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REPORTERS Notebook

BY DSN STAFF

Supplier News The Purple Beverage Co. is harnessing the power of the dark purple Amazon-ian açai berry, known for containing high levels of antioxidants and cholesterol-fighting fatty acids, into a new beverage, Purple.

The all-natural, no-sugar-added beverage combines the açai berry with six other antioxidant-rich juices, including black cherry, pomegranate, black currant, purple plum, cranberry and blueberry.

Purple is available in health food stores, restaurants, delis, drug stores, supermarkets and convenience stores in such cities as New York, Los Angeles and Miami, and will be available nationwide in fall 2007. Purple retails for $3.99. For more information about the purple drink, visit www.drinkpurple.com.

Nestlé U.S.A. introduced this summer its new Nestlé Crunch

Crisp bar. The chocolate bar features layers of light, crispy wafers and chocolate creme topped with airy crispies and chocolate.

Nestlé Crunch Crisp addresses consumers’ demand for unique texture combinations, and offers a lighter, less-filling solution to mid-afternoon cravings.

The Nestlé Crunch Crisp bar is available in a single-size bar, king-size bar, 8-bar packs and fun-size bags. The assortment retails from 69 cents to $2.99.

The Wm. Wrigley Jr. Co. recently released new tropical fruit flavors for three of its popular brands. Eclipse Fusion introduced Freshmint Tropical, Hubba Bubba Max unveiled Island Punch and Orbit White expanded its portfolio with Melon Breeze.

The Eclipse Fusion Freshmint Tropical is sold in a 9-pellet pack for $1.19 and in a multipack that includes three individual 10-pellet packs for $2.69. Hubba Bubba Max Island Punch is available in a five-pack for 59 cents and in a 10-pack for 99 cents. Orbit White Melon Breeze retails for $1.09 in the 12-pellet pack, a multipack that includes three individual 12-pellet packs retails for $2.29 and the new Big-E-Pak 60-pellet container sells for $2.99.

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Kroger appoints Going as Michigan division president

BY Adam Kraemer

CINCINNATI The Kroger Co. announced Wednesday that it has named Rick Going president of the company’s new Michigan division.

Kroger currently operates 138 stores in the state; Going will oversee operations in them, effective immediately.

During his 26-year tenure with Kroger, Going has held a number of district- and division-level leadership positions at the store and has served as vice president of Retail Operations and vice president of Merchandising for Kroger’s Cincinnati/Dayton division.

“Rick brings extensive experience in operations and merchandising to this new role,” said Don McGeorge, Kroger’s president and chief operating officer. “We look forward to his leadership as he works with our associates to build on Kroger’s growth in Michigan by focusing on our customers to create even better shopping experiences for them.”

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NACDS responds to “misleading” New York Times article

BY DSN STAFF

ALEXANDRIA, Va. The National Association of Chain Drug Stores has fired back at The New York Times after the publication ran an article in its Sept. 18 issue titled, “The ‘Poisonous Cocktail’ of Multiple Drugs.”

The NACDS said the article misrepresented the role of chain pharmacies in the prevention of harmful drug interactions. The article blamed, “places where chain stores have replaced independent pharmacies or when the patient’s drug plan requires that medications be ordered by mail.” The NACDS retaliated by stating that all pharmacists, no matter whether they work in a chain or at an independent pharmacy, counsel patients for drug interactions and rely on medication information for this purpose.

The NACDS said the article misrepresented the role of chain pharmacies in the prevention of harmful drug interactions. The article blamed, “places where chain stores have replaced independent pharmacies or when the patient’s drug plan requires that medications be ordered by mail.” The NACDS retaliated by stating that all pharmacists, no matter whether they work in a chain or at an independent pharmacy, counsel patients for drug interactions and rely on medication information for this purpose.

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