retail news in context, analysis with attitude

With brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

•  The Seattle Times reports that "Starbucks will close five Seattle stores and one in Everett with high rates of crime as part of a broad initiative to boost security at the cafes, the company announced Monday.

"The closed stores include five in Seattle — stores in the Central Area, Capitol Hill, Ravenna, Union Station and Westlake Center are slated to close — and one in Everett. In total, 17 U.S. stores will close July 31. The stores were chosen based on their level of crime and whether attempts to lower crime rates were successful, a company spokesperson said.

"Going forward, store managers will also be allowed to choose whether bathrooms are open to the public, and future stores will be redesigned to be safer, the company said Monday.  Those who work at the stores that are permanently closing can choose to be reassigned to neighboring stores, the company said.

"The stores at Union Station and Pike are unionized, and partners who relocate to other stores will continue to receive union representation if their new store is also unionized."

•  From Reuters:

"A federal judge said Subway can be sued for allegedly deceiving customers about its tuna products, including a claim it uses other fish species, chicken, pork and cattle instead of the advertised '100% tuna.'

"U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar in San Francisco called it premature to accept Subway's argument that any presence of non-tuna DNA might result from eggs in mayonnaise, or cross-contact with other ingredients that its restaurants' employees handle … The judge also said the plaintiff Nilima Amin, an Alameda County resident who claimed to order Subway tuna products more than 100 times from 2013 to 2019, could try to prove that the salads, sandwiches and wraps 'wholly lack' tuna.

"He rejected Amin's argument that 'reasonable consumers' would expect only tuna and nothing else, calling it a 'fact of life' that tuna products could contain mayonnaise and bread. Tigar also dismissed another plaintiff from the case.

"In a statement, Subway said it 'serves 100% tuna' and was disappointed the 'reckless and improper' lawsuit could continue."

They may think the lawsuit is reckless and improper, but I'm really, really looking forward to seeing what kind of evidence the plaintiffs are able to reel in.