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Food giants hit the headlines - chocolate maker Mars recalls its Snicker bars in 55 countries, yoghurt producer Danone reports a profit boost and Swiss major Nestlé shows interest in a health startup. Over in the US, Aldi announced opening dates in the highly competitive Californian market and Whole Foods buddies up with a delivery firm. Enjoy the read and please share - RetailUpdate remains FREE.
asia & south pacific
Australian announcements Department store operator Myer partners with global online marketplace Ebay to attract overseas customers +++ Despite stiff competition in the supermarket sector, Wesfarmers, which owns Coles, has unveiled a profit jump thanks to its dominant hardware business Bunnings.
Korean struggles Suffering from dull domestic consumption, the country's department store operators, amongst them Lotte and Shinsegae, are targeting rich Chinese travellers with promotional events. Sales to Chinese customers are on the rise in Korea.
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Expectations in China Consumption in the country grows at a rapid pace, according to the Chinese ministry of commerce, which will continue to promote reforms to enhance the quality of products +++ In an attempt to crack the market, Apple Pay is charging Chinese banks around 50% less than it charges US banks.
Massive recall by Mars After a consumer found a piece of plastic in a Snickers bar in Germany, US chocolate maker Mars takes back millions of candy bars in 55 countries. The products were manufactured in a Dutch factory and sold throughout Europe and Asia. The recall does not extend to the US.
Changes at the top The Southern Co-operative has announced Simon Eastwood as Chief Operating Officer of Food Retail +++ Home shopping company Findel has appointed former Home Retail Group executive Gregor Ball as an independent non-executive director.
Aldi reveals opening dates The German discount giant will make its long-awaited California debut on March 24, with the opening of eight stores. In all, Aldi plans to open approximately 45 stores in Southern California by the end of 2016.
Whole Foods partners with Instacart The grocery chain known for its natural and organic products has agreed to a five-year deal, making startup company Instacart the only delivery firm for Whole Foods. The pact could affect Google’s delivery business.
Wearables on the rise The worldwide market for wearable computing devices saw a huge expansion in the last quarter of 2015 with vendors shipping more than 27 million units, and this solid growth will continue, according to research group IDC.