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Meijer celebrates 75th anniversary with 189 block parties at each Meijer location

BY Anna Mcgrath

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. Meijer is celebrating its 75th anniversary with an old fashion “block party” on Saturday, June 27 at all 189 stores throughout the Midwest.

The event will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and will feature fun family events, kids’ activities, commemorative giveaways, entertainment, contests and free food.  Free hot dogs, food samplings, giveaways, music, games and dozens of other activities both inside and outside the store will also be provided by Meijer.

“We started as one small store 75 years ago this June,” said Frank Guglielmi, director of public relations for Meijer. “We wanted our celebration to reflect the personal relationship Meijer has always had with its loyal customers. Each store’s ‘block party’ will help convey that local connection we have with shoppers.”

Over the next several weeks, Meijer will be celebrating with other promotions, events and contests will be happening. For more information visit meijer.com or simply head into any local Meijer store.

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Walgreens opens eco-friendly drug store

BY Jim Frederick

DEERFIELD, Ill. The “green” in the Walgreens name is taking on new meaning.

Walgreens Wednesday unveiled what it calls the nation’s first drug store to meet top environmental requirements for efficiency and design. The new store, in the San Diego suburb of Mira Mesa, Calif., is designed to meet Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design standards, a certification granted by the U.S. Green Building Council.

Walgreens officials and guests marked the store’s grand opening with a tree planting ceremony and other eco-oriented activities, along with product giveaways for the local community. The company also is donating $5,000 to the San Diego chapter of the Surfrider Foundation, a nonprofit environmental group whose goal is to protect the world’s oceans, waves and beaches through education, conservation and research.

“We are proud to showcase our commitment to the environment here in the San Diego area, a region recognized for its sustainability efforts,” said Walgreens operations VP Matt Sesto. “Walgreens is making great progress on our environmental initiatives in stores chainwide. We’re cutting our electricity and water usage, recycling tons of cardboard and shrink wrap each year and upgrading equipment for maximum efficiency.”

The Mira Mesa store — Walgreens’ first in that community and its 19th unit in San Diego County —  offers reserved parking for hybrid vehicles and bike racks, and is located close to public transportation. Seventy-five percent of the store’s lighting comes from sunlight through skylights and solar tubes. Coolers, freezers and exterior signs all use LED lights, reducing energy use by 50% over fluorescent lighting.

The store will save enough electricity to power 19.3 homes per year, according to Walgreens. In addition, the use of native and adaptive plant species will eliminate water usage for landscaping, and 95% of construction waste was diverted from landfills and recycled.

“Signage posted inside the store will inform customers about the features that make this location unique,” Sesto said. “We want people to feel good about shopping here, and maybe even be inspired to live greener lives.”

The Mira Mesa Walgreens is registered under the LEED Green Building Rating System. It will be reviewed by the USGBC and given a specific level of certification in four to six months.

Walgreens plans to open its next LEED-registered store in Chicago this fall, with two more locations to follow by the end of the year. The company’s efforts to reduce its carbon footprint also include the use of solar panel systems in 63 of its locations in California, Connecticut, New Jersey and Oregon.

More information on Walgreens’ environmental efforts can be found at www.walgreens.com/responsibility.

The chain opened its first store in Southern California more than 15 years ago. Another nine Walgreens stores are planned to open in the area by the end of 2011.

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Supervalu CEO warns investors of upcoming Q1 results

BY Michael Johnsen

MINNEAPOLIS Within one week after the close of its first quarter ended, June 20, Supervalu officials warned investors that results will be “substantially” less than originally anticipated.

“Since providing guidance on our fourth-quarter earnings call, consumers have become more value focused and cautious in their spending, which has pressured sales and margins greater than anticipated,” said Supervalu CEO Craig Herkert. “We currently estimate our identical-store sales will be approximately negative 3%. We will update annual guidance on July 28 with our first-quarter earnings release,” he said. “I am engaged in a full review of our operations and support functions. Supervalu has significant potential.”

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