retail news in context, analysis with attitude

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

• Hips don't lie, apparently even about yogurt.

Advertising Age reports that Shakira has replaced Jamie Lee Curtis as Dannon's Activia spokesperson, as the company trades in an advertising approach that stressed digestive health for one that tries to grow the brand's sex appeal with footage that "shows the pop star in a 'fantasy forest where she is showered with swirls of gold stardust and dances to express how good she feels inside,' according to a description of the ad provided by Dannon."

The campaign is called "Dare to Feel Good."

I dare. I dare. Because while I'd never heard of Shakira before "The Voice," now I'd pretty much follow her anywhere. And yes, Mrs. Content Guy knows…

• The Chicago Tribune reports that Quiznos, the sandwich chain, has "filed for pre-packaged bankruptcy protection on Friday after struggling with high debt and stiff competition for years," saying that such a move could cut its debt by more than $400 million.

• The Associated Press reports on how the United States and the European Union are negotiating a trade agreement in which the EU "wants to ban the use of names like Parmesan, feta and Gorgonzola on cheese made in the United States. The argument is that the American-made cheeses are shadows of the original European varieties and cut into sales and identity of the European cheeses … U.S. dairy producers, cheese makers and food companies are all fighting the idea, which they say would hurt the $4-billion domestic cheese industry and endlessly confuse consumers … Concerned about the possible effect of changing the labels on popular foods, a bipartisan group of 55 senators wrote U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack this week asking them not to agree to any such proposals by the EU."

Nice that the Congress can get bipartisan about something…

• The Chicago Tribune reports that Lands' End is scheduled to be spun off as a separate business by Sears Holdings on April 4. Sears bought Lands' End for $1.9 billion in 2002.
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