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5 things
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5 things: It’s all about the beauty, baby

Here’s 5 things you may have missed in grocery

CVS is giving Lip: Beauty CPG company The Lip Bar has been in aggressive expansion mode this year, and its latest, at CVS, is the group’s largest yet.The 11-year-old brand announced that it’s expanded to 3,300 CVS locations, doubling its current number of brick-and-mortar doors to 5,300. The beauty brand is already in 2,000 stores between Target and Walmart. Why does it matter? CVS is getting in on the beauty market — predicted to hit $180 billion in value by 2025, the same year Amazon is predicted to surpass Walmart as the largest U.S. beauty retailer. Other retailers are looking to get in on the play. Rite Aid launched its own brand of clean beauty in June, and other retailers like The Giant Company and Tops Friendly Markets are also aiming for a slice of the beauty pie. —Chloe Riley

Go with the cheapest: With food price inflation continuing to dominate the news, it’s nice to hear about those retailers trying to pin down costs as much as possible. A management solutions company recently released its list of cheapest grocers in the U.S., and — to no one’s surprise — Aldi is king of the discount prices. The solutions company surveyed exactly 6,555 consumers asking them which retailer they thought offered the best value for their money. Woodman’s Market, WinCo Foods, Aldi competitor Lidl, and Market Basket rounded out the top five. The next five were Grocery Outlet, Costco, Sam’s Club, BJ’s Wholesale Club, and Trader Joe’s. The people thank you. —Bill Wilson

Walmart prices through the (last three) years: Inflation has hit grocery prices hard, and  even the low price king Walmart isn’t immune from higher prices. A recent viral TikTok post compared prices on some Walmart private label products — from 2020 to now. A 16 ounce package of turkey breast deli meat? In 2020, the cost was $3.14, but today, a shopper would spend $6.72 on the same item. Other items with significantly increased costs include mayonnaise, ground beef, frozen pizza snacks, and frozen waffles. It’s not surprising. According to our 2023 Category Guide, many categories across fresh, frozen, and center store saw big dollar increases over the past year — some in the double digits. It’s anyone’s guess as to when inflation may finally start to cool. —CR

Remember when? Publix is touting 93 years of business by reminiscing about its past — starting with the first store that ever opened in Winter Haven on Sept. 6, 1930. In the middle of the Great Depression, George Jenkins opened the first Publix stores, which averaged annual sales in the early years of about $100,000. “Mr. George”, as his associates called him, established profit-sharing and employee ownership, whereas many of his competitors’ store shelves went bare for lack of goods. By the time Publix turned 50 in 1980, the company celebrated by introducing checkout scanning statewide. Today, the grocery chain is a billion-dollar corporate giant with yearly earnings that rivaled Nike in 2018. Publix has certainly scaled up. —Alarice Rajagopal

Bagging a championship: He’s the master of the bag, the slinger of canned goods, and the champion of the wooorrrrlllldd…er…South Dakotaaaa…Elijah Schipper! For the second year in a row, Schipper (who works for Fareway Stores in Harrisburg) was the fastest grocery bagger in the land at the South Dakota Best Bagger Competition. The South Dakota Retailers Association held the competition, which involved speed, bag building technique, uniform bag weight, and personal attitude and appearance. Schipper competed against six other baggers from across the state. Schipper won $500 and a spot in the NGA’s national competition in Las Vegas, where he then has the chance to win $10,000. Then there are the endorsement deals as well as the chance to sign a mega-contract with big chain retailers like Kroger and Albertsons. OK, I made that up, but this is a man who should be in high demand. —BW

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