Walmart has garnered attention with an announcement requiring its lettuce suppliers to join a blockchain-enabled traceability project. The move aims to build consumer trust through transparency. Across the Atlantic, a number of retail and FMCG heavyweights, among them Tesco, Nestlé and Coke, are also on the way to earn praise by backing a drive to halve Britain’s food waste. Keep up the good!




Wednesday, 26 September 2018





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Walmart has garnered attention with an announcement requiring its lettuce suppliers to join a blockchain-enabled traceability project. The move aims to build consumer trust through transparency. Across the Atlantic, a number of retail and FMCG heavyweights, among them Tesco, Nestlé and Coke, are also on the way to earn praise by backing a drive to halve Britain’s food waste. Keep up the good!




Europe


Irish investments ▪ Lidl has started with the construction of its new distribution centre and regional headquarter in Newbridge. The EUR 100 million facility is the German discounter’s largest single capital investment in Ireland. The retailer has also launched a one-hour grocery delivery in Dublin (paywall).



Future thinking ▪ Coca-Cola has purchased French beverage brand Tropico in a bid to grow in the fruit drinks sector and offer a wider choice. The soft drink giant is also part of a huge initiative to reduce food waste in Britain. 70 leading companies have signed up a government-backed plan.



Tobacco challenges ▪ British American Tobacco has appointed insider Jack Bowles as the chief executive officer, giving him the task of adapting to new tobacco formats as smoking declines. Meanwhile, Britain's Imperial Brands sees its divestment plan on track as it ramps up the release of vaping products.



Payment options ▪ Lidl Italia announced that customers can pay for their grocery purchases through Google Pay, which will be available in the more than 600 Lidl stores in 19 Italian regions. Meanwhile, Auchan Retail Italia has partnered with PayPal for digital payment services in the country.




US & Canada


Trust through transparency ▪ Walmart has unveiled a new food safety initiative that will require suppliers of fresh leafy greens to use a blockchain-based solution piloted with IBM. The move could do more than cure E.coli outbreaks, says Walmart manager Frank Yiannas.



Hiring sprees ▪ Instacart is expanding in Canada. The San Francisco-based grocery delivery firm will build a technology hub in Toronto and is looking for 200 more employees. US grocer Schnuck Markets wants to fill 1,000 open jobs on the heels of its acquisition of 19 stores from Supervalu last week.



What's in a name ▪ In a move to highlight a wider array of menu items and appeal to a younger generation, legendary US pastry chain Dunkin' Donuts has officially ditched the word "donuts" from its branding and logo. Doughnut lovers took to social media to decry the decision.




Asia


Indian initiatives ▪ E-commerce leader Flipkart has acquired Israel-based analytics start-up Upstream Commerce to support its seller base with services such as real-time pricing. Flipkart-owner Walmart is currently looking to leverage the online platform to cross-sell private brands.



Japan revamps ▪ Against a backdrop of declining department store sales in Japan, and to meet the needs of today's shoppers, retailers Takashimaya and Isetan are opening refurbished stores in Tokyo's Nihonbashi district. Among the features will be a new concierge service.




Inspiring ideas


Camera cafe ▪ In partnership with Thai coffee brand Pacamara, a cafe for the Leica community has opened in Bangkok. Labelled as a meeting place for Leica Thailand enthusiasts to share knowledge, techniques and experiences. Click here for pictures.



Getting back in vogue ▪ Swedish fashion chain H&M is testing a new concept that marks a break with its past. The pilot store in its hometown of Stockholm offers a smaller range of selected clothes, displayed in colour-coordinated sections - as well as espressos and invitation-only events.