Mar 11, 2014
Chicago Reconsidering Plastic Bag Ban
New proposal drops an exemption for small retailers.
Senator Schumer Goes After E-Cigarette Marketing
The Protecting Children from Electronic Cigarette Advertising Act would ban the marketing of e-cigarettes to children.
British Columbia’s Grocery Stores to Sell Wine, Beer
A relaxation of British Columbia’s liquor laws will not apply to convenience stores.
Changing Eating Habits Send McDonald’s Sales Downward
McDonald’s is looking to modify its menu to appeal to changing eating habits.
Wisconsin Lawmakers Mull Creation of Beer Commission
Commission would promote, market and advertise Wisconsin products, making Wisconsin the “Napa Valley of craft brewing.”
Retail Employment Down 6,700 in February
Trade group argues against raising the minimum wage, saying it would “hamper economic growth” and drive up unemployment.
Mar 10, 2014
Industry Pioneers Inducted to PCATS Hall of Fame
Three new inductees will be recognized at the upcoming PCATS Annual Conference on April 28.
E85 Retail Fueling Locations Expanding
While Midwest states continue to add new E85 retail locations, other states are also experiencing rapid growth of E85 availability.
Reasons Why Wawa Rates With Customers
Customers from Wawa-inhabited towns say what they love about the Pennsylvania-based convenience store chain.
Missouri Lottery Tests Ticket Sales at ATMs
A new partnership at select convenience stores in St. Louis and Kansas City allows customers to access lottery games and potential winnings.
Card Companies Form Group to Tackle Data Security
The new group will initially focus on the adoption of EMV chip technology.
Mar 7, 2014
HR Forum Attendees Stay Ahead of the Curve
Attendees at the NACS event participated in interactive presentations and discussions on topics vital to their professional development and company’s bottom line.
Co-op to Double Its C-Store Count
Britain’s fifth-largest grocer announces plans to double its current portfolio of 2,000 convenience stores.
Taco Bell at Home Expands
Taco Bell Ultimate Taco Night Kits to be distributed at grocery stores.
E-Cigarette Tax Hike in Washington State Moves Forward
A House committee approved a 75% tax on electronic cigarettes.
Small Businesses Sick of Obamacare
A Detroit News columnist highlights the frustrations of one local small businessman.
Mar 6, 2014
Los Angeles Passes Stiff E-Cigarette Restrictions
The Los Angeles City Council votes unanimously to ban cigarettes in most work places, many public places, and 21-and-over establishments.
Proposed Federal Budget Includes Cigarette Tax Hike
President Obama’s proposed budget nearly doubles the federal excise tax on tobacco products.
Soda Sales Flat, Energy Drinks Supercharged
The energy drink category continues to see strong sales, despite increased scrutiny due to deaths that have been linked to consumption.
Grocery Stores Opening in South Bend Food Deserts
Two grocery stores are opening in South Bend, Indiana, home to Notre Dame and no fewer than seven food deserts.
Starbucks Broadens Espresso, Sandwich Offerings
Vanilla Macchiato and four new breakfast sandwiches enhance Starbucks’ breakfast lineup.
Burger King Adds Satisfries to Kids’ Meals
Adding Satisfries to kids meals “a step in the right direction,” says Burger King CMO.
Mar 5, 2014
Tennessee Lawmakers Approve Wine Bill
When the governor signs the measure, voters could have the opportunity to okay wine in their community grocery stores.
Utah Quashes Bill to Increase Smoking Age
Senators voted against the measure to raise the legal age from 19 to 21.
DIY Pizza Orders Tableside
Pizza Hut is piloting an interactive tabletop that would allow guests to select their own pizzas via a touchscreen.
NC Convenience Store Makes Produce a Must-Have
Customers routinely buy out his selection of fresh fruits and vegetables.
Chocolate Continues to Dominate Candy Sales
The National Confectioners Association predicts that trend will stay the same for the next five years.
Philippines House Considers Soda Tax Bill
The measure would up the tax on non-alcoholic drinks and other beverages by 10%.
Mar 4, 2014
Menu Labeling Pushed Until End of Year
The FDA missed yet another self-imposed deadline for issuing calorie-count requirement guidelines.
NACS Asks for Change to Real Estate Appraisals
The letter to the U.S. Small Business Administration asks the agency to make it easier for convenience stores and other retailers to have real estate appraisals preformed.
EPA Releases Final Cleaner Fuel, Car Standards
The agency claims new standards will significantly lower harmful pollution while promoting fuel efficiency in cars and trucks.
Craft Beer Bests Big Brewers
Production of specialty beer rose 9.6% last year, but overall beer production dropped 1.4%.
Missouri Governor Pushes E15 Policy
The state could allow the sale of the higher blend as early as summer 2014.
QuickChek Selected as One of the Best Places to Work in New Jersey
The convenience store chain is recognized for the fifth year in a row.
Mar 3, 2014
U.S. Senators Call for E-Cigarettes Advertising Ban
New legislation seeks to prohibit the marketing of electronic cigarettes to children and teens.
U.S. Attorney General Urges Data Breach Reporting Law
Eric Holder is calling on Congress to create a national fraud and breach alert system to quickly alert consumers if their information was potentially compromised.
Speedway Exceeds $60 Million for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals
Fundraising for the charity totaled $7.6 million in 2013.
McDonald's Tests Burger Customization
Personalized ordering allows consumers to build their own burger.
‘Yoga Mat’ Chemical Found in More Than 500 Products
Azodicarbonamide, the controversial chemical found in bread products, is striking a chord with consumers and Congress.
Donut Shop Won’t Sell Donuts
Banned from selling donuts, Honey Dew Donuts will instead sell muffins that contain more calories and sugar than donuts at a new YMCA location.
Feb 28, 2014
Op-Ed: Credit Unions Use Cyber Security for Gain
NACS contends that credit unions are trying to profit from data breaches.
FDA Revamps Nutrition Labels
For the first time in two decades, the agency has overhauled data on food packages to emphasize calories and sugar.
European Parliament Okays Harsher Tobacco Rules
The agreement is built on a compromise reached late last year between the European Union and its member nations.
U.K. Supermarkets Aggressively Expand Into Convenience Market
The big-name grocers are infiltrating the smaller format marketplace.
Berkeley Floats Soda Tax
The City Council will ask voters whether they would support a penny-per-ounce tax on soft drinks.
U.K. Small Shops Disappointed With Minimum Wage Recommendation
The Association of Convenience Stores said such a move would trigger reductions in employee hours.
Feb 27, 2014
Child Obesity Rates Are Declining
According to the CDC, the overall obesity rates among 2 to 5 year olds dropped 43% from 2003 to 2012.
PCATS Announces Golf Outing at the PCATS Annual Conference
The outing takes place on Sunday, April 27, at the Loews Ventana Canyon Resort.
California Gas Tax to Decline
The per-gallon excise tax on a gallon of regular gasoline in California will decrease 3.5 cents to 36 cents per gallon beginning July 1.
MasterCard to Use Smartphones to Increase Credit Card Security
Tapping into users’ smartphone geolocation information, credit card transactions would be prevented from being authorized unless within close range of the user’s cell phone.
Colorado Lawmakers Seek Online Lottery Sales Ban
Ticket sales would be restricted to licensed stores under a bill that passed the Colorado House earlier this week.
Caribou Coffee Launches Premium Pastries
Rollout is part of a three-phase food innovation initiative.
Feb 26, 2014
NACS Members Take on Washington
The convenience store industry is on Capitol Hill this week to tell our story and discuss key industry issues with members of Congress and their staff.
Ontario Proposal Would Mandate Menu Labeling
The legislation would make restaurant, supermarket and convenience store chains post calorie counts of food and alcohol.
Rule on Marketing Junk Food Proposed
The regulation would prohibit the promotion of junk food and sugared soda to school children.
Taco Bell Launches Breakfast Menu Nationally
Meanwhile, McDonald’s and Starbucks tinker with their morning meal offerings as well.
Is the Time of Men Shoppers Coming?
A new survey finds that more than 65% of men hold the primary purchasing responsibility for many households products.
Japanese Convenience Stores Embrace Fresh-Brewed Coffee
Sales of drip coffee at c-stores have soared in the Asian country.
‘Got Milk?’ Answer Changes to No
The milk industry is jettisoning its classic tagline.
Feb 25, 2014
Walmart Express Takes On Dollar Stores
Mass retailer is planning to open up to 300 new Walmart Express small format stores this fiscal year.
NACS Supports Regulatory Reform Legislation
The bill seeks to make federal agencies more accountable to the American public through greater transparency.
Colorado, Utah Moving Forward With Raising Smoking Age to 21
Both states face several more rounds of votes before the measures become law.
LA City Council Urges Regulation of E-Cigarettes
A city panel wants to ban electronic cigarettes wherever tobacco cigarettes are prohibited.
Ethanol Industry Enjoying Resurgence
Higher corn prices in 2012 forced the industry to “discipline” itself, which led to strong earnings in last year’s final quarter.
Ben & Jerry's Launches New Flavors
The four new flavors are 100% Fairtrade certified and made with non-GMO ingredients.
Feb 24, 2014
FDA Issues First Orders to Halt Sale of Tobacco Products
The FDA has ordered a stop to the sale of four cigarette products made by Jash International, marking the first time the agency has exercised this type of authority under the Tobacco Control Act.
CokeSolutions.com Adds New Business Insights
The Coca-Cola Company’s website continues to add new business tools and resources for convenience retailers.
Woolworths Tackles Obesity With Employee Wellness Program
Australia’s fresh food retail chain is implementing an employee wellness program to help employees make healthier choices.
Retailers Promote ‘Look Before You Pump’ Campaign
Lowe's, Walmart and True Value Hardware are encouraging consumers to make sure they don’t use higher ethanol blends above E10 in their small equipment.
Ewing Energies Gets Into Retail in ‘Dallas’
A real gas station opens today as the flagship store for the fictitious Ewing Energies, a move to promote the second season of the television show “Dallas.”
New Missouri Game Offers Top Prize of a Quarter of a Million Dollars
A new Missouri Lottery Draw Game will offer players three games with nine chances to win on a single ticket and a top prize of $250,000 cash.
Feb 21, 2014
Temperatures, Pump Prices Rise Together
With spring a month away, the annual increase in gasoline prices won’t be far behind.
We Card Helps Retailers Understand FDA Requirements
Complying with agency rules on ensuring that minors aren’t granted access to tobacco can be tricky.
California Legislature Tackles Data Breaches
The head of the California Retailers Association testifies that the U.S. payment system needs a complete overhaul.
Independent Grocers Embrace Gas Sales
More non-chain retailers are installing gasoline pumps on-site or working with local gas stations on incentives programs.
Visa, MasterCard Incorporate Contactless Payment Into Phones
Customers will be able to purchase by tapping their phones on a card reader.
Nestlé USA Voluntarily Recalls Hot Pockets Philly Steak and Cheese
The company issued the recall after the Rancho Feeding Corporation announced its own recall of meat products.
Feb 20, 2014
Going Up Against ‘Big Food’
A law firm believes it has a case against “Big Food” to recover obesity and health-related costs, even though the evidence is severely lacking.
New York Retailers Help Prevent Youth Access to Tobacco
The New York Association of Convenience Stores is commending neighborhood retail stores for a record-high level of preventing underage tobacco sales.
Consumers Looking Beyond Supermarkets for Groceries
Seventy-seven percent of Millennials, Gen X and Baby Boomers bought groceries from a non-grocery outlet last year.
Gluten-Free Is Everywhere
From cookies to vodka, Americans are gobbling up gluten-free products.
Raising Minimum Wage Reduces Jobs, Poverty
A Congressional Budget Office report suggests that raising the minimum wage would eliminate roughly 500,000 jobs by 2016 while lifting nearly a million people out of poverty.
Most Small Businesses Don’t Report Employee Theft
A University of Cincinnati report finds that 64% of small businesses have experienced employee theft, while only 16% of those report the theft to the police.
Feb 19, 2014
NACS Publishes Latest Assessment of Fuels Market
The newly released NACS “Future of Fuels” report offers an analysis of U.S. government projections through 2040.
Tighter Fuel Efficiency Standards Coming for Medium, Heavy-Duty Vehicles
The announcement follows President Obama’s State of the Union vow to have a new standard.
State Senator Starts Push for Soda Tax in Illinois
The new proposal would tack on a penny-per-ounce tax on sugared drinks.
Minnesota Revisits Bottle, Can Deposit
One suggestion would have consumers pay the dime deposit at retail, then recycle the empties at redemption centers.
BAT Rolls Out E-Cig Campaign
Vype, currently only available in the United Kingdom, will soon go international.
Square Partners With Whole Foods Market
The partnership will create a faster, easier payment and checkout experience for Whole Food shoppers.
Northern Ireland Creates Registry to Reduce Sale of Tobacco to Kids
The Tobacco Retailers Bill targets shops that sell to underage buyers and adults who purchase tobacco for children.
Feb 18, 2014
U.S. Senators Push to Extend Biodiesel Tax Credit
Bill seeks to reform the tax credit, increasing it from $1 to $1.10, as well as extend it by three years.
Snacks Driving Growth for PepsiCo
PepsiCo CEO says snacks will soon account for two-thirds of the company’s overall revenue.
Kansas Bill Would Triple Cigarette Tax
Lawmakers propose raising the cigarette tax from $.79 to $2.29 per pack while increasing the tax on OTP from 10% to 78%.
Senators Appeal to Walmart to Quit Tobacco
The appeal follows similar urging of major drug store chains.
South Florida Thirsty for Craft Beer
Craft beer sales are growing rapidly in South Florida, and brewers are increasing capacity to match demand.
Taco Bell to Launch Mobile Ordering
Smartphone app is in the test phase at five Orange County locations.
Feb 17, 2014
PCATS, NACS Announce CIO Summit at PCATS Annual Conference
The roundtable event for technology retail executives brings expert insights to the challenges and opportunities facing the convenience retail industry.
California Lawmaker Calls for Health Warnings on Sugary Beverages
Under the proposal, all 12-ounce beverages sold in the state that contain 75 or more calories and added sweeteners would be required to carry a health-warning label.
Making a Case for Cold Beer
Indiana retailers are getting their day in court as the fight to sell cold beer continues.
U.S. Senators Ask Federal Reserve to ‘Do More’
U.S. Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Al Franken (D-MN) are urging the Fed to do more to protect American consumers from payment card fraud.
Iowa Representative Introduces Legislation to Expand Renewable Fuel Infrastructure
The Re-FUEL Act would create a grant program to promote domestic fuel sources and offer consumers more choices at the pump.
Feb 14, 2014
NACS Partners with Trade Groups on Cybersecurity
NACS joins more than a dozen trade merchant and banking associations to explore ways to better secure financial transactions.
New Haven Mayor Pushes Connecticut Soda Tax
The former state senator is proposing a 2% tax on soft drinks across the state.
Retail CFOs Forecast 5% Sales Growth for 2014
Consumer confidence is expected to rise, according to the latest BDO survey.
Britain Bans Smoking in Cars With Kids Inside
The ban could be enacted before the May 2015 elections.
Dr Pepper Gambles on Mid-Calorie Sodas
The company will start testing 60-calorie versions of Canada Dry, Dr Pepper and 7Up later this year.
South Korean Gas Stations Struggling
More filling stations have been closing because of declining margins.
Feb 13, 2014
Open Spots Available for Upcoming NACS Leadership Challenge
Rising Leaders in the Industry grow their Skills and their companies at the NACS Leadership Challenge.
Paying for Obesity
Lawyers are urging state attorneys general to make CPG companies pay for obesity-related health-care costs.
Canada Raises Tobacco Tax
All tobacco products are included in a Canada-wide tax increase, which raises the price of a carton of cigarettes by roughly $4.
Evening Smartphone Use Leads to Less Productivity
Researchers suggest that late-evening smartphone use leads to a more restless sleep, which makes it more difficult to focus on work the following day.
Chick-fil-A Rebuilds Chickens
The QSR commits to serving antibiotic-free chicken at all of its U.S. restaurants within five years.
Kroger Invests in Coupons
Supermarket chain acquires YOU Technology Brand Services, a provider of digital coupon programs for more than 10,000 stores.
Feb 12, 2014
The Customer Is the Channel
Day two of the Leadership Forum educated attendees on how to reach increasingly savvy consumers through innovative use of social media.
IBM’s Chief Technologist for Global Retail to Keynote PCATS Annual Conference
Vish Ganapathy will speak on April 28 at the conference in Tucson, Arizona.
Concerns That Hinder EMV Smartcard Acceptance
Computerworld targets five issues that could slow down U.S. adoption of EMV smartcards.
White House Tweaks Employer Mandate Again
Obamacare’s requirement that employers with 50 or more employees provide healthcare has been pushed back until 2015.
New Zealand Passes First Step Toward Plain Packaging Law
Parliament overwhelmingly voted in favor of the bill, which would strip all branding from tobacco products.
Hawaii Considers Taxing E-Cigarettes
One bill would add a whopping 85% wholesale tax on electronic cigarette devices.
Two-Thirds of Americans OK With E-Cigarette Use in Their Personal Space
The U.S. study finds that 63% of adults wouldn’t be bothered by electronic-cigarette usage.
Canadian Beer Machine Wows Olympians
Molson’s celebrates Canada with a portable beer machine that opens when a Canadian passport is inserted.
Feb 11, 2014
Consumer Optimism Inches Upward
More than 80% of consumers surveyed in the latest monthly NACS Consumer Fuels Survey say that gas prices have an impact on their feelings about the economy.
The NACS Leadership Forum Kicks Off in Miami
RaceTrac Petroleum CEO Alison Moran and CST Brands President & CEO Kim Bowers shared their visions of the industry’s future with Forum attendees.
U.S. Senators Call on Drug Stores to Follow CVS
Less than a week after CVS announced plans to stop selling tobacco, eight U.S. senators are urging other drug store chains to follow suit.
Senator Schumer Calls on FDA to Ban Bread Chemical
Schumer’s urging follows an announcement last week by Subway that it was removing azodicarbonamide from its bread.
Minnesota’s Online Lottery Enjoys Soft Rollout
While Minnesota residents have been able to purchase lotto tickets online for several years, Spicy 7’s is the first instant online game.
South Carolina Considers Fees for Alternative Vehicle Use
The proposal would charge owners of hybrids $60 per year and those who drive electric vehicles $120 per year.
Web Ordering Option Gives Pizza Chains a Competitive Edge
Market share for pizza restaurants is growing for those who offer digital ordering.
Feb 10, 2014
New SNAP Provisions Become Law
President Obama signed into law the Farm Bill that includes new provisions for retailers that redeem Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits.
Tesla Makes History With Cross Country Trek
The Cross Country Rally team drove from Los Angeles to New York City in 76.5 hours, recording the lowest charge time for an electric vehicle traveling across the country.
Food Industry Pushes Voluntary GMO Labeling
Major food companies are proposing a plan to allow voluntary labeling of genetically modified ingredients to avoid possible mandatory requirements.
7-Eleven Malaysia Launches Delivery Service
A new partnership with Foodpanda brings delivery services to customers in Malaysia.
Outrageous Food Finds
The United States might not have the market cornered for wacky and tasty fast food finds.