business news in context, analysis with attitude

  • A new study, reported in the International Journal of Cancer, suggests that young children who frequently eat French fries run a greater risk of developing breast cancer. In fact, children between the ages of three and five who eat just one more serving of fries a week apparently increased their risk of breast cancer by 27 percent.

    Breast cancer is detected in more than 200,000 American women a year, and kills some 40,000.

  • The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reports that bankrupt Winn-Dixie plans to close 59 stores in Georgia tomorrow, laying off almost three thousand people in the process. The paper writes that “these totals include not just stores Winn-Dixie already has said it would close, but also stores sold in a recent auction to supermarket operators that actually may decide to rehire Winn-Dixie workers.

  • Sainsbury reportedly has acquired nine more former Safeway stores from William Morrison Supermarkets. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. The company said it would close the units for six weeks later this year and open them in time for the Christmas holidays.

  • UK retailer Iceland announced that it will close its seven-unit Irish operation because it is losing money with no immediate prospect of a turnaround.

  • Published reports in the UK say that Somerfield is changing its marketing approach, moving from a convenience-driven message to a price-oriented campaign that will stress deals and values available to shoppers.

  • Kroger has signed a multi-year deal with InStore Broadcasting Network (IBN) to create a targeted television network in more than 2,500 Kroger-owned stores across the country, offering new product information, cooking tips, community calendars, and other relevant information.

  • Seattle-based Larry's Markets announced that it is introducing all-new natural beef and poultry lines.

    According to the company, its current beef line, 100 percent Midwest corn-fed beef, is being replaced with a line of Northwest-grown, all-natural, hormone- and antibiotic-free beef. The locally raised animals are graded USDA Choice and fed an entirely natural, 100 percent vegetarian diet of barley, alfalfa and corn. The strict guidelines in which the cattle are raised ensure the beef is top quality with regards to consistency, flavor and safety.

    Larry's Markets is also launching a new line of poultry dubbed Smart Chicken that is processed via an air-cooling system that is supposed to create a more flavorful and tender chicken.

  • Retail Week reports on a Tesco projection that by October 1, it will have one million customers per week using its self-checkout lanes, with seven million items per week scanned in those lanes. This level of success has led Tesco to increase the number of stores that it has in the UK with self-checkout from 137 to 220 by the end of the year.

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