Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Tues. After Noon OneLiners: Fresh Direct needs a new HQ, Retail Workers still struggling

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Cover of Martin Luther King, Jr.
“It's downright disturbing, as this industry grows and plays a greater role in our economy, we're seeing stagnant wages and working conditions.” 
Carrie Gleason, director of the Retail Action Project, who will issue a study on how Retailers sell workers short in today's Crain's NY Business.
A&P unveiled a new healthy food format, focusing on foods for diabetics and health conscious shoppers.

Bayonne A&P will close, impacting 77 employees.  More @ the CT Courier Post.

Sprinklers exploded at the former Pathmark on Nostrand Avenue.

LoHud: Pathmark Mt.Vernon to close.

#Elsewhere, Industry
Aldi in Geneseo is closing in August.

In Jersey, consultants are wondering if a new ShopRite in Toms River will kill a Foodtown in the same town.

Fresh Direct has outgrown their Queens warehouse and is searching for a new site that could fit an additional 1,000 employees.  Well, New Jersey & the South Bronx are both doing their best to seduce the retailer to make their home.   Check out the article at the Daily News:
Only 47% of Fresh Direct employees make more than $25,000 a year, claimed Bettina Damiani of Good Jobs New York, a benefits watchdog group.
Living wage critics warned last week the bill could scare away Fresh Direct. But a City Council spokeswoman said Friday the legislation would not apply to the company if it moved to the Bronx.

Damiani accused Fresh Direct of using its New Jersey offer to leverage more New York aid. It has received millions of dollars in tax breaks in Queens, she said.

“It is incredibly unfair for Fresh Direct to hold city taxpayers over a barrel,” she said. “Fresh Direct is a perfect example of what’s wrong with the economic war between New York and New Jersey.”
Crain's writes about retail workers in NYC struggling to make ends meet.
The report, titled "Discounted Jobs: How Retailers Sell Workers Short," surveyed 436 workers in jobs across the five boroughs, making it one of the most comprehensive studies to date on the industry's workforce in New York. Nearly one-third of those surveyed supported at least one additional family member on their wages; their median income was $9.50 an hour. More than half made less than $10 an hour, and one in five earned less than $8 an hour.
Here is RWDSU President Stuart Appelbaum's statement on the NYC Living Wage agreement.  The New York Times sums up the tricky compromise very well.

The UFCW Blog wrote a nice piece, Honoring the Legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Smithfield Packing and the UFCW are donating 30,000 pounds of protein to a food bank in Arizona.

Supermarket News says it will take 23 years for Whole Foods to reach their goal of 1,000 stores.  They're telling retailers to brace themselves for record expansion pace.

Trader Joe's will be opening in Rochester and Albany, not Syracuse.

Motley Fool wonders if Target's new business strategy will over complicate the stores.

Controversial right-to-work legislation could advance this week in the Indiana legislature, and Kentucky labor unions and pro-business interests are closely monitoring its progress.

UFCW Local 400 President Tom McNutt issued a statement Jan. 13 in response to Delhaize America’s decision to close 126 Bloom, Food Lion and Bottom Dollar stores across the country.

Giant Food Stores' pending acquisition of Genuardis has investors thinking a re-branding for the stores could have great potential.

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