Monday, November 30, 2009

Monday Morning One Liners....Local 371 protests Fresh Market, more....

SECAUCUS, NJ - NOVEMBER 20:  Bargain DVDs are ...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

UFCW Local 371 is protesting a new Fresh Market.

Ray Venezia, a third-generation butcher and meat director for Fairway Market explains how to carve a turkey to FOX 5 here in NY. [video]

Police say a fire broke out in Wal-Mart's Christmas tree section outside their store in Westbury, Long Island.

Canada's top court has ruled in favor of Wal-Mart Stores Inc. in a dispute over union organizing efforts at a store in Quebec. Read More: [Bloomberg], [Marketwire] [Investor]

Newsday says that Security outweighed customers at Walmart in Green Acres mall.

DA: Walmart, peaceful this year on Black Friday.

NY Times Blog: Trader Joe's confirms it is coming to the Upper East West Side.

Apple growers upstate NY are leaving more fruit on trees than usual.

UFCW Local 7 members have began voting on their final contract proposal from Safeway, King Soopers, City Market.

U.S. retail shoppers spent about $41.2 billion over the four-day Thanksgiving weekend, up slightly from $41.0 billion last year, according to the National Retail Federation

Delahize closes on a Greek banner.

Penn Traffic Co. has informed the New York State Department of Labor that it could shutter most of its stores on Feb. 15, although reports said the company is still hoping to find a buyer by that time.

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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Wednesday Morning One Liners...Local 1360 continues talks with Acme,

Food Lion LLCImage via Wikipedia
Acme supermarket and UFCW Local 1360 make progress, but still no agreement.

 Supermarket News: Acme Markets here said it was making progress with union workers on a new contract, averting threat of an immediate strike.

Food Lion is still interested in Bi-Lo:
A spokeswoman for Food Lion here yesterday acknowledged that its agreement to buy the majority of Bi-Lo’s assets out of bankruptcy for $425 million was no longer valid, but said the chain remains “strongly interested” in acquiring some Bi-Lo assets.

Whole Foods is offering incentives to employees who are in good health, the Progressive Grocer reports that  Whole Foods team members will receive discounts of 20 percent to 30 percent on store items based on measurements of blood pressure, cholesterol levels, body-mass index, and whether they smoke.

The Atlantic Yards developer gets the OK to take the land.

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Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Tuesday Morning One Liners...

The Penn Traffic Company logoImage via Wikipedia
UFCW Local 1360 has reportedly reached an agreement with Acme late last night, averting a strike.

A 'Prevailing Wage bill' will be brought to the floor of the Pittsburgh City Council.

A&P's stock (GAP) has been on a complete surge lately, up 100% since September and investors continue to buy.

Pathmark signed a 20-year lease in Jersey for a 50,000 square foot store that will open by Thanksgiving 2010.

New York Tims: Price War Brews between Wal-Mart and Amazon.
In what is emerging as one of the main story lines of the 2009 post-recession shopping season, the two heavyweight retailers are waging an online price war that is spreading through product areas like books, movies, toys and electronics.

The Post Standard in Syracuse says"whoever buys Penn Traffic better be ready for a tough battle" The expansion of Walmart “superstores” and discounters like Aldi in the area makes it even harder for a new kid on the block to stay out of the red. So, too, does the overall decline in family income and population in the region.
This comes after Aldi announced another store opening in the Rochchester region.

The nation's leading meat processor and the country's largest union representing meatpacking and food processing workers (UFCW) have just completed the twentieth year of a workplace ergonomics program that is making meat processing jobs safer. [Press Release]

Whole Foods is disciplining their employees for Facebook posts.

NYC Food and Climate Summit, December 12, 2009, hosted by New York University, Just Food, and the President of the Borough of Manhattan.  Clean food is a right for all, and more and more, it’s an imperative for our planet. Check out more here.

The number of people seeking emergency food assistance in the city jumped 20.9% over last year, according to a new study from New York City Coalition Against Hunger.

NY Observer: Mom and Pop go to City Hall.
On Friday, Nov. 20, Councilman Robert Jackson was exasperated.  The Harlem Democrat had put in a call to the chair of the Council’s Small Business Committee, David Yassky, asking for a vote on the Small Business Survival Act, a bill of Mr. Jackson’s that would regulate commercial rents

The city also plans to re-zone the far west village.

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Monday, November 23, 2009

Local 1360 talks resume with Acme, Monday Morning One Liners...

SAN ANSELMO, CA - APRIL 30:  The Safeway logo ...Image by Getty Images via Daylife

Here's a first Grocery chains King Soopers and Safeway offered signing bonuses consisting of gift cards worth up to $1,000 to union workers in Colorado and Wyoming as part of contract proposals.

Local 1360 talks with Acme will resume today, after hitting a stand-still on Friday.

Penn Traffic Co. has sent letters to employees of P&C supermarkets warning of possible store closures. The earliest that could happen is Sunday, Feb. 15, 2010.
Wegmans Food Markets next month will open a stand-alone restaurant called the “Next Door Bar & Grill” across the street from its store on Monroe Avenue here, according to a report in the Brighton-Pittsford Post

Nearly two dozen eateries throughout Park Slope (Brooklyn), were found underpaying workers in the NY Department of Labor's random sweep of 23 restaurants throughout the area.  In some cases workers were making $2.75 an hour.

Marlene Lang of the Southtown Star thinks Wal-Mart got off easy in 'Black Friday death'.

Sources say Guiliani will seek a US Senate seat (Gillibrand), and if elected a white house run in 2012.

Another suit was filed last week to block the Atlantic Yards development in Brooklyn.

Democrats step up push for votes on Health Care.

New York City shed 15,600 jobs in October—including 12,800 private sector positions across a swath of industries—the worst one-month loss since December 2008, according to an analysis of state Department of Labor data.
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Thursday, November 19, 2009

Thursday News at Noon: BJ's Settles Wage and Hour Suit, Q3 number plummet, Suozzi down 553 votes

UFCW Local 1360 resumed talks with Acme this morning, as a threat of a walkout loomed.

UFCW Local 7 is waiting to vote on last proposals from King Soopers, Safeway.

Costco will not budge on their price dispute with Coca-Cola.

Target announced it plans to roll out their expanded grocery and perishables format, called p-fresh (which stands for 'Prototype-Fresh'), to 350 more discount stores in 2010 and ultimately to the majority of its base following encouraging sales results at the first 108 stores. P-fresh, or prototype-fresh, is a format that adds 90% of the food categories and approximately 60% of the SKU count available at the company’s Super Target stores...

From the sound of it Target employees are not thrilled about P-Fresh.
Tops opens first store since going '100% local'.  They plan on operating the company completely local.

BJ's Wholesale Club has some dissatisfying Q3 numbers.  BJ's and investors say the $11.7 Million Dollar wage and hour lawsuit which was settled contributes to these terrible Q3 numbers. 

Penn Traffic Co., based in Syracuse, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection yesterday, just four years after emerging from a previous bankruptcy filing

On Monday the Government Accountability Office said: work related injuries are underreported

Forbes: Unemployment, up again.

Ahold is announcing a new "cost-cutting program."

Pathmark announced that shoppers can now automatically link digital savings to their loyalty cards thanks to the Online Advantage program available at

A&P was recognized for environmental stewardship.

The Food Industry applauds the Food Safety Bill. 

New York Times updates on Kingsbridge Armory. Meanwhile Mayor Bloomberg and city development officials remained dead set Tuesday against imposing a "living wage" mandate on the developer who plans to turn the white elephant Kingsbridge Armory into a $310 million shopping mall

Despite the Mayor's opposition, the NY City Council has passed the 5 minute grace period for parking on an expired meter.

Governor Patterson is readying legislation that would require developers to pay prevailing wages on many construction projects that receive public financing, meaning that construction workers would have to be paid significantly more than minimum wage.

Out in Brookhaven, Long Island, town officials are being urged to study the economic impact and overall impacts on projects throughout Eastport and East Moriches.

Democrats Ben Nelson (Nebraska), Mary Landrieu (Louisiana) and  Blanche Lincoln (Arkansas) may block the Health Care bill in the Senate.

Newsday updates the Suozzi v. Mangano Nassau County Executive election.  By count last night Souzzi, the incumbent trailed by 553 votes.

Monday, November 16, 2009

UFCW Local 99 Settles contract, Local 1360 authorizes strike, Local 7 gets 'best, final offer'...Monday Morning Read

ShopRite logo (1974 to 2001)Image via Wikipedia

ShopRite puts specials on iPhone Application.

UFCW Local 99 averted a strike by coming to terms with Phoenix Supermarket Operators.

KYW News has more.

Meanwhile UFCW Local 7 will recieve Safeway's "last, best and final offer."

Last week Joe Sitt and NYC inked the Coney Island deal.

UFCW and Smithfield Foods launched a Feed the Hungry program in NYC last week.

King Kullen is accepting water bottles at all 52 of their stores for recycling at their redemption centers.

Lee Scott, former Wal-Mart CEO, joins a private equity firm.

Wal-Mart also announced they'll be restructuring their Asada ownership.

Meanwhile there are new Black Friday rules that retailers must oblige by.

Wal-Mart Stores here said they increased productivity and improved inventory management resulted in a better customer experience and contributed to improved financial results for the third quarter, which ended Oct. 31.

Target settled their expired baby formula lawsuit.

BJ's Wholesale Club executives to speak at Morgan Stanley Global and Retail Conference.

A study has found that just one in 10 union members is in manufacturing, while women account for more than 45 percent of the unionized work force. Read more from Steven Greenhouse, NY Times.

Trader Joe's leases property on sixth avenue.....The Real Deal has more on the move.

A&P family of supermarkets teams up with City and Island Harvest to feed the hungry.

Newsday: Sometime this morning, teams of lawyers for Thomas Suozzi and Edward Mangano will begin opening and counting more than 7,000 absentee ballots in the race for Nassau County executive.

Hillary Clinton says she is not planning on running for NY Governor. 

Lou Dobbs abruptly quits CNN.
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Monday, November 9, 2009

Monday Morning One Liners...

“We look forward to the supermarket...It is critical that the residents [who live nearby] in public housing do not live in a food desert.” 
- Councilwoman Leticia James (WFP), on the "Recession-Proof Brooklyn Navy Yard".

The nation's first housing development to start construction with federal stimulus money is under investigation for cheating workers out of wages, the Daily News has learned.
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Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Senate's Free Rider Provision Gives Nation's Largest Employer (Wal-Mart) A Free Ride


UFCW Releases Briefing Paper Detailing How Free Rider Provision Would Incentivize Irresponsible Walmart Employment Practices and Diminish Shared Responsibility for Health Care Reform

Washington, DC—The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW) released a briefing paper, today, examining the impact of the Senate’s Free Rider provision on the nation’s largest private employer – retail giant Walmart.   The provision would have the unintended consequences of:

  • Providing little or no incentive for Walmart to provide better care to its workers;
  • Continuing Walmart workers’ dependence on federal and state subsidies for Medicaid and Medicare, and encourage Walmart to have even more workers dependent on Medicaid and Medicare;
  • Making few, if any, Walmart workers eligible for tax credits to purchase better insurance through the health insurance exchange;
  • Forcing low-income Walmart workers into high-deductible company-provided insurance;
  • Incentivizing the hiring of a largely part-time workforce, and encourage reducing workers’ hours as a way to reduce health care costs.

The Free Rider provision currently would require that, if an employer with more than 50 employees has employees who receive a subsidy (i.e., tax credit) for insurance through an exchange, the employer has to pay a penalty that is the lesser of: The average national tax credit for insurance through exchanges multiplied by the number of full-time employees receiving the tax credit; or $750 times the total number of full-time employees of the company.

But if an employer has only part-time employees receiving tax credits for insurance purchased through an exchange, the employer pays no penalty. Employers also pay no penalty for workers who are on Medicaid or Medicare. And if employers offer bare bones, but high deductible, high co-pay coverage with low premiums, workers would be forced to accept this coverage, purchase coverage through an exchange without receiving tax credits, or pay a penalty for being uninsured—with the employer facing no penalty under the current free rider provision.

Walmart’s employment practices, including limited hours and pay that force many onto public assistance, as well as its cafeteria of health care plans that range from unaffordable premiums to unaffordable deductibles and co-pays for low end premiums would virtually exempt its workers from receiving tax credits for purchasing coverage through an exchange, and, consequently, exempt the company from any free rider penalty.

“A Free Rider provision that would have zero impact on Walmart is a problem,” said UFCW Executive Vice President Pat O’Neill. “The company employs 1.4 million workers in our country, and nearly 700,000 of those employees already get their health care insurance from public assistance, in the emergency room, or a spouse who has a responsible employer. President Obama laid down the principle that health care is a shared responsibility. If the country’s largest employer has no responsibility under the Senate Free Rider provision, then other employers will follow the Walmart example.”

Go to for a complete copy of the UFCW Free Rider Briefing Paper.


A further supporting actuarial analysis by the Segal Group of the value of a sample of Walmart’s health plans is available online.
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Bloomberg wins a third term, An annual Wal-Mart & NYC article, Wednesday Morning One Liners...

Election results
Mike Bloomberg wins a third term.

Michael Barbaro says the number one factor in the race was Bloomberg's influence
Elizabeth Benjamin: Democrat Owens beats Conservative Hoffman who Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh supported

You can find all the New York election results here.

In Long Island Tom Suozzi has a slight lead.

The New York Times spotlights Fairway's continued growth and success.

New stimulus funded Stop & Shop in Rockaway breaks ground.

Shares of Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. (GAP) climbed more than 14% Tuesday amid reports that its biggest stakeholder, German supermarket operator Tengelmann Group, would consider merging the U.S. supermarket company with a competitor.

Meanwhile Food Basics, an A&P discount food store format will open it's first Connecticut store.

Guess who's back? The annual Wal-Mart NYC article: Wal-Mart is making another bid to get into New York City, the Daily News writes.  The Gothamist also comments.

Wal-Mart also received final approval on Monday of a settlement in which it will pay between $65 million and $85 million to resolve wage-and-hour violations alleged by millions of workers

The FTC has extended their deadline for Whole Foods to sell Wild Oats stores.

And Trader Joe's will be opening Friday in Millburn, New Jersey.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Monday Morning One Liners...

WFP logoImage via Wikipedia

546,000 pounds of ground beef are being recalled because of possible contamination from the E. coli bacteria.  The retailers include: Trader Joe's, Price Chopper, Lancaster, Wild Harvest, Shaw's, BJ's, Ford Brothers, and Giant.

Three former executives of Ralphs Grocery Co. here are suing the company for firing them in the wake of the 2003-2004 strike-lockout.

Study: Recession doesn't hurt meat, poultry sales.

The Financial Times says Wal-Mart's continued urban expansion is laying ground work for yet another stab to try and open a store in New York City.

The Working Families has a new tool: MYWFP Candidate Finder, which allows you to type in your address to see what candidates the WFP has endorsed.

A Columnist quits after Newsday starts charging for website.

New poll has Bloomberg up 15 points on Thompson.

Old Yankee Stadium demolition underway [Curbed]
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