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‘Current economic situation’ impacts Stater Bros. Q2

BY Allison Cerra

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. A Southern California-based supermarket chain posted a near 5% decline in its net sales for the second quarter.

Stater Bros. announced Wednesday morning that its net sales for the second quarter ended March 28 totaled $885.5 million, down 4.9% from $931 million in the year-ago period. Additionally, same-store sales for the chain were down 3.1%, totaling $28.3 million for the second quarter.

For the 26 weeks ended March 28, fiscal 2010 sales $1.81 billion, compared with $1.89 billion for the same period of the prior year. Fiscal-year same-store sales decreased nearly 2.7% ($48.6 million), compared with fiscal 2009.

Company chairman, president and CEO Jack Brown attributed the losses to the “current economic situation,” adding that Stater Bros. has made “a conscious effort during these challenging economic times to keep prices low to help our customers get the most out of their shopping dollars and to retain customers.”

Stater Bros. currently boasts 167 supermarkets throughout Southern California.

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Report: Walgreens to offer genetic test kits

BY Jim Frederick

DEERFIELD, Ill. Walgreens soon will begin selling genetic test kits that may help customers learn more about their risk levels for various diseases, according to a report Monday in The New York Times.

The tests, which measure genetic markers for such potential conditions as diabetes and cancer, are marketed by Pathway Genomics. The company said its test kits likely will be sold in many of Walgreens’ more than 7,500 drug stores, the Times reported.

The DNA tests are based on patients’ saliva samples, according to the report, and will be conducted by outside laboratories. Users will pay as much as $250 or more for the Pathway sample kit sold in the stores and a full set of lab analyses, according to the report.

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Winn-Dixie reports 2.3% sales decrease, but is ‘on track’

BY Michael Johnsen

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. Winn-Dixie Stores late Monday afternoon reported $1.7 billion in net sales for the 12-week period ended March 31, representing a decrease of 2.3% as compared with the year prior.

Identical-store sales, which exclude stores that opened or closed during the quarter, decreased 2.2% for the third quarter compared to the same period in the prior fiscal year. However, the grocer’s 51 offensive remodel stores that are still within their first year of operation had a 6.3% weighted average sales increase compared to the same period in the prior fiscal year, excluding the grand re-opening phase.

“We are pleased that our results were in line with our expectations, as we continue to navigate through this challenging economic environment,” stated Peter Lynch, Winn-Dixie chairman, CEO and president. “By effectively managing our promotional activity, and exercising discipline with respect to our overall expenses and capital spending, we remain on track to meet our financial guidance for the year.”

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