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news ON OUR RADAR Consumers are increasingly looking to convenience stores for fresh produce for snacks and meals, whether it's bananas, cut fruit or prepared salads. Nearly half of all consumers (48 percent) say that convenience stores are a place where they can get fresh produce, according to a 2015 national consumer survey conducted by NACS. At the same time, convenience retailers also are stocking more fresh produce. More than three in four NACS members (77 percent) say that they now sell fresh produce. As a result of these trends, sales of fresh fruits and vegetables in convenience stores grew 14.4% in 2015, more than five times the overall 2.7% growth rate of produce sales in the United States, according to Nielsen data. If you're looking for Tuscan herb olive oil and Bordeaux cherry balsamic vinegar in the same place, Barons Market should have you covered. The San Diego-based supermarket introduced olive oil and vinegar bars in all six of its locations. The tasting stations include 10 exotic olive oils and 14 flavorful vinegars in silver vats. The stations also include high-end bread for dipping. Customers can expect to find exceptional flavors, including citrus habañero olive oil and honey ginger white balsamic vinegar along with classic balsamic and high-quality extra virgin olive oil. When a shopper picks out a favorite, 12-ounce bottles are ready to take home for $9.99. The olive oil and vinegar bar first appeared at Barons' Murrieta location late last year. Now, Barons has expanded the tasting stations to all six of its locations and says it plans to include the feature in its forthcoming location later this year. The new PCC Natural Markets location in Bothell, WA - which opened July 12 - features an in-store, slow-roasted meat concept. 10 * AUGUST 2016 * instore The concept - called Rotisserie - was developed to meet the growing customer desire for nutritious, made-from-scratch offerings, particular for lunch and dinner, the company says in a press release. Rotisserie will feature slow-roasted, sustainably-sourced meats prepared in-store. The meats are brined, seasoned, rubbed and roasted every day in the Bothell PCC kitchen. They are sustainably raised and always include organic chickens and Non-GMO Project Verified porchetta, alongside a rotating menu of offerings. The Bothell PCC is also home to the co-op's second Taqueria. The original debuted at the Columbia City PCC last year, and both locations feature seasoned fillings like pork adobado, beef barbacoa, roasted squash and garbanzos, and chicken verde made with Non-GMO Project Verified chicken, plus rice and beans, aguas frescas and salsas. Cincinnati-based Kroger opened its first convenience store under its own banner in College Station, Texas. The store will offer staple grocery items, including milk, flowers, bread and more at typical Kroger retail prices. The location will have 16 gas pumps and typical c-store items. Kroger officials say the company plans on expanding the branded c-stores outside of Texas in the future. Kroger also operates seven other c-stores in Texas under its Kwik Shop banner. They concentrate on small- and medium-sized towns near interstates. Two-thirds of the stores are in towns with fewer than 75,000 residents. According to the Specialty Food Association's 2016 State of the Specialty Food Industry report, specialty food sales hit $120.5 billion in the US in 2015. Dollar sales grew 21.2 percent since 2013 and unit sales increased 13.7 percent. Specialty food sales through foodservice are growing faster than retail sales: 27 percent versus 19.7 percent. More US consumers are dining out and seeking high-quality, flavorful foods when doing so. Fifty-eight out of 61 specialty food categories enjoyed double-digit sales growth in 2015, and two categories grew by more than 200 percent. Fresh, protein, and convenience are three trends holding steady as evidenced in the specialty food categories showing the most sales growth in 2015. Though mainstream retailers account for the largest share of specialty food sales, they are growing at an almost equal rate as specialty food and natural food stores. According to supply chain data, sales potential may be biggest in natural stores. BARONS MARKET As consumer demand and sales for fresh produce at c-stores continues to grow, the National Association of Convenience Stores (NACS) and the United Fresh Produce Association have published a new resource looking at distribution options available to store owners. Convenience Store Distribution Options for Fresh Produce provides an overview of the various options available to retailers seeking to increase their fresh produce offerings.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of instore - August 2016

instore - August 2016
Editor's note - Allergens: A new way to connect
Table of Contents
News - On our radar
Spotlight - By the numbers: Deli sandwiches
Cover story - Allergen awareness
Specialty insights - Consider: Dips and spreads
Commissary Insider - August 2016
Feature: Dealing with allergens
Food Safety: Reusable Plastic Containers vs. corrugated packaging (Part 2 of 2)
Product Spotlight: Sandwich wraps — making a comeback?
Packaging: Container innovations are clearly in your favor
Operations and logistics: Less-than-truckload shipping
Feature - Changing perceptions
Product knowledge - Need to know: Dessert cakes
Equipment & packaging - Latest Innovation: Combination ovens
Merchandising - On Display: Tailgating season
Product Trends - First to Market
Product Showcase
Ad Index

instore - August 2016