CENTER STORE

Clorox, Kettle Foods receive GMA awards

BY Alaric DeArment

Clorox and Kettle Foods got awards for innovation and creativity Tuesday from the Grocery Manufacturers Association and its Associate Member Council.

The awards were given as part of the association’s sixth annual CPG Awards.

Starting this year, GMA is awarding manufacturers in two divisions. Division A covers companies with sales less than $1 billion, while Division B covers companies with sales of $1 billion or more.

Past winners include the Campbell Soup Co. in 2005 and Kraft Foods in 2004. Last year’s recipient was Unilever, which achieved “center store excellence” with retail partner Ahold Stop & Shop.

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Wrigley plans meeting to talk about sale to Mars

BY Jenna Duncan

NEW YORK Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co., maker of Eclipse, Orbit and Altoids gum and breathmints, yesterday announced the date for a shareholder meeting to reach an approval for its sale to Mars Inc. Wrigley’s shareholders will meet Sept. 25, hometown of Chicago, the company stated in filings submitted to the Securities and Exchange Commission. Approval must be reached by at least two-thirds of those owning stock.

Wrigley has agreed to sell its business to Mars for $23 billion, or $80 per share. In addition, Wrigley must agree to pay Mars a one-time break-up fee of $621 million to $690 million if the deal fails to pass, according to the language in the SEC filing. Mars will have to pay Wrigley $1 billion if anything happens on Mars’ side to cause the deal to fail.

Mars will then absorb Wrigley’s brands to form the largest confection company in the world, bumping Britain’s Cadbury PLC to second place. The Mars/Wrigley deal is being financed in part by billionaire Warren Buffett.

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Marin County considers drug store tobacco ban

BY Alaric DeArment

NOVATO, Calif. Following in the footsteps of neighboring San Francisco, officials from Marin County, Calif., have drafted a bill to ban tobacco sales at drug stores, according to the Marin Independent Journal.

The county’s Board of Supervisors could decide on the bill as early as this fall. The county already banned smoking within 20 feet of workplaces in 2006.

San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors voted July 29 to ban tobacco sales at pharmacies throughout the city and county.

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