FUEL REWARDS IGNITE AT BASHAS', RANDALLS

CHANDLER, Ariz. -- Bashas' Markets here and Randalls Food Markets, Houston, are the latest supermarket chains to participate in the Fuel Rewards program from Centego Marketing, Dallas.In a joint promotion with Chevron Products Co., a division of ChevronTexaco, San Ramon, Calif., Bashas' is giving free gas vouchers to shoppers who purchase select products. The program is called Free Gas Rewards."The

CHANDLER, Ariz. -- Bashas' Markets here and Randalls Food Markets, Houston, are the latest supermarket chains to participate in the Fuel Rewards program from Centego Marketing, Dallas.

In a joint promotion with Chevron Products Co., a division of ChevronTexaco, San Ramon, Calif., Bashas' is giving free gas vouchers to shoppers who purchase select products. The program is called Free Gas Rewards.

"The Free Gas Rewards program offers an ideal opportunity to enhance our customers' shopping experience using gasoline -- a must-have," Christie Frazier-Coleman, vice president of sales and customer loyalty, Bashas', said in a prepared statement.

Shoppers will receive a gas coupon in addition to their grocery receipt. Participating Chevron gasoline stations will accept the coupons, which can be redeemed in multiples. The coupons are valid for about 30 days from the shopping date.

Featured products rotate on a monthly basis. Examples include Angel Soft bath tissue, 12-roll pack -- buy two, get $2 in free gas; and Coca-Cola select varieties, six-pack -- buy four, get $1 in free gas.

Products are listed in a pamphlet, which is available in Bashas' stores and at participating Chevron gas stations. Products can also be identified at the shelf with Free Gas Rewards tags.

In other Fuel Rewards news, Randalls, part of the Safeway chain, is offering free gasoline in 40 Houston-area stores. The free gas vouchers are redeemable at 20 participating Randalls fuel centers.

"Our business philosophy is centered around giving our best and rewarding our customers for their continued patronage and loyalty," Steve Frisby, president of Randalls, said in a prepared statement.

To date, about 11 supermarket chains, for a total of 1,600 stores, are involved in the Fuel Rewards program. Nearly 100 manufacturers representing about 400 products are participating as well.

"The high-perceived value of the free gas offer alters purchase behavior and drives sales," said Laura Narzem, vice president, marketing and grocer relations, Centego Marketing.