Welcome to The Grocery Trader’s June issue. It’s the sixth month of the year, and it still feels like winter outside! Seeing those chirpy presenters on BBC TV’s Spring Watch dressed for work in a cold store, it’s enough to make you want to join the 12 million Britons who go to Spain every year, rather than stay in the UK.

chazThat said, this is a great time for baby product sales. According to the Royal College of Midwives, England is enjoying its biggest baby boom for 40 years. Could it be down to the long winters and poor summers we suffer these days? The RCM didn’t pass comment about the rest of the UK, by the way, just England: presumably Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are made of stronger stuff.

As reported on our front cover, at its official launch at the Baby Show at the NEC, the new sanitising water Aquaint was selling one unit every 5 minutes on the company stand as parents heard about its extraordinary power and versatility. Aquaint is a revolutionary 100% natural product, which eliminates 99.9% of bacteria and is strong enough to kill germs, yet is safe enough to spray in your mouth, and preferred by healthcare professionals to alcohol-based products that dry out or irritate the skin. According to the makers, you can spray it directly on a dropped apple, pear, carrot or lollipop and your baby will be safe from harmful bacteria and viruses. So now you know.

In another encouraging story on our front page, Paragon Software Systems is celebrating a 30-year relationship involving the supply of transport optimisation solutions to Morrisons and previously to Safeway, Presto and Liptons. The relationship puts Paragon’s logistics software at the heart of Morrisons’ transport operations as it meets new challenges and opportunities, enabling it to maximise delivery performance to its stores.

Used since the early 1980s to plan distribution for Presto and Liptons supermarkets, which later rebranded as Safeway, Paragon’s software was retained by Morrisons after the retailer bought Safeway in 2004, and the systems remain integral to its distribution planning. With Paragon’s support, Morrisons continues to evolve the system to keep in step with its transport requirements, enabling it to maintain the highest possible levels of delivery service to its growing network of stores. After various major IT overhauling projects, Paragon remains Morrison’s standard solution for optimising movements of ambient, chilled and frozen goods from its distribution centres to more than 400 UK stores. Long may it continue.

Have a great month, and keep dry!

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