…with brief, occasional, italicized and sometimes gratuitous commentary…

• Associated Wholesale Grocers (AWG) announced yesterday that it is launching a new scan-based trading (SBT) program that will provide its members with “visibility into out-of-stocks so direct store delivery (DSD) suppliers can take action to optimize on-the-shelf inventory. Additionally, AWG’s members and vendor partners will gain labor savings at the back door with expedited check in while also allowing members to free up valuable working capital.

“In today’s omnichannel world, it’s essential to the success of independent grocers to partner with their suppliers and share store data to enable more accurate store replenishment,” said Louis Stinebaugh, VP, sales and support for AWG, in a prepared statement.

AWG’s new SBT program is powered by ReposiTrak.

Two notes here. One is that this yet again points to the power of data - you can do a lot more with it than without it. Why wouldn’t you do this?

Second, I need to point out that ReposiTrak is a regular MNB sponsor. But I would’ve written this item even if it weren’t.



• The Wall Street Journal< this morning reports that Starbucks “has agreed to provide additional disclosures on how it recognizes revenue after the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission questioned some of its accounting practices.”

According to the story, Starbucks “is one of many U.S. companies adjusting to new accounting guidelines that came into effect at the start of last year for most public companies. The new rules aim to standardize how companies from different industries account for revenue from sales and services.

“At least 208 companies received letters from the SEC about their revenue-recognition practices in 2018, according to regulatory filings and data compiled by consulting firm Audit Analytics Inc. That’s up about 56% over the annual average during the previous two years.”


• The New York Times reports that “Juul Labs, the dominant e-cigarette company, illegally marketed its vaping products as a less harmful alternative to traditional cigarettes, the Food and Drug Administration said on Monday, casting a deepening shadow over the safety of e-cigarette devices.

“The agency issued a warning letter to Juul, saying that the company violated federal regulations because it had not received federal approval to promote and sell its vaping products as a healthier option.”

The FDA move, the Times writes, “served as a reminder that the health effects of e-cigarettes are not established at a time when more than 400 people have been sickened by vaping-related illnesses. Five deaths have been linked to vaping, and hundreds of people have been hospitalized. Public health investigators have yet to determine a specific cause, but they have cited the use of cannabis and nicotine vaping products as possibilities. No one product or company has been implicated.”


• The Wall Street Journal reports that fast feeder Wendy’s is getting back into the breakfast business, and “will bring back breakfast across its U.S. restaurants next year as fast-food chains compete to lure diners during more of the day.”

Wendy’s says it “will spend $20 million to add more menu items and longer hours at its 5,813 domestic restaurants. Wendy’s said it and its franchisees will hire some 20,000 workers to help roll out the expanded offerings.”