In & Around Food World

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Wawa Inc. and Sheetz, two of the country’s finest convenience store retailers, teamed up to provide more than 5,000 lunches to attendees at the commissioning ceremony of the USS Somerset in Philadelphia last month. The box lunches featured popular items from both company’s menus and were free of charge.

The commissioning ceremony is a time-honored tradition that marks a ship’s entry into the naval fleet. The vessel, currently moored at Penn’s Landing on the Delaware River waterfront, commemorates Flight 93 which crashed in SomersetCounty after the crew and passengers thwarted a terrorist attack on 9/11. It incorporates both a flight deck for helicopters and Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft, in addition to a well deck for landing craft and amphibious vessels. It can carry up to 800 U.S. Marines and sailors.

Joe Sheetz, president and CEO of Sheetz, and Chris Gheysens, Wawa’s president and CEO greeted the more than 5,000 who attended the ceremony.

Recently I read an interesting article in Marketing Daily headlined, “More Guys in Grocery Aisles With Higher Brand Affinity,” reporting on a column in Defy Media’s second annual Acumen Report: “Brand New Men, tapping something over 2,000 men ages 18-49, suggests that men are becoming household helpers, perhaps as they are supplanted at work by women – a big change from household engagement meaning coming home for dinner now and then.”

“The study shows that men, as they become more involved with household duties, are also becoming more involved in shopping and brand choices. ……more than 65 percent of respondents said they now hold primary shopping responsibility for several household product categories, with 67 percent saying they enjoy shopping for the household and close to 63 percent open to choosing new brands.”

The study also showed that about 40 percent of men noted they became aware of a new brand from advertising and about 25 percent said they were apprised about a brand from a YouTube video, and about 28 percent from social media.

Our sincere sympathy is extended to the family of Michael Joseph Pastore, Sr., who died last month. Many of our readers will remember Mike, who along with his son Michael opened the Pastore Wholesale Grocers in 1966 in Baltimore’s Little Italy. Michael leaves his wife of 67 years, Dolores, son Michael and wife Maryann; and was the proud grandfather of Judge Nicole Pastore Klein and husband, Dennis; Michael J. Pastore II and wife Jessica; dear great-grandfather of Sienna, Naomi, and Page Klein and Sophia, Lucia, Michael III and Amelia Pastore. Michael was a gentleman at all times and was well known among the food trade in the Baltimore-Washington area. He will be missed. Any of our readers who would like remember Mike may make a contribution in his memory directed to St. Leo the Great Catholic Church, 227 South Exeter Street, Baltimore, MD21212.

We also recently received word of the death of Diana Hill who passed away at the age of 66. Diana was a valued Giant/Landover associate for 36 years. She began her career in 1965 and progressed from office clerk to executive assistant in 1977. She served as executive assistant to three Giant/Landover CEOs….Izzy Cohen, Pete Manos and Dick Baird.

Retired Giant/Landover EVP Dave Herriman commented, “Diana was a respected Giant associate. She took care of all of the many assignments that would arise in the office of a CEO. She was loyal, reliable, honest and a person who was always there when needed. Diana possessed that unique quality that enabled her to take charge of assignments and deliver expected results. She always had the confidence of the three CEOs under which she served. And, I think it’s appropriate to say that Giant’s success was because of people like Diana Hill.”

On a personal note, while she was a business associate, all of us at Food World called her a dear friend.

Happy birthday wishes to Kathy’s and my son, Rick Bestany, Allegian Systems, and our son-in-law, Bill Ireland, Clyde’s Restaurant Group.