October 18, 2021
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Food Marketplace Beat
H-E-B going big with new central Texas store
(H-E-B)
H.E. Butt Grocery has unveiled plans for a 103,000-square-foot store in the central Texas city of Leander, and the expansive site will offer enhanced dairy, produce and organic selections, along with a large self-checkout area, a drive-thru pharmacy and home delivery and curbside services. H-E-B says construction on the store, its second in Leander, should start early next year with a grand opening set for Nov. 17, 2022.
Full Story: Winsight Grocery Business (10/15) 
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FMI CEO: Opportunities abound in food retail industry
(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Today's grocers are helping workers build solid foundations for great careers, with many retailers such as Kroger, Walmart and Wegmans offering continuing education and other benefits that help employees grow and boost their earning potential, writes FMI CEO Leslie Sarasin. Those currently looking for work as unemployment benefits end should "consider the food retail industry as a place where their varied skillsets are not only needed by the communities the grocers serve but are also valued and invested in by their employers," Sarasin writes.
Full Story: Progressive Grocer (10/15) 
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The Great B2B Digital Acceleration
A new survey shows how accelerated digital transformation is reshaping B2B consumer goods, and how industry leaders are coming out ahead. Read the report.
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Trend-Spotter
Year-over-year sales at grocery stores in the US jumped 7.5% last month, beating the 6.6% comparable gains recorded in August. More customers were returning to brick-and-mortar stores, which indicates "consumers are feeling comfortable returning to in-person shopping compared to this time last year," said Naveen Jaggi of the Jones Lang LaSalle real estate firm.
Full Story: Winsight Grocery Business (10/15),  Supermarket News (free registration) (10/15) 
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Third-quarter sales of organic fresh produce has continued an upward climb, with figures from the Q3 2021 Organic Produce Performance Report by Organic Produce Network and Category Partners showing a 3% year-over-year jump. The report, which used Nielsen retail scan data, revealed berries to be among the top choices for customers and, combined with apples and packaged salads, made up 85% of the comparable dollar growth.
Full Story: Winsight Grocery Business (10/15) 
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Retail-ready containers save retailers time
Rising materials costs and dwindling supply of wood pallets and cardboard boxes made them an unstable solution to the current gaps in the supply chain industry. Reusable plastic containers and reusable pallets offer a reliable, sustainable alternative solution that help keep the supply chain moving forward. Read the whitepaper.
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Featured Content
Sponsored content from Deloitte
2021 Trends on Fresh Food9 in 10 consumers say that price is the most important purchase driver for fresh food. How does this impact the fresh vs frozen debate?

    SmartBrief Originals
    Although the pandemic pushed many people to drink more alcohol than normal, a counter-trend has emerged as health-conscious consumers start scaling down on their alcohol consumption. New research on the "sober curious" by the Hartman Group shows the trend is being bolstered by a renewed focus on better-for-you products along with "a demand for personalization in food and beverage," among other factors.
    Full Story: SmartBrief/Food & Travel (10/18) 
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    Future of Work
    Dollar Tree will hold a nationwide hiring event as it looks to add several thousand new employees to handle the anticipated holiday rush at its Dollar Tree and Family Dollar stores. The event, which is the sixth for the retailer, follows a two-day management job fair Dollar Tree hosted in August.
    Full Story: Progressive Grocer (10/15) 
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    Health and Well-being
    With Medicare's Annual Election Period now underway through Dec. 7, Hy-Vee's free Medicare Aisle service has rolled out an online tool to give shoppers a better look at all the coverage options available. The new service also features a team of experts customers can contact for guidance and advice on choosing a plan.
    Full Story: Progressive Grocer (10/15) 
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    FMI Spotlight
    Top Trends in Fresh: Balancing Affordability and Premiumization
    In this one-hour webinar, part of the ongoing FMI and IRI "Top Trends in Fresh" series, experts from FMI and IRI will share the latest data on fresh foods and the evolving definition of affordability in fresh that includes more choices in channels and options. The session will also highlight opportunities for manufacturers and retailers to connect with consumers on experiences and create real value beyond just "freshness" and "quality." Join us to learn how to find the right balance between affordable and premium options in fresh to optimize sales, customer satisfaction and profitability. Register now for the 3 p.m. ET discussion on Oct. 19.
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    Upending a 30-year tradition of a low-inflation industry
    Transitory, brief and fleeting are no longer adjectives that can be used to describe the current state of inflation affecting the economy. This news is reflected in recent statements by the Federal Reserve, as authorities indicate inflation will remain like a houseguest that overstays his or her welcome into 2022. Unfortunately, this means both shoppers and businesses will witness higher prices over a longer period, but the food industry remains committed to supporting grocery shoppers. Read more.
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