Issue link: http://magazine.progressivegrocer.com/i/723369
30 | Progressive Grocer | Ahead of What's Next | September 2016 knows in our community, and they like to see in our stores, and we're one of the few that does it." at producer and others are spotlighted through in-store signage and digital media. e partnership between Food City and local farmers has a long his- tory. "You guys have been local for, what, pretty much all your lives?" Glei quips to Adkisson and Bishop. "It's not a new thing to us." Alongside produce is a floral and gift shop that offers an unusual option: an engraving station where customers can have me- mentoes embellished with a personal touch. Notes Floral Supervisor Emily Parton, "It's going really well, especially [for] holidays, anniversaries, back- to-school, teachers' gifts," with pens, pocketknives and luggage tags standout candidates for engraving. Prime Grade Food City as a chain has long been famous for what Glei calls its "unparalleled meat and seafood case," and the Johnson City store is no exception. Along with a lot of packaged product behind glass doors like those in produce, the department offers a range of signature made-in-store items, including "a crab cake that's nothing but crab cake — no fillers," prepared by the former chef of a well-loved seafood restaurant that used to operate in the area, and steak burgers, which, as Meat Supervisor Johnny Stout explains, literally live up to their name, having been made from the trimmings of the department's steaks. In fact, when it comes to hamburger, "we grind all of our ground beef in the store every day, all the time," notes Glei. "ere's no ground beef that's ever more than 18 hours old. Many retailers have gone away from Store of the Month Food City, Johnson City, Tenn. M eat and G reet a mong the Johnson City store's meat and seafood selections are a variety of signature store-made offerings. Progressive Grocer: How is the dairy case changing in ways that offer opportunity for grocery retailers? Genevieve Poirier-Richards: The proliferation of new products has changed today's dairy case, causing many retailers to overlook an underleveraged profit driver – fluid milk. In fact, milk may be one of the most underleveraged profit drivers in the entire store, according to new research from industry experts. There's strong milk industry momentum, including new introductions, powerful national marketing programs and elevated scrutiny on milk alternatives. Plus, milk aligns with current food trends and offers so many of the benefits consumers are now seeking – from natural, high- quality protein, to farm-fresh, real nutrition. The time really is right to maximize the dairy case. PG: Why should retailers focus on merchandising and marketing fluid milk? GPR: Dairy aisle space is precious and it's critical to make every foot count. Milk far outperforms on space – generating 18 percent of dairy department profit in only 10 percent of the space. In most categories, profits trail as space grows but milk is the exception. Plus, milk leads the dairy case in sales productivity 1 . Yet, it often lacks the in-store interest of other categories. A d v e rt o r i A l Speaking with... Genevieve Poirier-Richards Senior Vice President, Marketing, Milk Processor Education Program (MilkPEP) PG: How can retailers reinvigorate their fluid milk business so they boost sales and maximize milk profit? GPR: The right balance of milk options, proper space allocation, and effective merchandising can drive profit, according to the research. There are four ways to invigorate fluid milk business: 1. Remedy the out-of-stock issue: Space reductions and out-of-stocks equal lost sales. Research shows converting space back to milk could drive profit 2 . 2. Increase days of supply: Because milk sells quickly and profitably, increasing days-of-supply could improve profit and resolve out-of-stocks 3 . 3. Make space for new products: Fluid milk innovation – like lactose-free, health-enhanced and single serve flavors – represents sizeable growth and sales opportunities 4 . 4. Optimize milk merchandising: Communicating the benefits of milk – in particular protein and recovery – is a proven purchase driver. MilkPEP offers significant support for in-store messaging opportunities 5 . Q A & Dairy Case Dynamics research was conducted by industry experts, including Prime Consulting and Willard Bishop, leveraging national retail data and proprietary research. For more information on the research, contact MilkPEP at [email protected] or 1-800-945-MILK. Watch a full webinar on the findings here: www.progressivegrocer.com/MilkPEP_June2016 1 Willard Bishop 2015 Grocery SuperStudy™ 2 FMI/GMA Study and Bishop SuperStudy™ values. 3 IRI Panel, Bishop Shopper Database, Prime Consulting. 4 IRI 2014 New Product Pacesetters. 5 MilkPEP proprietary data from national grocery channel.