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5 things: What Walgreens is betting on

Here’s 5 things you may have missed in grocery

Walgreens’ big bet: Walgreens Boots Alliance is betting its 8,700 bricks-and-mortar stores — and not a network of fulfillment centers — hold the key to ramping up delivery of online orders and thereby increasing sales. The Deerfield, Ill.-based company joins other retailers like Target, Walmart and CVS Health that have started fulfilling more online orders out of stores. Whether that strategy works remains to be seen. The pharmacy giant has seen a lot of C-suite turnover in recent months, including its former CEO Roz Brewer. That’s in addition to other recent layoffs within the company — totaling about 15% of its corporate workforce. Will Walgreens have the corporate vision to pull off its ecommerce vision? All bets are off. —Chloe Riley 

It’s not rocket science: Amazon is losing at online? What? It can’t be! Well, if your competitor is Walmart, then that is a very real possibility. According to new data from Insider Intelligence, Walmart’s online grocery sales have been dwarfing Amazon’s since 2019. In fact, by the end of 2024, Walmart will own about a 27% share of online grocery sales compared to Amazon’s 18.5%. The article goes on to say that Walmart’s dominance in online grocery will be so huge in a matter of months that the trend will be impossible to reverse. While Amazon is determined to be a contender in the grocery prize fight, its overall strategy in this area has struggled. The online giant uses a mix of warehouses and stores to fill online orders. Meanwhile, Walmart leans on its 4,600 stores and its own team of Spark drivers. But, hey, at least Amazon can say it owns a rocket. —Bill Wilson

Don’t hold back on the Oreo: Is this the biggest supermarket inflation scandal to date? Or just a case of product inconsistency? Some shoppers on Reddit are claiming that, in recent years the filling in Oreo cookies (both Double Stuf and regular) has been dwindling, to the point where it no longer reaches the wafers’ edges. Some fans are even making videos of themselves twisting Oreos open to reveal a sad amount of filling. Mondelez, the maker of Oreo, said the whole thing is a load of hooey — “We would be shooting ourselves in the foot if we would start to play around with the quality,” said Mondelez CEO Dirk Van de Put. But who can say? The only way to know for sure? Buy a pack of Oreos and start twisting. —CR

Frame it up: If you are having trouble framing the thief, well, then just frame up the product instead. It appears toilet paper is flying off the shelves at a Washington, D.C., CVS store, and not in a good way. People have taken to stocking up on the necessity without paying for it, so the store has decided to put a framed picture of each toilet paper product on the shelves instead of the actual product. A customer service button next to the “TP family portraits” summons a store worker who will bring on the product. Pictures of the strategy landed on social media and, of course, many opinions ensued. “I know this ain’t supposed to be funny, but come on man,” said an Instagram user. “Why’d they put it in frames like that?” asked another poster. If you ask me, frames look better than pictures of the product taped to the shelves. I mean, let’s be classy here. —BW

Turning on the waterworks: Kroger just released a holiday commercial that has some online viewers in tears. “It’s 7 a.m. and I’m hysterically crying at a Kroger commercial,” one person posted on X, formerly known as Twitter. The Cincinnati-based grocer recently debuted the ad, which features a couple and the series of foreign exchange students they host. The ad ends with a tear-jerking reunion between all the students and their host parents. The ad’s vibe is a la the 2009 Pixar film “Up.” And if that’s any indicator, you may want to stock up on kleenex before you take a watch. —CR 

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