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Trade News

Each day TFO Canada publishes a sample of trade news on the Canadian import market along with any new, updated or changed regulations and legislations regarding international trade; countries in which TFO Canada offers services and on the export sectors which it promotes.


Shoppers Drug Mart starts testing fresh groceries

Tuesday, September 09, 2014 > 11:07:31

(Canadian Grocer)

Drugstore chain to test sales of fresh groceries in six Toronto-based stores

Beyond merely pantry staples, consumers can now pick up a much wider variety of groceries at select Shoppers Drug Mart locations in Toronto.

According to The Toronto Star, six Shoppers Drug Mart stores are testing sales of fresh foods, including meat, vegetables and fruit. The official launch of the pilot will take place on Sept. 20.

The test comes a little over a year after Loblaw announced its purchase of Shoppers Drug Mart stores in a $12.4-billion deal. In April, President’s Choice cookies and baby food were the first Loblaw products to appear on Shoppers Drug Mart shelves. Simultaneously, the drugstore’s Life brand products have been brought into Loblaw supermarkets.

“The question that we’re asking ourselves… [is] can we sell more? Can we sell some fresh foods? Could we sell bananas? Could we sell meals that are ready to go? Is that something the Canadian consumer would embrace or would be interested in?” Loblaw executive chairman and recently appointed president Galen G. Weston told shareholders at the company’s annual meeting in May.

Loblaw is looking to answer these questions with the pilot.

According to The Star, shoppers can now buy pork chops, beefsteak tomatoes and fresh salads at the pilot Shoppers Drug Mart store, on Dundas St. W, between Jane St. and Runnymede Rd.

The store also stocks fresh sushi, artisan breads and baked goods.

“The biggest hurdle is having customers believe they can get fresh product from a pharmacy,” Mike Motz, EVP and chief merchandising officer for Shoppers said in a Toronto Star video.

Other sections in the pilot store contain meat and seafood, produce, prepared meals including salads and sandwiches, and dairy (including specialty cheese).

New signage throughout the bright food section reads “Food You’ll Love.”

“Our core customer is about 76-78 per cent female, they’re moms, they’re time-pressed, they’re looking for convenience, and a natural extension of convenience, from beauty and health and wellness, is food,” Motz told The Star.


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