ALA Executive Briefing
Jul. 24, 2015

Obama announces new credit protections for troops
Military Times
President Barack Obama announced that the Defense Department will expand existing credit protections for troops and families against predatory lenders.More

Obama uses VFW speech to rail against sequestration
Military Times
President Barack Obama reiterated his pledge to veto defense budget bills if Congress does not lift mandatory spending caps on several federal agencies, saying Republican funding plans jeopardize national security.More

Defense bill could lift restrictions on guns on military bases
The Hill
Congress could vote to lift a ban on military personnel carrying guns at bases in the aftermath of the recent attack in Chattanooga, Tennessee.More

The unarmed forces: Will the Pentagon let troops carry weapons after Chattanooga, Tennessee shooting?
The Washington Post
Recently, the U.S. Army awarded Purple Hearts to two soldiers who were wounded in an attack by a gunman on a military recruiting center. One of them, Pvt. William Long, received the award post-humously after being killed in the attack. The other, Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula, was wounded numerous times but survived.More

No explanation on flags not lowered to half-staff for Tennessee shootings
Stars and Stripes
The White House provided no explanation amid questions over why the president had not ordered flags across the nation to half-staff in the wake of a Chattanooga, Tennessee, shooting that killed five service members.More

Coalition urges conferees to roll back harmful commissary provisions
Save Our Benefit
We strongly urge the Senate and House conferees to roll back provisions in the Senate version of the FY16 National Defense Authorization Act, which transfers operating costs to patrons including provisions to: (1) allow the Secretary of Defense to increase prices of goods at commissaries; (2) allow domestic transportation costs to be factored into the cost of goods and prices charged to patrons; and, (3) have patrons pay with surcharge costs that have traditionally been paid with appropriations. These actions will destroy the commissary benefit.More

AMRA supports Save Our Benefit call to action
America Military Retirees Association
The House and Senate will be meeting over the next couple of weeks to iron out differences in their versions of the NDAA for fiscal year 2016. The Senate version of the NDAA includes language that would be detrimental to the commissary benefit and transfers operating costs to patrons: allows the Secretary of Defense to increase prices of goods at commissaries; allows domestic transportation costs to be factored into the cost of goods and prices; allows surcharge costs traditionally paid with appropriations to be paid by patrons. As the Senate and House conferees meet to discuss these important issues, they need to hear from military families!More

Reject military pay and benefits cuts
Military Officers Association of America
Members of Congress may leave Washington, D.C., without having completed an annual defense bill. Some of the proposals up for debate in the defense bill are a bad deal for the military community, including: pay raises that fail to keep pace with the private sector; dramatic pharmacy fee increases; erosions to housing allowances; and continued cuts to commissaries. These shortsighted decisions will have a long-term effect on the future of America's military. Before Congress adjourns for the August recess, show your support. Speak up and tell your elected officials you support the House-passed provisions in this year’s defense bill.More

Empty promises mean empty wallets for military families
National Military Family Association
Our United States all-voluntary military is still looking for men and women ready to serve and protect! Congress offers a competitive compensation package for your sacrifice, like a "marriage penalty" BAH cut for dual-military families, increased commissary prices and capped pay raises below your private sector counterparts. Sound enticing? Find out what else your country's leaders think your military family deserves for your selfless call-to-serve, and how NMFA is fighting to stand against these injustices.More

Report: nearly 1 in 3 young adults too fat for military
The Associated Press via
The nation's obesity epidemic is causing significant recruiting problems for the military, with 1 in 3 young adults nationwide too fat to enlist, according to report issued by a group of retired military leaders. The nonprofit, nonpartisan group called Mission: Readiness (Military Leaders for Kids) is promoting healthy school lunches across the nation as a way to combat the problem.More

Shelf stocking, receiving/storage/holding area, custodial operations at the Fort Stewart Commissary for the Defense Commissary Agency located at Fort Stewart, GA.
Solicitation Number: HDEC08-15-R-0026. Agency: Other Defense Agencies. Office: Defense Commissary Agency. Location: Contracting Bus Unit/Commercial Activities (HDEC08). More

Landscaping services
Lawn Maintenance Service, Fort Polk Commissary, The Period of Performance will be for a base period of Oct. 1, 2015 through Sept. 30, 2016, and will include four one-year option periods that may extend performance through Sept. 30, 2020.More

Miscellaneous operating supplies, paper bags for CONUS, Puerto Rico, Alaska, Hawaii and the Pacific Theater
Solicitation Number: HDEC05-15-R-0003. Agency: Other Defense Agencies. Office: Defense Commissary Agency. Location: Contracting Business Unit Support Services/Supply and Revenue Branch (HDEC05).More

Who you callin' ugly? Join the campaign to end food waste now!
It's time to stand up for the uglies! Supermarkets have long discriminated against any fruits and vegetables that do not meet the absurdly high cosmetic standards for sale, with an estimated 26 percent of all produce in the United States tossed before it's even given a chance on the shelves.More

More players entering drinkable soup category; which one says is next big thing
The founder of Tio Gazpacho, a front runner in the drinkable soup segment, welcomes to the nascent category several newcomers that he hopes will help validate the new food concept and build consumer interest.More

Supermarkets: Is anyone buying what they're selling?
Forget the cleanup on aisle 14. Does the supermarket industry itself need a complete makeover? That's what some industry analysts and experts are saying in light of the news that the storied A&P chain has declared bankruptcy for yet a second time, with a debt load of $2.3 billion. More

Who's really in charge at the supermarket?
Shoppers like to think they're in control of their own food decisions, but there's actually a complex web of manipulations between supermarkets and food processors going on behind the scenes.More

Americans will know less about GMO products with new food label law
International Business Times
A bill will go before the House of Representatives that will prevent states from requiring food companies to make labels that indicate if the products are made with genetically modified organisms.More

Reinventing category management
Progressive Grocer
That was one of the messages coming out at the recent FMI Connect in Chicago, when a panel of experts discussed the results of a Food Marketing Institute/Deloitte study revealing that the vast majority of retailers are clinging to category management standards at least two decades old.More

Is your favorite grocery store making you fat?
Science Codex
Is your favorite grocery store making you fat? According to new findings, a Grocer Retailer Scorecard may be an effective, healthy shopping tool that benefits both grocers and shoppers. More

Q&A: Quinn Popcorn pushing to reinvent category
Food Business News
Transparency, as Kristy Lewis has learned, can be tricky. In 2014, her company, Boulder, Colorado-based Quinn Popcorn, launched an ingredient traceability initiative that has added challenges to sourcing. More

Weak US retail sales hint at slower economic growth
U.S. retail sales unexpectedly fell in June as households cut back on purchases of automobiles and a range of other goods, raising concerns the economy was slowing again.More

Wal-Mart's self-interested shot at reviving the American factory
The Washington Post
The group cheer at Wal-Mart's third annual U.S. manufacturing summit — convened to find more American-made products — was greeted with a voice from another era.More

The top 10 clothing companies in America
Business Insider
The apparel industry rakes in a massive amount of revenue each year. But as shopping malls struggle with a decline in foot traffic, many retailers have had to get creative to keep sales growing.More

After splurging in 2014, families trim back-to-school spending for 2015
After spending more on school supplies and electronics in 2014, parents this year will head into the back-to-school season evaluating what their children really need before spending on new items. More

What will cheaper J.Crew line mean for brand's image?
CBS News
As J.Crew prepares to launch a more affordable clothing line, the company's CEO won't be worrying about how its cheaper products will hurt their image, according to CBS News financial contributor Mellody Hobson.More

2015 Retail Holiday Planning Playbook
The inaugural 2015 Retail Holiday Planning Playbook is the retailer's guide to key questions and issues around the upcoming holiday season. More

Texas food companies score Wal-Mart shelf space
Austin Business Journal
Two Austin, Texas, food companies will get their products in front of potentially millions of new customers by the end of the year thanks to the Wal-Mart chain's increasing emphasis on U.S.-made goods.More

Ashley Furniture decides to retain family ownership
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
Ashley Furniture Industries Inc. recently reported to have been exploring a possible sale, will remain in the hands of its current owners, chiefly the Wanek family.More

Minnesota: St. Paul's new TargetExpress thinks outside the big box
St. Paul Pioneer Press
The world's second smallest Target is about to open for business in Minnesota's St. Paul Highland Park. Customers will no doubt notice differences when they begin perusing the aisles of the new TargetExpress. It will be the second TargetExpress in Minnesota.More

Food safety fears spell opportunity for retailers
Take note, retailers: The potentially harmful ingredients lurking in food and personal care products are putting a bad taste in the mouths of consumers.More

Survey: These 2 retailers satisfy gas customers
Chain Store Age
When it comes to filling their tanks, consumers are most satisfied by two retailers. Wawa and Costco are the most satisfying gas station/convenience store and wholesale/grocery/big box retailers for fuel, respectively, according to a new survey of 6,935 U.S. consumers by Market Force Information.More

New Convenience Store Roundup for June 2015
This edition of New Convenience-Store Roundup features new convenience-store openings, sales, acquisitions and store closings with listings for the month of June 2015.More

Slideshow: Inside Sheetz U Place
"We're amplifying what we do today. In laying out the store, we're bringing the dining experience to the front."More

Kentucky: Leadership Fort Campbell cultivates future leaders
The Fort Campbell Courier
The 13th graduating class of Leadership Fort Campbell consisted of 18 students split into four groups — red, gold, blue and green. Zubeda Hemani, supervisor planning and policy was red. The IT Specialist said she applied for the program with very little knowledge of what the students actually did. More

ACS birthday celebrates enhancing military lives
Hawaii Army Weekly
In 1967, Hester Ruth Francis was living with her parents in a dilapidated, three-room cabin in rural Kentucky, while her husband, Pvt. Sterling R. Francis, was stationed in South Korea. The cabin did not even have indoor plumbing or central heat. Money was clearly an issue for the Francis couple, especially with a newborn on the way.More