Grocers gather on supermarket industry issues
Washington, D.C. — Grocery retailers, wholesalers and food industry state association executives representing more than 30 states assembled in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday to urge Congress to act on pro-business reforms that impact their industry.
Members of the National Grocers Association, Food Marketing Institute and the Food Industry Association Executives gathered for the annual "Day in Washington" congressional fly-in, during which grocery company executives and operators meet with Congress and key Congressional staff to discuss issues of importance to the supermarket industry such as healthcare, tax reform, FDA menu labeling, and swipe fees.
The supermarket industry supports changes to the Affordable Care Act that would increase their ability to maintain health coverage and comply with the law. Operators are also urging Congress to co-sponsor H.R. 1249, the Common Sense Nutritional Disclosure Act, bi-partisan legislation that would, in part, ensure that the FDA does not capture mainstream grocery stores in chain restaurant menu labeling regulations.
“It’s great for members of Congress to hear directly from the grocers in their districts about how even the slightest nuances to legislation or regulation can impact their 1% profit-margin-businesses,” said Leslie G. Sarasin, FMI president and CEO.
Attendees of the Day in Washington are also addressing the issue of credit card swipe fees.
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Office Depot expands National Green Business Challenge
BOCA RATON, Fla. — Office Depot will team up with ICLEI–Local Governments for Sustainability to expand the National Green Business Challenge, a program that encourages local businesses to take part in a friendly competition to save energy and money, reduce waste and water consumption and procure greener products.
The program was first piloted in 2010 as the City of Chicago’s "Green Office Challenge."
Founded in 1990, ICLEI is an association of cities and local governments dedicated to sustainability that counts with more than 1,000 local government members in 84 countries. In the United States, ICLEI is a leader on climate action and clean energy provides tools, training and technical support to help cities and counties advance their sustainability goals. Originally called the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives, ICLEI revised its mission, charter and name in 2003.
The four additional cities will receive funding to launch their own Green Business Challenge programs, building on the successful challenges that ICLEI and Office Depot helped launch with local governments in Chicago, Austin, Bellevue, Chula Vista and the Triangle J region.
Office Depot also announced that it will help ICLEI USA establish a Green Business Challenge resource center that will support cities and counties wishing to develop a Green Business Challenge, as well as a network of Green Business Challenge communities to encourage sharing of successful practices.
The announcement was made at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Business & Civic Leadership Center’s Bricks & Sticks Sustainability Symposium, an event designed to showcase outstanding examples of public-private partnerships making a difference in the country.
ICLEI USA helped implement the challenge in Chicago, and Office Depot provided core funding and program design support. Chicago businesses that participated in Round 2 of the challenge collectively saved more than 124 million kilowatt-hours of electricity and more than 85,000 metric tons of carbon emissions.
“The Green Business Challenge is a highly scalable idea that brings together the historically separate concepts of ‘fun’ and ‘sustainability,’” said Yalmaz Siddiqui, senior director of environmental strategy for Office Depot. “The challenge helps ‘gamify’ greening, and as such builds on the natural human and organizational impetus to compete. We’re proud to have been associated with the challenge since its inception, and are excited to be able to bring it to four more cities in 2013.”
“ICLEI is proud to partner with Office Depot to bring the Green Business Challenge to four more cities within our network,” said Michael Schmitz, ICLEI USA executive director. “This proven program reflects the reality that environmental improvement doesn’t have to come at the expense of economic performance. The challenge helps local governments reach their energy and climate goals, and helps businesses save money, make their operations more efficient and receive recognition for going green.”
The four new cities will be selected and announced later in 2013 and Office Depot will provide each with a Green Business Challenge implementation pack, which includes cash, in-kind support and training and technical support through ICLEI, as well as a customized Green Business Challenge software tool.
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J.Crew announces new president, senior execs
New York — A Wednesday report by Women’s Wear Daily said Libby Wadle been named president of the J. Crew brand, charged with overseeing both the retail and direct businesses of J. Crew, Crewcuts and J. Crew factory outlets. She was previously EVP.
Former chief administrative officer James Scully has been promoted to COO.
In other moves: Two SVPs of merchandising, Laura Willensky and Charlie Phillips, were promoted to EVPs. Tom Mora and Frank Muytjens have been elevated to SVPs of women’s and men’s design, respectively. Mark Demott, formerly SVP, has been named EVP of brand creative. Charlie Miller, formerly a VP, has risen to SVP of asset management.
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