Friday, December 28, 2007

Natural~Specialty Foods Memo On Fresh & Easy

The food and grocery industry blog Natural~Specialty Foods Memo has been writing a lot about Tesco's Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market.

The blog recently reported, and wrote about the grocer's plans to move into Northern California next year.

Additionally, they have a number of pieces about Fresh & Easy and other small format stores, including deep-discounter ALDI, the Giant Eagle Express stores, Whole Foods' Market, Inc.'s new Whole Foods Express prototype store and others.

The blog also has numerous stories about Wal-Mart's research and development efforts into a small format grocery market of their own. Natural~Specialty Foods Memo calls the format "Small Marts."

Further, the publication has a recent article about two small format natural foods stores--Sunflower Market, which is owned by supermarket industry giant Supervalu, and Sunflower Farmers Market, a fast-growing natural foods chain started by the former founder of Wild Oats Markets and based in Boulder, Colorado.

Both Sunflower Market and Colorado-based Sunflower Farmers Market plan on building numerous new stores in the next five years, posing a potential challenge to Whole Foods' dominance of the natural and organic products retail category, according to the blog.

Natural~Specialty Foods Memo calls these small format natural foods stores "Natural Born Category Killers." It calls them this because the small format natural and organic products stores are no frills in style, carry a smaller selection of products than Whole Foods--and put a major emphasis on low prices, which is the chains' key positioning element in the category.

The blog's address is:

After reading a couple pieces, we typed in Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Markets, Fresh and Easy, Wal-Mart, Small Marts, Express stores, small format revolution, Sunflower Farmers Market, Sunflower Market, ALDI and Tesco, and got access to numerous stories about Fresh & Easy and other small format grocery markets.

You can also find the Fresh & Easy and small format stories by looking at August through December in the blog archives.

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