Bruno's, Birmingham, Ala., said last week its was coping with a strike by members of the United Food & Commercial Workers Local 1657, also Birmingham, at all of the chain's Alabama stores by using management to staff supermarkets and by "hiring like crazy." The company said all stores were staffed and open, adding that less than half of its workers were honoring the union picket lines. The union said all stores were being picketed and this was "dramatically effecting" sales. The strike began Sept. 26, after union members rejected what Bruno's termed its "last, best offer." No negotiations have been held since the strike began, and none is scheduled.
lp the victims of the floods that followed in the wake of Hurricane Floyd. The company also said it will be collecting cash donations for the American Red Cross at the check-out in all its 1,120 Food Lion stores.
Certified Grocers of California, Los Angeles, said last week its shareholders and those of United Grocers, Portland, Ore., have voted in favor of merger their two grocery cooperatives into a single entity named Unified Western Grocers. The merger was finalized last Thursday.
The Food Marketing Institute Foundation, Washington, said it presented last week its inaugural grant to the Partnership for Food Safety Education. The grant, timed to coincide with National Food Safety Month, will be used to fund a nationwide food safety education program for fourth through sixth graders. The foundation's fundraising campaign raised nearly $9 million largely through contributions by major food manufacturers and food retailers.
Nash Finch Co., Minneapolis, said last week it will close its Denver, Colo., distribution center at the end of the year as part of the ongoing strategy to enhance productivity and shareholder value that led to the closings earlier this year of warehouses in Liberal, Kan.; Appleton, Wis., and Rocky Mount, N.C. The company said volume from the Denver facility will be consolidated into warehouses in Rapid City, S.D., and Omaha, Neb., both of which have the capacity to absorb the transferred business without expansion. The consolidation will affect approximately 130 employees in Denver, the company added.
The Tucson City Council, Tucson, Ariz., voted last week to approve a ban on so-called big-box stores. The law, which takes effect Oct. 27, requires developers of stores of 100,000 square feet to receive permission from both the city zoning examiner and the council. The ordinance also limits the amount of space that can be dedicated to non-taxable grocery items to 10% of a superstore's floor space.