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Winn-Dixie helps customers prepare for hurricane season

BY CSA STAFF

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Winn-Dixie Stores has announced its creation of a “hurricane preparedness kit” in advance of what is expected to be an extremely active year.

“Our guests can find the supplies to stock their hurricane kits at their neighborhood stores, and it can be done on a budget by using our customer reward card and taking advantage of this week’s hurricane preparedness stock up and save sale in our stores,” Winn-Dixie’s group VP marketing Mary Kellmanson said. “We are offering a number of buy one, get one sales, 10 for $10 items, and ‘Save ’til’ offers. That’s in addition to our Winn-Dixie brand products, which are better than or equal in quality to national brands at a significant cost savings.”

The timing of the announcement corresponded to the official start to the Atlantic hurricane season.

Kellmanson noted that the American Red Cross and emergency management officials urge people to have a “hurricane kit” with enough medicine, bottled water, canned and nonperishable foods, paper products, flashlights and batteries to last at least three days.

According to Winn-Dixie, a typical “hurricane kit” should include:

3-pack of gallon bottles of drinking water or 24-pack of 16-oz. bottles of water;

32-oz. bottle of Gatorade or 20-oz. bottle of Propel vitamin water or sports drink;

10-pack of Kool-Aid Jammers;

7.5-oz. or 15-oz. cans of spaghetti (Chef Boyardee);

4-pack of Kraft Handi-Snacks pudding and gel cups;

16-oz. jar of peanut butter;

16-oz. jar of jam or jelly;

6-pack of canned tuna or chicken;

5-oz. can of Vienna sausage;

12-oz. can of Spam or Hormel corned beef or 10-oz. can of Hormel Compleats or Chili Meals;

3.5-oz. package of beef jerky;

150-count foam plates;

50-count of 16-oz. red or clear plastic cups;

15-count of 13-gallon tall kitchen or 30-count of 4-gallon trash bags;

8-roll package of paper towels;

182-oz. bottle of liquid bleach;

Flashlights (one per person);

Batteries (D-cell, C-cell and AA-cell);

NOAA emergency alert weather radio;

10-in. battery-operated fan;

2.5-gallon plastic gasoline can

1-quart bottle of Coleman Liquid Fuel;

Magic Lamp with refill;

1 box of kitchen matches; and

1 bag of charcoal briquettes.

Experts predict the 2011 Atlantic hurricane season will have 12 to 18 named storms, six to 10 of which are predicted to become hurricanes. Forecasters expect three to six of those will strengthen to major hurricanes (Category 3 or higher on the Saffir-Simpson scale) with sustained winds of at least 111 miles per hour.

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Staples Europe names new executives

BY CSA STAFF

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. — Staples has announced new appointments at its European division. Amee Chande has been named managing director U.K. retail and direct and Andrew Gabriel has been named director technology and services European retail.

Chande will have overall responsibility for Staples retail and delivery businesses in the United Kingdom, a key market for the company. Chande joined Staples in 2009 as SVP strategy, responsible for developing and driving the company’s growth agenda.

Gabriel will lead the development of technology and services initiatives for Staples retail operations in Europe. He will work with the company’s retail businesses worldwide to advance these important growth initiatives. Gabriel currently serves as managing director U.K. retail and direct.

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Warehouse clubs deliver big comps in May

BY CSA STAFF

ISSAQUAH, Wash. and WESTBOROUGH, Mass. — Costco Wholesale and BJ’s Wholesale reported strong sales growth and produced impressive comps even without the benefit of fuel sales.

Costco reported that net sales for the month of May increased 17% to $7.14 billion from $6.09 billion last year. This year’s May results period included sales from the company’s Mexico joint venture. If these sales are excluded, Costco’s net sales increase would have been 14%.

Costco’s total same-store sales, including the beneficial impact of gas prices and foreign currencies, were up 13% (11% at its U.S. operations and 21% internationally). Excluding the benefit of fuel, total company same-store sales rose 7%, U.S. same-store sales rose 6%, and international sales rose 12%.

BJ’s reported that net sales for May increased by 10.7% to $952.9 million from $860.8 million in May 2010. Acoording to the company, departments with the strongest sales increases compared to last year included beauty care, coffee, computers, cookies, dairy, deli, electronics, frozen, meat, milk, paper, prepared foods, produce, salty snacks and small appliances. Departments with weaker sales compared to last year included apparel, diapers, juices, plants and shrubs, plates and utensils, pre-recorded video and televisions.

BJ’s same-store sales were up 7.4% for the month, which included a contribution from gasoline sales of 4.4%. Excluding the impact of gasoline, merchandise comparable-club sales increased by approximately 3%.

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