Weekly Round Up, May 26 2015

By Steve Wynne-Jones
Weekly Round Up, May 26 2015

Schwarz Group, the parent company of Lidl, has posted a 7% sales increase in FY2014 to reach €79.3 billion. The German retail giant did see a decrease in profits for the year, however, this was due to investment in store revamps. Commenting on the group's performance, Barclays European Food Retail Research said "the 7% sales growth on an already large base is a strong performance."

A study by Tesco Ireland has named the grocery items that shoppers from different parts of the country place most often in their shopping baskets. As reported by The Journal, the study found that Dublin residents are most likely to put bagged salads, chilled salads, eggs and cheese in their basket, while in Cork, bakery bread is most popular. Meath residents can't get enough coleslaw, it found, while Tipperary consumers are big purchasers of pet food.

The National Federation of Retail Newsagents has welcomed the EU’s adoption of regulations to cap fees for credit and debit card payments, following its efforts to demonstrate the burden they have on retailers. The aim of the new regulations is to reduce costs for both retailers and consumer, and to help create an EU-wide payments market.

The FSAI has issued an alert on imported frozen berries, following reports of an outbreak of norovirus in Sweden and hepatitis A virus in Australia, linked to the consumption of frozen berries. There is no indication that batches of berries implicated have been imported into Ireland, but consumers are advised to boil frozen berries ahead of use.

Footage of Dublin Zoo’s elephants is set to feature in a new national TV ad campaign for The Natural Confectionery Company as it promotes its new limited edition ‘Dublin Zoo Friends’ sweets. The ‘Zoo Cam’ campaign will be the first time footage from Dublin Zoo will be used in national advertising.


France's parliament has voted to reduce food waste by banning medium and large supermarkets from throwing away food. Supermarkets will have to sign contracts with charity groups to instead see excess food donated to those who need it, or have food that can’t be distributed turned into animal feed and compost.

Wheat and gluten-free brand Helen’s has announced that it will again be taking part in at this year’s Bloom Festival in the Phoenix Park between 28 May and 1 June. The Kinsale-based company will be presenting its full range of free from foods, including Breakfast Seed Toppings and Breakfast Protein Crunch.

Manor Farm has announced a €5 million innovation investment; the latest phase of a five-year investment at its processing plant in Cavan. Just over €3 million is being spend on the installation of Individual Quick Frozen freezers, following on from a €1.6 million upgrade of Manor Farm’s water treatment system. Another quarter a million will help the brand develop a ‘cook in the bag’ roast chicken, Really Easy Chicken.

Western Union’s Irish operation has reportedly been issued with a €1.75 million fine by the Central Bank, following the discovery of insufficiencies in its anti-money laundering policies by regulators. The Central Bank also discovered that the company fell short in training retail agents, and that instead of employing a local IT system to monitor potential illegal activity, it relied on staff in the US to spot it.

© 2015 - Checkout Magazine

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