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FMI launches new general merchandise & health and beauty program 

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ARLINGTON, Va. FMI – The Food Industry Association announced on Thursday a new general merchandise & health and beauty care (GM & HBC) initiative that extends its total store collaboration concept in grocery. This new portfolio will be led by consumer goods and retail industry veteran Tom Duffy and embraces a community of professionals – from grocery retailers to suppliers – for high-impact industry dialog and best-in-class capabilities.

“Total store collaboration is a core strategic pillar of FMI and serves as a way to describe our approach to fostering partnerships among trading partners, including retailers, wholesalers, manufacturers and brokers in the retail food industry,” FMI president and chief executive officer Leslie Sarasin said. “Our investment in general merchandise & health and beauty care is consistent with the fulfillment of this vision.”

According to IRI, GM/HBC sales constituted an estimated 10% of all grocery sales in the most recent 52 weeks, or $49.1B, demonstrating that GM & HBC categories have consistently represented an opportunity for both food retailers and manufacturers to optimize the store environment and enhance consumer satisfaction.

“Since the FMI brand represents everything in the food, beverage and consumer goods retail basket, and embraces all categories in the marketplace, FMI is poised to further its stock in what’s sold at grocery,” explained Mark Baum, FMI’s chief collaboration officer & senior vice president, industry relations, who will oversee this critical new initiative.

“As a senior advisor to FMI on this initiative, I will support and provide grocery retailers with knowledge and insights that drive new ideas, products and solutions to grow their business across the GM & HBC,” Duffy, former vice president of member development at GMDC/Retail Tomorrow, said. “In turn, FMI will enhance trading partner collaboration to address challenges, opportunity gaps and innovations designed to drive profitable growth in GM & HBC categories and to better serve consumers.”

To lay the groundwork for this venture, FMI will organize an advisory group; identify priority areas; explore and exchange opportunities for best demonstrated practices; and analyze the changing economics that support investments in these categories.


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