business news in context, analysis with attitude

With brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

•  Fortune is out with its annual Best Workplaces For Women list, and the list includes a number off retailers:  Target (#13), Wegmans (#17), Publix Super Markets (#59), and Sheetz (#64).

It almost came as a shock to me that Wegmans wasn't in the top three - it almost always when it makes these lists.

•  Pennsylvania-based Weis Markets said yesterday that "more than 90 percent of its stores no longer use ozone-depleting refrigerants and that its distribution, manufacturing and support facilities have also transitioned away from the use of these refrigerants."

The press release points out that "the United Nations (UN) adopted the Montreal Protocol in 1987 to phase out substances depleting the Earth’s ozone layer, which protects us from receiving harmful levels of the sun’s ultraviolet light, a known cause of skin cancer and cataracts. The Protocol is the only UN treaty to have been ratified by all 198 UN Member States.

"Developed countries have banned the production and import of new HCFCs as of January 1, 2020, while developing countries are to complete the phase-out by 2030. To date, the Parties to the Protocol have phased out 98% of ozone-depleting substances globally compared to 1990 levels."

“Over the past fifteen years, as part of our work with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Green Chill partnership, we’ve worked to reduce our store and facility refrigerant emissions, which deplete the ozone layer and contributes to climate change,” said R. Kevin Small, Weis Markets’ Vice President of Development

•  The New York Times reports that Marks and Spencer is closing its 11 food stores in France and is blaming Brexit for the decision.

“The supply chain complexities in place following the U.K.’s exit from the European Union, now make it near impossible for us to serve fresh and chilled products to customers to the high standards they expect,” Paul Friston, the company’s managing director for international business, said in a statement.

According to the Times, "The stores were supplied with products made in Northampton, near the middle of England, and shipped across the English Channel each day. At the start of the year, once Britain began its new trading relationship with the European Union, the stores’ shelves emptied out in Paris as new customs checks and tariffs upended the retailer’s supply chain."