In & Around Food World

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Welcome to the June 2012 issue of Food World, the 34th Annual Market Study we have published.

This study is completely researched and prepared by the staff of Best-Met Publishing Company and is the most definitive study done about the grocery business on the East Coast. Retailers, food manufacturers, food marketing companies, print and broadcast media, marketing consultants and manufacturers will be quoting the facts and figures contained here for the next twelve months. And we are proud to boast that this issue will be used as a source by all the major newspapers and media outlets in the Mid-Atlantic and throughout the entire Eastern part of theUnited Statesand all the food companies who sell the great retailers doing business east of theMississippi River.

While many in and outside the grocery industry benefit from all the research in this issue, the great companies that choose to advertise in it are the major beneficiaries. Their ads will be seen and read by every food company and food retailer doing business or wishing to do business on the East Coast. No other medium can deliver such a targeted audience. We thank all our many advertisers and we urge our readers to support them and their products.

Preparing such an issue is no easy task. It takes of months of preparation and research from many sources. The work begins in January and is not complete until the June issue goes to the printer. Along the way, many people spend many hours gathering information, stories, pictures and all the facts and figures needed to put the June Market Study together.

The one who puts it all together is publisher Jeff Metzger. He oversees all the work along the way and directs the entire process from beginning to end.

Heading up the talented team of writers, researchers and sales people is vice president and editorial director, Terri Maloney. Assisting Terri are Jenny Jones and Matt Danielson of Electronic Inc, our production company. Beth Pripstein, a 16 year veteran of Best-Met Publishing, has the task of preparing the invoices, maintaining our mailing lists, preparing and maintaining the billing, assisting with the proof reading, and helping with much of the research. And without our advertising staff and marketing staff, we would never have an issue to put together. They are the most knowledge and able food trade people in the United States: Karen Fernandez, director of sales and marketing; Maria Maggio, vice president/general manager, Food Trade News; and advertising and sales executive Mike Keba.

A HUGE THANKS has to go to our loyal readers, many of whom have been with us for years along with the legions of food broker sales people and the direct manufactures who serve the retailers of the Mid-Atlantic.

A very special “thanks” to the retailers of the Mid-Atlantic for without them, there would be no market study.

The Maryland Food bank merged with Food Resources, Inc. of Hagerstownto create the Maryland Food Bank-Western Branch. The new branch will serve as a central distribution point for a network of more than 120 soup kitchens, pantries, shelters and other community-based organizations in Allegheny, Frederick, Garrett and Washingtoncounties. According to a recent study by Feeding America, the national network of food banks, more than 52,000 individuals in the Western Marylandregion are food-insecure. “This merger is critical to bridging the hunger gap in Western Maryland,” said Maryland Food Bank CEO Deborah Flateman, “with additional resources and investments, this branch will be able to distribute nutritious food more efficiently, enabling us to help many more families in need.”

Retired Giant/Landover chief merchandising officer and senior vice president Dave Herriman informed us that Al Lechert (retired Giant VP-construction) passed away the week of April 15.

Other Giant/Landover retiree news from Dave – Anna Hedrick, former executive secretary at Giant is at the Hospice of theChesapeake. She is 90 years old and “has cancer but her spirits are good.”

(Food World welcomes any news about retirees. You can call the information to us at 410-730-5013 or e-mail me at:

We were saddened to learn last month of the death of Marsh H. Blackburn, the former chairman and chief executive officer of Sales Force Cos., who died at 82 of heart failure.

As the head of Sales Force Cos., Blackburnwas an industry pioneer in transforming the company into a multi-regional food brokerage, said Mark Baum, the former CEO of the National Food Brokers Association (NFBA).

Blackburnwas active with several industry trade groups, and was a past chairman of the Food Industry Crusade Against Hunger, now called Food For All. He was the first broker ever to receive FMI’s William H. Albers Award in 1994, and also won the FMI Distinguished Service Award, the National Grocers Association Industry Service Award, and the J. Frank Grimes Award from IGA.  He was also the task force chair of an industry group that combined the Uniform Product Code Council with the Uniform Communication Standards organization and was on the Executive Committee of the ICC.

After he retired form Sales Force in 1994, he worked with Andersen Consulting and served on the USDA International Section Advisory Board, traveling to several Eastern European countries as they privatized their food industries.

According to a survey done by, Giant/Landover and ShopRite are shoppers’ two favorite supermarkets. Market Force Information released results of the survey of 6,428U.S. and Canadian consumers released last month.

Giant/Landover was in the top spot, followed by ShopRite, Wal-Mart, Publix and Costco. Giant got high marks for its fast checkouts and organic options, but discount grocer Aldi beat out the others on price, while Publix was recognized for atmosphere and courteous staff. Wal-Mart was recognized for convenience as a one-stop shopping destination, but placed last for courteous staff and high-quality meat and produce.

Shoppers ranked the deli, butcher and baker as the most important departments, and considered high-quality produce more important than high-quality meat, with long wait times in the checkout lines causing the most dissatisfaction.

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Food Lion’sWilliamsburg,VAstore has been awarded a LEED Silver certification for a number of environmentally friendly construction and energy-efficient features, including an on-site recycling center, an educational kiosk and preferred parking for carpool vehicles.

Established by the U.S. Green Building Council, LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), certification recognizes the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. The store features a number of environmentally-friendly features, including: LED lighting in the frozen food cases; bike racks and preferred parting for carpool vehicles; low-flow and sensor-activated water fixtures in restrooms; rainwater harvesting system that captures rainwater from the roof and reuses it for irrigation; environmental education kiosks with sign age; carbon dioxide sensors located throughout the store; energy-efficient roof; in-store customer and associate recycling programs

Happy birthday wishes go out to: Mickey Parsons; Coca-Cola Refreshments’ Cyndi Ireland; H&S Bakery’s J.R. Paterakis; Agora International’s Jerry Shupack; Food World’s Beth Pripstein, Terri Maloney, Jeff Metzger, Lou Rosenthal (retired); and to my granddaughter, Kathryn Dougherty Ireland, who will be celebrating her 6th birthday. Congratulations to my wife Kathy, who will celebrate her 50thEmmanuelCollege reunion inBoston with almost 100 of her fellow alumnae and me.

Celebrating wedding anniversaries this month are: John and Donna Plumhoff, their 30th; H&S Bakery’s JR and Emily Paterakis, their 30th; display consultant Mike and Jennifer Keefe, their 23rd Utz Quality Foods’ Tom and Bekki Dempsey, their 31st; Star Sales & Marketing/Pro-Star’s Randy and Debi Holland, their33rd; Quaker Maid Meats’ Tom and Janine Robinson, their 11th; Coca-Cola Refreshments’ Cyndi and Clyde’s Restaurants’ Bill Ireland, their 8th.