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Author Archive | Johnny Harris

COMPETING WITH ALDI

No, it’s not easy. But here are some ideas that might come in handy. Extreme discounter Aldi has put many grocers off balance in the 32 states where it operates. Now Lidl — also from Germany — is building a DC in Virginia and hiring a team for its own aggressive invasion of the U.S. […]

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dial-for-Johnny

A FEW WORDS ON TRANSPARENCY

It’s not just consumers who are left out in the dark about some vendors’ products. Buyers could use a bit more information, too! There’s been a lot of talk about how manufacturers aren’t transparent when it comes to telling consumers what’s in their products. News about nasty ingredients hits the fan nearly every day, and […]

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LEARNING FROM C-STORES

They may not be a big threat to your business right now, but you can learn from some of the things they do really well. Supermarkets need to take a close look at what convenience stores are doing these days. No, not because C-stores are going to steal away their sales of eggs, milk and […]

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Johnny Harris

RELATIONSHIPS.’ WHERE’D THEY GO?

Business lunches and golf games are becoming scarce. People change jobs like undershirts. And trade relations are worse than ever. Hmm… When I was new in the business, my boss told me “You have to have good relationships with the people who call on you. They are the ones who will make you or break […]

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I PREDICT…

Listen, this wasn’t my idea. But here are eight things I see coming down the pike in the next year or two. (Or three.) As Yogi Berra once said, “It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future.” But this month’s cover story is full of predictions, and Warren asked me to come up with […]

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TIME FOR MORE ‘SCROUNDS’

Lots of good things have been happening in dairy department packaging, but there’s still room for improvement that will lead to better packout and stronger in-stock positions. First, hats off to Unilever for being an innovator here, just as they were with “scrounds” (square-round) containers for Breyers ice cream 15 years ago. Looking back, it […]

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GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS FOR EGGS

And that spells opportunity for retailers who play their cards right. There’s good news and bad news in the egg category, and that combination means there’s also lots of opportunity — provided you play your cards right. First the bad news: Conventional egg prices have shot up by 29% (often much more) during the past […]

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SAY CHEESE!

Block cheese pricing is down 28% from a year ago. (You’re seeing some of that, right?) Also, a few merchandising ideas for you. BY JOHNNY HARRIS With block cheese commodity prices down by about 28% from a year ago, right now is an excellent time to be paying particularly close attention. As I write this, […]

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SLOTTING IS HERE TO STAY, BUT…

It’s an addiction that can cause long-term harm. BY JOHNNY HARRIS I had never even heard of slotting back in 1977 when a broker came in with a new item I didn’t want to put in. But I’d just had the flu and I felt rotten, so when he said he’d pay us $100 to […]

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ASK JOHNNY

An inside look on how win-win might work for small vendors and big retailers. BY JOHNNY HARRIS Dear Johnny, I’m a small vendor with a good product that’s doing great with local independents, but I can’t even get the time of day from larger retailers. What can I do? —Frustrated Dear Frustrated, This is not […]

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