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• Pro’s Ranch Markets and Vallarta Supermarkets jointly announced that they have entered into an agreement for the sale of the four Pro’s Ranch Markets California Central Valley grocery stores to Vallarta Supermarkets. The transaction is expected to close before Thanksgiving 2010.

“The Central Valley and the surrounding communities welcomed us with open arms from day one, and we have long-term team members who are like family, so this decision is especially difficult,” said Mike Provenzano Sr., Pro’s Ranch Markets President and CEO. Pro’s Ranch Markets continues to own 11 locations in the Southwest with stores in Arizona, Texas and New Mexico (including four currently under construction).

• The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reports that Giant Eagle Supermarkets’ “3-year-old experiment in operating its own plant to bottle water and iced teas will come to an end Friday when the company closes its Latrobe bottling facility. Talks are progressing with a possible buyer. The Chestnut Ridge Beverage Co. is closing the former LeNature's Inc. bottling plant to cut costs, Giant Eagle said in a statement. Giant Eagle is the minority owner in Chestnut Ridge, with the other unidentified investors.

• The American Council on Exercise (ACE), the largest fitness certification, education and training organization in the world, announced an alliance with the NuVal, the nutritional ranking system that scores virtually every product in the supermarket on a scale of 1-100, allowing consumers to make more informed choices. The goal of the arrangement, the organizations said, is to “work together to combat the growing obesity epidemic, promote small steps to a healthier lifestyle, empower Americans to make healthier choices and provide tools and education to improve quality of life.” The first step will be a series of webinars that will empowerACE members with information that will allow them to counsel consumers more effectively.

• Pennsylvania-based Weis Markets announced that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s GreenChill Partnership recently presented it with three 2010 Environmental Achievement Awards. The Company received GreenChill’s “Most Improved Emissions Rate Award,” the “Superior Environmental Achievement Award,” and the “Exceptional Environmental Achievement Award.”

The awards recognize the Weis’s efforts “to reduce the refrigerant discharged from the systems used to refrigerate the displays and frozen food cases in its 164 stores,” the company said. “These refrigerant emissions harm the earth’s ozone layer and contribute to climate change.”
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