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• The Des Moines Register reports that “Hy-Vee plans to expand its new Fast & Fresh convenience store concept to the Shoppes at Prairie Crossing in Altoona, near the soon-to-open outlet mall … the Altoona location could include fuel pumps, a Starbucks coffee shop drive-thru, groceries and a place to pick up online grocery orders.”

The story says that “the Altoona store could be the first Fast & Fresh store to open in the metro, although a similar store in Davenport could open sooner … The Des Moines and Altoona stores are the only two slated for the Des Moines area, although Hy-Vee is looking to build Fast & Fresh stores in other markets.”

• The Orlando Sentinel reports that “Publix Super Markets’ strict grooming standards have the clean-cut grocery chain in hot water with federal anti-discrimination authorities. The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is suing the Lakeland-based grocer, alleging religious discrimination for telling a new hire to cut his dreadlocks to work there.” The person in question is Rastafarian, and does not cut his hair.

According to the story, “Publix has been criticized in the past for its strict grooming code that requires men to wear clean-cut hairstyles and eschew beards. In 2015, an online petition to allow beards at Publix gathered more than 16,000 supporters, but the facial-hair doctrine remained.”
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