OPERATIONS

Survey: Food trips to nontraditional stores on rise

BY Katherine Boccaccio

New York City — A survey released Thursday by consumer research firm AlixPartners found that 51% of consumers visit traditional supermarkets for their grocery shopping, while 30% shop mass merchants such as Walmart for groceries. Drug stores pull 5% of grocery shoppers, as do dollar stores.

According to the AlixPartners Grocery Shopper Preferences Survey, of all grocery spending, the lowest-income shoppers are purchasing only 45% of their groceries at grocery stores, with mass merchandisers capturing 38% of total spending from these consumers. The highest-income shoppers (those with incomes of $100,000 and above) purchase most (56%) of their groceries at grocery stores, and club stores capture 17% of this group’s grocery spending.

“The battle with mass merchandisers, club stores and dollar stores has been dragging on for years, but it’s heating up and traditional grocery retailers are losing ground,” said Russ Jones, director in AlixPartners’ Global Retail Practice. “Shoppers are more willing than ever to try new venues — and, unfortunately for traditional grocery stores, many shoppers are finding a better fit elsewhere.”

The average shopper makes 1.8 trips per week to pick up groceries. Some 70% of consumers are making trips to the grocery store at least once per week, and 50% plan to spend more on groceries in the coming year while 39% expect to spend the same amount.

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STORE SPACES

CVS distribution center awarded LEED Gold

BY Marianne Wilson

Woonsocket, R.I. — CVS/pharmacy’s distribution center in Chemung County, N.Y., has been awarded LEED Gold certification from the United States Building Council. It it the chain’s first LEED-certified distribution center.

The 751,000-sq.-ft. facility is the largest industrial building in the state of New York — and one of-the-10 largest industrial buildings in the United States — to receive to achieve LEED Gold, which is the second-highest level of LEED certification given by the USGBC. The CVS center was designed and built by Gray Construction.

Among the sustainable design elements featured in the facility are:

  • Energy-efficient, white PVC insulated roof;
  • Interior and exterior lighting with daylight sensors and timers;
  • High-efficiency, low-flow plumbing fixtures;
  • Rainwater harvest system for irrigation;
  • Fluorescent fixtures and skylights; and
  • Construction process using local materials, recycled materials and waste recycling.

The Chemung center, which opened in June, will support the inventory and fulfillment needs of approximately 350 CVS/pharmacy stores in the Northeast.

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STORE SPACES

Fresh & Easy powers up REC solar panels at 11 stores

BY Staff Writer

Phoenix — Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market said Thursday it has turned on 11 rooftop solar installations in Phoenix and Los Angeles. The panels, installed by REC Solar, will provide 536 kW of power and supply 20% of each store’s energy needs.

REC Solar installed roof-mounted solar systems on 10 stores throughout the greater Phoenix metro area, including stores in Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa and Avondale, Ariz. The Fresh & Easy in the Glassell Park neighborhood of Los Angeles also features a solar system. The systems feature REC Peak Energy Series Panels, from global solar panel manufacturing leader, REC Group.

In addition to the panels, the stores features an in-store display that reports real-time solar energy production at the store while explaining how solar systems work to store customers. On average, Fresh & Easy stores use 30% less energy than a typical supermarket. Fresh & Easy has also worked to reduce emissions and has the most currently certified stores through the EPA’s GreenChill program, according to the company.

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