The clear air of Palm Desert, Calif., must have had a salubrious effect on industry executives who attended the Western Association of Food Chains convention, judging by the thought-provoking content of presentations a couple of them made. Highly placed executives of both Vons Cos. and Ralphs Grocery Co. -- both southern California chains -- were unusually forthcoming in setting out provocative industry visions. First, let's take a look at how Roger E. Stangeland, Vons' chairman and chief ...

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