Welcome to the February Grocery Trader. With snow on the ground it’s hard to imagine spring round the corner, but the first daffodils are out and we’ve got features on Spring Cleaning and our first quarterly look at the Back of Store.

Spring’s arrival promises sparkling sales for cleaning products, and a few minutes’ sunshine is enough to spark a cleaning blitz. Mintel’s recent ‘Cleaning the House’ report shows 75% of us get satisfaction from seeing their home clean and tidy, but apparently four in ten admit they are sometimes embarrassed by the state of their home. Parents with children at home may question the bit about ‘sometimes’…

With parts of the UK economy looking bleak, high street names struggling and shoppers moving to online or digital formats for more of their purchases, multiple grocers are more reliant than ever on their teams putting in a winning performance, to ensure the goods are there in all parts of the business for shoppers to buy.

As sales growth continues in the UK grocery retail sector, the resources available for the back of store and supply chains continue to evolve and improve. As our quarterly Back of Store feature shows, there is a wealth of suppliers well placed to equip the grocery retail sector’s supply chains with the tools for the job and the services to support them.

In this issue we have an interview with Powerlogic UK, Britain’s leading manufacturer of traction battery handling and changing equipment and battery changing partners with Asda, Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Arla Foods and Wilkinsons. Powerlogic’s systems speed the process of handling, charging and changing warehouse truck batteries, and remove the hazards of doing so manually.

Plastic reusable transit packaging is an essential part of today’s food retailing supply chain. As reported on our front page LINPAC Allibert and Schoeller Arca Systems have joined together under one name, Schoeller Allibert, to become the world leader in this field. The move offers customers direct access to an even broader range of RTP from a single source, and focuses the two former companies’ combined expertise on their service offering.

Also featured on our front page X2 Computing, a leading supplier of mobile computing solutions for retail and order fulfilment, has launched the Tlantic Mobile Retail Suite (MRS), an innovative software solution that automates and streamlines the supply chain. Currently in use in Portugal’s leading home shopping operation, it enables retailers to significantly increase efficiency and productivity by empowering staff to deliver improved service to customers using tablets, smartphones and handheld computers.

Have a successful month.

Charles Smith, The Grocery Trader

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