Whole Foods to merge rewards program into Amazon Prime | Report ranks 10 major grocers on food waste programs | Industry leaders offer updates on the romaine-linked outbreak
April 18, 2018
PMA SmartBrief
Global news for the produce and floral industry
Global Connections
Whole Foods to merge rewards program into Amazon Prime
Whole Foods to merge rewards program into Amazon Prime
(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Whole Foods Market will shut down its rewards program and online accounts on May 2 and roll the benefits into the Amazon Prime program, the company told participants in an email. The company also hinted at forthcoming grocery promotions for Prime members.
MarketWatch (4/18) 
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Report ranks 10 major grocers on food waste programs
Walmart scored the highest in a recent study of efforts by the 10 largest grocery chains to cut food waste that looked at how much the retailers revealed about their programs as well as the programs themselves. "For other chains that scored lower, it's not necessarily that they're not trying to reduce food waste, it's that they're not reporting what they're doing," Jordan Figueiredo of the "Ugly" Fruit and Veg Campaign said.
KUT-FM (Austin, Texas) (4/16) 
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Food Safety
Industry leaders offer updates on the romaine-linked outbreak
There are many questions surrounding the E. coli outbreak linked to chopped and bagged romaine lettuce from the Yuma, Ariz., growing region, as the CDC and the Food and Drug Administration issued an alert before identifying a specific source, and retailers and suppliers are pulling product regardless of origin from the marketplace. PMA's Bob Whitaker and other industry experts address the broad warnings from Consumer Reports, the inaccurate use of the word "recall" and much more.
The Packer (Lenexa, Kan.) (4/17) 
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Register Now! 2018 PMA Foodservice Conference & Expo
This year's PMA Foodservice Conference & Expo in the newly renovated convention center has a new theme and new schedule that will whet your Growing Appetite for bold ideas, innovative chefs, and new flavors that help grow business! In Monterey, California, July 28-29, you can meet and mingle with highly accomplished chefs, network with industry experts, and build relationships with more than 1,800 sellers and buyers. The PMA Foodservice Conference & Expo is bringing everyone to the table to grow a healthier world. Don't miss it!
Science & Technology
Walmart will give its e-commerce site a makeover
Walmart will give its e-commerce site a makeover
(Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Walmart will launch a revamped website next month with a cleaner, more modern design to encourage browsing and highlight higher-end goods. The site will also be more personalized, showing users profiles of their local stores and showcasing top-selling items.
The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (4/17),  CNBC (4/17) 
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Meijer rolling out Scan & Go technology
Meijer rolling out Scan & Go technology
(Nicholas Eckhart/Flickr)
Meijer is implementing Scan & Go technology through its mobile app to let shoppers move through the checkout process more easily. The technology, which allows customers to ring up purchases while they shop then scan their phone to pay, will be rolled out to all Meijer stores by August.
Crain's Detroit Business (tiered subscription model) (4/16) 
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Public Affairs
Specialty growers outline federal funding requests
Specialty crops including fruits, nuts and vegetables generate $66 billion for US farmers and represent about one-third of US farm cash receipts, according to the Specialty Crop Farm Bill Alliance. The coalition of 120 groups recently outlined its priorities to a Congressional committee, including increasing annual assistance for research and pest-fighting programs.
The Packer (Lenexa, Kan.) (4/17) 
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Summit brings students together to talk healthy food
Hundreds of Washington, D.C., students shared research into the food system and ideas for making healthy dietary changes and gaining access to affordable healthy food at last week's Food Justice Youth Summit. "We were thinking of ways to bridge the gap between the haves and have-nots by sharing some of the food we don't eat with people who don't have any food," said 16-year-old Daniel Escobar.
The Washington Post (tiered subscription model) (4/17) 
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Ill. district grows fruits, veggies for meals
Meals at an Illinois school district have featured green beans and potatoes grown in an on-campus garden. School officials have added an orchard with apple, pear and peach trees to the farm-to-cafeteria program.
Journal Star (Peoria, Ill.) (4/17) 
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Industry Talent – Center for Growing Talent
Do you have the right influence in your work relationships?
Your boss, your co-workers and your vendors are three types of relationships you should periodically review to see where you have influence and what you could do to strengthen those bonds.
The MAP Blog (4/16) 
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How to manage a narcissistic manager
Leaders who treat employees disrespectfully can ruin a workplace, but employees can use certain strategies to manage the people who are supposed to manage them, writes Bill Eddy of the High Conflict Institute. Eddy offers tips for setting limits and for coping with a difficult personality.
Training magazine (4/12) 
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PMA News
Buyers, suppliers connect through PMA in Shenzhen
Global produce suppliers interested in exporting to China connected directly with major retail, ecommerce and wholesale buyers at PMA's Fresh Connections: China event March 21 in Shenzhen, China. In 2016, more than 1 million ton of fruits valued at $2.3 billion was imported to China through Shenzhen, making it the No. 1 port for mainland China in volume and value. Shenzhen is also home to leading retailers CR Vanguard, Walmart and Pagoda.
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Futurist Schwerdtfeger says industry's tech solutions are here now
Technology futurist Patrick Schwerdtfeger and PMA's Chief Science & Technology Officer, Bob Whitaker, Ph.D., recently told The Produce News that technology solutions can help the industry address issues such as labor shortages. Schwerdtfeger and Whitaker will discuss how companies can leverage technology trends at PMA's Tech Knowledge Symposium, May 2-3 in Monterey, Calif. Stanford's Mike Steep will be there to discuss how to get ahead of disruptive technology now. Learn more about the event.
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Learn more about PMA:
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If you reject the food, ignore the customs, fear the religion and avoid the people, you might better stay home.
James A. Michener,
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