity needs to be part of business plan: Panel 
Developing and growing a successful program of inclusiveness in the supply chain requires that the program fit into the overall goals and strategies of the organization, a panel of supplier diversity professionals said on a panel at FMI Connect in Chicago on Wednesday.
Shoppers seek grocery apps that provide solutions 
Retailers have the opportunity to tailor their mobile apps to meet the needs of different shopper segments, according to Nancy Childs, a professor of food marketing at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia.
Mid-market stores under pressure: Sarasin  3
It is becoming increasingly difficult for supermarket operators to play to the middle, said Leslie G. Sarasin, president and CEO, Food Marketing Institute, in her keynote address Wednesday at FMI Connect in Chicago.
Food retailing 2025: Shoppers still want the basics, and then some 
What will the grocery shopper of tomorrow want from their supermarkets?
Communities: Attendees pursue specialized tracks at FMI Connect 
To help retailer and wholesaler participants get the most out of their FMI Connect experience, FMI is initiating a new service called FMI Connect Communities.
Ahold rolls out price, merchandising improvements  5
Ahold said Wednesday it plans to invest more heavily in the quality and merchandising of its fresh assortment, in employee training and in targeted price reductions in all of its U.S. divisions.
The Fresh Market not worried about price competition 
The Fresh Market isn’t particularly worried about the more competitive price positioning of Whole Foods Market, executives said in an earnings conference call Thursday.
SpartanNash plans store investments 
SpartanNash said Thursday it plans to invest in growing sales at the legacy Nash Finch retail locations it acquired last year, particularly in booming North Dakota.
Harris Teeter to expand price advertising 
Harris Teeter is touting its new low-price positioning with radio and TV ads in the Charlotte market, and will likely expand that effort to other markets as well, a Kroger executive said at an investor conference this week.
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