Supermarket Industry News Roundup: July 21, 2017

July 21, 2017

Ag Secretary Names New Leadership For FNCS, Including Former NGA Staffers
U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue has appointed three people to take on leadership roles within the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food, Nutrition, and Consumer Services (FNCS) division. Brandon Lipps will serve as the administrator of the Food and Nutrition Service, and also as acting deputy under secretary of FNCS until the Senate confirms a permanent presidentially-nominated appointee. In addition, Maggie Lyons will serve as chief of staff and senior advisor to the under secretary, while Kailee Tkacz will serve as policy advisor. Learn more via The Shelby Report.

SpartanNash launches first Fast Lane-equipped store
SpartanNash has rolled out its inaugural Fast Lane store at a Family Fare in Grandville, Mich. The program allows customers to utilize personal shoppers who can fill digitally placed orders and prepare them for curbside pickup. Learn more via Supermarket News.

AWG to Supply Strack & Van Til
Strack & Van Til is emerging from the ruins of bankrupt wholesale distributor Central Grocers with a new supplier partner that’s expected to make the family-owned northwest Indiana retailer more competitive on price and selection. Learn more via Progressive Grocer.

Coinstar and Allegiance to Install Coin-Counting Kiosks at Independent Supermarkets
Coinstar has partnered with Allegiance Retail Services to install up to 80 Coinstar kiosks at Allegiance affiliate supermarket banners, including Foodtown in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. “We’re very pleased to sign this agreement with Allegiance,” says Lee Pantalone, senior director of sales at Coinstar. Learn more via Grocery Headquarters.

ShopRite Celebrated for Donating 8.4 Million Meals to Connecticut Food Bank
Connecticut Food Bank will welcome local family-owned ShopRite stores to celebrate the food bank’s 20-year partnership with ShopRite — a relationship that has helped provide 8.4 million meals to hungry Connecticut residents. Learn more via Hamlet Hub.

Possible Extraneous Material Causes Hot Dog Recall
The US Dept. of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) has announced that Bronx, New York-based Marathon Enterprises is recalling approximately 7,196,084 lbs. of hot dog products that may be contaminated with extraneous materials. Learn more via Meat + Poultry.

Grocery shopping is no longer a one-stop experience
Mandy Roberson spends her Sundays driving from one store to another to buy all the groceries she needs for the week. To find bargains, the 28-year-old blogger from Queen Creek, Ariz.,heads to the Sprouts organic supermarket for produce, meat and condiments, She drives to Target for dairy items, eggs, bottled water and paper products. Then, she zips over to Sam’s Club for frozen fruit, granola bars and cereals. Learn more via USA Today.

Amazon files meal-kits trademark, treading on Blue Apron’s turf
Amazon, whose plans to acquire supermarket chain Whole Foods pose a threat to the grocery industry, appears to be entering the meal-kits business. Amazon registered a trademark in the U.S. on July 6 for a service described as: “We do the prep. You be the chef.” The service will provide customers “prepared food kits … ready for cooking and assembly as a meal,” according to the trademark application. Learn more via CNBC.

Report: France’s Drive is a growth model for U.S. grocery e-commerce
Drive, a click-and-collect model in France that’s been adopted by most major grocers and nearly a quarter of the country’s households, is a case study for the growth opportunities and challenges U.S grocers face in e-commerce, according to a report from Kantar Retail. Learn move via Food DIVE.