Fresh Thinking - Blog

Blog Results...

Before and after: Speedy fixes for merchandising mistakes

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist With no budget and only the merchandise on hand, I partnered with an independent supermarket customer to overhaul a closed-case display. The store’s merchandiser was focused on SKUs she was responsible for and spread the product too thin — so the set looked picked over. By cross merchandising, we were able to create a full set and increase sales. Giving customers a visual cue that “This goes great with that!” works just as well behind doors as in open cases. You can see the results in these before-and-after photos. Adding baskets and shelf

Continue Reading

Casting the Right Talent for Destination Centers

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist No one would expect a cashier to assume the role of produce manager or butcher. The same goes for staffing Destination Centers. These roles require a genuine interest in food and robust people skills. Staff should be able to share product knowledge and engage customers – and enjoy doing it. Culinary talent Chefs and other culinary professionals bring authenticity and expertise to menu development, food preparation, and food presentation. To fully benefit from their strengths, don’t hide them away in an enclosed work area. Bring them out where shoppers can see them

Continue Reading

Clarity line adapts to supermarket sizes and styles

By Kelly Sayko Hillphoenix Case Division Product Manager One-size-fits-all refrigeration equipment won’t work in today’s supermarkets, which come in all shapes and styles. What’s more, the growing popularity of store-within-a-store destination areas means a one-size refrigeration strategy may not even work across a single store. These days, grocers need refrigeration equipment that’s flexible, and Hillphoenix’s Clarity line was designed with adaptability in mind. The Clarity V Series Door Case is a great example. Not only do V Series refrigerated cases offer customizable door, frame and handle designs to suit any décor, they also come in standard and narrow sizes to

Continue Reading

CO2 offers unexpected benefit: less product shrink

By Derek Gosselin Hillphoenix Systems Product Manager Today’s grocery shoppers demand more fresh offerings — from cut fruit to prepared meals — and this changes the profitability equation for supermarkets. Fresh sells, but as perishables become a larger percentage of a store’s mix, it’s essential to extend how long those products are fit for sale. That’s why grocers are adding doors to refrigerated display cases and employing new, moisture-retaining cooling technologies like Hillphoenix’s Coolgenix cases in the meat department. But there’s another product-shrink solution that comes as a bonus prize in a carbon dioxide-based refrigeration conversion: consistent cooling. Traditional hydrofluorocarbon-based

Continue Reading

CO2 Training Eliminates the Fear Factor for Refrigeration Technicians

Most technicians aren’t ready for alternative refrigeration changes on the horizon, but Hillphoenix is working (and training) hard to change that. By Rusty Walker Hillphoenix Senior Corporate Trainer One thing really surprised contractor Kurt Hugger about his CO2 training session: How simple it was to learn the alternative refrigeration system. “A lot of people are intimidated by CO2. But, honestly, it’s very easy to work on,” Kurt told me after completing one of our on-site training sessions at a supermarket in California where his company, CHM Mechanical, is based. “There are different components and pressures,” he noted, “but it operates

Continue Reading
Combine food art, science, & trends to drive fresh ideas

Combine food art, science, & trends to drive fresh ideas

As the supermarket industry continues to expand and evolve, it’s become even more essential to anticipate trends and shoppers’ needs. This is precisely why Hillphoenix is part of bringing together in-house experts and industry professionals for another year of Supermarket Sense.  Join us September 20-21, 2017 in Conyers, GA to boost your insights into trends, strategies, and goals.  Across two days, you’ll be inspired to create a crave-worthy store with sensory experiences for your shoppers.  And let’s not forget the importance of lighting, strategic packaging, and the upcoming trends with flavors. Here are just a few topics that should catch

Continue Reading

Conduction heat transfer: Why does it matter to merchandisers?

If your job involves showcasing meat and seafood in ways that are attractive to the customer and maintain the integrity of the product, conductive heat transfer can dramatically expand your window of opportunity. Moist and even cooling – the kind that actually extends the life of meat and seafood – are hallmarks of the conduction approach to refrigerated display case design. Conduction is heat transfer through the direct physical contact of two objects (or surfaces) at different temperatures. When two objects are in contact, heat flows from the warmer surface of one to the cooler surface of the other until

Continue Reading
Consumers’ path to healthier eating leads right to your seafood department

Consumers’ path to healthier eating leads right to your seafood department

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Health-conscious U.S. consumers are eating more seafood, and there’s still plenty of room for demand to grow. The National Marine Fisheries Service reports per-capita seafood consumption in the U.S. is 14.6 pounds, an amount that has increased over the last two years. Consumption of shrimp — the No. 1 seafood seller — increased 11% from 2013 to 2014. Americans eat, on average 4 pounds of shrimp a year. Per-capita consumption of salmon jumped 34% from 2012 to 2013, according to the latest data from the fisheries service. Salmon is the No. 2

Continue Reading

Convenience and Drug Stores: Future-Proof Your Business with Natural Refrigeration

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC Convenience stores and drugstores have long had the luxury of being blissfully unaware of refrigerant environmental regulations. Historically, most retailers in this sector were able to meet their refrigeration needs with self-contained refrigeration equipment that uses less than 50 pounds of refrigerant, meaning that most of the EPA’s Section 608 regulations did not apply. Some larger convenience stores or other stores with slightly greater refrigeration needs may have used cool rooms and single condensing units, but overall, it was uncommon to hear of a convenience store with a full refrigeration system. But

Continue Reading
Destination Center Success Begins with Food Selection, Presentation

Destination Center Success Begins with Food Selection, Presentation

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist What do empty nesters, busy, working parents, and Millennials have in common? They’re all engaging with food in new ways. They care about what they eat, where they get it, and how it’s prepared. More than “something to eat,” food has become an experience, one that has to satisfy increasingly sophisticated consumer sensibilities. And consumers have so many options for seeking those experiences. From traditional and fast-casual restaurants to farmers markets, online shopping, specialty shops, and grocery stores, there are more players than ever competing for shoppers’ food dollars. The good news

Continue Reading

Destination Centers: Layout and Flow Can Make or Break the Customer Experience

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Consumers are looking to grocers to please their sophisticated palettes and to help solve the problem of how to give their families and themselves high-quality meals despite their busy schedules. Grocers are responding with Destination Centers: from full-scale grocerants and fresh prepared dishes for takeout to wine and beer bars and cheese or chocolate shops. Destination Centers can vary widely in type and number, but whatever route is taken, one thing holds true: The layout and flow has tremendous impact on the customer experience, staff performance, and sales. The design experts at

Continue Reading

Discover ways to light up meat sales

By Jack Sjogren Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist The right lights produce results. Just ask the owners of this supermarket in Crestline, California, a summer tourist area. Our Hillphoenix team helped them rethink lighting in the store’s meat department, and over three months departmental sales jumped 15% compared to the same three months the year before. (That sales boost came after peak tourist season, I might add.) We made simple changes with big visual impact that captured customers’ attention. The first step was shutting off existing in-case lighting — T8 fluorescents — that drained color from the meat and created an

Continue Reading

Does your meat department need a makeover?

Want to attract more customers to your high-margin meat and seafood departments? Start by standing where they do — in front of your refrigerated display cases. Then ask yourself a few questions: Is your attention stolen by crowded signs, melting ice, visible cleaning equipment or other distractions? Does lighting give meat an off-putting, brown or grayish hue? Does seafood look slimy, rather than moist? Does product look dry around the edges? Do employees have to turn their backs on you to weigh and wrap product? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you need a meat department

Continue Reading

Don’t fear the door: Shoppers will reach in for freshness

By Kelly Sayko Hillphoenix Case Division Product Manager Packaged meat is one of the highest-revenue foods in the supermarket, but it’s also one of the most susceptible to spoiling. The typical shelf life a cut of steak is four days. Ground beef typically can stay on the shelf only two days before it turns from bright red to dark red or brown, and shoppers feel it is no longer fresh. But add doors to a refrigerated meat case, and everything changes. The Hillphoenix AMS Group conducted a study in which identical eight-foot cases with the same operating performance were set

Continue Reading

Double the display life of cut meat; save employee labor hours with Coolgenix

Meat and seafood departments present huge, high-margin opportunities for supermarkets. In the consumer’s mind, purchasing meat and seafood from a trusted grocer best ensures it is fresh and safe. These offerings enable grocers to differentiate their stores from discount and online retailers and build loyalty with local shoppers. But meat and seafood departments present challenges, too. The product is costly and highly perishable. Grocers must make sure they’re refrigerating and displaying meat and seafood properly to reduce waste and the risk of contamination — and to increase sales. One problem I see in supermarkets again and again is displayed meat

Continue Reading

Each Destination Center Is a Theater for Engaging the Whole Shopper

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Grocery stores are in a unique position to satisfy today’s consumer’s appetite for fresh, high-quality foods and engaging food experiences. Along with being a one-stop shop for household goods and pantry staples – something restaurants and farmers markets can’t offer – in-store Destination Centers cater to customers seeking a boutique wine or cheese experience or fresh, prepared dishes to eat in or take out. They’re also a store’s opportunity to captivate shoppers who came in for a few basic items, like milk and paper towels, and have them leaving with a bottle

Continue Reading
Ease of Installation Simplifies the Path to Small-Format CO2 Refrigeration

Ease of Installation Simplifies the Path to Small-Format CO2 Refrigeration

For small-format retailers interested in making the switch to natural CO2 refrigeration, their options just got considerably more appealing. AdvansorFlex, the latest addition to Hillphoenix’s evolving Advansor CO2 platform, is engineered to ensure straightforward installation and smooth operation from day one. Whether part of a new store construction or a remodels, the installation of refrigeration equipment is a major consideration in terms of project costs, feasibility, and completion time—particularly when minimizing downtime is part of the equation. With AdvansorFlex, scalability and ease of installation now go hand-in-hand. Less Onsite Prep Every feature of the AdvansorFlex CO2 system is designed with

Continue Reading
Easy Maintenance Is a Bonus with Small-Format CO2 Refrigeration

Easy Maintenance Is a Bonus with Small-Format CO2 Refrigeration

In 2014, research firm Packaged Facts reported that the average size of supermarkets has been trending smaller since 2006. At the same time, consumers have continued to ask for more fresh and convenient food options, and supermarkets — along with small-format retailers such as drugstores and convenience stores — have responded by increasing their fresh and prepared food selections. And just as space is becoming more limited and offerings are becoming more complex, retailers are trying to keep up with environmental regulations to reduce or eliminate HFC refrigerants. Fortunately, there are new, sustainable CO2 refrigeration systems that make it easier

Continue Reading

Energy efficient solutions from a shopper’s point of view

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix Our relationship with food is changing. Cooking shows, celebrity chefs, open kitchen designs. Instagram photos. Grocers bringing alternatives into the mainstream. The resurgence of the farmers market. The list goes on and on. For a mix of health, social, economic, and sustainability reasons, people are engaging more deeply  with food. They talk – and think – about what they eat, how they prepare it, and where they buy it. And food shopping is no longer a list-driven routine for replenishing the pantry. For more and more people, it’s an experience

Continue Reading

Equip Destination Centers for Versatility

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Equipment for preparing and displaying foods should be able to accomplish a variety of goals. Along with supporting the menu, the right equipment plays a role in creating product theater. From ordinary to interactive Picture the typical produce department with cases along the perimeter and rows of islands out on the floor. Shoppers often navigate the space on autopilot, engaging momentarily to check items for freshness and integrity. Compare that familiar scene with this: staff chopping and slicing fresh fruits and vegetables at a refrigerated kiosk island in the center of the

Continue Reading

Evaporator Fan Retrofits Do More Than Save Energy

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix Electronically commutated (EC) motors have been an alternative to induction (shaded pole and permanent split capacitor) motors in evaporator fans for the past decade. Although EC motors can reduce energy consumption by as much as 65 percent compared with its predecessors, the higher cost of the technology – and longer payback period – has hindered significant adoption in the supermarket space. But as with most new technologies it’s only a matter of time until the price comes down, and EC motors are now essentially standard on evaporator fans in new

Continue Reading
Financing options bolster the business case for energy-efficient food stores

Financing options bolster the business case for energy-efficient food stores

The AMS Group No matter where you stand on climate change or environmental stewardship, one thing is clear: It pays to be green. That message was driven home when Goldman Sachs upped its investment in energy-efficiency and clean-energy projects over the next 10 years from $40 billion to $150 billion. In fact, investing in energy efficiency is one of the best bets around, with a low risk comparable to U.S. T-bills (~ 5% risk index) but an average annual return upward of 20 percent – more than four times that of T-bills. The business case for energy efficiency is especially

Continue Reading
Follow Food Trends to Drive Sales

Follow Food Trends to Drive Sales

Following food trends isn’t just about the groceries you sell.  It’s also about providing inspiration for shoppers, understanding their needs, and increasing access to the food experiences they crave. Ignoring trends, or simply neglecting to integrate them effectively into your merchandising, risks loss of sales and not capturing shopper loyalty.” Mark DiDomenico of Datassential, Inc. will be sharing the latest food trends at Supermarket Sense, September 20-21, 2017.  From the healthy craze to what’s new or taboo, you won’t want to miss how trends can influence your store and your customers. The health and wellness industry continues its climb into

Continue Reading

Food Retailers Discuss the Future of Sustainable Refrigeration at Hillphoenix Tech Symposium

Nearly 30 ATMOsphere America attendees took a road trip from Atlanta to Hillphoenix’s Conyers, Georgia, headquarters for a day of delving into refrigeration technologies and trends — and a firsthand look at the latest cooling technology for food retailers. Hillphoenix’s June 24 Technology Symposium, managed by Supermarket Sense, was called “State-of-the-Art is Due for an Update.” It covered refrigeration topics and trends crucial to supermarkets, convenience stores and other food retailers. Among them: Current regulations and anticipated regulatory changes Emerging alternative refrigeration case technology, including developments in Hillphoenix’s Second Nature® CO2 Booster, Cascade and Secondary systems Ways to extend product

Continue Reading

For most utilities, natural refrigerants are a tough sell

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC The fundamental difficulty with the opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is that, for most utilities in the country, greenhouse gas emissions in and of themselves are irrelevant. Most of the world’s population thinks that energy use and greenhouse gas emissions are one and the same, but utilities are well aware that this is not the case. In the utility world, these two concepts are separate, but related. Energy efficiency equals greenhouse gas reductions, but greenhouse gas reductions don’t always equal energy efficiency. While the vast majority of policy-makers in the world

Continue Reading

Future-Proof Your Refrigeration

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC People ask me all the time if the EPA is ever going to get off their backs about the refrigerant they use. My answer is always the same: The only way that will happen is if the industry stops using refrigerants that harm the environment. For the first time since the EPA started regulating refrigerants in supermarkets, it is possible for a supermarket to operate using 100% natural refrigerants. With the use of CO2, we have a refrigerant that is safe for the ozone layer and for our climate. The EPA’s refrigerant

Continue Reading

Goodbye, gourmet: Artisan is the new buzz word

By Hannah Thompson Educator & Trainer for ANCO Fine Cheese Looks like the word “artisan” has been hijacked! Subway sandwich shops now offer artisan sandwiches, and Domino’s offers artisan pizza. What does “artisan” really mean? It’s meant to refer to foods that are hand-crafted in smaller batches and made with high-quality ingredients, such as ice cream, cheese and bacon. The dairy farmer was once the producer, processor, distributor and marketer of his own milk; that trend is returning as today’s consumers ask for farmstead-made cheeses and other dairy products produced locally with minimal processing. Beyond the cheese, fresh fruits and

Continue Reading
Harness the power of inspiring, informative signs

Harness the power of inspiring, informative signs

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Merchandising has two main objectives: to engage shoppers and influence their buying decisions. Beautiful, surprising displays are powerful ways to accomplish both goals. But don’t overlook the persuasiveness of a simple sign. Signs can do everything from attract shoppers to your juice bar from 30 feet away to educate them about the nutritional value of the fruit and vegetable beverages they’ll find there. Here are some great ways to incorporate signs into your store installations and displays, all centered on selling food — and your brand. Train shoppers to open the refrigerated

Continue Reading

Hillphoenix AdvansorFlex CO2 Brings Sustainable Refrigeration to Retailers of All Sizes

Hillphoenix, a pioneer in designing environmentally sustainable refrigeration systems, now brings HFC-free refrigeration to small and medium-sized retailers. The company’s new AdvansorFlex CO2 refrigeration system delivers all the benefits of natural CO2 refrigeration in a compact and scalable format that is perfect for stores of every size. As part of the evolving Advansor CO2 platform, AdvansorFlex is an environmentally sustainable HFC-free system that uses non-toxic, non-flammable CO2 as its only refrigerant. Both Advansor CO2 and AdvansorFlex CO2 are part of Hillphoenix’s industry-leading Second Nature® line of alternative refrigeration systems. Because it relies solely on plentiful, all-natural CO2, AdvansorFlex is DOE

Continue Reading

Hillphoenix earns fifth EPA GreenChill Award

Hillphoenix congratulates all the 2015 GreenChill Environmental Achievement Award recipients who, along with Hillphoenix, were recognized by EPA Greenchill at the GreenChill Partnership’s annual Achievement Awards on September 29. Hillphoenix, a pioneer in designing environmentally sustainable refrigeration systems, received a 2014-2015 Achievement Award – Store Certification Excellence from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s GreenChill Partnership program. It’s the company’s fifth GreenChill award since the program launched in 2007. For the third year in a row, Hillphoenix was the only non-grocery recipient of a GreenChill Store Certification Excellence award. “We are honored by this recognition from EPA GreenChill. Since GreenChill was established

Continue Reading

Hillphoenix supports Coolgenix customers with onsite training

By Derek Gosselin Hillphoenix Systems Product Manager Using carbon dioxide as a refrigerant seems like a new solution to today’s challenge of lowering the global warming potential of commercial refrigeration systems. But, as industry researcher James M. Calm has documented, the use of CO2 as a refrigerant actually stretches back to 1866. In subsequent decades CO2, ammonia and other early refrigerants took a backseat to organic fluoride-based cooling compounds. The first among them was synthesized dichlorodifluoromethane, or R-12, developed in the late 1920s. In 1930, fluorocarbon refrigerants were introduced to the market and quickly became the standard. It took us

Continue Reading

Infographic: Capture Savings as You Spend Capex Dollars on Refrigeration Upgrades

Are you looking for projects to help you make the most of your allocated capital expenditure budget before the year runs out? A refrigeration system upgrade is a strong option. Here’s why: It’s a capex project that can be accomplished in a relatively short time. There’s no major construction. It positions your store for more modernization down the road. The upfront costs can often be offset by rebates and incentives — as much as 40% depending on project size and location. The investment is returned through years of energy savings. Your refrigeration system upgrade also may lead to savings on water

Continue Reading

Infographic: Island 2 Innovate (i2i) Makes Destination Centers Easy

Hillphoenix’s new Island 2 Innovate (i2i) modular island system makes it easy for retailers to offer creatively merchandised, healthy food selections within any size footprint. The i2i island system is a multifunctional, modular display case that can be configured to include heated, refrigerated, wet and dry products in virtually any combination. With i2i, any retailer can create fresh Destination Centers — regardless of store layout or size.

Continue Reading

Just Because It’s Difficult Doesn’t Mean We Shouldn’t Try

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC This is the second article in a three-part series on sustainability and refrigerants. In part I of my series on communicating about sustainability in refrigeration with consumers, I discussed why it is difficult to make refrigeration relevant to stores’ consumers. Notice I said difficult – not impossible. Just because something is difficult doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. If it were easy, it wouldn’t be a challenge. And if there is anything we all love in this industry, it’s a challenge. I received my first lesson in the relevance of supermarket refrigeration to

Continue Reading

Lack of uniform modeling solutions hinders natural refrigeration adoption

Last month, we discussed the lack of effective performance baselines for natural refrigeration systems and how that makes it difficult for utilities to provide natural refrigeration incentives. In this article, we’ll talk about the second challenge faced by end users and utilities: the lack of good modeling software for natural refrigeration systems. When seeking incentives from utilities for natural refrigeration, modeling new system performance is key to calculating anticipated savings. “Modeling” entails determining what the energy consumption of a particular technology is, taking all variables into account and using mathematical formulas to ensure that all numbers are accurate. It’s important

Continue Reading
Lighting Affects Consumer Perception of Vacuum Packaged Meats

Lighting Affects Consumer Perception of Vacuum-Packaged Meats

In late 2016, Hillphoenix and Sealed Air co-sponsored a study that compared consumer assessments of its new proprietary Clearvoyant® LED lighting technology to existing “cool” and “warm” levels of fluorescent lighting. This research supports efforts to encourage the adoption of vacuum packaging for fresh proteins. As a percentage of packages in the refrigerated meat case, vacuum packaging grew from 10% in 2002 to 24% in 2015 as PVC packing decreased from 51% to 33%. For retailers, the benefits include extended shelf life, less handling within the store, less shrink, and more time for employees to help shoppers and keep cases

Continue Reading
Make Utility Rebates Part of Your Energy Improvement Efforts

Make Utility Rebates Part of Your Energy Improvement Efforts

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix In the commercial building space, grocery stores rank #1 for energy intensity, using more energy per square foot than even health care facilities. As consumer demand for more fresh and frozen foods grows, energy intensity will too, with more store space devoted to refrigerated and freezer cases. Improving energy efficiency is imperative to protect grocers’ already thin profit margins. End-use energy is the second highest operating expense after labor for food retailers, and the U.S. Department of Energy estimates that every dollar saved in electricity has the same impact on

Continue Reading

Mapping shopper’s eye leads to 22% sales jump

By Jack Sjogren Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist Here’s a great story about the power of lighting and proper merchandising. Driscoll’s, one of the world’s largest distributors of fresh berries, wanted to amp up sales from its “Berry Patch” displays, which it creates for select partner retailers. Each Berry Patch features strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and blackberries merchandised in a refrigerated display case designed to maximize berry freshness and longevity. The berries were selling well, but Chuck Sweeney, Driscoll’s Director of Category Development, thought they could be moving out the door even faster. At an industry trade show, he saw a demonstration

Continue Reading

Meal-centered “Occasions” Drive Prepared Food Sales

Getting customers to purchase your freshly prepared food instead of that of the restaurant down the street is the name of the game. Tailoring your food offerings to your customers’ needs is key to making that happen. Why are your customers eating what they do? What time of the day and days of the week are they coming in? Hint: They’re not just buying ready-to-eat lunches and family dinners anymore. A study from Datassential identified a few lesser known “occasions” for customers buying ready-to-eat or semi-prepared meals. Up-and-coming urban areas may be saturated with young couples and singles looking for

Continue Reading

Merchandising Tip: Create a visual focal point

Want to attract more customers to your high-margin meat and seafood departments? Put the focus on the product. Coolgenix conductive refrigeration technology protects the integrity of meat and seafood, so your product is moist, colorful and visually appealing to your customers.

Continue Reading

Merchandising Tip: Moist and even cooling

Moist and even cooling – the kind that actually extends the life of meat and seafood – are hallmarks of the conduction approach to refrigerated display case design. Conduction is heat transfer through the direct physical contact of two objects (or surfaces) at different temperatures. When two objects are in contact, heat flows from the warmer surface of one to the cooler surface of the other until both reach the same temperature – also known as equilibrium. A display case using conduction includes a special type of deck pan through which a chilled fluid flows. When product is placed on

Continue Reading
Milk Flavor Profile Influenced by Retail Lighting and Packaging

Milk Flavor Profile Influenced by Retail Lighting and Packaging

If you’ve ever tasted fresh milk with its creamy, slightly sweet flavor, you know how delicious good milk can be. You probably also noted the brand and the grocery store from which it came.  Likewise, you may have experienced milk that tasted off or gone bad — perhaps with hints of burnt, plastic or cardboard flavors. These off-flavor notes are caused by oxidation in the milk which is caused by light exposure. As part of its ongoing commitment to fresh marketing, Hillphoenix sponsored two studies, conducted by researchers at the Virginia Tech Food Science Department, Chemours Packaging, and the Dairy

Continue Reading

Natural refrigeration is a challenging sustainability issue for consumers

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC This is the first article in a three-part series on sustainability and refrigerants. In this day and age, most supermarket companies recognize that their customers care about the environment and their communities. Customers want to spend their money at businesses that share those values. They want to feel good about where they shop, so they want to know that their grocery store is helping to make their community a better place. Given these facts, and given the enormous progress that many supermarket companies have made in reducing the environmental impact of their

Continue Reading
New LEDs will have you seeing red in all the right ways

New LEDs will have you seeing red in all the right ways

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix Over the past decade or so, grocers have been reaping merchandising benefits of LED lighting in freezer cases. Despite initial limitations in LED color quality and total light output, both its cooler color temperatures and uniform illumination have literally cast frozen foods in a favorable light. Along with creating the ideal look and feel, LED’s superior performance at lower temperatures and greater energy efficiency compared with fluorescent lights have been a real win for grocers in the freezer aisle. LEDs have finally surpassed fluorescents in color fidelity. The good news

Continue Reading
No-Heat Freezer Doors

No-Heat Freezer Doors? No Sweat!

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group Food stores are complex. What it takes to merchandise effectively, on one hand, and operate efficiently, on the other, can be at odds with each other. Heated cooler and freezer doors are a perfect example. Preventing condensation, or sweating, on low-temperature case doors is a must for merchandising and a good customer experience. Using heat to do it, however, has a significant downside for efficient operations. The problem with heated doors Put simply, heated doors are expensive to operate. In addition to the energy it takes to prevent condensation, refrigeration loads

Continue Reading

Paying for Building-Level Energy Projects: PACE Makes It Possible

The AMS Group Solar power, wind power, fuel cells. These and other alternative approaches to producing and using energy still have an air of newness for most people who are not in the energy business. While the technologies themselves are not new, the traction they are gaining in a more mainstream application and adoption is. This, in large part, is because they are becoming easier to pay for. In two previous posts, we covered how food retailers can maintain positive cash flow while paying for energy projects through on-bill financing and even traditional financing. These are great options for energy-efficiency

Continue Reading

Planning an effective retrofit strategy starts with benchmarking

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix Download Infographic Supermarkets are the most electricity-intensive commercial buildings, using an average of 51.5 kilowatt-hours per square foot per year at a cost of about $3.70 per square foot per year. In terms of operating budget, energy is the second largest expense for food retailers after labor. In fact, given the industry’s thin profit margin, it’s estimated that it takes $18 in sales to pay off $1 of the electric bill.* The good news is there are several system retrofits and other energy upgrades that significantly improve electricity efficiency –

Continue Reading
Prepare for Refrigerant Regulation Changes; Future-Proof Your Business

Prepare for Refrigerant Regulation Changes; Future-Proof Your Business

EPA’s SNAP Phaseout Schedule for Alternative Refrigerants The wait is over. Food retailers and the refrigeration industry were in a holding pattern for months while the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency considered its next move on alternative refrigerants. Then, in mid-July, a 90-page ruling published in the Federal Register (pp. 42870-42959) confirmed what Hillphoenix and other industry experts had anticipated: Widely used refrigerants R-404A and R-507A would join the list of alternatives being phased out under the EPA’s Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) program. Now retailers and manufacturers have the facts. Like the ruling or not, the industry finally can take

Continue Reading

Prepared Food Safety is Critical for Managing Risk, Maximizing Opportunities

Join Michael Williams and Joe Sielski for “HACCP Plan – Ideas on Having a Strong Program for Prepared Meals and Deli” at Supermarket Sense 2016, September 21-22 in Conyers, Ga. Offering prepared and semi-prepared foods at retail supermarkets presents a great opportunity for grocers but also presents a potential for great risk if the food safety program is not properly executed. That is why these programs are best viewed as an investment rather than an expense. Ensuring viable food safety is necessary for food retailers to build their prepared foods business and ultimately engage their customers. A good food safety

Continue Reading
Produce for the Win!

Produce for the Win!

Pricing may get shoppers in the door, but the entire produce experience is what makes the sale.  As the perimeter grows fresher and greener, understanding your customers’ wants and needs is paramount to staying the top pick for where they spend their dollars. Because produce consumption often is tied to health and wellness, shoppers are recognizing they need to add more vegetables across meals each day. Targeting the heart-healthy and waistline-friendly produce speaks to the consciousness of your customers. Wellness-focused signage and samples encourage your shoppers to try new varieties, increasing awareness and demand. Time-pinched customers are seeking easy-to-access fruit

Continue Reading

Recommissioning cuts energy, improves store environment

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix The food store environment is complex, with the various building systems essentially working against each other to maintain optimal conditions. General illumination competes with lighting used to enhance merchandising. Refrigeration competes with maintaining comfortable aisle temperatures for customers. Seasonal and daily weather variables further complicate the mix, affecting loads on refrigeration and HVAC systems. When any one of a store’s systems isn’t operating optimally – at designed specifications – it affects the performance of the other systems and the overall store environment. It also significantly increases energy expenses. Migration away

Continue Reading

Restaurant trends create opportunities for supermarkets

By Mark DiDomenico Datassential, Inc. Today’s consumer is much more engaged with the foods and beverages they consume. Subsequently, they are driving faster adoption of trends. Nowhere is this more evident than in the restaurant channel, where operators are challenged with developing new and enticing menu options for their patrons’ ever evolving tastes. Those trends are also providing great challenges and opportunities for supermarkets, which are increasingly competing with restaurants. Datassential recently published an in-depth analysis of how supermarkets can grow their prepared food departments and become popular and profitable food service destinations in their own right. Here are some

Continue Reading

Retailers and industry experts gather for Hillphoenix’s Supermarket Sense

By Henry Pellerin Hillphoenix Vice President of Marketing As traditional food-selling lines crisscross and blur — think grocerant — retailers increasingly seek insights from vendors with a view across multiple environments. At Hillphoenix, we have that broad view because our people are on the ground in traditional supermarkets, convenience stores and meal-oriented small-format operations. We transform what we learn in the field into institutional expertise and strategic intelligence for customers. Our people have deep knowledge about merchandising, store design, lighting, food safety, meal programs, shopper engagement and more. You can meet some of our experts at the upcoming Supermarket Sense,

Continue Reading

Retailers can future-proof their business now by assessing alternative refrigerants…

Retailers can future-proof their business now by assessing alternative refrigerants before they hit the market Now’s the time for supermarkets and convenience stores to assess whether soon-to-be-released sustainable refrigerants will be a good fit for their businesses — and Hillphoenix experts can help. Major manufacturers plan to release refrigerants with lower global-warming potential in mid-2015. The new products will hit the market in advance of an anticipated phase out of R404A, a widely used refrigerant that U.S. and European regulators have targeted because of its potential for environmentally harmful emissions. “Grocers and convenience store owners should start today assessing whether these

Continue Reading
Revealing food merchandisers’ secrets for closed-case refrigerated displays

Revealing food merchandisers’ secrets for closed-case refrigerated displays

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Here’s a merchandising secret that’s kept far too well: Putting doors on refrigerated cases will enhance your displays. Skeptical, are you? Well, keep reading to discover just how compelling closed-case merchandising can be. Create a food gallery. The visual stimuli on store shelves can be overwhelming to consumers. All those shapes and colors can create sensory overload — especially when a shopper is strolling past vast stretches of open refrigerated cases. But add doors to those cases, and you define the field of vision. Shoppers see one area at a time and

Continue Reading
Securing Energy Incentives Isn’t a DIY Endeavor for Supermarkets

Securing Energy Incentives Isn’t a DIY Endeavor for Supermarkets

By Leigha Joyal Energy Analyst, Hillphoenix Food retail is among the most electricity intensive commercial enterprises, and store owners want to reduce their consumption and their bills. Utilities want to see that happen, too. Containing consumption is more cost effective for utilities than expanding the electric grid. That’s why they have incentive programs that defray some of the costs of adopting energy-efficient technologies. This, at least in theory, is a win for everyone. But in practice, it’s not always a win for food retailers. The energy incentives landscape Navigating the incentives terrain takes an investment of time, manpower, and even

Continue Reading

Shedding light on cost-effective energy reduction in convenience stores

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix There are more than 152,000 convenience stores in the U.S. and about 80 percent of them sell gas. The food retail part of the business alone makes these stores energy intensive. Across the industry, food stores use an average of 51.5 kilowatt-hours per square foot  – more than any other commercial building. For C-stores that sell gas, energy intensity can soar to as much as 94 kilowatt-hours per square foot or higher due to greater plug loads (e.g., coffee makers, slushy machines), outdoor lighting, and gas canopy lighting, all compressed

Continue Reading
Shine the Right Light on Your Offerings to Stand Out in the Marketplace

Shine the Right Light on Your Offerings to Stand Out in the Marketplace

It should come as no surprise that LED lighting continues to rise in popularity to save cost and improve efficiency.  An overlooked detail is that improper use can actually reduce sales, too.  By using incorrect color temperatures and not protecting product integrity, customer satisfaction is at risk. Let’s look at color.  Opting to use warm or cool tones appropriately around your produce, meats, and even packaged frozen products makes all the difference in the world to how your shoppers view your offerings.  Vibrant colors naturally exist in fresh fruits and vegetables.  If your LEDs aren’t dialed in to bring out

Continue Reading

Show-and-sell strategy leads to hot foods program success

By Kim Camp, Learning Center Programs Manager and Justin Webster, Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist Grocery shoppers love the convenience and variety of ready-to-eat meals. In response, about 75% of food retailers plan to set up self-service bars by early next year, according to a Supermarket News survey published in April. But hot food program newbies have a few things to learn — like the fact that a high-quality hot foods program involves both art and science. Displays must be attractive. Food should look moist and freshly prepared, and also be safe and healthy. At our upcoming Supermarket Sense conference, Sept.

Continue Reading
Small-format stores capitalize on “fresh” opportunities to boost sales

Small-format stores capitalize on “fresh” opportunities to boost sales

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Whether they’re stopping at Starbucks or a convenience store, Americans increasingly want fresh options. The desire for fresh and healthy foods runs the gamut from snacks to ready-made meals. Just look at the research: 78% of consumers are on a mission to eat more fresh and fewer processed foods, according to the 2014 Gallup Study of Cooking Knowledge & Skills. “Health” to consumers now is more about food purity than traditional dieting, and they are eating more fresh foods, reports global information company The NPD Group. Fresh-format retail sales are growing 12%

Continue Reading
Small-format stores capitalize on “fresh” opportunities to boost sales

Small-Format Strategies: Merchandising tips that make every square foot count

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist In small-format stores, every square foot counts. That’s why it’s important for convenience, discount and drug stores to save space, while also maximizing merchandising opportunities. So, what can small-format stores do to make the most of their space and ensure that small feels special to shoppers? Here are a few strategies: Elevate endcaps Don’t stuff end caps with past-their-prime discounts or the staples shoppers already know you sell. Instead, use that prime real estate to showcase goods that will surprise and delight your customers. For example, encourage shoppers to bring home a

Continue Reading

Small-format trend calls for refrigerated cases designed for small spaces

By Kelly Sayko Hillphoenix Case Division Small-format stores now claim about half of consumers’ short shopping trips, according to market researcher IRI, and traditional retailers are adapting. Big-box stalwart Wal-Mart is reporting same-store growth of nearly 8% at its smaller-footprint Neighborhood Markets stores, compared to just 1.1% for its standard format stores. Meanwhile, small-format rival Aldi, a German discount chain, is planning to add 600 locations in the U.S. by the end of 2018, bringing its nationwide store count to 2,000. Even megastore IKEA is trying out 19,000-square-foot spaces — 94% smaller than the Swedish chain’s largest floor plan. Come

Continue Reading
Smooth Operators: Small-format retailers simplify ongoing operations with CO2

Smooth Operators: Small-format retailers simplify ongoing operations with CO2

Over the past several years, some notable trends have brought changes to the retail refrigeration space. Grocery stores are getting smaller, fresh-food options are gaining ground at retailers of every size, and ozone-depleting refrigerants continue to be pushed out by natural and sustainable options. At the spot where small-format, fresh-format, and sustainability converge, retailers may find themselves in unfamiliar territory when it comes to selecting refrigeration equipment for a new location or a store remodel. With the old distinctions between big- and small-format offerings becoming more than a little blurry, retailers are in need of a new kind of refrigeration

Continue Reading
Supermarkets Give Meal Kits Staying Power

Supermarkets Give Meal Kits Staying Power

With $2B in annual sales, meal kits have made a splash in the food retail industry.  Subscription services are already challenged with retention because customers are selective.  They want convenience without sacrificing nutrition, cost, flavor, or variety, and those are tall orders for the subscription business model.  Supermarkets, on the other hand, can give meal kits true staying power simply because of easy access to resources. Furthermore, you can leverage meal kits to open the gateway to more cooking by your shoppers.  Supermarket Sense is the place to set your sights on how kits fit into your profit plan. One

Continue Reading

Sustainable Refrigeration: Tips for simplifying a complex topic

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC In Parts I and II of the series on sustainability and refrigerants, I listed some of the reasons why it can be difficult to communicate with grocery shoppers about sustainable refrigeration. This third installment provides tactics for clear, simple, and compelling communication — as well as tips to avoid common mistakes. First, I need to address readers who expect a fill-in-the blank communication template that works for everyone and every topic. Stop reading now. You are going to be disappointed. The truth of the matter is, there is no universal formula for

Continue Reading

The Future for Naturals is Now: Utility Incentive Success Stories

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC Much has been written over the past few months about the potential for utility incentives based on natural refrigerant use in supermarkets. The word “potential,” as well as the nature of the articles, suggests that utility incentives for naturals are a thing of the future. Not so! There are plenty of examples of successful incentive projects for stores that use natural refrigeration systems. The discussion about utility incentives for naturals normally centers around how our industry can get utilities to adapt their existing incentive programs to better fit the world of natural

Continue Reading

The right lights turn closed cases into ‘food galleries’

By Jack Sjogren Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist Using proper lighting inside and around closed-door refrigerated cases turns glass-fronted coolers into gallery-worthy display spaces. That increases the value of your investment in high-visibility cases, such as the Clarity line from Hillphoenix. And it ensures your closed cases not only offer energy savings and product longevity, but also show merchandise at its best. Here are a few tips for putting merchandise behind doors in the best light: Use warm-colored LED lights in cool spaces. Avoid white and blue-tinged light inside refrigerated cases. Instead, use blubs on the “warm” red-to-yellow color spectrum to

Continue Reading

The Shrinking Supermarket: 6 Essentials to Designing Small-Format Grocery Stores

The trend toward smaller stores is getting bigger. Small-format dollar stores and drug stores now claim about half of consumers’ short shopping trips, according to market researcher IRI. Meanwhile, traditional supermarkets are netting just 25 percent of those in-and-out sprees, IRI reports. These statistics reflect a shift in consumers’ definition of convenience. The all-in-one big box is losing its allure. These days, on-the-go consumers would rather make more frequent trips to smaller stores where they can get what they want and be on their way. In this environment, supermarkets still have an edge because they’ve got the product mix and

Continue Reading

To understand the future of commercial refrigeration, look to CO2’s past

By Derek Gosselin Hillphoenix Systems Product Manager Using carbon dioxide as a refrigerant seems like a new solution to today’s challenge of lowering the global warming potential of commercial refrigeration systems. But, as industry researcher James M. Calm has documented, the use of CO2 as a refrigerant actually stretches back to 1866. In subsequent decades CO2, ammonia and other early refrigerants took a backseat to organic fluoride-based cooling compounds. The first among them was synthesized dichlorodifluoromethane, or R-12, developed in the late 1920s. In 1930, fluorocarbon refrigerants were introduced to the market and quickly became the standard. It took us

Continue Reading

Use food demonstrations to connect with customers

By Justin Webster Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist On September 22-23, Hillphoenix hosted Supermarket Sense, a gathering of industry experts designed to educate food retailers about current and future trends — and how to make the most of them. One of the sessions I led was called “How to Engage Customers and Increase Shopper Dependency.” We covered everything from shopper loyalty to connecting with customers from different generations. One thing we talked about was the power of product sampling. Here are some tips you can use to improve your in-store demos.

Continue Reading

Utility Incentives: Lack of standard industry benchmarks still a challenge

If you’re going to reward improvement, you need a baseline against which to measure it. Therein lies one of the many challenges facing refrigeration end-users seeking utility incentives for upgrades and new installations. As utilities, manufacturers and end-users work together to make newer, more energy efficient equipment more affordable through incentives, the lack of standard industry benchmarks makes the process complicated, fragmented and inconsistent. Manufacturer calculations are apples and oranges Within the refrigeration manufacturing industry, there is no uniform energy performance baseline for either CO2 or DX systems. Each manufacturer has its own set of tools for calculating energy consumption,

Continue Reading

Video: Coolgenix versus other conduction cooling cases

Only Coolgenix deck pans use pulse flow control technology to maintain natural moisture levels and preserve the integrity of meat and seafood. Other conduction cooling cases claim to work like Coolgenix, but they don’t. Protect the integrity of your meat and seafood with the only conduction cooling case that actually maintains natural humidity and prevents shrink.

Continue Reading
Is your display case stealing moisture from your meat and seafood?

Video: Is your display case stealing moisture from your meat and seafood?

Video: Is your display case stealing moisture from your meat and seafood? March 29, 2016 | Coolgenix Only Coolgenix deck pans use pulse flow control technology to maintain natural moisture levels and preserve the integrity of meat and seafood. Other conduction cooling cases claim to work like Coolgenix, but they don’t. Cases with our patented Coolgenix technology are the only meat and seafood cases with a glycol-cooled deck pan that releases moisture into the case as it cycles between set points of 29 and 33 degrees Fahrenheit. This continuous cycling is how Coolgenix maintains natural case humidity, preserving product integrity and

Continue Reading

Video: Is your display case stealing moisture from your meat and seafood?

To understand how conduction heat transfer preserves the natural moisture content of meat and seafood, it helps to understand the alternative: traditional convection-cooled cases. Most convection-cooled meat and seafood display cases work in one of two ways. The most common way uses fans to drive the circulated air; this method is called forced convection. A second approach relies on the natural tendency of cold air to sink and warm air to rise. A particular type of evaporator called a gravity coil is mounted at the top of the case instead of at the bottom as is typically used in forced-air

Continue Reading
Why You Shouldn’t Dismiss Traditional Financing for Energy Improvements

Why You Shouldn’t Dismiss Traditional Financing for Energy Improvements

The AMS Group The initial cost of energy-efficiency retrofits is the single biggest hurdle to initiating projects. That’s because the cost of a project is more salient than the amount of money to be saved by energy efficiency. But what if you compare the cost of a project with the cost of energy wasted instead? The two propositions are the same, but the second one shifts focus to costs on both sides of the equation. A retrofit project costs money but so does not doing a project, especially for grocery stores, where energy consumption is among the highest of all

Continue Reading

Your customers should understand sustainable refrigeration just enough to care

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC The difference between mediocre communication and compelling communication lies in your message’s credibility, appeal, relevance, and distinctiveness. However, just like in refrigeration, when you fail to look at the whole picture, you wind up changing certain elements only to bring others out of whack. You lower your head pressure to save energy, but in doing so you lose heat reclaim capacity, which uses more energy, which brings you right back to square one. Similarly, in communication, overdoing it on one element, like distinctiveness, makes it harder to achieve another element, like credibility.

Continue Reading

Fresh Thinking...

Categories
Archives
Categories
Archives

Blog Results...

Casting the Right Talent for Destination Centers

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist No one would expect a cashier to assume the role of produce manager or butcher. The same goes for staffing Destination Centers. These roles require a genuine interest in food and robust people skills. Staff should be

Continue Reading

Clarity line adapts to supermarket sizes and styles

By Kelly Sayko Hillphoenix Case Division Product Manager One-size-fits-all refrigeration equipment won’t work in today’s supermarkets, which come in all shapes and styles. What’s more, the growing popularity of store-within-a-store destination areas means a one-size refrigeration strategy may not even work across a single store.

Continue Reading

CO2 offers unexpected benefit: less product shrink

By Derek Gosselin Hillphoenix Systems Product Manager Today’s grocery shoppers demand more fresh offerings — from cut fruit to prepared meals — and this changes the profitability equation for supermarkets. Fresh sells, but as perishables become a larger percentage of a store’s mix, it’s essential

Continue Reading
Combine food art, science, & trends to drive fresh ideas

Combine food art, science, & trends to drive fresh ideas

As the supermarket industry continues to expand and evolve, it’s become even more essential to anticipate trends and shoppers’ needs. This is precisely why Hillphoenix is part of bringing together in-house experts and industry professionals for another year of Supermarket Sense.  Join us September 20-21,

Continue Reading

Discover ways to light up meat sales

By Jack Sjogren Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist The right lights produce results. Just ask the owners of this supermarket in Crestline, California, a summer tourist area. Our Hillphoenix team helped them rethink lighting in the store’s meat department, and over three months departmental sales jumped

Continue Reading

Does your meat department need a makeover?

Want to attract more customers to your high-margin meat and seafood departments? Start by standing where they do — in front of your refrigerated display cases. Then ask yourself a few questions: Is your attention stolen by crowded signs, melting ice, visible cleaning equipment or

Continue Reading

Equip Destination Centers for Versatility

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Equipment for preparing and displaying foods should be able to accomplish a variety of goals. Along with supporting the menu, the right equipment plays a role in creating product theater. From ordinary to interactive Picture the typical

Continue Reading

Evaporator Fan Retrofits Do More Than Save Energy

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix Electronically commutated (EC) motors have been an alternative to induction (shaded pole and permanent split capacitor) motors in evaporator fans for the past decade. Although EC motors can reduce energy consumption by as much as

Continue Reading
Follow Food Trends to Drive Sales

Follow Food Trends to Drive Sales

Following food trends isn’t just about the groceries you sell.  It’s also about providing inspiration for shoppers, understanding their needs, and increasing access to the food experiences they crave. Ignoring trends, or simply neglecting to integrate them effectively into your merchandising, risks loss of sales

Continue Reading

For most utilities, natural refrigerants are a tough sell

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC The fundamental difficulty with the opportunity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is that, for most utilities in the country, greenhouse gas emissions in and of themselves are irrelevant. Most of the world’s population thinks that energy use

Continue Reading

Future-Proof Your Refrigeration

By Keilly Witman KW Refrigerant Management Strategy LLC People ask me all the time if the EPA is ever going to get off their backs about the refrigerant they use. My answer is always the same: The only way that will happen is if the

Continue Reading

Goodbye, gourmet: Artisan is the new buzz word

By Hannah Thompson Educator & Trainer for ANCO Fine Cheese Looks like the word “artisan” has been hijacked! Subway sandwich shops now offer artisan sandwiches, and Domino’s offers artisan pizza. What does “artisan” really mean? It’s meant to refer to foods that are hand-crafted in

Continue Reading
Harness the power of inspiring, informative signs

Harness the power of inspiring, informative signs

By Margie Proctor Hillphoenix Marketing & Design Specialist Merchandising has two main objectives: to engage shoppers and influence their buying decisions. Beautiful, surprising displays are powerful ways to accomplish both goals. But don’t overlook the persuasiveness of a simple sign. Signs can do everything from

Continue Reading

Hillphoenix earns fifth EPA GreenChill Award

Hillphoenix congratulates all the 2015 GreenChill Environmental Achievement Award recipients who, along with Hillphoenix, were recognized by EPA Greenchill at the GreenChill Partnership’s annual Achievement Awards on September 29. Hillphoenix, a pioneer in designing environmentally sustainable refrigeration systems, received a 2014-2015 Achievement Award – Store Certification

Continue Reading
Lighting Affects Consumer Perception of Vacuum Packaged Meats

Lighting Affects Consumer Perception of Vacuum-Packaged Meats

In late 2016, Hillphoenix and Sealed Air co-sponsored a study that compared consumer assessments of its new proprietary Clearvoyant® LED lighting technology to existing “cool” and “warm” levels of fluorescent lighting. This research supports efforts to encourage the adoption of vacuum packaging for fresh proteins.

Continue Reading

Mapping shopper’s eye leads to 22% sales jump

By Jack Sjogren Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist Here’s a great story about the power of lighting and proper merchandising. Driscoll’s, one of the world’s largest distributors of fresh berries, wanted to amp up sales from its “Berry Patch” displays, which it creates for select partner

Continue Reading

Merchandising Tip: Create a visual focal point

Want to attract more customers to your high-margin meat and seafood departments? Put the focus on the product. Coolgenix conductive refrigeration technology protects the integrity of meat and seafood, so your product is moist, colorful and visually appealing to your customers.

Continue Reading

Merchandising Tip: Moist and even cooling

Moist and even cooling – the kind that actually extends the life of meat and seafood – are hallmarks of the conduction approach to refrigerated display case design. Conduction is heat transfer through the direct physical contact of two objects (or surfaces) at different temperatures.

Continue Reading
No-Heat Freezer Doors

No-Heat Freezer Doors? No Sweat!

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group Food stores are complex. What it takes to merchandise effectively, on one hand, and operate efficiently, on the other, can be at odds with each other. Heated cooler and freezer doors are a perfect example. Preventing

Continue Reading
Produce for the Win!

Produce for the Win!

Pricing may get shoppers in the door, but the entire produce experience is what makes the sale.  As the perimeter grows fresher and greener, understanding your customers’ wants and needs is paramount to staying the top pick for where they spend their dollars. Because produce

Continue Reading

Recommissioning cuts energy, improves store environment

By Jonathan Tan, VP Energy Services The AMS Group, Hillphoenix The food store environment is complex, with the various building systems essentially working against each other to maintain optimal conditions. General illumination competes with lighting used to enhance merchandising. Refrigeration competes with maintaining comfortable aisle

Continue Reading

Restaurant trends create opportunities for supermarkets

By Mark DiDomenico Datassential, Inc. Today’s consumer is much more engaged with the foods and beverages they consume. Subsequently, they are driving faster adoption of trends. Nowhere is this more evident than in the restaurant channel, where operators are challenged with developing new and enticing

Continue Reading

Show-and-sell strategy leads to hot foods program success

By Kim Camp, Learning Center Programs Manager and Justin Webster, Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist Grocery shoppers love the convenience and variety of ready-to-eat meals. In response, about 75% of food retailers plan to set up self-service bars by early next year, according to a Supermarket

Continue Reading
Supermarkets Give Meal Kits Staying Power

Supermarkets Give Meal Kits Staying Power

With $2B in annual sales, meal kits have made a splash in the food retail industry.  Subscription services are already challenged with retention because customers are selective.  They want convenience without sacrificing nutrition, cost, flavor, or variety, and those are tall orders for the subscription

Continue Reading

The right lights turn closed cases into ‘food galleries’

By Jack Sjogren Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist Using proper lighting inside and around closed-door refrigerated cases turns glass-fronted coolers into gallery-worthy display spaces. That increases the value of your investment in high-visibility cases, such as the Clarity line from Hillphoenix. And it ensures your closed

Continue Reading

Use food demonstrations to connect with customers

By Justin Webster Hillphoenix Design Center Specialist On September 22-23, Hillphoenix hosted Supermarket Sense, a gathering of industry experts designed to educate food retailers about current and future trends — and how to make the most of them. One of the sessions I led was

Continue Reading
Close Menu
×
×

Cart