NEW YORK — Investors clearly rewarded the best-managed food retailers in 2011, according to analysts, as chains like Whole Foods Market, Ruddick Corp., Costco Wholesale and Kroger Co. all saw stock-price gains that exceeded the market. Companies that lost market share in 2011 or struggled to hang onto share, such as Supervalu and Nash Finch Co., saw double-digit declines in their share prices. To some extent the performance of the “big three” traditional supermarket ...

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