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Rite Aid sales up in September

BY Staff Writer

Camp Hill, Pa. — Rite Aid reported a 1.3% increase in same-store sales in September.

Total drugstore sales for the 30 weeks ended September 24, 2011 increased 0.9% to $14.535 billion, from $14.407 billion in last year’s like period. Prescription sales accounted for 68.4% of total drugstore sales, and third-party prescription sales was 96.4% of pharmacy sales.

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Fresh & Easy caters to gluten-intolerant customers with new products, mobile-accessible list

BY CSA STAFF

EL SEGUNDO, Calif. — Fresh & Easy announced that it has doubled its gluten-free product range, the supermarket chain announced Wednesday.

To help customers find these gluten-free items — including cereals, oatmeal, baking mixes, grab-and-go snacks, pretzels, cookies, crackers, soups, pastas and condiments — Fresh & Easy has added a QR code to in-store signage so that customers may view a mobile-friendly version of the chain’s gluten-free products list once the code is scanned on their mobile device. In addition, Fresh & Easy maintains a "Gluten-Aware Product List" on its website.

"As more and more shoppers seek out gluten-free options, we are happy to expand our offering and become more of a destination for gluten-free items," Fresh & Easy CEO Tim Mason said. "We understand it can be a challenge to locate gluten-free products, so we’ve created an easy, one-stop shopping experience for our customers."

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Rite Aid comps increase 1.3% in September

BY CSA STAFF

CAMP HILL, Pa. — Rite Aid same-store sales increased by 1.3% in September, compared with September 2010, the company said Thursday.

During the four-week period that ended Saturday, front-end same-store sales were down 0.5%, though pharmacy same-store sales increased 2.1%, including a 143-basis point negative effect from new generic introductions.

The softer sales for the month were expected by the company’s management and analysts alike, with analyst John Heinbockel of Guggenheim Partners attributing them to Hurricane Irene and the slow start of the allergy season.

Total sales for the period increased 1.1% to $1.92 billion, compared with $1.9 billion in September 2010.

Year-to-date same-store sales increased 1.4%, including a front-end same-store sales increase of 1% and a pharmacy same-store sales increase of 1.6%. Total sales for the 30-week period were $14.5 billion, a 0.9% increase over the same period last year, when they were $14.4 billion.

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