Walmart has moved its Open Call event to a virtual format this year because of continuing concerns about the pandemic. The seventh annual event, which gives entrepreneurs a chance to pitch their products to the retailer, will now feature virtual one-on-one meetings as well as other online events to help small businesses and find new suppliers.
Costco has decided to keep its special weekday morning shopping hours for members age 60 and older or who are otherwise at risk from the coronavirus. Costco initially announced it would reduce those designated hours starting this week, but said in a recent update that "due to an increase in COVID-19 cases, Costco will maintain current Special Operating Hours until further notice."
Amazon is best when it comes to satisfying online grocery customers' needs, with a new survey showing the e-commerce giant just beat out Walmart, which took second in the 2020 US Online & In-Store Grocery Shopping Study by Retail Feedback Group. The survey showed US supermarkets have gained online customers during the pandemic, but it also indicated that some customers don't plan to continue doing their grocery shopping online.
Spirits brand Onda seems to be tapping into the tenor of the times with its new 100-calorie canned sparkling tequila. Tequila soda is the favorite drink of the company's management team, which includes actress Shay Mitchell, and the team of four founders "wanted to create a premium, pre-mixed, ready-to-drink option that's light and refreshing enough for all-day occasions, like beach hangs, pool parties and backyard BBQs," said Onda's Chief Creative Officer Kelli Adams.
The final recommendation of President Donald Trump's proposed 25% tariff on French goods, which could reach $1.3 billion, excludes wine and cheese. The tariffs, which are in response to a French tax on digital services, are not scheduled to take effect until January, giving the countries time to negotiate a resolution.
More of today's food consumers, especially millennials, are looking for new experiences in taste, texture and flavor by seeking out foods from all over the world. The trend is being fueled by global social media connections, and this second installment of a four-part series explores ways retailers and foodservice operators can reach this emerging group of adventurous customers.
A new robot designed by MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory team and Ava Robotics
could help grocers by using a special UV-C light fixture to kill the coronavirus. The light is attached to the autonomous robot's base and the machine can cover 4,000 square feet of surfaces in 30 minutes, killing about 90% of the virus, designers say.
More than half of shoppers say their biggest worry once the pandemic recedes is being able to find the products they want at their local stores, a new survey from Acosta shows. The poll found 53% of people cited the continuing prospect of empty shelves as a chief concern, while 45% said finding low prices once the pandemic passes would be a top priority.
MilkRun, which works to help farmers and shoppers by delivering locally produced food direct to the doors of customers, has expanded to Seattle and says it plans to launch service in other cities by the end of 2020. The Portland, Ore., company said it has hired 28 people from the restaurant industry and added new food distributors to help fuel its expansion.
Starting today, wineries, bars and restaurants in Sonoma County, Calif., are halting indoor service as the state reimposes restrictions because of the spread of COVID-19. Movie theaters are also affected by the order, which will last at least until Aug. 2.
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