retail news in context, analysis with attitude

• The Richmond Times Dispatch reports that Kroger “s expanding its fuel program to allow customers to redeem points at 26 Richmond area Shell stations beginning Monday. This would be in addition to redeeming points at fuel centers located at Kroger stores. Points are earned when shoppers use their Kroger loyalty card at check out. For every 100 points a customer racks up, they get 10 cents off per gallon of gas. They can redeem a maximum of 1,000 points at once, which translates into $1 discount at the pump at a Kroger fuel center.”

Reuters reports that “scientists at Coca-Cola Co. are working on developments ranging from plant-derived plastic to beverages with new textures, as the world's largest soft drink maker aims to stay ahead of consumers' quickly changing tastes ... toying with beverage formulations that may take the company beyond liquids.”

Evaluating the possibilities is the responsibility of Coke’s Venturing and Emerging Brands (VEB) unit, which is both assessing outside proposals as well as working on internal product development.
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