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Rite Aid partners with Billy Blanks on heart-healthy excercise and diet

BY Michael Johnsen

CAMP HILL, Pa. Rite Aid announced Monday partnerships with fitness guru Billy Blanks—a celebrity who in the past has appeared at Rite Aid’s semi-annual Health & Beauty Expos—and the American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women movement to help promote heart health during National Heart Month in February.

As part of the partnerships, Rite Aid is offering exclusive heart-healthy tips and information that includes a set of “Amped Moves” developed by Blanks exclusively for Rite Aid. The free comprehensive Rite Aid Heart Guide provides information on detection and prevention of heart disease. It also offers helpful advice on heart risks, the signs of a heart attack, and helpful products to aide heart health, among other things. “Rite Aid pharmacists and associates are committed to providing the everyday products and services to help valued customers lead healthier lives,” stated John Learish, Rite Aid’s senior executive vice president of marketing. “Couple our Heart Guide with the Billy Blanks Amped Moves workout, and customers will be on their way to battling heart disease.”

Customers will receive a Billy Blanks cookbook with heart smart recipes if they purchase $30 worth of select items.

And Rite Aid will be seeking $1 donations for a “Red Dress” to benefit the Go Red for Women movement of the American Heart Association. To help show the company’s support, Rite Aid associates will wear red to participate in the AHA’s National Go Red for Women Day Feb. 1.

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Ahold 4Q U.S. sales reach $5 billion

BY DSN STAFF

AMSTERDAM Ahold today reported total net sales for its U.S. segments of $5 billion for the fourth quarter compared with net sales of $4.8 billion for the same period last year.

For its Stop & Shop/Giant-Landover division, the company reported net sales of $3.9 billion for the quarter, a 2% increase over sales of $3.8 billion last year. The Giant-Carlisle division posted a net sales increase of 8.6% to $1 billion from $951 million last year.

According to Ahold, economic instability in the United States did not have a significant impact on local market conditions. Price investments related to the further roll-out of the Value Improvement Program, launched in September 2006 at Stop & Shop and Giant-Landover, will continue to impact margins, the company reported.

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Supervalu’s Sunflower Markets to close after two years

BY Doug Desjardins

MINNEAPOLIS The Sunflower Markets chain run by Supervalu is shutting down after two years in business. The chain announced that it’s now closing all five stores in three states.

“Ultimately, the format did not meet our goals,” said Supervalu spokeswoman Haley Meyer.

The smaller format stores emphasized organic foods and all-natural products and were seen as an alternative to other grocers like Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. Three of the stores are located in Columbus, Ohio, and the other two are in Chicago and Indianapolis. The first store opened in early 2006 and Supervalu planned to open up to 50 stores if the format proved successful.

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