Retail Rx is helping do what Washington won’t

Actuaries at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have released their annual look at trends in U.S. health care spending. Published in the journal Health Affairs, the report contains a few bright spots, but the overall picture remains bleak. Total expenditures on health care increased 4.6% in 2018 to reach $3.6 trillion. While the

Kroger’s new look

CINCINNATI — Kroger Co. is emphasizing its grocery heritage and its food bona fides with a new logo and a marketing campaign built around the slogan Fresh for Everyone. Food is also a key strength Kroger focused on during its investor conference earlier this month, during which company executives argued that the Restock Kroger initiative

New format in the works at Amazon

SEATTLE — Amazon has confirmed plans for a new grocery format under the Amazon brand that will debut next year in the Woodland Hills neighborhood of Los Angeles. The format will be distinct from the company’s Whole Foods Market chain, according to published reports. The inaugural store will be larger than its Amazon Go convenience

Albertsons to repurpose plated

BOISE, Idaho — Albertsons Cos. is phasing out subscriptions for Plated meal kits that shoppers can purchase online and cook at home. The retailer said Plated is being transitioned into a “comprehensive in-house culinary brand” that will join its lineup of private label products. “Our vision for Plated includes an expanded set of products that

Health Foundation honors Pessina

NEW YORK — Stefano Pessina, executive vice chairman and chief executive officer of Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA), was honored recently by the American-Italian Cancer Foundation (AICF), which presented him with the Alessandro di Montezemolo Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding career in health care. Among those honoring Pessina at the foundation’s Benefit Dinner and Auctions

Holiday competition

NEW YORK — With forecasts calling for strong holiday sales despite fewer shopping days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, retailers are doing everything they can to convince consumers that their stores and websites are the ones to shop. Walmart kicked off the holiday deals at its stores earlier than ever this year, introducing special offers at

Amazon seeks more food sales

SEATTLE — Amazon is leveraging its large base of Prime members to seize a bigger share of the U.S. grocery market. The company this month announced plans to make free grocery delivery a benefit of Prime membership. Members in more than 20 major metro areas can get free two-hour grocery delivery after the company eliminated