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Weekly Round-Up ... 9 February 2021

By Maev Martin
Weekly Round-Up ... 9 February 2021

Portuguese retailer Continente has agreed to purchase a total of 14.5 million tonnes of oranges produced in the Algarve region, as it seeks to expand its support for local producers, reports This represents a rise of 5% on last year’s numbers, the retailer noted. All oranges available at Continente stores are sourced from the Algarve, including oranges used in in-store juice machines, as well as the natural orange juice for sale at Bagga cafeterias.

Londis retailers and their staff will be humming the song made famous by Nancy Sinatra – ‘These Boots are Made for Walking’ – for the month of February, as they take part in the LauraLynn 280,000-step challenge. In total, more than 500 Londis retailers, their families and staff from 42 stores across 15 counties in Ireland have signed up to raise much-needed funds for LauraLynn, Ireland’s children’s hospice, the retailer announced. Even by modest calculations, Londis retailers and their teams will circumnavigate the globe twice by the end of February. LauraLynn is the only specialist hospice in Ireland to care for children with life-limiting conditions and their families. The children’s hospice provides palliative and end-of-life care to children and gives respite and support to their families – at the hospice, in the community, and in their own homes. The hospice also provides psychological support and counselling, residential family camps, a bereavement programme, and musical and holistic therapies to the families. In December 2020, Londis announced that LauraLynn would be its new national charity partner for the next two years, and this is the first of many fundraising initiatives in which Londis retailers will be engaging for the charity.

Mace has launched a new radio and digital campaign featuring brand ambassador and Irish rugby captain Johnny Sexton that will run throughout the Six Nations rugby tournament. The radio campaign, running on national and local stations, makes a play on the moment when the crowd traditionally falls silent, just as Johnny is about to take a kick. It draws a parallel from this to the in-store experience at Mace, with the store falling silent as someone makes the all-important decision of what to pick up to enjoy while watching the match at home. Delivered in a commentator style, it is sure to grab people’s attention. The accompanying digital-video series demonstrates the many magic moments that Johnny has created with Mace, ‘with many more to come,’ the retailer noted.

A number of seafood producers in Ireland are moving online, in a bid to increase trade due to their businesses being hit during the pandemic. Atlantis Seafood saw business drop by 70%, as pubs, restaurants and hotels closed their doors, reports RTÉ. The seafood processor noted that a new website that it has developed will help save jobs and build a new customer base. The Wexford-based company is now selling fish nationwide, using specially developed packaging that keeps it chilled. The team at Atlantis of Kilmore Quay started a home delivery service, using vans that would normally be used to deliver to restaurants. Speaking with RTÉ, John Kenny, who runs Atlantis, said, “Our bread-and-butter business was the hospitality trade. We had many loyal customers over the years, and, hopefully, in the not-too-distant future, we will see that business return.”

Supermarket chain Kroger Co. is to give $100 to workers who get a Covid-19 vaccination, joining a growing list of US retailers incentivising employees to get inoculated against the novel coronavirus as soon as possible, reports Reuters. Kroger, which also operates Ralphs and Harris Teeter, among other banners across 35 states, has hired over 100,000 new workers to cater to a surge in demand amid coronavirus lockdowns. The company announced that it will also invest an additional $50 million in rewards for associates, including a $100 store credit and 1,000 fuel points for hourly staff. Other retailers who have taken similar action to encourage their US employees to get a vaccination include Dollar General, German supermarket chain Aldi, Instacart and Trader Joe’s.

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