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Weekly Roundup, 25 August, 2020

Long-standing ambassador for Spar, Claudine Keane has officially launched the Spar Better Choices - Back to School campaign. As part of the campaign, Spar has created a number of easy to prepare recipes. Parents can use the easy to follow recipes to make family meals such as healthy chicken nuggets, sweet potato flatbreads and chicken and vegetable crumble, the retailer said. The busy mum to sons Robert and Hudson, Keane said: "The past few months have been so difficult for families all over Ireland, and with two growing boys at home, who are preparing to go back to school, it is so important that I try to prepare tasty, healthy meals as they settle back into school."

Irish retail customer engagement platform ServiceDock has recently launched a new store messaging solution for multi-unit retailers. 'The new platform allows consumers to contact the local outlet of a preferred retail chain directly from Google search results, Google Maps and WhatsApp to ask questions about stock availability and product features,' the company explains. 'Messaging from Google search results or WhatsApp provides a more convenient way for customers to contact stores than a phone call,' it adds. Store staff can respond using ServiceDock’s messaging app, unlike a phone call which will ring out if it’s not answered and that could be a lost sale.“We’ve spoken to retailers who are experiencing 20-times the volume of store queries over the phone now compared to pre-lockdown levels," Oisin Ryan, ServiceDock’s CEO and founder explains.

Chicago soybeans edged lower on Thursday after a seven-month peak in the previous session, while corn eased for a third day as traders set recent storm damage and dry weather in the Midwest against generally strong prospects for harvest yields, reports Reuters. Wheat also eased, with rising expectations for Russia's harvest set to maintain strong export competition. Grain markets were also awaiting weekly U.S. export figures, as well as any further flash sale announcements, to see if brisk demand from China was continuing despite diplomatic tensions between Washington and Beijing.

German retailers EDEKA and its subsidiary Netto Marken-Discount are to offer Apeel coated fresh produce in more than 11,000 stores across Germany, the company said in a statement. The retailer also plans to add more products with the innovative coating developed by the US-based company, Apeel Sciences. The plant-based coating prolongs the shelf life of fruit and vegetables by slowing down water loss and reducing the penetration of oxygen, reports esmmagazine.com

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