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Whole Foods: Joke’s on you

BY Allison Cerra

AUSTIN, Texas — Proving that natural food stores have a sense of humor, Whole Foods hosted a faux website home page to celebrate April Fools’ Day.

The homepage featured such items as "insects raised with compassion," stinky cheese lipstick and bizarre recipes. The retailer even featured a video about finding love at its stores on both the website and its Facebook fan page. Needless to say, it received many "likes."

Although natural food stores take themselves seriously when it comes to delivering natural and organic products to customers, it’s nice to see Whole Foods having some fun.

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Harveys kicks off grocery giveaway

BY Allison Cerra

SALISBURY, N.C. — One week after Food Lion announced its grocery giveaway, another Delhaize America banner has kicked off a similar program.

Harveys said members of its Hometown Rewards loyalty program have the chance to win free groceries for a year. Additionally, customers also can instantly win 1-of-more-than-5,000 free national and private-brand items now through April 26.

Customers can participate in this sweepstakes at participating Harveys stores in Georgia, Florida and South Carolina.

For full contest rules, click here.

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Interbrand ranks top U.S. retail brands

BY Allison Cerra

NEW YORK — Some of the nation’s most popular retailers earned a spot on Interbrand’s annual ranking of the 50 most valuable U.S. retail brands.

Walmart topped the list, with Target coming in the No. 2 spot, while CVS/pharmacy, Walgreens and Sam’s Club respectively earned the fifth, sixth and seventh spots.

Other retailers on the list included Publix, Dollar General, Costco, Whole Foods and Family Dollar.

The U.S. brands study is part of Interbrand’s "2011 Best Brands" report, which ranks the top retail brands from the United States, Asia Pacific, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Spain. In the United States, the study noted that brand-led companies have proved resilient, responding rapidly to the downturn while taking advantage of its opportunities — the total value of the top 50 brands rose 5.45%, or $20 billion.

The report also called out three emerging trends for 2011:

  • Customer’s demand for a more seamless retail experience;

  • The need for human touch in all interactions; and

  • An increasingly interrelated global retail market.

Click here to read the full report.

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