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Winn-Dixie donates 50-ft. trailer to Second Harvest North Florida

BY Michael Johnsen

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Winn-Dixie Stores on Wednesday announced the donation of a 50-ft. refrigerated semi-trailer to Second Harvest North Florida, the regional food bank that supplies food to 450 local nonprofit organizations across 17 counties in northern Florida.

Winn-Dixie donated the trailer after learning the food bank’s existing trailer was no longer road-worthy and is being used as an auxiliary refrigeration unit to store perishable foods. The trailer was loaded with approximately 13,000 lbs. of food to restock the food bank’s nearly empty warehouse.

"Winn-Dixie is in the food business. So it’s only natural that we’re eager to partner with Second Harvest to address what, to many, is an invisible problem," Winn-Dixie regional VP Randy Rambo said. "When we learned about Second Harvest’s need, we knew what had to be done in the short and long term."

The food donated today by Winn-Dixie is being put to immediate use through Second Harvest’s Mobile Pantry and its BackPack programs. The specially-wrapped trailer will act as a rolling billboard to educate the public about the region’s hunger problem while transporting food to senior centers, soup kitchens, youth and adult daycare facilities, homeless shelters, church food pantries and feeding programs for school children.

"This is a real godsend," stated Bruce Ganger, executive director for Second Harvest North Florida. "We are the link between surplus food and local nonprofits serving people in need. We have seen demand nearly quadruple in the past four years and we can’t serve the need without a trailer like this."

In 2008, Second Harvest distributed 7.6 million lbs. of food. In 2009, that increased to 11 million lbs. The need continued to grow to 19.3 million lbs. in 2010 and 20.1 million lbs. in 2011. Ganger said that in 2012, Second Harvest will distribute 24 million lbs. of food — equivalent to 20 million meals.

Ganger hopes today’s donation will encourage other companies and individuals to donate food or funding to Second Harvest. He said that a $1 donation provides seven meals. Many of the families the food bank serves make too much money to qualify for federal benefits but too little to make ends meet.

Three-and-a-half years ago, Winn-Dixie launched its food recovery program with Second Harvest North Florida. Prepackaged foods from the grocer’s in-store bakeries and delis, produce, and meat and seafood departments that had previously been discarded on their "sell by" dates are now donated to the food bank. The program was expanded company-wide later that year and has been replicated by other grocers.

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Kraft Foods outlines plans for North American grocery biz

BY Allison Cerra

BOSTON — The future North American grocery business of Kraft Foods will deliver steady and profitable top-line growth, consistent bottom-line growth and a superior dividend payout, according to the business’s future executive team.

Speaking this week at the Barclays Capital Back-to-School Consumer Conference, the future leadership team said that led by such brands as Kraft, Oscar Mayer and Maxwell House, Kraft Foods Group will be North America’s fourth-largest consumer packaged food and beverage company out of the gate, with revenues of approximately $19 billion in 2011. The team added that 10 of the company’s brands achieved sales of $500 million or more in 2011, while an additional 17 brands posted sales of $100 million or more in 2011. What’s more, approximately 80% of Kraft Foods Group’s revenue comes from categories in which the company holds the No. 1 or No. 2 market position.

Kraft Foods Group’s future growth will be driven by a four-part strategic plan: Making its people its competitive edge, executing with excellence, "turbocharging" its iconic brands and redefining efficiency. Additionally, the company expects to be well-positioned over the long term to deliver steady, reliable growth with a strong focus on cash flow to fund a highly competitive dividend and reinvestment in people, innovation and brand-building.

"I have the honor to introduce a new Kraft, one with the spirit of a startup and the soul of a powerhouse," said Tony Vernon, president of Kraft Foods North America and future CEO of Kraft Foods Group. "Our aim is to be North America’s best food and beverage company, and we’ll get there by continuing to offer products consumers love, creating a performance-based culture that motivates and excites employees and becoming the best investment in the industry."

As previously announced, Kraft Foods plans to spin off Kraft Foods Group, which will hold Kraft Foods’ North American grocery business on Oct. 1. Kraft Foods Group will trade on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the ticker symbol "KRFT." Following the spinoff, Kraft Foods will be renamed Mondelez International. Mondelez International will trade on the NASDAQ stock exchange under the ticker symbol "MDLZ."

"Tony and his team have a clear mission and are ready to deliver," said John Cahill, future executive chairman of Kraft Foods Group. "I’m confident we have the right plans and people in place to unlock the value of the North American grocery business after its spinoff."

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Lessons from mobile gaming applied to CPG brand engagement

BY Moira Koch

User engagement is critical to driving brand loyalty. Mobile gaming can offer a unique perspective on how consumer packaged goods firms can engage their consumers.

I recently had the chance to speak with my friend Gregg Carey, co-founder and VP operations for Voxy, a personalized mobile platform to help native Spanish speakers learn English through everyday life experiences (check out Voxy.com). I consider Gregg an expert at mobile technology and I thought I would take advantage of our friendship to gain perspective on how he believes CPG brands can better leverage mobile platforms to gain brand loyalty. Here are the key takeaways of our conversation.

It all boils down to user engagement. Engaging users in two or multi-way interaction is far more effective then pushing out ads, coupons or the like. While the later can drive very short-term purchases, the former builds long-term brand loyalty. As Gregg sees it, one of the most effective ways to engage users is through fun mobile games. He thinks CPG firms can learn a thing or two from the big mobile companies out there today (think Zygna). He suggests that brands need to understand how they fit into their consumer’s lifestyle and build games around that. The key questions CPG firms should be asking are, “how can our brand help our consumers achieve their lifestyle goals and how can we build a game around that?” By building games that reward consumers for achieving goals or by simply building a game which is fun to play and where your brand is a major part of the gaming activities, will increase user engagement and thereby increase brand loyalty. A great example of this is Pepsi’s Brisksaber app that helped promote the Brisk ice tea brand.

I think we are going to see similar apps coming from a much larger range of brands. Be sure you are not left behind.


Moira Koch is a VP at Maia Strategy Group, where she leads consumer packaged goods engagements with an emphasis on retail insights. Prior to joining Maia Strategy Group, she was responsible for developing and launching Bluebeards Original, a premium line of Men’s beard care products sold in retail stores nationwide. Her latest whitepaper “How Mobile Technology is Changing the Retail Environment” is available here.

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