June 28, 2013

 IGA Red Oval Perspective

DG Graphics and IGA...Helping You Tell Your IGA Story

A message to IGA retailers from...
David Marti
DG Graphics

How do you tell the Hometown Proud IGA story that sets you apart from the competition and demonstrates your commitment to your community? No doubt there are many ways, including through the actions of your thoughtful, well-trained employees, your innovative and engaging digital media platform, and your participation in community-focused events and fundraising.

But what about IGA's well-designed point of purchase (POP) materials? If you're not taking advantage of POP materials to remind shoppers day-in and day-out your store is the Hometown Proud supermarket of choice, you're missing out on a very important marketing resource.

DG Graphics offers you a large variety of POP related to IGA programs, from signage highlighting your IGA Exclusive Brand's product line, to IGA Promise kits that communicate your store's true point of difference, to vibrant materials for your core marketing events.

And here's the great news: It's not too late to get POP resources for the last two IGA Marketing Events in 2013!

The complete sign kits for both events—including banners, window signs, posters and ceiling danglers—is available now! Click here to order.

Thanks and happy selling,

David Marti


Retail News

Americans spent $1.7 billion on hot dogs last year at supermarkets alone. Still, hot dogs sales are declining. According to figures from IRI, a Chicago-based market-research firm, sales dropped more than 3% in 2012, up from 2011, following two consecutive years of smaller declines, reported Bloomberg Businessweek. Full Story

Giant continues to dominate the Baltimore-area grocery store scene, while smaller chains like Wegmans are opening new stores and grabbing more market share. Giant posted local sales of $1.54 billion between April 1, 2012 and March 31, 2013, according to a new study by Food World. The sales from the 41 local stores were up from $1.515 billion the year before, when Giant had 39 Baltimore-area stores. Giant's market share held relatively flat at 32.6%. Safeway, with 26 local stores, remains the second largest grocery store chain in the Baltimore area, reported Baltimore Business Journal. Full Story

New Store News: Target plans to open a 140,000-sq.-ft. store in Fresno, CA and a 136,000-sq.-ft. Store in Rocklin, CA in March 2014. The stores will include a selection of fresh produce, fresh packaged meat and pre-packaged baked goods, as well as a Starbucks and a Target Pharmacy. Full Story...Trader Joe's is expanding to Boca Raton, FL. It's the third store announced by the California-based chain for the South Florida market, reported SunSentinel. Full Story

Manufacturer News

Blue Heron French Cheese acquired Pacific City, OR–based Riverhouse Food Products from Steven and Joy Neufeld. Riverhouse Food Products produces a line of salad dressings that are unique blends of oil, vinegar and spices, while Blue Heron French Cheese is a family-owned wine, cheese and specialty food tasting room in Tillamook, OR, reported Grocery Headquarters. Full Story

In July, General Mills will launch more than a dozen supermarket products bearing Hershey's brand names. In the cereal aisle, Big G is rolling out Hershey's Cookies 'N' Creme, one of the new flavors that the food maker hopes will put its cereal division back on the growth path. In the baking aisle, six Hershey's/Betty Crocker baking mixes are coming, including dry mixes for chocolate-chunk cookies, s'mores-flavored cupcakes and Reese's peanut-butter-and-chocolate cupcakes. General Mills also is introducing six varieties of canned frosting, ranging from Hershey's dark chocolate to a new Almond Joy flavor, reported The Pioneer Press. Full Story

Nestle will invest $53 million to establish a new building that will expand the existing R&D facility in Solon, OH. The new center will be designated as a global Product Technology Center, dedicated to frozen and chilled foods research, and will serve Nestle's businesses worldwide. The glass-faced facility will house offices and labs for approximately 100 scientific, professional and technical staff. The 144,000-sq.-ft. building also will include a pilot plant where new recipes and the latest technologies will be tested and evaluated. Construction is expected to begin this summer and Nestle expects the new facility to be operational in late 2014. Full Story

Stuff 'N Mallows, a new creation from three recent Colorado State University graduates, came into a reality after a class project. The new chocolate-infused marshmallow, which creates the "perfect" s'more comes in two varieties - standard and mint flavor, reported Coloradoan.com. Full Story

New Product News: Hellmann's is introducing Hellmann's Creamy Balsamic Mayonnaise Dressing, made with high-quality ingredients like cage-free eggs, oil, and premium balsamic vinegar. It combines Hellmann's mayonnaise with a touch of aged, sweet balsamic vinegar. Full Story

Foodservice News

All seven Qdoba Mexican Grills in Manhattan closed yesterday leaving only two eateries open in New York City, one in Staten Island and the other in Queens, according to a Jack in the Box spokesman. The closings are part of the 67 restaurants in the country that will close while it restructures, reported Crain's New York Business. Full Story

Mariano's will open a new location in Elmhurst, IL, that features new sushi and gelato bars, a bakery, wine and cheese shops, even a pizzeria with a stone hearth oven. The 76,000-sq.-ft. store will offer a mix of fresh and organic items along with specialty and ready-to-eat foods. Mariano's, with nearly a dozen stores in the Chicago area, is a brand of Milwaukee-based Roundy's Supermarkets, reported Chicago Tribune. Full Story

Health News

The size, weight, shape and color of your cutlery can affect how food tastes, a new study suggests. In the research, participants thought white yogurt tasted sweeter than pink-colored yogurt when eaten from a white spoon, but the reverse was true when a black spoon was used, reported usnews.com. Full Story

Refined carbohydrates such as corn syrup could trigger food cravings not unlike the cravings that drug addicts' experience, the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests, reported LiveScience.com. Full Story

Washington News

USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service will accept comments on the recordkeeping requirements for certifying agents for the National Organic Program. The requirements are divided into three categories of records with varying retention periods: records created by certifying agents regarding applicants for certification and certified operations, maintained for 10 years; records obtained from applicants for certification and certified operations, maintained for five years; and records created or received by certifying agents regarding accreditation, maintained for five years. Full Notice

Distillers Diageo, Bacardi and Pernod Ricard are seeking to overturn state franchise laws that lock in liquor producers with specific wholesalers. The laws were designed to push wholesalers to help states collect sales taxes and keep one company from dominating alcohol sales. The distillers claim the franchise laws artificially prop up local wholesalers and drive up distribution costs, and want the right to consolidate their wholesalers, reported The Wall Street Journal. Full Story (WSJ Subscription Required)

The Senate Agriculture Committee will examine the proposed $4.7 billion purchase of Smithfield Foods by Shuanghui International at a July 10 hearing. Smithfield CEO Larry Pope will be among those to testify at the hearing, designated "Smithfield and Beyond: Examining Foreign Purchases of American Food Companies," reported Reuters. Full Story

Scenic Fruit Company is voluntarily recalling 5,091 cases of Woodstock Frozen Organic Pomegranate Kernels, as they may be contaminated with Hepatitis A virus. Full Story

Recording Now Available for Purchase! The Food Institute's latest webinar, Looking to Buy or Sell a Business?, broke down all the aspects that should be considered before a deal is reached. Whether the company is being bought out by family members or acquired by a multinational consumer packaged goods (CPG) conglomerate, having a plan and knowing your options can make a big difference. The webinar featured Rick Andrade, managing director of Calabasas Capital. To purchase, click here.

Global News

Japan's organic share in domestically grown agricultural food products in Japan was only 0.24% in 2011, still 0.14 percentage points up from a decade ago, according to the Japanese Ministry of Agriculture, Forest and Fisheries. Considering that Japan imports about 60% of its food supply on a calorie basis from other countries, the stringent regulations on organic food imports is also a major impediment to the expansion of the organic market in Japan. In view of the huge size of the Japanese food market, which is well over $820 billion, the growth potential of the organic market is significant. USDA Report

International dairy prices remain exceptionally high by historic standards after reaching record levels in April, ten months after the last market trough, according to a report from Rabobank's Food & Agribusiness Research and Advisory team. The report found the price rally is the result of significant declines in milk production in export and import regions, shorting a market with very weak demand. Prices are expected to drift downwards as supply improves over the next two quarters, but change is likely to be gradual. Full Story

LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton bought a majority stake in Pasticceria Confetteria Cova Srl, a cafe and confectioner and the French group's first acquisition in the upper end of the food business. LVMH stated the Faccioli family would remain as managers and minority shareholders in Cova. LVMH, which didn't disclose the value of the purchase, said it planned to expand Cova overseas, reported The Wall Street Journal. Full Story (WSJ Subscription Required)

Asahi Group Holdings will buy the bottler of PepsiCo products in Indonesia through its local joint ventures, in a bid to get a chunk of a market with potential for growth. The Japanese company stated its two local joint ventures with PT Indofood CBP Sukses Makmur Tbk have signed a contract to buy the entire stake in PT Pepsi-Cola Indobeverages for $30 million, or Y2.9 billion, from the current stakeholders, Seven Up Nederland B.V. and PT Gapura Usahatama, reported The Wall Street Journal. Full Story (WSJ Subscription Required)

Toronto-based Wonder Berry North America is recalling Umnitza baby cereal products because they may contain the chemical known as mycotoxin HT-2. Wonder Berry North America imports the cereal from Russia and it was distributed in Alberta, Ontario and Quebec. The Canadian Food Inspection Agency reported one illness associated with the cereal, reported The Montreal Gazette. Full Story

China is expanding a pilot system that tracks the movement of meat and vegetables to the supermarket shelf as part of efforts to tighten supervision of its scandal-plagued food industry. The system has been set up in 20 cities and is currently being rolled out in another 15 including Beijing. It should cover 50 cities by the year-end, stated Li Zhenzhong, deputy chief of the Ministry of Commerce's market supervision department, reported Reuters. Full Story

Indonesia's state procurement body Bulog is set to resume soybean imports for the first time in 15 years, industry officials stated, with the agency poised to sign the first of many deals to supply domestic food producers. As part of reforms agreed with the International Monetary Fund in the midst of the 1997-1998 Asian financial crisis, Bulog was stripped of several monopolies in trading food commodities and left with only rice, reported Reuters. Full Story

Market News

Prices for Chinese garlic have reached record highs in recent years due to light crops, but this year's crop is expected to be up in volume by about 35% with a corresponding drop in price, reported The Produce News. Full Story

Michigan could be looking at 28 to 30 million bushels of apples this year, claims the president of All Fresh GPS, a company that markets, sells, distributes and merchandises fresh apples. That's more than a ten-fold increase over last year, when the state produced only 2.5 million bushels after a late April frost killed most of the budding apples, reported MLive.com. Full Story

Three sugar companies received 55% of the $1.1 billion in federal loans made to processors of the sweetener this fiscal year, according to USDA documents viewed by The Wall Street Journal. The recipients, Amalgamated Sugar, Michigan Sugar and Western Sugar Cooperative, are grower-owned cooperatives that process sugar beets and produce about 20% of the country's sugar. Disclosure of the loan recipients comes as domestic sugar prices are trading around four-year lows, prompting the USDA to voice concerns that some processors—who turn sugar cane or sugar beets into the sweetener—may not be able to repay what they owe. Some $644 million in loans remained outstanding as of July 26. Full Story (WSJ Subscription Required)

Amaize sweet corn variety is enjoying increased demand as it begins its third year of shipments. Known for its distinctive crunch and long shelf life, marketers of the specialty sweet corn say the variety is gaining consumer acceptance and experiencing significant retail growth, reported The Packer. Full Story

Researchers produced the first comparison of both the DNA sequences and which genes are active between the domestic tomato and its wild cousins. The results give insight into the genetic changes involved in domestication and may help with future efforts to breed new traits into tomato or other crops, reported Western Farm Press. Full Story

Rice exports from India, the world's second-largest grower, may decline this year from a record as buyers turn to cheaper supplies from Vietnam and Pakistan, according to a traders' group. Shipments may fall 6% to 9.5 million metric tons in the year that started in April from 10.1 million tons a year earlier, reported Bloomberg.com. Full Story

West Coast Tomato Growers expect to start shipping tomatoes under the Oceanside Pole brand in the first week of July. The company's farm expanded into another 150 acres this season, totaling about 650 acres, reported The Packer. Full Story

New York state government is sending a strong message to consumers in the Empire State, encouraging them to take advantage of the Empire State's rich agricultural heritage and bounty. The message: buy local. Restaurants have actively embraced the program and continually promote locally grown products on their menus and in advertisements, reported The Produce News. Full Story

Over the past couple of months, California had been producing small-sized avocados, while Mexican producers provided most of the larger fruit. But the avocado market is on an uptick as Mexico moves into a typical lag period and California fruit begins to have a more diverse size portfolio, reported The Produce News. Full Story

U.S. apple production should be up in 2013-14, thanks to big comebacks from hard-hit Michigan and New York, according to a recent estimate. 251 million bushels of fresh-market and processed-market apples are expected to ship next season, up from 215 million bushels this season, according to the annual Fruit Crop Guesstimate from the Suttons Bay-based Michigan Frozen Food Packers Association, reported The Packer. Full Story

Fresh produce saw positive dollar and volume sales in the first quarter of 2013, a strong start to the year. Organic fruits and vegetables and value-added categories also posted positive overall dollar and volume growth compared to the same period last year, according to the latest edition of “FreshFacts on Retail,” the quarterly retail research report of the United Fresh Foundation, reported Fruit Growers News. Full Story

Scientists have engineered wheat that is resistant to stem rust, a fungal disease that has ruined crops in Africa, Yemen and Iran. The genetic advance raises the possibility of breeding wheat that is resistant to the fungus, researchers report in the journal Science, reported the BBC. Full Story


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