Albertsons has launched O Organics Market, an online store that focuses on two of its organic private labels, O Organics and Open Nature. The special market, with delivery via Instacart, is launching in Washington, D.C., and San Francisco, but is expected to be offered in other cities.
Bakers including Nature's Own and Dave's Killer Bread are among the companies using SmartLabel to help consumers learn more about their products. An educational campaign in the coming months will inform consumers how they can use the program to get more information about almost 28,000 labeled products.
Supply chain technology startup Inspectorio has raised $10 million in a funding round that included Target and Ecolab. Inspectorio, which will use the funds in its work to improve and update the retail supply chain, is an alum of Target's Techstars accelerator program.
Back-to-school spending is expected to hit $82.8 billion this year, with $27.5 billion being spent on students from kindergarten through high school and $55.3 billion on students heading to college, according to this year's survey from NRF and Prosper Insights and Analytics. Clothing and electronics are expected to be the biggest categories for spending this year, with most shoppers heading to department stores, online retailers and discount stores.
General Mills is looking at a multipronged strategy to boost growth, including releasing new products, updating pricing and divesting weaker business units. The firm "will look to divest roughly 5% of our portfolio," said CEO Jeffrey Harmening.
As the cost of mini microphones drops and functionality increases, more companies are implementing the components in their products to use voice command technology in everything from wireless headphones to trash cans. Companies are contending with privacy implications; for example, Simplehuman's trash can uses its own microprocessors to avoid connecting to the cloud.
Best Buy, under the leadership of Hubert Joly, has turned its struggling business around and re-established itself as a major consumer electronics and technology supplier. The company has doubled online sales to $6 billion in the past five years, and service revenue was nearly $2 billion in Best Buy's fiscal year ending in January.
A labeling dispute is flaring up over lab-created meat, which is biologically nearly identical to the traditional product. Petitions from beef producers and some state laws have asserted that lab-created products should not be able to call themselves "meat" or "beef," but the fight has just begun.
Reverse logistics companies should look at industry leaders who offer clear return policies, have created software to prevent returns or specialize in reprocessed goods, says ReBOUND CEO Graham Best. "We need more joined up thinking; companies that collaborate across the reverse supply chain will surely succeed over those that don't," he says.
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