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In Canada, Global News reports that traditional retailers have managed to "mount an improved defence" against Walmart and Costco, which have "gobbled up a growing share of Canadian food sales for more than a decade."

According to the story, "Industry watchers say the price gap between the two sides has narrowed and the traditional stores’ loyalty programs are helping support sales."

In addition to effective loyalty programs, Global News writes, one of the things that traditional grocers have done is open discount formats that have effectively blunted the impact of Walmart and Costco. "Loblaw, for example, operates 500 discount banner stores, including No Frills, across Canada," and CEO Galen Weston says, "We believe we have some of the strongest, most effectively operated and most customer-centric discount formats in the country."

"For the average Canadian shopper," the story says, "that means the price difference between a product at a traditional grocer and a Costco or Walmart is not necessarily compelling enough to justify shopping at two separate locations."
KC's View:
In a lot of ways, I've found that Canada's discount-driven food stores to be superior to many in the US ... they manage to have a sense of personality while still driving home a price message. Especially in a US environment where discount retailing may be about to see a surge, it might be worth a trip north of the border to see how these folks come to market.