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Is Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods a game changer or more of the same? PLMA Live goes inside the takeover and analyzes its real impact on national and regional chains and direct-to-consumer services. What are the numbers? Will private label get a huge push forward? Is this the wave of the future? Join news anchor Jodi Daley and PLMA president Brian Sharoff as they dissect the deal of the year. Click here for video.

  • A “Lidl” Help for Save-A-Lot
    Two former Lidl executives now head up discounter Save-A-Lot, as the chain prepares to battle a revamped Aldi and incoming Lidl U.S. David Merrefield explains.

    David Merrefield
    A “Lidl” Help for Save-A-Lot
    September 2017
     
    What does Save-A-Lot in the U.S. have to do with Canada, Germany, Ireland, and Jamaica?
     
    Well, strangely enough, quite a bit. And, as we’ll see, a lot of the answer has to do with its executives.  
     
    Let’s start at the beginning. Save-A-Lot is the soft-discount food retailer founded in Missouri in 1977. Two decades ago, it was acquired by wholesaler Supervalu and in time grew to more than 1,300 stores spread across 37 states. 
     
    Supervalu itself also grew, becoming a major wholesaler and retailer, but more recently Supervalu has moved back to its wholesaling roots. That shift has been spurred on by CEO Mark Gross and his predecessor.
     
  • Helping Disabled Shoppers
    Some 56 million Americans are disabled, but they still have to shop. How are retailers accommodating their needs? Brad Edmondson profiles some solutions.

    Brad Edmondson
    Helping Disabled Shoppers
    September 2017
     
    More than 56 million Americans find it difficult to walk, bathe, dress, eat, cook, or do errands alone. That's a lot of people—about as many the combined populations of California and New York State.  And people with persistent disabilities spend five times as much on health care as non-disabled people do. It is a market that retailers could create through their store brands.
     
    Adults with disabilities have been overlooked for several reasons.  One is that business tends to ignore older consumers in general. Forty percent of disabled adults are over the age of 65, and disability rates increase steadily with age. 
     
    On the other hand, about 30 million Americans with disabilities are aged 21 to 64, which is equal to the total combined populations of Florida and Michigan.  About 5.5 million of these disabled working-age adults are employed, but a lot more of them could be.
     
  • Deflation’s Impact
    The past 18 months have been tough on all retailers due to deflation, which lowered prices and depressed margins. Is the end in sight? Roy White prognosticates.

    Roy White
    Deflation’s Impact
    September 2017
     
    E-commerce? Discounters? The declining importance of center store?  The greatest impact on supermarket P&L’s over the past year and a half has been grocery price deflation.
     
    Deflation certainly dominated the operating environment for all 2016, and by October of last year the Department of Labor’s food-at-home index was down 2-point-3 percent over a 12-month period with the meats, poultry, fish and eggs group leading the price declines at 6-point-4 percent.
     
    In back of this development was a strong dollar that dampened exports and fueled gains in imports. Additionally, corrections occurred against shortage-driven higher prices.
     
    What happen next pretty much caused most of the corporate pain.
     
  • IKEA’s Food Sales
    Home goods chain IKEA might be famous for its Swedish meatball eateries, but also sells more than 150 private-label food products. Christopher Durham has the details.

    Christopher Durham
    IKEA’s Food Sales
    September 2017
     
    Retailer Ikea has long been known for its clean Scandinavian design and inexpensive flat pack furniture, but private brand groceries and Swedish meatballs are the experiences helping to convert value shoppers to rabid Ikea fans.
     
    Founded in Sweden in 1943 by then-17-year-old Ingvar Kamprad. Adding the first initials of his family's farm (Elmtaryd) and his village (Agunnaryd) to his own initials, the IKEA name was born. Kamprad began selling IKEA private brand products in flat-pack form from his warehouses. Thus, the basic IKEA concept – simple, affordable flat-pack furniture, designed, distributed and sold in-house – was complete.
     
    The Swedish home goods chain offers its food products for purchase in their restaurants and Food Markets. As anyone who has shopped Ikea knows, it can take hours, or even an entire day, to work your way through the immersive maze-like store. So, it makes sense to offer shoppers something to eat and drink.
     
Kantha

Anti-biotics

Durham

Lidl

Brad

Young People Cooking

A Lidl Help for Save-A-Lot

Two former Lidl executives now head up discounter Save-A-Lot, as the chain looks to its future in the U.S. David Merrefield explains.

PLMALive! Archives:
the Best of the Year Past
In The Stores, On The Shelves - July

In this month's edition, Walgreens updates its Nice! brand; Supervalu expands Culinary Circle; Trader Joe's can’t keep its new canned wines in stock; and other timely updates from Target, Family Dollar and Stew Leonard’s. Click here for video

Time To Get Serious Again

Summer is almost over. Time to check PLMA’s autumn programs. PLMA’s Washington Conference October 2-3. For details of upcoming events and a preview of this year’s Chicago trade show.

Private Label, European Style

European retailers are having a big impact in the U.S. Euromonitor International's Alexander Kottke, explains how they use private label to build consumer loyalty.

What’s 5 Below?

As a chain of more than 500 stores in the Eastern U.S., 5 Below is a hit with young people for its eclectic, fast-changing selection of goods, most costing under $5. Roy White reports.

Health as Status Symbol

Healthy living is developing into a “status” culture and food is  a big part of the trend. Dr. Kantha Shelke analyzes the trend.

Is There A Trump Consumer?

Everyone now knows that there are Trump voters. But are there Trump consumers? Brad Edmondson analyzes the link between the voting booth and the supermarket.

Store Brands for the Military?

Atten-tion! Military commissaries may finally get private label for their shoppers. Len Lewis has the details.

Boomers and Millennials

Believe it or not, millennials and baby boomers have much in common. Richard Cope, Senior Trends Analyst at Mintel, thinks this creates an opportunity for store brands.

Lidl’s U.S. Entry

What will Lidl stores look like when the retailer makes its U.S. debut in a few months? Len Lewis reports on what the industry – and consumers -- can expect.

Staying Put

Americans are moving less, but they still love the regional and local foods they grew up with. Brad Edmondson explains how store brands can appeal to homesick consumers.

Energenic Enzymes

Enzymes aren’t sexy, but they’re an integral part of the manufacturing process. From bread to laundry detergent, Dr. Kantha Shelke explains this unsung hero of the industry.

Direct 2 You

From razor blades to paper towels, the digital age is redefining direct-to-consumers sales. Len Lewis reports on opportunities for private label.