EARLY EASTER SALES LAY AN EGG

For food retailers, sales this spring have been about as soft as the Easter Bunny.Easter fell on the last Sunday in March, about three weeks before it usually does. The holiday's early arrival meant there was less time to merchandise specialty offerings this year, and retailers told SN the effect showed up in their tills."When we put this year up against last year's Easter, our comp-store sales weren't

For food retailers, sales this spring have been about as soft as the Easter Bunny.

Easter fell on the last Sunday in March, about three weeks before it usually does. The holiday's early arrival meant there was less time to merchandise specialty offerings this year, and retailers told SN the effect showed up in their tills.

"When we put this year up against last year's Easter, our comp-store sales weren't as high," said Ron Pearson, chairman, Hy-Vee, West Des Moines, Iowa.

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