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From shake-ups at Supervalu to the fate of faltering regional retail banners and a medley of top consumer trends, the U.S. supermarket industry withstood the upheaval of an uncertain economy, a troubled political climate and devastating weather events of past year admirably well, all things considered.
In preparation for the year to come, Progressive Grocer counts down the top 10 news stories of 2012.
1. Walmart Launches ‘12 Days of Giving’
Walmart kicked off the 2012 "12 Days of Giving" campaign by calling on Facebook users to nominate the nonprofits that are making an impact in their local communities and need support. Read more.
2. Six Key Consumer Trends for 2012 and Beyond
Leo Burnett Chicago has released its first study of people and behavior highlighting six key consumer trends expected to have a lasting effect on American brands and marketers in 2012 and beyond. Read more.
3. General Mills, Atari Partner on ’80s Retro Cereal Boxes
Big G cereals are bringing back retro-themed packaging for the fifth time, ’80s style, on boxes of Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Cheerios, Honey Nut Cheerios, Cocoa Puffs and Lucky Charms. Read more.
4. Current U.S. Grocery Retailing Trends
The latest statistics from the U.S. Commerce Department provide very clear insights into the current trends taking place in the industry. The highlights of our most recent analysis are as follows: Read more.
5. How Today’s Cost-Conscious Grocery Shoppers Tick
While grocers and CPG manufacturers are still figuring out how to navigate the post-recession economy, consumers are also trying to find the best ways to maximize their monthly spend. A new research report sponsored by MaxPoint Interactive reveals the changing behavior among cost-conscious grocery shoppers as they move through the path to purchase in today’s post-recession economy. Read more.
6. A&P Closing 14 Stores
The Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. Inc. (A&P) has filed a motion with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York seeking approval to close 14 underperforming stores in four states as the Montvale, N.J.-based grocer prepares to emerge from Chapter 11. The store closures are expected to be completed in the A&P’s fiscal first quarter, subject to court approval. Read more.
7. Supervalu Cutting 39 Marketing Jobs Across Company
In its latest round of restructuring, Supervalu is eliminating 39 marketing positions across the company. Spokesman Mike Siemienas told Progressive Grocer that the move will aim to “improve core processes, eliminate redundancies, create efficiencies, and better integrate the entire marketing team.” Read more.
8. Kraft Names Sales Heads
As part of Kraft Foods’ endeavor to build two powerful sales organizations, the Northfield, Ill.-based food company giant has named the U.S. heads of sales for both its GroceryCo and SnackCo businesses, as well as their leadership teams. The appointments will become effective on April 1, at which time the businesses will operate as two separate sales forces. Read more.
9. Tesco Reviews Options for Struggling Fresh & Easy Division
Five years after its widely publicized U.S. debut, British supermarket operator Tesco is embarking on a strategic review of its beleaguered Fresh & Easy chain that has struggled to turn a profit from the outset. Read more.
10. Supervalu Seeking Buyers for Whole Company: Report
Advisors to Supervalu Inc. are reportedly asking potential buyers to bid for the entire business, though at least three buyers have expressed interested in acquiring individual parts of the beleaguered Minneapolis-based grocer. Read more.