retail news in context, analysis with attitude

The Wall Street Journal reports that Walmart, “which scours the globe seeking the lowest-cost suppliers, is finding it can save money by buying more fruits and vegetables grown closer to its stores.

“Other food retailers, including Supervalu Inc. and Safeway Inc., also are racing to expand the amount of locally grown food they offer, as more Americans flock to farmers markets and gourmet grocers such as Whole Foods Market Inc. in search of fresher produce. While some retailers, such as Wal-Mart and Kroger Co., say that buying locally yields savings, most of the chains say their main objective is to satisfy changing consumer preferences.”
KC's View:
Of course, because “local” has neither a legal or even commonly agreed-upon definition, that means retailers have a lot of wiggle room when using it to describe products. But the general consensus seems to be that local sourcing can reduce transportation expenses and spoilage, while at the same time making a compelling value argument to consumers.