Tuesday, 14 April 2015 13:49

Grocery Council Check Out Line 3-31-2015

FRF Grocery Update | March 31, 2015

This issue of THE CHECKOUT LINE contains important items that you as Florida food retailers need to address.

Menu Labeling

If you have 20 or more stores under the same name, you must comply with the Menu Labeling Standards. The greatest challenge is the compliance date of December 1, 2015. Please click for more information on these requirements.

Grinding Logs

Recently the USDA Food Safety Inspection Service (FSIS) published a proposed rule to modify recordkeeping for retail stores that grind raw beef products. According to the proposal the retailer must keep records that disclose the identity and contact information of the supplier of all source materials that they use in the preparation of each lot of raw ground beef.

Again this is a proposed rule, and FRF's Grocery Council will be weighing in with our national partners (FMI and NGA) to make your voice heard. We will keep you updated on this rule. See the FRF website for more information.

Ambush Union Elections

The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has adopted new election rules for union elections for determining if employees will be covered by a union. For years, the average period of time between filing the petition and the actual election has been 38-42 days. Under this new rule the election could be in as few as 11 days! By reducing this time period, employers will find it difficult to share both sides of the story with their employees. Thus favoring the union and making it more difficult to be union free. Despite the fact that congress passed a joint resolution to disagree with this rule, we are no doubt facing an Obama veto. Therefore, the effective date of this rule is April 14, 2015. Please click for more detailed information and recommendations on dealing with this critical issue.

Coupon Bar Codes - Change is Coming Soon#

JICC Urges Retailers to Prepare for Retirement of Coupon Barcodes

On January 29th the Joint Industry Coupon Committee (JICC) urged retailers to prepare for the retirement of UPC Prefix 5 barcodes from manufacturer coupons. These symbols will no longer be used after June 30, 2015 as manufacturers shift to exclusive use of the GS1 DataBar™ format for coupons. To ensure readiness, retailers may simply need to enable the functionality in their systems. In some instances, software and/or hardware modifications may be required. To avoid a disadvantaged position in the marketplace after June 30, retailers are encouraged to implement and activate these technologies as soon as possible.

The decision to move to exclusive use of the GS1 DataBar™ was announced in 2007, with the phase out period for UPC Prefix 5 barcodes beginning in 2011 and concluding June 30, 2015. For additional information, visit the GS1 US website, courtesy of NGA. Also, see the FRF website for more details.

SNAP Update

Once again we want to inform you that SNAP EBT cards will begin to expire in the month of April. All EBT recipients will receive a new card in the mail. The problem comes when a recipient has moved and has not provided their new address to the Department of Children and Families. See the FRF website for a poster explaining this which you can post for customers to see.

We are pleased to report that we are making progress in the expansion of SNAP benefits from 15 days to 28 days. We will keep you updated with our progress.

Mark Your Calendars:

June 10th—FRF Summer Meeting - Rosen Shingle Creek, Orlando
Grocery Council - 10:00am-Noon
Loss Prevention Council - 1:30-3:30pm

October 12th—Law Enforcement Officer of the Year Awards Dinner
5:00-7:30pm - Downtown Hilton Tampa

Welcome Reception—FRF Loss Prevention Conference - 7:30-9:00pm
Downtown Hilton Tampa

October 13th—FRF Loss Prevention Conference - 8:00am-4:00pm
Downtown Hilton Tampa

Published in Grocery Council
Monday, 23 February 2015 12:57

2-23-2015 ABL Update from RBC

January, 2015, Control State Results

Source: NABCA
February 22, 2015

During January, nine-liter spirits case sales in the control states were flat, down 0.2%, compared to same period sales last year. Rolling-twelve month volume growth, 2.2%, lagged December's 2.5%. Alabama, Idaho, Montgomery County Maryland, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Virginia, and Vermont reported monthly growth rates exceeding their twelve month trends.

Control state spirits shelf dollars were up 2.7% during January while trending at 4.8% during the past twelve months. Alabama, Idaho, Montgomery County Maryland, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Utah, Virginia, and Vermont reported growth rates exceeding their twelve month trends.
Price/Mix for January is 2.9%, mirroring December.

January's Control State spirits growth was affected, to some extent, by the calendar:

- January, 2015, had five Saturdays in contrast to four during last year's January. A
Wednesday (weak selling day) in last year's calendar was replace by a Saturday (strong
Selling day) in this year's.

- Michigan, with 15% of Control States' spirits and dollars volume, reported four weeks
of sales this year versus five weeks of sales during January, 2013, artificially deflating
sales and skewing Control States results. Michigan had seven fewer selling days this year
than last.

- After normalizing nine-liter spirits case sales for selling day differences, January's
volumetric growth is 3.3% and rolling-twelve month volumes are up 2.2%. Likewise, after
normalizing shelf dollars, January's control states shelf dollar growth rate is 6.6% while
trending at 4.7% during the past twelve-months.

- January's normalized Price/Mix is 3.3%.

During January, Irish Whiskey, with 1.0% share of the control states spirits market, was the fastest growing category with 12.2% reported and a twelve month trend of 11.9%. Vodka, with 35% share, grew during the same periods at 0.1% and 2.0%. Cocktails, Irish Whiskey, and Tequila grew at rates exceeding their twelve-month trends.

January's nine-liter wine case sales growth rate was 2.0%. Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Utah, Mississippi, Montgomery County Maryland, and Wyoming reported 3.4%, 1.1%, 4.6%, -5.0%, -2.6%, and -0.1%, respectively. Rolling-twelve month wine volume growth was 1.8%, nearly flat with December's reported 1.9%.

Friday, 09 January 2015 09:09

"Ambush" Union Elections

On Friday, December 12, 2014, the NLRB finalized their new election rules, which will change union election procedures and shorten an employer’s time period to run a campaign and educate its workers.For years, the average period of time between the filing of a petition for an election until the actual election has been 42 days. This six-week period most often is the only time period that an employer has to spend talking to its employees about the election process, the union’s efforts and promises, and the risks that often accompany unionization. Under the new rules, it is anticipated that the 42-day election campaign period may be as short as 25 days! By shrinking this time period, employers will find a more difficult battle ahead of them if they want to remain union-free. The rule was published in the Federal Register on December 15, 2014, and will go into effect on April 14, 2015.

According to the NRLB, the new rules are intended to streamline the current election procedure, including the following important changes:

  • Union election petitions can be filed electronically, rather than by fax or mail, to make it easier to initiate the process.
  • When an employer maintains its employees’ personal e-mail addresses and phone numbers, it must disclose to the union that information for the individuals included on the voter list (Excelsior List) within two (2) business days of the Regional Director’s approval of an election agreement or Decision and Direction of Election. The “old” rule provides that the list be submitted within seven (7) days and did not require the provision of e-mail addresses and phone numbers.
  • Pre-election hearings (to address any issues that may be deemed to be impediments to having an election) will be scheduled within eight (8) days of the filing of a petition. Prior to the pre-hearing election, employers must provide a list of prospective voters, including job classifications, work schedules and work locations to the Regional Office of the NLRB and to the union.
  • The scope of pre-election hearings will be limited (for example, the eligibility of individual voters is likely to be put off until after the election is held), and NLRB hearing officers will have great latitude in determining what evidence the parties can present at the hearing.
  • At least one day prior to the pre-election hearing, the parties must identify and file a position statement containing all disputed issues; otherwise, parties run the risk of waiving those issues.
  • Once the Regional Director directs an election to take place, obtaining a stay of the election pending an appeal to the NLRB will no longer automatically be permitted.
  • Employers are required to provide more detailed information when posting the Notice of Petition for Election and the Notice of Election.

Courtesy of JD SUPRA