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News Archives
"Ted-Bits"
Houchens Industries announces the sale of Commonwealth Brands
Posted 02-08-07 - Bowling Green, Kentucky: Jimmie Gipson, Chairman of Houchens Industries, Inc., and Spencer Coates, Chairman of Commonwealth Brands, Inc., today announced that Houchens has agreed to sell 100 per cent of CBHC, Inc. (sole shareholder of Commonwealth Brands, Inc.) for a total consideration of $1.9 billion (plus certain post-closing adjustments).
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Retailer one-stop clinics gain in popularity
Posted 02-25-07 By Rick Stouffer TRIBUNE-REVIEW Sunday, February 25, 2007 Craig Schwartz was tired -- literally -- of being unable to sleep due to a persistent, nagging cough.
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Betting bigger is more than better
Posted 02-08-07 - Nationally, the average grocery store size grew to 48,100 square feet in 2005, from 35,100 square feet in 1994, according to the Food Marketing Institute, an industry trade group.
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Grocers checking out strategies for growth
Posted 02-15-07 - Supermarkets change direction to compete with Wal-Mart, Target - By John Schmeltzer, Tribune staff reporter
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AP Centerpiece: Small-town cooperative grocery stores challenge big retailer dominance
Posted 01-08-07 - By Nafeesa Syeed ASSOCIATED PRESS - ANITA, Iowa – The grocery stores that lined Main Street were always key to the little farm town of Anita, Iowa.
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An Aisle for Hispanics
The Southeast 14th Street Hy-Vee supermarket has half an aisle filled with Hispanic goods, including brands such as Suavitel fabric softener and Churritos snacks, along with Hispanic-oriented American brands such as hot and spicy Jolly Ranchers and papaya-flavored Gerber baby food.
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Worktime stunts discovered by supermarket (Video Clip)
Posted 01-29-07 - LONDON, Jan. 28 (UPI) -- The bosses at a British supermarket are investigating employees' on-the-job antics, after discovering video of the high jinks on the YouTube Web site.
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Next on your grocery list: help from store's dietitian
By Dan Thanh Dang sun reporter Originally published September 19, 2006 Walking into a supermarket often makes Michael Thompson feel as though he's navigating a foreign country.
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Artistic Expression in the Produce Aisle
All Things Considered, November 28, 2006 · Artists found work during the Italian Renaissance with powerful families like the Medicis. Now, some artists are being supported by companies that sell Florentine cookies, as two large upscale grocery chains employ hundreds of in-store artists
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Kroger stays competitive
The supermarket industry has become hotly competitive since Wal-Mart came onto the field, but Kroger has continued to post strong numbers. Diantha Parker looks at the grocery chain's winning game plan.
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USDA (FDA) announces meat and milk from cloned animals safe to eat
Posted 01-02-07 - The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced that it has concluded that meat and milk from cloned animals are safe to eat, and should be allowed to enter the food supply – without any labeling.
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Much more than drugs
Posted 01-09-07 - Claiming a slice of other stores' turfs, drugstores are adding food, cleaners, even electronics - Sue Stock, Staff Writer, NewsObserver.com
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Independent Streak - ValuMarket
Posted 01-11-07 - Grocery Headquaters Cover Story by Richard Turcsik - Louisville's ValuMarket, Inc. Featured
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Win, Lose, or Drawing
Posted 01-13-07 - Shrink, tech standards, long lines raise lottery concerns - CSP Magazine
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Grocery lists help you save time, eat healthier
Posted 01-24-07 - By Debbie Wilburn, The GainesvilleTimes.com - Perhaps you've heard that it's a good idea to shop with a grocery list. Yet even when you make a list, you still forget to buy foods you need. Do some types of lists work better than others?
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Grocers evolve to fight off rivals
Posted 01-27-07 - CINCINNATI - When Roberta Mand needs groceries, she has a world of choices in her own back yard. - By DAN SEWELL - THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
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Wal-Mart Enhances Neighborhood Market Design
Posted 01-17-07 - TULSA, Okla., /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- It has a new look and feel, new track lighting, a makeover in health & beauty and abundance of freshly baked breads and fresh produce. Today, Jan. 17, Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) opens its newly designed Neighborhood Market in Tulsa, Okla. -- the first to open in the U.S. that will share a new design based on months of customer research on Wal-Mart's Neighborhood Market concept. The company will be testing customer reaction and success of its new design, starting in Tulsa, as it focuses the brand for continued growth in the U.S. The new store is located at 4720 E. 21st St., and opened its doors to the public at 8 a.m.
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Cultivating Female Leaders
Posted 02-02-07 - Retail grocery giant Safeway is seeing the results from long-standing efforts to help women advance in the company. By Ann Pomeroy
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Wal-Mart to edge in on local grocers
Posted 02-03-07 - BaltimoreSun.com - Traditional grocery stores bring in about $150,000 in weekly sales while supercenters bring in about $600,000, according to William H. Marquard, author of WAL-SMART: What It Really Takes to Profit in a Wal-Mart World. Marquard once did strategic planning for Wal-Mart.
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Re-designing and re-sizing stores is one of the hottest topics in the supermarket industry
Posted 02-03-07 - Worcester Telegram & Gazette - Re-designing and re-sizing stores is one of the hottest topics in the supermarket industry, driven by the flight of consumers to other stores with food. Americans spent $478.9 billion at supermarkets in 2005, according to the Food Marketing Institute. Yet they spent another $279.4 billion on non-gasoline purchases at convenience stores and $85.4 billion at wholesale clubs.
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Grocery Tour Goal: How to Make Healthy Choices
Posted 02-05-07 - MARLOW HEIGHTS, Md. - Yvette Eisbey, 39, wants to be a "foxy mama." "I want to lose weight and eat healthy," she says as she sticks nutrition labels to cartons of doughnuts and cakes in the Marlow Heights Giant Food where she work - By HALLIE C. FALQUET Capital News Service
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Shocked at changes at Wal-Mart
Posted 02-05-07 - As a concerned senior citizen in this county, I feel the great need to express my feelings over a matter that is very dear to my heart. Central Kentucky News-Journal
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Food City mourns passing of beloved Founder and Chairman of the Board, Jack C. Smith
Posted 03-16-07 - Abingdon, VA – Jack C. Smith, beloved Food City Founder and Chairman of the Board passed away earlier today at his home in Abingdon, Virginia, following a brief illness. Smith, 81, was born August 21, 1925 in Grundy, Virginia. He was the only child of Buchanan County natives Curtis and Elizabeth Belcher Smith.
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Iowa Bill aims to keep bottle program alive
Posted 02-06-07 - Iowa lawmakers will consider increasing the fee that distributors must pay redemption centers - By JENNIFER JACOBS REGISTER STAFF WRITER
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DVD rental at a supermarket near you
Posted 02-06-07 - A new service is popping up in area Harris Teeter grocery stores. Now along with your milk, eggs and orange juice you can pick up a copy of the latest movie on DVD - By JANELLE MARTINEZ / WCNC
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Scan-as-you-shop wands debut here
Posted 02-08-07 - supermarket adopts technology that lets shoppers bag as they go down the aisle
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Supermarket self-checkouts on the rise
Posted 02-13-07 - Grocery store self-checkout aisles are becoming more common across the country, said Bill Greer, spokesman for the Food Marketing Institute in Arlington, Va. Systems are more user-friendly and shoppers are more computer literate, creating the conditions for a spike in the number of supermarkets adding the machines - By Dan McLean
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LED Lighting: Brighter Displays in Supermarket Freezers
Posted 02-13-07 - Newswise — Supermarket freezers may soon look a lot brighter while demanding less energy, thanks to LED lighting. A recent study from the Lighting Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute found that shoppers overwhelmingly prefer LED lighting inside supermarket freezer cases when it comes to merchandise appeal and the brightness, comfort, and evenness of the freezer lighting. And now, some freezer case manufacturers are planning to include LED lighting in their products.
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Tesco plans new formats for U.S.
Posted 03-29-07 - Tesco , the world's fifth largest retailer, believes it will create a new market in U.S. food retailing when it opens later this year by introducing a new store format to the United States.
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Key Indicators Up for Independents
Posted 02-17-07 - This year's Independent Grocers Survey from NGA and Financial Management Solutions (FMS) is a financial and operational review of the independent retail grocery industry. Respondents were comprised of multi-store operators (59.8 percent) and single store operators (40.2 percent). About one-third of the operators had a majority of their stores in urban areas and slightly less than two thirds operated in non-urban environments.
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What's Old Is New: Grocery Store Courts Seniors
Posted 02-18-07 - At Generation Market, they aren't trying to sell MP3 players to teenagers and they're not trying to sell designer clothes to hip 20-somethings. They're trying to sell groceries to old people.
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Heads Up: San Francisco Nears ban on Plastic Grocery Bags
Morning Edition, March 14, 2007 · San Francisco may be on the verge of becoming the first city in the country to ban plastic shopping bags because they're bad for the environment. by Richard Gonzales
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Grand Mart: A Life-Changing Grocery Store
Posted 03-20-07 - Chicagoist was taking an excursion down North Avenue this weekend, when we decided to stop and buy some groceries at what looked to be a standard Cub Foods. Upon closer inspection (a.k.a. actually reading the sign) we discovered it was not a Cub Foods. What was it?
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Kroger denies buyout report
Posted 04-07-07 - Kroger Co. wants to continue as an independent public company and is not interested in going private, chairman and chief executive officer David Dillon told employees Friday.
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Wal-Mart Considers Convenience Store Format
Posted 08-20-07 - NEW YORK – Wal-Mart is anticipating the British invasion of Tesco by considering new store formats, including an "urban" convenience store format and high-end stores, reports The Wall Street Journal. Courtesy NACSdaily
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How to Grow Without Wal-Mart?
Posted 06-22-07 - Package-Goods Players Turn to Supermarkets as Giant Slows Expansion
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Red Marbles
I was at the corner grocery store buying some early potatoes. I noticed a small boy, delicate of bone and feature, ragged but clean, hungrily apprising a basket of freshly picked green peas. I paid for my potatoes but was also drawn to the display of fresh green peas. I am a pushover for creamed peas and new potatoes. Pondering the peas, I couldn't help overhearing the conversation between Mr. Miller (the store owner) and the ragged boy next to me.
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6 Steps Small businesses can use to chop through the forest of credit card fees
Posted 11-19-07 - Credit card transactions can add up to a major expense. Small businesses accept payment cards because it's easy for their customers.
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IBM Survey Finds Grocery Industry Falls Short in Building Loyalty With Customers
Posted 11-23-07 - ARMONK, NY: In a new IBM (NYSE: IBM) survey, consumers revealed widespread dissatisfaction with their primary grocer. IBM's research found 73 percent of the 6,000 consumers in the United States surveyed feel either antagonistic towards or have no loyalty to their local supermarket. The study also reveals that this dissatisfaction is creating legions of disloyal customers sharing their negative experiences and shopping around for a better alternative.
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Wegmans to stop selling cigarettes
Posted 01-09-08 - Wegmans is making a change that could affect the shopping habits of thousands of local customers. The Rochester-based supermarket chain will no longer sell tobacco products, including cigarettes, starting February 10.
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Alcoholic Beverage News
Want wine with that?
Posted 01-04-08 - In most communities, wine and food go together like snow and winter: Shop for chicken or flank steak, then head a few aisles over to buy the right wine.
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Wineries seek spot on grocery shelves
Posted 01-04-08 - In most states, people who stop at the grocery store on their way home from work can pick up a cabernet to go with the steak they choose at the meat counter, or a chardonnay to pair with their chicken.
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Big-Box News
Wal-Mart Goes Chainwide with POP in Bid to Cut Payment Costs
Posted 04-18-07 - Rejected by many retailers, the point-of-purchase electronic-check code has one fan that really counts: Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s largest retailer. Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart expects the last 300 of its approximately 3,400 U.S. Wal-Mart locations to go live with the automated clearing house payment option next Monday.
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It’s Not Only About Price at Wal-Mart
Posted 03-02-07 - For 44 years, Wal-Mart’s message was “Low prices, always.” Stephen Quinn is Wal-Mart’s new chief marketing officer. Then in early 2006, it invited customers to “Look beyond the basics,” and try costlier products like 500-thread count sheets - New York Times
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Wal-Mart Shifts RFID Plans
Posted 02-26-07 - (Computerworld) -- Though Wal-Mart Stores Inc. expects the number of its stores using radio frequency identification systems to reach 1,000 in April, the retailer has come under fire from some analysts and users for failing to meet its plan for installing the technology in its distribution centers.
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Wal-Mart TV sells marketers flexibility
Posted 03-29-07 - In mid-March, about three dozen people recruited from New York City sidewalks were treated to a private concert by country crooner Tim McGraw at a Times Square studio. While the audience was impromptu, the performance was part of a carefully planned production by Frito-Lay with McGraw and Wal-Mart Stores (WMT).
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'Wal-Mart Is Saving America,' Authors Say
Posted 02-05-07 - (CNSNews.com) - Despite frequent and vocal complaints from critics of the world's largest retail chain, Wal-Mart "has arguably done more to help ordinary Americans, especially the poor and disadvantaged, than any other institution in our society," according to the authors of a new book being released nationally on Monday - By Randy Hall CNSNews.com Staff Writer/Editor
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Class Action Status Allowed In Kentucky Wal-Mart Suit
Catlettsurg, KY A judge has granted class action status in a lawsuit filed by a former Wal-Mart employee who is suing the discount chain, claiming he was required to work through breaks without getting paid.
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My Year At Wal-Mart
Posted 02-02-07 - Business Week Online - How marketing whiz Julie Roehm suffered a spectacular fall in 10 short months
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How Costco Became the Anti-Wal-Mart
Posted 01-29-07 - JIM SINEGAL, the chief executive of Costco Wholesale, the nation's fifth-largest retailer, had all the enthusiasm of an 8-year-old in a candy store as he tore open the container of one of his favorite new products: granola snack mix. "You got to try this; it's delicious," he said. "And just $9.99 for 38 ounces." - By STEVEN GREENHOUSE
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Wal-Mart bank: Ruling due?
Posted 01-09-07 - FDIC to lift its freeze, may have answer on Utah plan By Steven Oberbeck - the Salt Lake Tribune
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Wal-Mart Pushing Ahead to Require Suppliers 'Chip' Products with RFIDs
Posted 02-24-07 - Retail 'wave of the Future' Dragging Some Suppliers Reluctantly Along
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Who Does How Much Business With Wal-Mart? Options Trading on Wal-Mart Supplier Index to Begin
Posted 12-19-2006 NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The International Securities Exchange (NYSE: ISE), in collaboration with Revere Data LLC, today announced the development and launch of the ISE-Revere Wal-Mart Supplier Index (Ticker: WMX). This unique, relationship-based index allows investors to track the overall price performance of companies that derive a significant portion of their revenues from supplying Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s leading retailer. The index value is accessible from leading market data vendors as well as on the ISE website. ISE plans to list options on the index in the coming weeks. Click "Read More" to see who does how much business with Wal-Mart.
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Wal-Mart RFID Hits Road Block
Posted 02-17-07 - Wal-Mart Stores hits a road block in its move into printed Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags. The retail giant once hoped to have up to 12 of its roughly 120 distribution centers using RFID technology by January 2006, reports the Wall Street Journal. But so far it has installed the technology at just five, plus 1,000 stores. Wal-Mart expects to add another 400 stores this year.
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First Bank of Wal-Mart?
By Emil Lee November 20, 2006 To approve or not to approve, that is the question. Wal-Mart's (NYSE: WMT) recent application to form an industrial loan corporation (ILC) has caused such a stir that the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the regulatory body that insures deposits from bank defaults, effectively decided not to decide for six months, which helped it buy time to try to figure out what the heck it's going to do. Let's take a look at some of the key facts and issues.
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Predicting the Next Wal-Mart
Posted 01-24-07 - "I know no way of judging of the future but by the past." -- Edward Gibbon - It earned the name "category killer," a term used for large companies that put less efficient merchants out of business. When this retailer went public in 1978, it soon became No. 1 in the market. Independent shops closed their doors, unable to compete with the growing colossus. - By John Reeves, The Motley Fool
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Will Wal-Mart sell electricity one day?
Posted 01-28-07 - Company enters power industry to cut costs at Texas stores. Wal-Mart now has the infrastructure to sell electricity to Texas consumers. That could change the game in a deregulated state where high prices have become a hot political issue - By ELIZABETH SOUDER / The Dallas Morning News
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San Diego City Council Votes 5-3 to Ban "Big Box" Facilities
The Wall Street Journal this morning reports that the San Diego City Council voted 5-3 to ban the building of stores larger than 90,000 square feet that use 10 percent or more of their space to sell groceries not subject to sales tax.
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Presence of Communists grows at Wal-Mart China
BEIJING: Employees at Wal-Mart's China headquarters have set up a Communist Party branch, the company and the party said Monday, as part of a campaign by the party to expand its presence in foreign companies.
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Wal-Mart workers win
Posted 01-22-07 - By Boston Herald Editorial Staff - Don’t look now, but big bad Wal-Mart is at it again. Exploiting its workers, you assume?
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Convenience Stores
February Convenience News
State Governments Watching For Gasoline Price Gouging... From Cola to Coffee… Gas & 2x4’s?... More...
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NACS President and CEO Shines the Light of Day on Interchange at Congressional Hearing
ALEXANDRIA, VA -- The voice of NACS retail members came to the table during a congressional hearing on interchange fees, “The Law and Economics of Interchange Fees,” held by the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade and Consumer Protection.
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Kings of Convenience
Listen to a report from American Public Media's MARKETPLACE reporter Andrea Gardner on Famima, a Japanese company that's out to give the California mini-mart a makeover.
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Giant Eagle to test Redbox kiosks
Posted 12-23-06 - PITTSBURGH — Supermarket and convenience store retailer Giant Eagle Inc. is testing Redbox DVD rental kiosks at five area GetGo c-stores beginning this month.
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Study: Store Design Can Reduce Shoplifting
Posted 02-05-07 - NACS Daily - GAINESVILLE, Fla. – New research from the University of Florida indicates that store design can reduce shoplifting, Security Director News reports.
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US Convenience store sector is run by South Asians
Posted 03-16-07 - US has almost 140,655 convenience stores (C-store) posting sales of US$ 495 Billion annually. The Indo Asian News Service reported rough estimates provided by the online edition of ‘littleindia’, an ethnic Indian magazine. As per the estimates, South Asians dominate the C-store sector nationwide and own around 50,000 to 70,000 stores, almost one-third to half of the total.
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Credit Card Interchange & Electronic Payments
Lobbying War Over Credit Card Feeds on the Horizon
Posted 03-20-07 - NACSDaily - WASHINGTON – Already under attack from the Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC), of which NACS is a founding member, credit card companies are under greater scrutiny about their fees now that the Democrats have taken control of Congress. But, notes the Capitol Hill-focused CQ Weekly, they are fighting back with hard-nosed lobbying and so-called consumer-advocacy groups that intimidate politicians who introduce legislation to rein in credit card fees.
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GratisCard offers a credit card for the anonymous
Posted 03-21-07 - No name, no number and no physical data stored on the card itself
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'No interchange' card debuts
Posted 03-28-07 - GratisCard, a credit and debit card brand, debuted at the Prepaid Card Expo. The instant-approval card will be issued to consumers at the POS, enabling each card to also carry the merchant's brand.
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Wal-Mart Goes Chainwide with POP in Bid to Cut Payment Costs
Posted 04-18-07 Rejected by many retailers, the point-of-purchase electronic-check code has one fan that really counts: Wal-Mart Stores Inc., the world’s largest retailer. Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart expects the last 300 of its approximately 3,400 U.S. Wal-Mart locations to go live with the automated clearing house payment option next Monday.
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The Masters Program, 2007: Industry Leaders Confront Card Fee Issue
Posted 03-05-07 - By David Meyer MARCH 05, 2007 -- A call by Patrick Diemer, managing director and chairman of AirPlus International, for airlines to shift credit card fees to buyers startled many of the nearly 200 corporate buyers and senior travel services executives at The Masters Program in Washington, D.C., last month.
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Merchants Welcome Senate Examination Of Hidden Credit Card Fees, High Interest Rates And Other Abusi
Posted 03-22-07 - WASHINGTON, /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC)welcomed comments from Sen. Norm Coleman (R-MN) criticizing the hidden "interchange" fees that Visa and MasterCard charge merchants whenever a customer makes a purchase using a credit or debit card.
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Visa CEO urges investment in payments security
Posted 03-11-07 - WASHINGTON — Visa USA president and chief executive John Philip Coghlan told an audience of more than 400 business, government and academic representatives that payment security must become a strategic priority for businesses entities that touch payments. He said security measures must be taken to maintain and ensure consumer trust.
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Technology Sinks the Check Float
Posted 03-15-07 - Remember back in the day when you wrote a check and you could count on at least a few days before it was cleared by your bank?
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Credit Card Industry Takes Its Licks
Posted 03-13-07 - Upfront fees aren't the only costs we face when paying with plastic. Chief among the others is the "interchange fee," the cost merchants and retailers incur for processing transactions made with credit and debit cards. Interchange fees are complex and even more difficult to understand than penalty fees; simply put, they increase the cost a merchant incurs in selling to a customer who uses a credit or debit card - consumeraffairs.com
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Retailers, Banks Duke It Out Over Transaction Fees
Posted 03-13-07 - Financial companies and merchants are cleaning their weapons for a major legislative fight that affects just about every American consumer. By: Jeff Patch
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Small businesses can chop through the forest of credit card fees
Posted 11-19-07 - Six Steps to manage your credit card fees - Small businesses accept payment cards because it's easy for their customers. But with fees tacked on by as many as 12 intermediaries – from the equipment provider to the card issuers themselves – payment processing is often the third- or fourth-highest expense for a small business.
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Fed: Consumers prefer electronic payments over checks
Posted 12-11-07 - Consumers made 62.7 billion electronic payments worth $34.1 trillion in 2006, compared with 30.6 billion check payments valued at $41.7 trillion in 2003.
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Secret History of the Credit Card
Posted 12-28-07 - In "Secret History of the Credit Card," FRONTLINE® and The New York Times join forces to investigate an industry few Americans fully understand. In this one-hour report, correspondent Lowell Bergman uncovers the techniques used by the industry to earn record profits and get consumers to take on more debt.
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Interchange: U.S. House Hears Tesitmony from Food City's Steve Smith
Posted 08-03-07 - Note from KGA/KACS Executive Director Ted Mason regarding U.S. Congressional Hearing on "Interchange". Includes link to video from the hearing including Food City (K-VA-T) CEO Steve Smith.
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Supermarket Shoppers Tell Senator Specter What They Think About Hidden Credit Card Fees
Posted 02-22-07 - WASHINGTON /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Sen. Arlen Specter, ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, visited the Giant Food supermarket in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania today and heard directly from shoppers and Giant CEO Carl Schlicker about the impact of hidden credit card "interchange" fees.
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Hidden Interchange Fees Now Total More Than $36 Billion
Posted 04-18-07 - WASHINGTON, /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Increases in credit card interchange rates announced by Visa last week average only 0.6 percent, but the $36 billion in total interchange fees consumers paid in 2006 will probably increase close to 20 percent this year, the Merchants Payments Coalition said today.
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Signature or PIN?
Posted 02-07-07 - NACS Daily - BOSTON – Banks prefer signature-based debit card transactions, while retailers want customers to use personal identification numbers (PIN), which can make many shoppers feel like their involved in a tug of war between the two when using debit cards, the Boston Globe reports.
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NACHA to Assess New Fees on ACH Payments
Posted 02-05-07 - NACHA, the electronic payments association, announced that as of Jan. 1 it will assess financial institutions a fee of $0.0001 on all ACH transactions, including originated and received ACH credits and debits. The only transactions not charged a fee will be "on-us" transactions that stay within a single financial institution.
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Feds may yank Regulation E's receipt requirement for small dollar transactions
Posted 02-05-07 - Change could open floodgates for contactless and other payment cards in vending, transit, unattended locations - by Chris Corum
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Debit Cards Spurs Slide in Check Writing
Posted 02-05-07 - OMAHA, Neb. — Richard Kesterson slid his debit card out of his wallet even before the cashier at a Hy-Vee grocery store in west Omaha rang up his total - By JOSH FUNK AP Business Writer
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Visa Hikes Merchant Fees on High-Limit Card
Posted 03-15-07 - Merchants will pay an average of 14% more per transaction when customers use their new Signature Preferred Visa card.
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American Merchants Welcome Today's EU Report Calling for Closer Scrutiny of Interchange Fees
Posted 02-03-07 - WASHINGTON, /PRNewswire/ -- The Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC), an organization representing retailers, online merchants, and other businesses that accept credit and debit cards, welcomed today's release of a European Union (EU) policy report that calls for closer scrutiny of competition in the European retail banking sector.
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Europeans 'ripped off' by too high banking, card costs
Posted 02-03-07 - The Associated Press - BRUSSELS, Belgium: Europeans are "ripped off" by unnecessarily high banking and card costs that push up retail prices, EU antitrust regulators said Wednesday as they published the results of an investigation into retail banking. - International Herald Tribune
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MasterCard Gets a Rude Jolt
Posted 02-13-07 - After MasterCard (MA on Feb. 9 announced a profit and rising numbers of transactions during the three months ended Dec. 31, the Purchase (N.Y.) company's stock price hit a new 52-week high. But it soon plummeted more than 11% as investors worried about the credit card company's ability to keep profits growing in 2007 - BusinessWeek
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Credit Card Fees Add $169 Million to Cost of Valentine's Day
Posted 02-13-07 - WASHINGTON, /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Visa, MasterCard and their affiliated banks will receive a one-day Valentine gift of $169 million this year because of hidden "interchange" fees collected on transactions during the holiday, the Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC) said today.
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The Illogical Battle Between PIN Debit And Signature Debit
Posted 02-17-07 - Bubbling like a witch’s cauldron in the heart of the electronic payments industry’s turmoil over signature cards is the strange and self-destructive contention between the two primary ways of getting funds out of your checking accounts with a bank card.
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Senator to Hold Hearings on Credit Card Industry Abuse
Posted 01-17-07 - WASHNGTON – Some top Democrats have turned their attention to correcting what they perceive as "unfair" practices in the credit card industry, such as unfair fees, incomprehensible disclosure statements and confusing interest rates, Congress Daily reports.
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Merchants Push PINs as Card Fees Increase
Posted 01-17-07 - NACSdaily - WASHINGTON -- Merchants of all sizes are pushing customers who pay with a debit card to use their personal identification numbers instead of their signature, The Wall Street Journal reports. By punching in a PIN, customers save retailers billions of dollars in fees that are collected by banks and credit-card issuers. PIN transaction fees are lower than signature-based transactions.
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Merchants Payment Coalition (MPC) - New Ads
New radio and print ad campaign from the Merchants Payment Coalition
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Congress Targets Credit Card Companies For Reform
Posted 01-29-07 - After years of having its way with American consumers, the multibillion-dollar credit card business may soon face greater oversight and tighter reins. By Martin H. Bosworth, ConsumerAffairs.Com
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Brussels to launch attack on bank fees
Posted 01-29-07 - Retail banks and credit card companies in the European Union will face sharp criticism from the region’s top antitrust regulator on Wednesday, following an inquiry that found evidence of artificially high fees, anti-competitive practices and a lack of cross-border competition. By Tobias Buck in Brussels, FinancialTimes.com
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EC abandons retailers and backs down on interchange fees
Posted 01-30-07 - Despite accusing retail banks and credit card companies of maintaining artificially high fees, the European Commission will not recommmend overhauling the controversial interchange fee structure when it publishes its report on the European retail banking markets.
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Merchants Applaud Congressional Call for Disclosure from Credit Card Industry
Posted 01-27-07 - WASHINGTON, /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC) Legislative Committee Chairwoman Jennifer Hatcher today issued the following statement based on comments from Senator Christopher Dodd (D- CT), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, at this morning's Hearing titled "Examining the Billing, Marketing, and Disclosure Practices of the Credit Card Industry and Their Impact on Consumers."
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Interchange is the biggest credit card fee you’ve never heard of - and it’s outrageous
Americans are shelling out tens of billions of dollars to credit card companies and their member banks in fees every year. These fees keep increasing with no end in sight. There are balance transfer fees, late payment fees, over-the-limit fees, cash advance fees and the list goes on and on and on.
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Steve Case Takes On the Credit Card Giants
Posted 03-13-07 - His new GratisCard slashes fees via Net-based transactions. But can he wrest market share from the likes of Citigroup, JPMorgan, and Bank of America? - Businessweek.com
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First Bank of Wal-Mart?
By Emil Lee November 20, 2006 To approve or not to approve, that is the question. Wal-Mart's (NYSE: WMT) recent application to form an industrial loan corporation (ILC) has caused such a stir that the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), the regulatory body that insures deposits from bank defaults, effectively decided not to decide for six months, which helped it buy time to try to figure out what the heck it's going to do. Let's take a look at some of the key facts and issues.
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U.S. Adults Say Visa and MasterCard Should Disclose Hidden Interchange Fees
Posted 02-06-07 - WASHINGTON, Feb. 6 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Consumers overwhelmingly believe that Visa and MasterCard should disclose the $30 billion in hidden "interchange" fees they charge each year and consumers want Congress to do something about it, according to a new poll released today by the Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC) that was conducted by Harris Interactive(R).
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IRS Ruling on Health Reimbursement and Flexible Spending Accounts
The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) issued a statement yesterday applauding a ruling by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) that consumers may use Health Reimbursement and Flexible Spending Account (HRA/FSA) debit cards at all supermarkets and mass merchant outlets.
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Merchants protest credit-transaction fees
Posted - 01-27-07 - Visa and MasterCard made $30.7 billion in 2005 by charging merchants a percentage of each credit card transaction. By Emma Ritch The Sun News
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Congressional Committee talks tough on interchange fees
Posted 01-27-07 - The Merchants Payments Coalition (MPC), a group of around 20 American merchant trade associations, has welcomed moves by the US Congress to examine the non-negotiable interchange fees charged on card transactions by credit card companies.
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eCashflow Systems Partners With NACS to Offer Electronic NSF Check Collection Services
Posted 01-23-07 - DENVER, Jan. 23 /PRNewswire/ -- eCashflow Systems LLC, a division of ePayments Corp., has signed an agreement with NACS, the association for convenience and petroleum retailing, to provide returned check collection (RCK) services to the retail trade association's members.
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MasterCard to Publish Interchange Rate Schedule & Cap Fuel Purchase Rates
Purchase, NY, September 05, 2006 - MasterCard Worldwide announced today that it will soon implement significant interchange initiatives aimed at addressing concerns that have been raised by the merchant community, and helping them maximize the benefits and value of accepting MasterCard cards.
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Corporate Thievery
Posted 01-22-07 - LAST YEAR'S holiday season generated a staggering $21 billion in revenues, according to the Consumer Electronics Association. American households on average spent hundreds of dollars on gifts galore. But many Americans were likely unaware of the billions of dollars secretly being funneled into the hands of credit card corporations. - Charles Lee, Opinion Columnist -The Cavalier Daily -
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It’s in the cards
Posted 01-27-07 - To save money and improve service, the State of Rhode Island as of March 26 will do away with all paper unemployment checks and instead deliver benefits via direct deposit or “electronic payment cards” that can be used at ATMs, grocery stores and other retailers. - By Lynn Arditi - Journal Staff Writer
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Wal-Mart launches technology for flexible spending account debit card customers
Posted 01-08-07 - The Business Journal of Jacksonville - Wal-Mart Stores Inc., which has 17 Wal-Mart stores in the Jacksonville area, is debuting a new technology for customers who use flexible spending account debit cards to pay for health care or dependent care merchandise.
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Check writing loses ground to electronic payments
Posted 02-08-07 - OMAHA, Neb. -- Some consumers may still be writing checks, but merchants increasingly are scanning those checks and converting them into electronic payments.
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ShopRite to Accept MasterCard PayPass™ 'Tap & Go™' Payments
Posted 03-01-07 - PURCHASE, N.Y. & ELIZABETH, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--MasterCard Worldwide and Wakefern Food Corporation, the merchandising and distribution arm of ShopRite supermarkets, announced today it has begun accepting MasterCard® PayPass™, an innovative contactless payment solution, at over 200 ShopRite locations in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania and Delaware. This rollout constitutes the largest deployment of PayPass in the supermarket category to date.
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Food Safety
USDA Advice for Holiday Turkey Meal Preparation
Posted 11-16-07 - No matter what size turkey you purchase or what dish you prepare, it is important for consumers to heed the recommendations of the USDA's nationwide campaign, Be Food Safe. When handling and cooking a turkey, put "Clean, Separate, Cook and Chill" into practice in order to help prevent food borne illness.
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Food Stamps (SNAP) EBT & WIC EBT
KGA/KACS Fraud Alert: EBT Food Stamp Scam
Posted 12-03-07 - Below is important information regarding a EBT Food Stamp scam that could impact your store. Please take a moment to read through the material below and take steps to make sure anyone with access to your store EBT processing information is aware of the scam and to NEVER provide EBT or any other payment transaction processing information over the phone or through email.
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EBT Fraud & Information Hotline
Use the following number to report suspected fraud or to obtain information on food stamp questions in Kentucky.
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Grocery & Supermarket News
Bag ban?
Posted 04-04-07 Ted Mason, executive director of the Kentucky Grocers Association, said the association is researching what consumers prefer.
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KGA/KACS News
2005 Press Releases-October 25, 2005
Kentucky Grocers Association/Kentucky Association of Convenience Stores (KGA/KACS) Inducts George W. Griffin From Laurel Grocery Company Into Kentucky Grocers Hall of Fame
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2005 Press Released-December 14, 2005
Kentucky Grocers Association/Kentucky Association of Convenience Stores (KGA/KACS) Inducts Ruel & Suel Houchens From Houchens Industries Into Kentucky Grocers Hall of Fame
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Legislative - U.S. Congress
Food Stamps & System Outages: A New Option For Retailers
With electronic delivery of food stamp benefits, there are times when the electronic system is not operational and stores must either refuse a customer or store the transaction to be forwarded for payment when the computerized systems are once again functioning properly. This process is referred to as “store and forward processing.”
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Federal Combat Meth Act - April 8th Implementation Date - Retailer Responsibilities
The purpose of this FMI communication is to provide you with further information on the likely implementation and official interpretation of the Combat Meth Act.
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Retailer Responsibilities Regarding
CRITICAL Documentation couresty of The Food Marketing Institute (FMI) regarding: -Retailer Requirements -Explanation of Requirements -Scope of Retailer Liability
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Federal Methamphetamine Act Compliance Deadline September 30, 2006
On September 30, 2006 the second phase of the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act (CMEA) goes into effect and will require all pseudoephedrine (PSE)-containing products** regardless of form—including liquid, liquid-filled gel capsules and pediatrics—to be pulled from the shelves and placed behind a counter or in a locked display case.
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Food Bioterrorism Compliance Required - June 9, 2006
Information regarding the Bioterrorism Act related to food. Regulations for businesses employing fewer than 500, but more than 10 employees must be in compliance on June 9th, 2006.
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DEA Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act Interim Final Rule for Retail Sales
The purpose of this memorandum is to summarize the requirements of the interim final rule published by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to implement the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act (CMEA). The non-Federal Register text and accompanying informational materials may be found at the following website: www.deadiversion.usdoj.gov/meth This page also has links to the retailer training materials and the self-certification portal, both of which are discussed below.
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Members in the News
New Store CONGRATULATIONS!
Posted 04-20-07 - Congratulations Vic Dawn!
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Motor Fuels & Petroleum News
Claim: Gasoline prices still small part of budget
CAMBRIDGE, MASS. December 5, 2006 9:46pm • Little change since Ozzie & Harriet • Rate of gasoline consumption drops Despite pump prices that put a pain in the pocketbook, Americans are still paying about the same percentage of households budgets for gasoline now as they did when “Ozzie & Harriet” was a popular TV show, according to an analysis of prices and supplies by Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA), of Cambridge, Mass.
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Hodgepodge of rules enriches oil industry
By Steve Everly, McClatchy Newspapers KANSAS CITY, Mo. - When Florida officials realized that hot fuel was costing the state millions of dollars in taxes, they saw a loophole to plug.
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Cold Fuel? - Hot Fuel?
SUFFOLK, Va. – Lesley "Lucky" Duke's mood darkened with every drop of diesel that flowed into his 2005 Freightliner big rig. The 52-year-old independent trucker from Hertford, N.C., was topping off his tank on a sweltering summer day. He whipped out a thermometer and took the temperature of the fuel gushing into his truck's tanks.
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Lawsuit: Gasoline prices inflated by 'hot' fuel
Posted 12-26-06 - Lawsuits charging oil companies with cheating motorists out of billions of dollars have been filed in California and six other states.
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The Return of Cash? Retailers revisit cents-off discounts to avoid plastic transaction fees
ROCK HILL, S.C. -- Gas stations are once again offering discounts to drivers who pay cash, said a USA Today report on Wednesday.
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Preparing for the Jobs of the Post-Petroleum World
SYNOPSIS: Kurt Cobb lays out principles that will determine the jobs of the future. Many types of jobs will cease to exist: public relations executive, marketing directors, et cetera. I think work will be very hands-on, and a lot of it will revolve around food production. -- James Howard Kunstler, 2003
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Florida Legislation Requires Backup Generators in Gas Stations
In 2006, Florida state legislators approved new regulations for gas stations, requiring backup generators to be in place by next year. But state officials said they didn't know how many gas stations in South Florida have been rewired, in advance of those regulations, to use generators in the event of power outages or how many mobile generators oil companies have available to ship into the area.
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How We Got to $3 a Gallon
The United States has the energy policy it deserves, although not the one it needs. Having been told for years that their addiction to cheap gasoline was on a collision course with increasingly insecure supplies of foreign oil, Americans are horrified to discover that this is actually the case.
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A deeper bet on ethanol
Posted 01-27-07 - With subsidies and mandates, the federal government moves in to manage fuel market.
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Will price of oil rise or fall in '07?
Posted 12-30-06 - Forecasters split; views on output, consumers conflict - By Mike Meyers - Minneapolis Star Tribune - MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - Want to drum up a debate? Ask what a barrel of oil will cost next year.
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Perishables: Meats, Produce, Deli, etc.
A good year for pork
Posted 02-15-07 - THANKS TO SUCCULENT HERITAGE BREEDS, MEAT'S A BORE NO MORE
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Pharmacy
FDA Alerts Consumers to Unsafe, Misrepresented Drugs Purchased Over the Internet
Posted 02-16-07 - The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has become aware that a number of Americans who placed orders for specific drug products over the Internet (Ambien, Xanax, Lexapro, and Ativan), instead received a product that, according to preliminary analysis, contains haloperidol, a powerful anti-psychotic drug.
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Supplier Partner News
Laurel Grocery Company Purchases Tusco Grocers
Posted 02-19-07 - Jim Buchanan, President and CEO of Laurel Grocery Company, announced the purchase of Tusco Grocers located in Dennison, Ohio.
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SUPERVALU Named Winner of Supermarket News 2007 Champion of Diversity Award
MINNEAPOLIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Posted 01-22-07 - SUPERVALU (NYSE:SVU) has been named the 2007 Champion of Diversity by Supermarket News, a leading grocery industry trade magazine, for the company’s diversity efforts.
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Laurel Grocery Company Awarded IGA "President's Cup"
Posted 04-18-07 - Laurel Grocery Company located in London, Kentucky was recently awarded the prestigious President’s Cup for overall growth and performance.
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Kraft Hopes to Take a Bite of Take-Out
Posted 02-28-07 - NEW YORK — Kraft Foods Inc., looking for a way to end a prolonged sales slump, is trying to take a bite out of its real competition - restaurants. By LAUREN SHEPHERD AP Business Writer
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Technology
Wal-Mart RFID Hits Road Block
Posted 02-17-07 - Wal-Mart Stores hits a road block in its move into printed Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) tags. The retail giant once hoped to have up to 12 of its roughly 120 distribution centers using RFID technology by January 2006, reports the Wall Street Journal. But so far it has installed the technology at just five, plus 1,000 stores. Wal-Mart expects to add another 400 stores this year.
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RFID and Wireless Sensor Networks in the Supply Chain
Posted 02-01-07 - The use of RFID technology in the retail industry has been increasing, albeit tentatively, and the debate over RFID in general continues unabated. Meanwhile, proponents are finding that RFID adoption is easier in the manufacturing sector and upstream in the supply chain, in areas such as asset tracking and inventory management, as well as security-related, government-driven applications, such as international air travel.
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Tech-filled shopping cart ready to roll
Posted 01-29-07 - Plano maker's buggy locates items, offers specials, scans as you go - Columnist:Cheryl Hall, Dallas Morning News.com
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Pros, cons of supermarket checkout automation
Posted 03-11-07 - I enjoy the efficiency of the automated-checkout processes at the grocery store. It has been years since I've had to write a check at the register because a quick swipe of my credit card is all it takes to pay for my groceries. The cashier's ability to scan items quickly instead of typing in prices means my order is rung up as quickly as I can empty my cart. However, the checkout automation offers more than simple efficiency to shoppers and cashiers. In fact, the future of stores' automated procedures may actually work to protect consumers.
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Once-wary retailers turn to technology
Posted 03-01-07 - Retailers, who have traditionally been slow adopters of technology, are beginning to understand the value of investing in new software and systems that can improve customer service, day-to-day operations and sales, experts say.
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Wal-Mart Shifts RFID Plans
Posted 02-26-07 - (Computerworld) -- Though Wal-Mart Stores Inc. expects the number of its stores using radio frequency identification systems to reach 1,000 in April, the retailer has come under fire from some analysts and users for failing to meet its plan for installing the technology in its distribution centers.
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Two Critical Things You Must Do With Retail Technology To Grow Your Business
Posted 02-17-07 If you want to get the MOST from retail technology and really grow your business, then there are two critical things that you must do. (Registration Required to Read Article)
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Theft & Fraud
KGA/KACS FRAUD Alert: IMPORTANT CHECK FRAUD INFORMATION
Posted 05-24-07 - A KGA/KACS retailer member has reported a payroll check fraud scenario where female subjects presented payroll checks from "Jim's Concrete of Brevard" that were fraudulent. The two were "masculine built" and wore hats with each using a billfold.
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KGA/KACS Fraud Alert: EBT Food Stamp Scam
Posted 12-03-07 - Below is important information regarding a EBT Food Stamp scam that could impact your store. Please take a moment to read through the material below and take steps to make sure anyone with access to your store EBT processing information is aware of the scam and to NEVER provide EBT or any other payment transaction processing information over the phone or through email.
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