retail news in context, analysis with attitude

...with brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary...

• The Los Angeles Times this morning reports that the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has filed a petition with the US Food and Drug Administration (USDA), asking that the government "require beverage makers to reduce the amount of high-fructose corn syrup and other sweeteners," saying that "current levels of high-fructose corn syrup are unsafe for daily consumption."

In response, the American Beverage Association (ABA) released a statement that said, in part: "Everyone has a role to play in reducing obesity levels — a fact completely ignored in this petition. This is why the beverage industry has worked to increase options and information for consumers."

• The Newton Tab reports that the new Boston-area Wegmans store slated to be opened in the Chestnut Hill Square Development is likely to be opened between October and November 2013.

• The Sacramento Bee reports that David John Magana, a former Raley's advertising director, "has pleaded guilty to his role in a complex scheme to defraud the West Sacramento-based supermarket chain of more than $2.5 million ... According to court documents, Magana conspired with others to defraud Raley's through a scheme that involved kickbacks, selling Raley's paper inventory to third parties at a discount and supplying paper to Raley's at an inflated price."

TechCrunch.com reports that Apple plans to close down 20 of its stores so they can be moved to larger locations that can handle the influx of customers; Apple says that 10 million people per week visit its 400 stores around the world.

Apple CEO Tim Cook says that the retail model has been a major driver behind the company's success. "I’m not even sure ‘store’ is the right word anymore – they’re much broader than that," he recently told an investor conference. "They are the face of Apple for almost all customers."

Cook's comment is worth paying attention to ... because it signifies what great retailing should be about.
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