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Schnucks and Instacart to Offer Same-Day Grocery Delivery Across Midwest

Schnucks, the third-generation, family-owned grocery/pharmacy retailer, and delivery service Instacart are expanding their partnership to bring same-day grocery delivery from the majority of Schnucks stores throughout the Midwest.

On July 13, Schnucks customers in Missouri (Cape Girardeau, Columbia and Jefferson City) and Illinois (Carbondale, Champaign, Bloomington, Normal, Pekin, Peoria, Savoy, Springfield, Urbana) can visit schnucksdelivers.com to fill their virtual carts with all their favorite items and have them delivered straight to their doorstep by Instacart, in as little as an hour.

“Schnucks is committed to giving our customers premier products and the best shopping experience,” said Andrew Nadin, Chief Marketing Officer, Schnuck Markets. “Partnering with Instacart to offer Schnucks Delivers online grocery shopping and same-day delivery will allow us to further nourish our communities and provide shoppers the kind of options they expect in order to manage their busy lifestyles.”

Schnucks and Instacart first joined forces to bring same-day grocery delivery to customers in February 2017 with the launch of Schnucks Delivers Powered by Instacart. Since launching in St. Louis, Missouri; Rockford, Illinois; and Evansville, Indiana; customers have embraced the service.

Based on strong initial results — including the most successful launch in Instacart’s history in St. Louis, Missouri — Schnucks and Instacart are doubling down on the partnership to bring the winning combination of  high-quality products from Schnucks stores and the convenience of same-day delivery to more customers across Missouri and Illinois.

“Instacart’s expansion across the heartland of America, to meet the goal of serving 80 percent of American households by 2018, is driven by partnerships with the nation’s best retailers like Schnucks,” said Nilam Ganenthiran, Instacart’s Chief Business Officer. “We are thrilled to bring same-day delivery to more Schnucks customers across the Midwest.”

Meijer Bringing Store-to-Door Delivery to Chicago and Rockford

Meijer and official home delivery partner Shipt will offer their increasingly popular store-to-door service beginning July 13 to nearly 2.5 million households throughout the Chicagoland suburbs and Rockford. The home delivery service launches as part of an expansion across six states that has so far resulted in more than 250,000 deliveries this year, combining personalized shopping with fresh grocery and a wide selection of daily essentials available 24 hours a day.

Using the Shipt smartphone app or placing orders from their computers or tablets, members are able to access more than 55,000 items available at Meijer stores, note any preferences, choose a one-hour delivery window and pay for their order. Fresh produce, meat, dairy, as well as hard-to-carry items like pet food, diapers and cleaning supplies can all be delivered to shoppers’ doors when it is convenient for them – as soon as one hour after the order is placed, or up to one day in advance.

“Our goal is to provide store-to-door convenience to as many of our customers as possible,” said Art Sebastian, Vice President of Digital Shopping for Meijer. “We believe that the personalized service that Shipt offers, coupled with the freshness and wide selection our customers love about Meijer, is the perfect meld of online shopping and our brick and mortar locations. Whether you’re too busy or just have difficulty getting around a store, the ability to shop digitally and have it delivered when its most convenient provides a life-changing alternative to the way you’ve always shopped for our groceries.”

Meijer has aggressively rolled out the service since launching in Detroit last September and now offers home delivery throughout Michigan, Indiana, Ohio, Illinois, and Wisconsin. The massive greater Chicagoland launch will cover more than 4,500 square miles and include more than 200 zip codes in Aurora, Algonquin, Bolingbrook, Bloomingdale, Crystal Lake, Elgin, Flossmoor, Hoffman Estates, Naperville, Joliet, Mokena, Orland Park, Oswego, Rolling Meadows, Round Lake Beach, St. Charles, Wheaton and Tinley Park, as well as Michigan City, Merrillville, Highland and Portage, Indiana.

“People in the Midwest love to shop Meijer because of their vast selection and high-quality products,” said Shipt CEO and Founder Bill Smith. “With this latest expansion of our partnership into Chicago and Rockford, more than 2.5 million households will have the ability to shop tens of thousands of fresh grocery and household items without having to travel to the store.”

Shipt memberships are available for an annual fee of $99 and members have access to free delivery on all orders over $35. For orders under $35, there is a $7 delivery fee. Shipt plans to hire 10,000 people across the six-state expansion with Meijer this year. Shipt displays a commitment to each of the communities it serves and plans to identify opportunities to help eliminate hunger and food insecurity in these communities.

Top Note Tonic Earns a sofi as Best New Product

By Lorrie Baumann

Top Note tonics are attracting attention among the fans of craft beverages, most recently with a sofi Award for Top Note Indian Tonic Water, named the best new product in the cold beverages category by the Specialty Food Association this year. The company’s other products include a Ginger Beer as well as a range of other European-style tonics in Bitter Orange, Bitter Lemon and Gentian Lime flavors.

Mary Pellettieri, Noah Swason, Founders Top Note TonicTop Note tonics are produced by La Pavia Beverage, LLC, founded in 2014 by Mary Pellettieri and her husband and partner, Noah Swanson and headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. “We decided to go into this business because we were very intrigued by craft beer,” Pellettieri says. “As I was concocting and crafting some syrups for that, using traditional recipes, I found that I liked the syrups just with carbonated water.”

Pellettieri’s interest in beer was long-standing. She began her career at the Siebel Institute of Technology, a research institute and school of brewing technology founded in Chicago in 1868, where she was a chemist and microbiologist and taught sensory management. Her career has taken her from there to Silliker Labs, Goose Island Beer Company and then MillerCoors before she left the brewery giant to start her own company. After more than 20 years of working with craft beers, she was in an ideal position to recognize the potential of the beverage she’d created. “To me, it’s more than just a mixer. It could be an herbal soft drink on its own,” she said. “It’s a radler [also known as a shandy] when mixed with beer.”

Pellettieri’s experience had taught her to appreciate the tonics she’d tasted in Europe, where the category was burgeoning with many more products and flavors than were being offered to the American market, where tonics tended to have harsher flavors that could mask the rasp of alcohol when they were mixed into cocktails based on mass-marketed spirits. But after distillers of craft spirits began producing smoother liquors, there was no longer as much need to hide the harsh taste of the alcohol. Pellettieri figured that created a gap in the market for mixers with bright, clean flavors, including the herbal elixirs that she loved.

“We just saw that the category of sparkling beverage needing some innovation, some dusting up,” she said. “I just thought: Why not someone who understands bitter, who understands beer? Why not me?”

“The tonic category in the States has been sleepy,” she added. “If you go to Europe you’ll see that it’s much more of a burgeoning category and much more diverse in its offerings.”

The Top Note product line started with mixable syrups that could be added to cocktails, stirred into sparkling water to make a soda or drunk on their own. “It’s still a tonic, and there’s still some bitterness to it, so I always warn people. Tonic lovers really love it,” Pellettieri said. “It’s still true to the tradition that a tonic is a bitter, sour and sweet beverage.”

The Top Note tonics pair well with the same kind of foods that complement other bitter beverages like an IPA beer or a dark espresso, and Pellettieri has recently expanded the line by packaging the tonics in four-packs of ready-to-serve bottles and adding a Ginger Beer that can be consumed either as a mixer or on its own. “We designed it with the idea that flavor is most important,” Pellettieri said. “That’s selling out faster than we can keep up with right now.”

The Top Note tonics are currently being distributed locally in Milwaukee and Madison, Wisconsin, where they’re in both liquor and specialty grocery stores, but the products have also recently launched through KeHE. The Top Note Indian Tonic Water will be in the sofi Award showcase at the Summer Fancy Food Show, and Pellettieri plans to exhibit her line at the Winter Fancy Food Show in 2018. She says her production line is scalable for the orders that the sofi Award and the KeHE launch are bound to bring. “We’re ready,” she said. “We are ready. Everything’s in place.”

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