Consumers stripped supermarket operators' shelves bare of many paper products and household cleaning supplies during the first weeks of the COVID-19 pandemic, and retailers and suppliers have been scrambling to keep up with demand ever since.
For the eight-week span through April 25, year-over-year sales of all household care items rose 45.6% across U.S. retail channels, according to Nielsen. That included gains of 245.2% for aerosol disinfectants; 229.2% for hand sanitizer; and 145.9% for multipurpose cleaner wet wipes. View the full story HERE.
Late Friday night, the Small Business Administration (SBA) released its PPP loan forgiveness application. To apply for PPP loan forgiveness, borrowers must complete this application and submit to their lenders. Lenders may also have a portal to complete the application electronically, so be sure to contact your lender before filling out the document. The application form consists of four parts: (1) the PPP Loan Forgiveness Calculation Form; (2) the PPP Schedule A; (3) the PPP Schedule A Worksheet; and (4) the optional PPP Borrower Demographic Information Form.
You can view and download the application here.
The pandemic has driven huge sales for grocers, but new data and industry sources say the spikes have been uneven and constantly changing, driven initially by the rush to stock up and now governed by new shopping patterns that reflect social distancing measures and spending of stimulus checks. As the economy starts to reopen in many places, what some observers are calling the "new abnormal" will likely alter the shopping landscape again, forcing grocers to pay close attention to new trends and be nimble in their responses.
You can read the full story here.
Take action today to urge your representative to support H.R. 6841, the AG CHAIN Act. This bipartisan bill, sponsored by Rep. G.T. Thompson (R-PA) and Dwight Evans (D-PA), would recognize the heroes serving at the frontlines of the food and agriculture industry by extending income and payroll tax relief for income earned during the public health emergency.
These dedicated and talented men and women are working tirelessly to ensure that our food supply chain continues to operate for the benefit of all Americans. The AG CHAIN Act honors our supermarket superheroes and will help boost the income of workers that show up for work every day.
Please click here to urge your representative to cosponsor the AG CHAIN act.
Wednesday morning, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced that it has extended its Hours of Service waiver for motor carriers and drivers providing direct assistance in the transportation of essential supplies, equipment, and persons. The current extension, which was set to expire on May 15, has now been extended through June 14, 2020. To view the extension, please click here.
"Consumers are returning to old-fashioned brands that previously fell out of favor, reported The Wall Street Journal (May 11).
As consumers stockpile nonperishables, goods such as processed cheese and canned soup that had been losing out to healthier alternatives are recording their strongest sales in years. Hershey noted its confectionery products also gained three percentage points of market share over the past month.
Additionally, frozen fish sticks and canned salmon made a comeback, reported Reuters (May 11). Volumes of packaged seafood surged more than 50% during quarantine, according to Nielsen data."
"The world is fundamentally recalibrating right now. Consumer habits are changing at pace and understanding those changes, in the context of these scenarios, will be critical as businesses prioritize how they too recalibrate to meet the changed circumstances driven by COVID-19," said Scott McKenzie, Nielsen global intelligence leader.
To read the full article click HERE.
Curbside pickup at grocery and general merchandise stores including Target and Walmart was on the rise before the pandemic, and it's been catching on with retailers across the board in recent weeks. Retailers including Kohl's and Ulta Beauty have made it easier for shoppers to use the service by putting step-by-step instructions online. Curbside pickup is the new "Key to Success".
You can view the full story here.
This year's online grocery sales are poised to grow 40% fueled primarily by the pandemic, compared with 22% growth in 2019, according to the Coresight Research US Online Grocery Survey. Online sales are expected to account for 3.5%, or nearly $38 billion, of retail food and beverage sales in 2020, and Coresight CEO Deborah Weinswig noted a decline in the number of respondents doing "almost none" of their grocery shopping online as well as an increase in respondents doing "some" shopping online. You can view the full story here.
As the coronavirus pandemic wears on, some states are starting to ease restrictions, allowing businesses to reopen. As an essential business, supermarkets have remained open throughout the crisis, adapting operations on the fly to the dictates of social distancing and enhanced safety and sanitation procedures.
Consumers are not expected to immediately or entirely revert back to their pre-crisis shopping behaviors in the post-pandemic world, which will likely be further stressed by recession.
This webinar will explore how grocers must adapt to the new normal, how adoption of eCommerce may continue to accelerate, how new shopping habits may influence daily operations and store design, and how a struggling economy may impact purchasing patterns.
Click Here to Register Now.
Wednesday morning, the Treasury Department provided additional guidance regarding how SBA will review PPP borrowers' required good-faith certifications. All loan requests under $2 million will be deemed to have been made in "good faith" and the borrower's certification of necessity will not be scrutinized. If a borrower of a PPP loan over $2 million is found to have lacked the required basis for the certification of necessity, the borrower must repay the loan and will be ineligible for forgiveness. However, if the borrower (over $2 million) repays the loan after notice from SBA, additional enforcement action will not be taken. To view the most recent PPP guidance, please click here.
The Missouri Grocers Association | 315 N Ken Ave, Springfield, MO 65802 | Phone: 417-831-6667 | Fax: 417-831-3907