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Hy-Vee improves food access with free shuttle

A Hy-Vee store in Ottumwa, Iowa, is improving food access in two counties by providing free shuttle transportation to shoppers who live up to 40 miles away.

The service, which is funded by Hy-Vee, is part of that store’s involvement in a consortium of local businesses and non-profits led by the Ottumwa Regional Legacy Foundation to bring together siloed efforts that address food deserts and food insecurity in Wapello County, Iowa. At 14.2% the 35,000-resident county has the second highest food insecurity rate in the state.

Through interviews with community members and data analysis, consortium members learned that a lack of transportation in area food deserts is so hindering that it prevents SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) and WIC (Women, Infants and Children program) recipients from expending all of their  benefits each month, Amber Payne, consultant and coordinator for Growing Wapello Together, told SN

“That’s their purchasing power and they’re not even able to use it,” she said.

Even when community members in food deserts are able to access public transportation — which stops running at 5 p.m. on weekdays and doesn’t run at all on the weekends — the bus system limits the number of bags riders are permitted to travel with. Compounding the issue is the fact that benefit recipients often have small children in tow and the winters are especially harsh.

Hy-Vee’s shuttle service, which picks up and drops off groups and individual shoppers from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. every Friday, is helping scale many of these hurdles.

“They can take as many bags as they’d like, they can ride after 5p.m. and take as much time at the grocery stores as they want,” noted Ina Cavin, store director at the North Ottumwa Hy-vee. “It’s not like they’re going to miss their ride.”

Shoppers can call ahead to schedule a pick-up or do so on the day of. Fridays were chosen since that is when many residents get paid, and the local community college, which educates a lot of international students, does not hold classes.

In recent weeks there have been as many as 85 passengers on shuttle days, but Carter expects that number to grow now that it’s distributing Spanish-language flyers about the service, and has enlisted a Spanish-speaking dispatcher to set up rides. Direct mail flyers will be sent to homes in particularly high-risk areas to notify residents of the free service.

Supermarket News

Look! No hands! — When devices go hand free

James McCann looks at computing as a series of interface changes, leading directly to a revolution in grocery shopping. “At the moment, this generation of devices uses a touch interface with the finger,” the chief operating officer of Ahold USA explained. “The one before that was a mouse, the one before that was a keyboard, the one before that was a punch card, the one before that was a telegraph tapper. The next big interface change is going to be the wearable devices …

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Supermarket News

The Lempert Report: Standards in place for gluten free (video)

So basically now, if a food package says it’s gluten free, you can be well assured that it is!

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Supermarket News

Food Lion’s free grocery giveaway

Each day through July 29, Food Lion is giving one customer at each of its participating stores the opportunity to win up to $ 100 in free groceries during the grocer’s “MVP Free Grocery Giveaway.” One grand prize winner will also receive a year’s supply of free groceries.

More than 15,000 winning customers will enjoy immediate savings of up to $ 100, not to exceed their grocery bill, at checkout, through this “pay it forward” program. All participants are also immediately entered into the drawing to win the grand prize of a year’s supply of groceries.

To enter, customers simply purchase any five participating items in one transaction and scan their MVP card at checkout. Participating items are clearly tagged on store shelves and are also listed in a booklet that can be found in stores.

The promotion is running at all participating Food Lion stores. There is no purchase necessary, and the official rules, including the participating stores and the free method of entry, can be found at http://foodlion.com/grocerygiveaway.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Food Lion’s free grocery giveaway

Each day through July 29, Food Lion is giving one customer at each of its participating stores the opportunity to win up to $ 100 in free groceries during the grocer’s “MVP Free Grocery Giveaway.” One grand prize winner will also receive a year’s supply of free groceries.

More than 15,000 winning customers will enjoy immediate savings of up to $ 100, not to exceed their grocery bill, at checkout, through this “pay it forward” program. All participants are also immediately entered into the drawing to win the grand prize of a year’s supply of groceries.

To enter, customers simply purchase any five participating items in one transaction and scan their MVP card at checkout. Participating items are clearly tagged on store shelves and are also listed in a booklet that can be found in stores.

The promotion is running at all participating Food Lion stores. There is no purchase necessary, and the official rules, including the participating stores and the free method of entry, can be found at http://foodlion.com/grocerygiveaway.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Food Lion’s free grocery giveaway

Each day through July 29, Food Lion is giving one customer at each of its participating stores the opportunity to win up to $ 100 in free groceries during the grocer’s “MVP Free Grocery Giveaway.” One grand prize winner will also receive a year’s supply of free groceries.

More than 15,000 winning customers will enjoy immediate savings of up to $ 100, not to exceed their grocery bill, at checkout, through this “pay it forward” program. All participants are also immediately entered into the drawing to win the grand prize of a year’s supply of groceries.

To enter, customers simply purchase any five participating items in one transaction and scan their MVP card at checkout. Participating items are clearly tagged on store shelves and are also listed in a booklet that can be found in stores.

The promotion is running at all participating Food Lion stores. There is no purchase necessary, and the official rules, including the participating stores and the free method of entry, can be found at http://foodlion.com/grocerygiveaway.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Food Lion’s free grocery giveaway

Each day through July 29, Food Lion is giving one customer at each of its participating stores the opportunity to win up to $ 100 in free groceries during the grocer’s “MVP Free Grocery Giveaway.” One grand prize winner will also receive a year’s supply of free groceries.

More than 15,000 winning customers will enjoy immediate savings of up to $ 100, not to exceed their grocery bill, at checkout, through this “pay it forward” program. All participants are also immediately entered into the drawing to win the grand prize of a year’s supply of groceries.

To enter, customers simply purchase any five participating items in one transaction and scan their MVP card at checkout. Participating items are clearly tagged on store shelves and are also listed in a booklet that can be found in stores.

The promotion is running at all participating Food Lion stores. There is no purchase necessary, and the official rules, including the participating stores and the free method of entry, can be found at http://foodlion.com/grocerygiveaway.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Food Lion’s free grocery giveaway

Each day through July 29, Food Lion is giving one customer at each of its participating stores the opportunity to win up to $ 100 in free groceries during the grocer’s “MVP Free Grocery Giveaway.” One grand prize winner will also receive a year’s supply of free groceries.

More than 15,000 winning customers will enjoy immediate savings of up to $ 100, not to exceed their grocery bill, at checkout, through this “pay it forward” program. All participants are also immediately entered into the drawing to win the grand prize of a year’s supply of groceries.

To enter, customers simply purchase any five participating items in one transaction and scan their MVP card at checkout. Participating items are clearly tagged on store shelves and are also listed in a booklet that can be found in stores.

The promotion is running at all participating Food Lion stores. There is no purchase necessary, and the official rules, including the participating stores and the free method of entry, can be found at http://foodlion.com/grocerygiveaway.

The Produce News | Today’s Headlines – The Produce News – Covering fresh produce around the globe since 1897.

Peru to export tariff free grapes to Chinese market

Peru to export tariff free grapes to Chinese market

Peruvian producers and exporters of fresh grapes are celebrating that, as a result of the FTA with China, they will be able to export their fruits to the Asian market without paying tariffs.

Sandro Farfan, CEO of Provid Peru, stated that producers and exporters of fruit have benefited from the decline in tariffs, from 15% in 2010 to the current 3.9%.

“There will be an increase, obviously, because we’ve got to zero tariffs. It was a process that began with the signing of the free trade agreement with that country. China is currently our main market and, after signing an FTA, it will definitely continue to be so and it will continue to grow,” said Farfan.

According to the CEO, China is Peru’s primary target market as it accounts for 26% of the exports of Peruvian table grapes.

“The whole Asian region is important for us. Four of the top ten markets to which we send grape are Asian countries: China, Thailand, Indonesia, Korea,” he said. “Obviously, the U.S. and Europe are still important markets for us,” he added. 

The United States is the second destination for Peruvian grapes, however, according to Farfan, “We’ll have better opportunities of increasing our export volumes as a result of the Chinese decrease in tariffs. This is favourable for us.”

Asked about the effect that this tariff reduction would have on producers and exporters, Farfan said that, “In recent years, there has been a steady growth in areas and new players have joined the sector. However, I think that the industry is mature enough and it should focus on the future. I also wonder if current production volumes will affect prices.”

Farfan said the industry was getting ready to face this situation, and noted that Peru had exported 150,000 tons of fruit during the previous season and, up to date, has exported 220,000 tons this season.

According to Farfan, Peru currently exports grapes to seventy markets including Europe and the United States. Given the economic crisis in these markets, export volumes decreased a little, but “thanks to the Asian market-which we have been working on and opening for years- we have been able to counter this decrease and it has become the main destination for Peruvian grape.”

Asked about the possible opening of new markets for Peruvian grapes, Farfan said they were “still analysing the abolition of tariffs for the Chinese market and other Asian markets such as Korea. We have also been working to open the Japanese market, for the past four years we’ve been doing tests and we’ll come to an end this year. We expect a Japanese mission come by the end of the year to do tests in origin so that we can open the Japanese market, which is the last big market that we are missing,” he said.

Source: Fresh Fruit Portal

Publication date: 5/5/2014


FreshPlaza.com

Chile: “We will seek free transit regulations to prevent port strikes”

TGF-FruitImageInterview with Juan Carolus Brown, new president of Fedefruta
Chile: “We will seek free transit regulations to prevent port strikes”

Great challenges are ahead for the new president of Fedefruta, Juan Carolus Brown, who replaced Cristián Allendes. His team was formed yesterday, with the latter in it, as well as Felipe Garcia-Huidobro (first Vice President), Jorge Valenzuela (second Vice President), María Inés Figari (secretary), Antonio Walker Prieto, Domingo Romero, Ramón Achurra Larraín and Claudio Vergara, who will serve as head treasurer.

In an interview to Estrategia, the civil engineer from the Catholic University, MBA from the University of Chicago and grower (as part of the family business tradition), revealed the strategies he will adopt while in command at Fedefruta.

What are the main challenges you will face as president of FEDEFRUTA?

“In the next two years, we would like some regulation or free transit law for perishable goods to be approved, because we have had to face two port strikes during times when high fruit volumes are usually shipped, causing huge losses which will hopefully not happen again. Regarding labour issues, we want the temporary worker statutes to be approved; a project which has been presented, but that should be pushed forward so that people can be hired whenever they are needed. We wish to come to some agreement about the immigration of people willing to work in the agricultural sector, and we have also been summoned by the agricultural authority to assist in the modernisation of SAG.”

What do you think about the Government’s plan to reform the water regulations?

“We are primary users of water and we use those rights on a daily basis, unlike other sectors. We will try making sure that this doesn’t change.”

What do you mean with sectors that do not use their water rights allocated?

“Concerns arise from mining companies, which have water rights that they do not use, but are kept for future projects. And that should, in my opinion, be subject to regulation.”

How could the water ownership issue be resolved?

“The problem is that laws give too much power to mining firms; their water seems to be prioritised, and they are often given rights even when the channels are supposed to be depleted.”

Is the sector still hampered by droughts? It has been said rainy months are coming.

“Droughts are not over as soon as it starts to rain, and until reservoirs reach their normal levels, we cannot say that the problem has been overcome. We would need a cycle of about four or five years of rainfall for the crisis to be definitely resolved.”

Meanwhile, the dollar has reached a value of 550 pesos. Will this affect you? 

“A dollar a little above the 550 pesos is better than at 450 pesos; we are happy with this. But the issue is similar to that of the droughts. We will have higher revenue in pesos than in previous years; however, for the financial situation of fruit exporters to normalise, the exchange rate levels need to stay like this for a while.”

What are the plans for the new fruit season?

“The frosts we had in September 2013 caused some problems, especially in the stone fruit sector, and those that survived will have a very good next season, with 20% higher prices and a production 15% larger.”

Source: Fedefruta

Publication date: 4/18/2014

 

FreshPlaza.com

Free health kiosks installed at Albertsons banners

Kiosks that provide free blood pressure, heart rate, total body composition (percent lean mass, percent body fat, and hydration index), total body weight/BMI, and color blindness checks, have been installed in 765 Albertsons LLC and Jewel-Osco, Acme Markets, Shaw’s and Star Markets supermarkets and pharmacies.

The Stayhealthy HealthCenters also support the uploading of readings taken from personal blood glucose meters, enabling trending of blood glucose levels over time, which users can share with their pharmacist or physician.


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Users can also track other personal screening results over time in their Stayhealthy electronic personalized health and fitness record.

“Both Stayhealthy and Albertsons share in the desire to deliver health and wellness initiatives aimed at improving the health of individuals between visits with our pharmacists and their regularly scheduled visits with their doctors,” said Dan Salemi, president of pharmacy operations for New Albertsons, which operates Jewel-Osco, Acme Markets, Shaw’s and Star Markets stores. “Stayhealthy was selected because of their clinical expertise and reputation for delivering high-quality, clinical-grade health solutions and wellness services.”

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The United Family offers free tax day comfort food

The United Family is treating guests to free tax day comfort foods at 51 locations across Texas.

“We are excited to offer the Tax Day comfort food promotion in Dallas and West Texas this year, and bring our communities together during time we could all use a little relief,” Robert Taylor, president of the Lubbock, Texas-based retailer said in a statement.


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Cornbread and beans will be served in the deli sections on April 15 from 4 to 8 p.m. at The United Family stores: United Supermarkets, Market Street and Amigos. The food is available as dine-in only and no purchase is required. In Dallas-Ft. Worth, the service is all-you-can eat; in West Texas guests can receive one serving of cornbread and beans.

“Each of our stores values its connection in the community, and this is an opportunity for us to give back to our guests after the dreaded tax season,” said Taylor.



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CFIA Finds Cantaloupe Mostly Salmonella Free

As part of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency’s (CFIA) routine testing of various food products, a study released today found that 99.8 per cent of whole cantaloupe samples tested negative for the presence of Salmonella.

A total of 499 whole cantaloupe samples were collected and tested for Salmonella bacteria, which can cause a serious illness with long-lasting effects. One sample was found to be unsatisfactory due to the presence of Salmonella. The CFIA initiated a food safety investigation as a result of this unsatisfactory result, which led to a product recall (currently available at Library and Archives Canada). No illnesses associated with the consumption of any of this product were reported.

The CFIA has identified cantaloupes as one of the priority commodity groups of fresh fruits and vegetables for enhanced surveillance. This targeted survey focused on Salmonella and represents part of the collection of over 3,500 cantaloupe samples over five years (2008/2009 – 2012/2013). The CFIA continues its surveillance activities and will make public its findings when available.

The overall finding of this survey suggests that the vast majority of cantaloupes in the Canadian market are produced and handled under good agricultural and manufacturing practices. However, cantaloupe contamination with Salmonella could sporadically occur. Consumers should follow these safety tips when choosing to purchase and consume cantaloupes and other melons at www.healthycanadians.gc.ca.

Food Safety News

McDonald’s offers two weeks of free coffee

To attract customers during breakfast hours, McDonald’s will offer free coffee at participating stores across the U.S. from March 31-April 13.


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“We take a lot of pride in our breakfast offerings and our McCafé coffee is a great complement to our breakfast lineup. That’s why we’re excited to share it with our guests, on us,” Greg Watson, SVP, McDonald’s U.S. Menu Innovation, said in a press release. “This event is McDonald’s way of encouraging new guests to try McCafé Coffee while giving our breakfast lovers even more reason to enjoy the great taste of our signature blend.”

On March 31, McDonald’s also hosted events in major cities with free coffee and live musical and comedic performances.

The chain has advertised the promotion heavily on its social media channels.

McDonald’s plans to continue the McCafé campaign through the end of the year by giving one Twitter follower coffee and prizes every day starting in mid-April.

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UK: McDonald’s introduces ‘Free Fruit Fridays’

TGF-FruitImageUK: McDonald’s introduces ‘Free Fruit Fridays’On the first Friday of each month, McDonald’s will be handing out a free fruit bag with every Happy Meal purchased. This, it is estimated, will account for more than half (52 per cent) of all children’s fruit bags sold in the UK on that day.

The launch of the campaign comes as official government figures reveal that people are finding it harder than ever to eat their recommended five daily portions of fruit and vegetables; according to the latest National Diet and Nutrition Survey, less than one third of adults and around one in 10 older children meet the 5-a-day recommendation.

In addition, a new survey of 2000 parents – released today – finds that just 1 in 10 children are eating the recommended 5-a-day, despite 60% of mums and dads being aware that children should have at least five portions of fruit and veg each day. The parents, who were also asked what the three biggest challenges to getting their child to eat fruit and vegetables were, cited finding affordable seasonal fruit and vegetables, making eating fruit and vegetables fun and enjoyable, and getting their children into good habits at an early age as the biggest barriers.

The launch of Free Fruit Friday has been inspired by a similar campaign run by McDonald’s in France which launched in 2010: ‘Crunchy Wednesdays’, as it is known, is supported by the French Association of Ambulatory Pediatrics (AFPA) and, whilst overall purchases of fruit in France were declining by 5%, McDonald’s saw a 19% increase in Happy Meal fruit orders outside of Crunchy Wednesdays according to official figures (between October 2011 and April 2012).

In France today, McDonald’s has become the number one restaurant where kids eat the most fruit. More than half of the fruit consumed by kids aged between 3 – 8 years old in the French restaurant industry is eaten at McDonald’s.

The first free fruit bag on offer from McDonald’s UK will be apple and grape and by the end of 2014, McDonald’s expects to have handed out the equivalent of more than 3.5 million apples and over 23 million grapes free of charge to Happy Meal customers.

Source: westerndailypress.co.uk

Publication date: 3/7/2014

 

FreshPlaza.com

The Lempert Report: Moving on from gluten free (video)

Marketing analysis, issues and trends from
Supermarket Guru Phil Lempert

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Pink Lady America & Bob’s Red Mill partner for tasty gluten free treat

Pink Lady America & Bob’s Red Mill partner for tasty gluten free treat

When the marketing arm behind the Pink Lady® Brand Apple went looking for a new partner matching the quality of its apple, it didn’t have to look any further than Milwaukie, Oregon and Bob’s Red Mill.
   
“We’ve been focusing on Valentine’s Day for several seasons with a major stress on giving a loved one a gift box of Pink Lady® Brand Apples,” says Alan Taylor, Marketing Director, Pink Lady America LLC (PLA), headquartered in Yakima, Washington.


   
“But with a recent Scripps Networks Interactive’s Great American Country Lifestyle report showing apple pie as the number one dessert and by a wide margin (66%!), we decided to move in a different direction this year especially if we could find a partner known for its quality.”
    
What PLA discovered in Bob’s Red Mill is a state-of-the-art milling, packaging and distribution company which does make pie crust mix. However, it’s just one selection in a product line which includes whole grain flours, cereals and baking mixes, as well as a full line of gluten free products.
    
In business over 30 years, employee-owned Bob’s Red Mill does its milling, testing, packaging and distributing for thousands of units all under one roof. They also do factory tours.

“We didn’t need to know anything more,” Taylor says. “This would be a perfect fit starting with the pie crust mix so we contacted Cassidy Stockton.”
   
“Cassidy Stockton is the Social Media Manager at Bob’s Red Mill and a big fan of the Pink Lady® Apples, and was immediately on board with a program involving our complementary products.”
    
It was agreed the best way to start the partnership would be to involve social media and to provide the best and most delicious way to put the products together for a Valentine’s Day treat.
   
“Actually, we liked the idea so much we decided to kick off our partnership with a recipe for a Pink Lady® treat for the remainder of February and into early March,” Taylor says. “And yes, it uses Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pie Crust Mix but through the magic of Sarah House in Bob’s test kitchen, it forms the foundation for a Pink Lady Tarte Tatin.”
   
So, they will be co-promoting a recipe bringing Pink Lady® Brand Apples together with Bob’s Red Mill wheat free, gluten free and dairy free pie crust mix. With the recipe including two pounds of Pink Lady Apples, Bob’s says it will be “Easy As Pie.” All that’s required is to “Mix It, Chill It, Roll It, Fill It and Bake It.” And at the end, “Enjoying It!”
   
Pink Lady America and Bob’s Red Mill will be using the Bob’s Red Mill blog to get the word out on the co-promotion along with their Facebooks, websites and extensive email lists.

“We’re really looking forward to working with Cassidy and Bob’s Red Mill in what we see as just the first step in a really tasty collaboration,” Taylor says. “Bob’s Red Mill has a lot of other products also working very well with Pink Lady® so everyone can look forward to even more ‘deliciousness’ in future seasons.”
 
For more information:
Alan Taylor
[email protected]
or
Cassidy Stockton
[email protected]

Publication date: 2/14/2014


FreshPlaza.com

SN Schedules Free FMI Midwinter Newsletter

Sign up today to receive SN’s special FMI Midwinter 2014 Show Daily E-Newsletter.

The newsletter, which will run three mornings, Monday, Jan. 13, through Wednesday, Jan. 15, will compile headlines, summaries and links to conference news including presentations, business sessions and awards, in addition to seven Total Access Videos with industry leaders such as FMI CEO Leslie Sarasin and officials from Hy-Vee, Schnucks, Metro and others.

Click here to register today for the free newsletter. (Note that subscribers to SN’s daily eNL will automatically receive this one.)

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