Personnel Updates:

Ahold USA announced that Bhavdeep Singh, who currently serves as Exec VP of Operations, has been appointed to Exec VP, New Formats. As part of this transition, Mark McGowan, Exec VP of Merchandising, will transition into the role of Exec VP of Operations

CHS Inc. announced that Mark Palmquist, Exec VP and COO, Ag Business, will leave the organization effective Aug. 31, 2014; Shirley Cunningham will take his place.

FreshDirect has announced that Larry Scott Blackmon will become the grocery delivery company’s VP, Community and Government Affairs.

Loblaw has appointed Pavi Binning as a Director on the company’s board.

Mi Pueblo Foods announced the appointment of Jose Aguayo as VP of Human Resources.

Performance Food Group, Inc has named Jim Hope to the new role of Exec VP of Operations.

Roundy’s announced that its Exec VP and CFO, Darren Karst, will be leaving the company to join Rite Aid in the same role. The company also announced that Michael Turzenski, currently Roundy’s Group VP and Chief Accounting Officer, has been named to succeed Karst as Group VP and CFO.

Schnuck Markets announced that David Steck has joined the company as VP IT Infrastructure. Niké Van Arsdale recently joined as Category Manager for natural, organic, gluten-free and bulk foods.

SpartanNash Co. has promoted Larry Pierce to Exec VP, Merchandising and Marketing, effective immediately.

Tesoro Corp. announced that Steven Sterin will join the company as Exec VP and CFO, effective August 18, and Cynthia Warner will join as Exec VP, Strategy and Business Development, effective October 6.

Industry Insight:

Petrogas Group Ltd. is expanding its Applegreen convenience store chain to the United States. The company recently purchased two gas station sites in Hicksville and Plainview, Long Island, N.Y., according to an Irish Times report.

Instacart offers grocery delivery from Whole Foods, Safeway and Costco, but now it’s adding Bi-Rite to the mix. (This is the first time it’s partnered with Bay Area stores; Instacart users can already order groceries from Rainbow Grocery and Berkeley Bowl.)

Kroger stores in Kentucky will begin having a Kentucky Proud section which sell items made in Kentucky.

ShopRite partnered with Baltimore to re-launch Virtual Supermarket, a city-run program allowing residents to order groceries online and pick them up in areas with no grocery stores.

Weis Markets opened an in-store beer café in its East Norriton, Pa location.

Mergers and Acquisitions:

Ahold USA announced that a subsidiary would acquire Eastside Marketplace.

Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. announced today that it has signed, through its wholly-owned indirect subsidiary, Mac’s Convenience Stores LLC, an agreement to acquire 55 stores from Tri Star Marketing Inc. and affiliates, of which 51 stores located in the state of Illinois and four stores located in the state of Indiana. These stores are currently operating under the brand Super Pantry and offer Phillips 66 and Mobil branded motor fuel.

CST Brands Inc. announced that it has entered into definitive agreements to purchase 100% of the membership interests of Lehigh Gas GP LLC, the general partner of Lehigh Gas Partners LP from Lehigh Gas Corp. and all of the outstanding Incentive Distribution Rights.

KeHE Distributors, Naperville, Ill., has agreed to acquire Nature’s Best.

Real Estate:

Aldi opened a location in Orlando, FL and plans to open a new store in Hurricane’s Liberty Square later this year. The company also states that they hope to open 600 to 650 stores within the next five years, and 120 in the next year.

The United Family announced Friday that four Albertsons stores in New Mexico will be realigned under The United Family.

American Gas and Oil Inc. (AGO) is converting 19 gas stations across western Michigan to the CITGO brand.

The Fairway Markets reported that its four stores located in Carlsbad, Clovis, Hobbs, and Roswell will retain their Albertsons identity and will continue to operate under the same name. The store also reported that it will cut back on its store opening program over the next few years, with only one store planned to open in 2016 and one in 2017.

Festival Foods will open a location in Mount Pleasant, WI.

Fresh City Market opened a store at Purdue University in West Lafayette, Ind.

The Fresh Market will open a location in Creve Coeur, MO; Dallas, TX; and Memphis, TN.

Fresh Thyme opened its first store in Cincinnati, Oh, and plans to open a 28,000 square foot store in Omaha.

Harris Teeter is closing its Homestead Market store at 105 Highway 54 in South Durham after 25 years.

Hy-Vee will open its second Twin Cities location in Oakdale, MN.

Ingles Markets will open a location in Enka, NC.

Kroger Marketplace will open in Katy, TX in spring 2015.

Loblaw will sell two No Frills discount grocery stores to rival Metro Inc. as part of a settlement with Canada’s Competition Bureau approving Loblaw’s acquisition of Shoppers Drug Mart.

Lowes Foods is closing four stores in North Carolina.

Lucky’s Market will open a location in Iowa City, IA.

Meijer Inc. will open four new supermarket-discount stores in Wisconsin in 2015.

Natural Grocers by Vitamin Cottage, said it plans to continue 20% unit growth into next year, with plans to open 18 new stores in fiscal 2015, compared with 15 scheduled to open this year.

Publix Super Markets Inc. will open a store in Huntersville, North Carolina.

Safeway shareholders approved the $9 billion sale of the company to an investor group controlled by Cerberus Capital Management.

ShopRite will open a location in Baltimore.

Speedway LLC plans to purchase a 55,572-sq. ft. office building in Springfield, OH, to expand its operations. The company also plans to make additional investments at its Enon, OH, headquarters, bringing the total investment for the three-year expansion plan to $9.1 million.

Sprouts Farmers Market will open a location in Cupertino, CA, Fort Worth, Tx, and plans to open 14 stores in the third quarter.

Trader Joes will open a location in Pembroke Pines, FL, and another location in Fort Lauderdale, FL, in 2015.

Walmart will open a Neighborhood Market in Colorado Springs, CO; Concord, NC; Kissimmee, Fl; and Norman, Ok.

Wegmans will open a location in Wilmington, DE; Glen Mills, PA; 4 stores in VA, 2 in MA, 2 in NJ, 1 in PA, and 1 in MD.

Whole Foods Market will open a location in Fayetteville, AR; Schererville, IN; Berkeley, CA; Sacramento, CA; Shrewbury, MA; Bedford, NH; Irvine, CA; and will replace a smaller store in Houston, TX, with a 45,000 square-foot store. The company will also open the first of six renovated Dominick’s grocery stores. The first opened will be in Streeterville, IL, the others planned to open later in 2015 will be located near DePaul University, the West Loop, Edgewater, Elmhurst, Evanston, and Willowbrook.

WinCo Foods LLC will open as many as four stores in the Oklahoma City metro area.

Green Initiatives:

Family Express has completed a comprehensive energy-efficiency initiative by retrofitting the entire chain of about 60 convenience stores with advanced technologies. It included not just lighting, but an energy-intelligence system, new rooftop heating and air-conditioning units, motion sensors, etc.

H-E-B is partnering with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to offer sustainable seafood and educate consumers about its offerings.

Tops Markets LLC is rebranding its fleet of delivery trucks to focus on fresh meat and produce. The supermarket chain hired SKM Group to design the trucks with Tops logo and images of sirloin and berries.

The Whole Foods in Brooklyn reports that it will begin using electric-assisted bicycles to make grocery deliveries.