AVANZA'S NEW PRICING SIGNS GET OK
LAKEWOOD, Colo. — New signs providing a more concise explanation of the “shelf-plus” pricing policy at Nash Finch's Avanza stores in Colorado have met the approval of the Colorado Department of Agriculture here. The department, which oversees how prices are communicated to shoppers, said it identified certain misleading pricing signs in an investigation prompted by consumer complaints. Nash Finch subsequently replaced signs reading “Shelf + 10% at the Register” and “A Great Way to Save — Plus 10% at the Register” with new signs that read “A charge of 10% will be added at the register.” As reported previously in SN, Avanza's shelf-plus pricing has drawn at least two lawsuits. Nash Finch officials have defended the pricing practice.
FRESH BRANDS RENAMED PIGGLY WIGGLY
SHEBOYGAN, Wis. — Fresh Brands, the operator and supplier for Piggly Wiggly Stores in Illinois and Wisconsin, said last week that it would change its name to Piggly Wiggly Midwest, effective Jan. 4. Company officials said the change will help the public better identify the company, which has operated stores under the Piggly Wiggly name since 1949. The Fresh Brands name was introduced in 2001 following the acquisition of Dick's Supermarkets. The company previously was known as Schulz Sav-O Stores.
POLICE FOIL COIN SCHEME: REPORT
PLAINVILLE, Conn. — Police here have arrested three men and charged them with stealing about $5,000 from area supermarkets by turning in fake receipts from coin-counting machines, a published report said Wednesday. According to the Hartford Courant newspaper, the men printed counterfeit Coinstar receipts and turned them in at Stop & Shop, Big Y and Shaw's stores. The men created a fake company to order special inks to get around Coinstar's anti-counterfeiting system, but were tripped up when a Big Y clerk became suspicious of a spelling error — “food” spelled with three o's — on a receipt, the newspaper said.
TOPS PLANS EXPANSION IN 2009
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Tops Markets here is planning to open seven to 10 new stores during 2009, local news reports said last week. The Buffalo News reported that a spokeswoman for the chain said Tops expects to finalize its plans for expansion shortly after New Year's, calling for stores throughout western and central New York. The chain, which was acquired a year ago by Morgan Stanley Private Equity, previously announced a $150 million program to renovate existing stores.
NEGOTIATIONS RESUME AT MAXI
QUEBEC — Negotiations between Loblaw Cos. and the union representing workers at Maxi stores in the Quebec City area resumed last week as a strike affecting 14 stores continued. Workers at the stores — each of which have separate contracts with Maxi parent Loblaw and are represented by United Food and Commercial Workers Local 503 — called the strike Oct. 22, forcing the stores to close. The majority of Maxi stores in the chain have agreed to new contracts and remain open. Negotiations resumed at the request of a conciliator, the union said, adding that the parties have agreed not to make any comments until the end of the discussions. Separately, Loblaw said it has selected Manhattan Associates' Warehouse Management Solution to support its distribution operations and help warehouses optimize their operations.