Progressive Grocer

JUN 2016

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Page 139 of 239

Canned Goods Grocery C ans may be considered passé by many in the food industry — and even by many consumers — but they're still ubiquitous on center store shelves, as at Food Lion's more than 1,100 locations. Te Salisbury, N.C.-based grocer ofers canned items in its private label Cha-Ching line, for example, along with analogous items from national brands. "At Food Lion, we promote the key core [canned] items frequently and create displays that are easy for our customers to understand," notes company spokesman Benny Smith. "Corn, green beans and peas are the core vegetable items." To further encourage shoppers to purchase these products, Smith says, "We are leverag- ing our current promotional strategy of BOGO, two-for-$1 and hot sale prices. Our customers have responded positively, as this helps them get the items they need at a [better] price, thus sav- ing money." When it comes to future rollouts of canned products, "we have concentrated on intro- ducing new line extensions of products we already have, based on customer preferences," he explains. "We continue to look at introducing new products later, based on customer needs." As for advancements in the pack- aging form, Smith points to cans' "be- coming more eco-friendly," like Bumble Bee Seafoods' Wild Selections seafood line, as well as to the fact that vendors like Bumble Bee, Chicken of the Sea, ConAgra Foods, Del Monte and Goya Foods are introducing easy-open cans, "since most Millennials do not own a can opener." Canned Heat Such innovations are par for the course for the Washington, D.C.-based Can Manufacturers Institute (CMI), the trade association of the metal and composite can manufacturing industry and its suppliers in the United States. "Moms have, for generations, relied on canned foods to seal in the nutrition, freshness and favor of their favorite foods, and recent innovations — like easy-to-open and pull-tab lids, as well as metal cans being 100 percent recyclable — have made them even more invaluable for today's families," says Sherrie Rosenblatt, the institute's VP of market- ing and communications. "Te canning process provides long-term food quality, as fruits and vegetables are picked at the peak of ripeness and canned within hours, which locks in all the fresh- ness, nutrition and favor." To promote "the myriad benefts canned foods ofer," CMI created Cans Get You Cooking, which, according to Rosenblatt, has led to "a sizable lift in canned food sales for those retailers partnering Consumer research has shown we must improve consumers' perceptions of the nutritional benefits of canned food." —Rich Tavoletti, Canned Food Alliance 140 | Progressive Grocer | Ahead of What's Next | June 2016 In the Can It's not just the container, but also the contents, that distinguishes these products. By Bridget Goldschmidt

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