Natural Foods Merchandiser

Natural products industry business briefs

Tesco to measure carbon footprint
London-based supermarket chain Tesco is helping pioneer the way to a new international labeling standard for products' effects on climate change. The store is teaming up with the U.K. government-supported Carbon Trust to measure the carbon footprints of 30 different products, from tomatoes to light bulbs. The research will help companies and customers make more-informed purchasing decisions as environmental concerns continue to grow, said British Climate Change Minister Joan Ruddock in a statement. The new standard, called the Publicly Available Specification, will be based on a method for measuring the greenhouse-gas emissions embodied in products and services across their lifecycles. Development of the standard is being overseen by an independent steering committee with members from the UK Energy Research Centre, businesses, nongovernmental organizations and academia.

No need to fear savvy sales shoppers
Worried that putting items on sale will attract cherry pickers? Rest easy. A new study shows that "extreme cherry pickers," grocery shoppers who buy only sale items and nothing else, do not harm retailer profits as significantly as is generally believed. The research, published in the November Journal of Marketing Research, showed that cherry pickers indeed saved more money than shoppers who were not actively searching for promotions, but those super-choosy people make up only 1.2 percent of store customers. And, while sales promotions benefit retailers by attracting customers into the store, sales to the extra-finicky shoppers reduced profits less than 1 percent.

Ohio grocers get waste-reduction help
Ohio grocers are joining the waste-reduction movement. Partnering with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources, the Ohio Grocers Foundation—the philanthropic arm of the Ohio Grocers Association—is developing a guide for its members to create an in-store waste-reduction program. The groups are working to reduce the amount of greenhouse gas emissions from organic material in landfills by finding productive reuses for cast-off produce, damaged consumables, packaging and other supermarket byproducts. The ODNR awarded a $26,625 grant for the foundation to develop a handbook for members who want to implement food-waste composting programs.

Natural Foods Merchandiser volume XXVIII/number 12/p.22

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