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Home   About   Membership   Meetings   Government Affairs   Members Only Sep. 7, 2012
Executive Briefing

President's Message

The budget mess will remain top news until it is fixed:

Sequestration worries speakers at defense forum
Read the Full Story
Dayton Daily News, Thomas Gnau
The Office of Management and Budget is charged with making the cuts by Jan. 2. But officials warned that preparation for possible cuts is happening now. And Frank Kendall, undersecretary of defense, acquisition, technology & logistics, warned further that it's small businesses that could especially suffer. He expects program managers to examine spending in their programs line item by line item, and they will be more likely to spare prime contractors — larger businesses — from ruinous cuts.

Over 100,000 have signed up! Email is the way to reach out. Don't hope that a few people will visit a website and click on your banner. Deliver your message directly into their inboxes. Contests, Events, Special Promotions, Commissary and Exchange Sales and more. Everybody on this email list has visited the website and signed up to receive your email message of interest to the military community.
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Marine Corps:

Money crunch
Read the Full Story
Marine Corps Times, Gidget Fuentes
A cost-cutting move driven by reductions in the base's operating budget has led officials at Camp Pendleton, Calif., to shutter two hobby shops this month, officials said. But after getting strong feedback and complaints from the military community, Camp Pendleton Marine Corps Community Services reconsidered its decision also to close by Sept. 30 three community centers: Abby Reinke, San Onofre and Stuart Mesa. Those three centers will be retooled to support other quality-of-life programs, Pendleton officials said.

Gold Medal Products Co.

Gold Medal has more than 350 employees committed to fueling our product lines with sales-generating concessions, as well as specialty foods machines and supplies. In addition to the network of dealers world-wide, Gold Medal has 11 branches throughout the nation to serve you. MORE

Air Force:

Budget cuts bear down
Read the Full Story
Air Force Times, Jeff Schogol
As the specter of mandatory budget cuts totaling $500 billion within the Defense Department looms ever larger, the Air Force finds itself facing the possibility of dialing back its aircraft modernization plans and ditching older aircraft.

Defense industry bracing for further budget cuts
Read the Full Story
Reuters, David Alexander
U.S. defense companies are bracing for additional cuts in Pentagon spending, even if Congress reaches a deal to avert a controversial $500 billion across-the-board budget cut due to go into effect in January, industry officials said.

Patrick B. Nixon
President, American Logistics Association

Washington Update

Top Pentagon advisor: 'Put a match to it' and scrap DoD's buying rules
AOL Defense    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
If the Pentagon wants to buy weapons that are delivered on time and don't cost too much, then it should take decades of regulations, totaling thousands of pages, and "put a match to it," the chairman of a Defense Business Board study told AOL Defense. More

Direct Mail Reaches Military Families Where They Live
The Military Shopper Insight Study reported that shoppers want information and coupons in advance to help them save money by planning at home. Active duty families living on post will receive Judy Johnson's Military Family Mailbox envelopes for Labor day and again for Veterans Day. Active duty families on post is the segment of the market with the most potential new commissary shoppers. Young active duty families are your core customers. Reach them at home! Get them into the store!

US Army general emphasizes readiness amid cuts, delays
Defense News via Early Bird    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U.S. Army is making some "very tough decisions" as it transitions from a decade of war while facing budget cuts and a shrinking force, the Army's top operations officer said. "The key is readiness," Lt. Gen. John Campbell, deputy chief of staff, G-3/5/7, told Defense News in an interview. "We can't have a hollow Army, so we're going to make sure that end strength matches up and is balanced with our structure." The Army also will have to cut some programs while delaying others, said Campbell. More

US arms buyer foresees more program terminations
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Pentagon may have to kill or cut some arms programs and slow spending on research and development even if Congress delays automatic budget cuts due to take effect in January, the top U.S. arms buyer recently said. More

Defense Department to Hill: Save us from budget ax
Politico    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Washington's defense community may be eagerly awaiting a report from the White House to detail how it would implement across-the-board budget cuts early next year, but the Pentagon's top weapons buyer already can describe how they'd work. More

Commissary News

PMA Impact award winners to be announced Oct. 27 at Fresh Summit
Fresh Plaza    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Finalists in the Produce Marketing Association 2012 Impact Award: Excellence in Packaging have been chosen, and winners will be awarded Saturday, Oct. 27 during the breakfast general session of PMA's Fresh Summit International Convention & Exposition in Anaheim, Calif. This global award program recognizes companies throughout the supply chain who are maximizing the numerous opportunities to sell more fresh produce and floral through innovative packaging. Members of the media are invited to attend the award presentation with complimentary pass. More

Government to sell bananas to US troops in Middle East
Business Insight    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
One of the least publicized elements of the cost of fighting in the Middle East and troop deployment in the Pacific is the need to supply food items to United States forces and government personnel in these areas. This is why the Department of Agriculture recently said it is preparing to contract out delivery of Cavendish bananas. Agriculture Secretary Proceso J. Alcala said the department is negotiating a bilateral agreement with Washington for the possible shipment of Philippine bananas to U.S. military bases. More

Salty Wahine Gourmet Hawaiian Sea Salts
Our wide variety of gourmet sea salts, seasoning and BBQ rubs are the perfect gift for any home chef. Infused with tropical flavors, they are unlike anything you have ever experienced. Try our Guava Garlic, Mango Lava Java, Pineapple Poultry Seasoning, Lilikoi Chili Pepper, and our special Hawaiian Rub blend.

How 'millennials' are changing food as we know it
Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Move over boomers, the millennials are taking over. And that shift will potentially change the food system as we know it. More

New Navy Exchange, Joint Commissary planned at NSA Annapolis
Capital Gazette    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A Connecticut construction firm has been picked to build a new 51,000-square-foot Joint Commissary and a new 98,000-square-foot Navy Exchange at Naval Support Activity Annapolis. The Department of Defense recently said KBE Building Corp., of Farmington, Conn., was awarded $27.2 million for the job, required to be LEED Silver certified. More

Civilian Transitions Guidebook for FREE!
This book helps with transitioning to civilian life, and planning for life after the service.
  • Click here to download
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  • InCharge Provides Credit Counseling and Foreclosure Prevention Counseling
  • Order copies of the guidebook for your servicemembers for FREE
  • Contact Shawn Walsh, Director of Outreach Programs at

  • Michelle Obama presents course: 'Supermarket Shopping 101'
    CNSNews    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    As part of her anti-obesity Let's Move campaign, First Lady Michelle Obama is now presenting a brief online course: "Supermarket Shopping 101." The course, which now appears on the website, provides novice shoppers with tips such as "steer clear of the cookie, snack and soda aisle." More

    Kroger hits sustainability milestones
    Progressive Grocer    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Energy savings, waste reduction and community involvement are spotlighted in The Kroger Co.'s sixth annual sustainability report, in which the grocer details how it has met annual sustainability benchmarks. "Kroger associates embrace sustainability in their everyday business practices," said David B. Dillon, Kroger's chairman and CEO. "In 2011, our stores saved enough energy to power every single-family home in Columbus, Ohio, for a single year. We're proud to have donated the equivalent of 160 million meals to local food banks through our partnership with Feeding America, placing us among the top-tier donors. We continue our commitment to help make the world a better place in a variety of ways." More


    Uniweb continually pushes the limits in creativity and potential of every product they create, providing cost-effective solutions to upgrade existing shelving and increase product facings in the same footprint, thereby enhancing sales volumes! Uniweb also engineers modular spaces which include cash or manager’s offices, secure rooms, and back offices.

    Study questions how much better organic food is
    The Seattle Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Patient after patient asked: Is eating organic food, which costs more, really better for me? Unsure, Stanford University doctors dug through reams of research to find out — and concluded there's little evidence that going organic is much healthier, citing only a few differences involving pesticides and antibiotics. Eating organic fruits and vegetables can lower exposure to pesticides, including for children — but the amount measured from conventionally grown produce was within safety limits, the researchers recently reported. More

    Nielsen: US grocery shoppers go online to save money
    Drug Store News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Consumers focus on savings when they log in to their digital devices to shop for groceries, according to a new study from Nielsen. The top weekly U.S. activities related to grocery shopping on a connected device, ranging from a mobile phone to tablet, included reading online grocery circulars (62 percent), looking for coupons online (55 percent) and browsing a manufacturer's website for a grocery category (55 percent). More

    AppAdvice Jr: The best apps to ease grocery shopping with a child
    AppAdvice    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    When it comes to grocery shopping, you'd most likely rather leave the children at home. Ideally, the other parent could watch them, or you can leave them with grandma or grandpa. However, if we lived in an ideal world, the groceries would just be delivered to us (and even better yet, cooked for us). So what do you do when you're faced with lugging the little one around in the child seat of the shopping cart? The answer may be as close as your pocket or purse. More

    Report: Supermarket share loss to slow
    Supermarket News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    The rate at which traditional supermarkets in the U.S. lose share to alternative formats will slow as the leading grocers roll out sales-building strategies, according to a research note from Moody's Investors Service. "We expect supermarkets to reduce prices, reward loyal customers and expand offerings of organic products and private-label items to woo customers and boost sales," said Mickey Chadha, a Moody's vice president and senior analyst. More

    Commissary Announcements

    Commissary Web Posts

    The following commissary items were posted to the ALA Website as of 10 a.m., September 6, 2012.

    DP #17, Update #2.
    DP #20, Update #1 and Alaska Promotion & Shipper Quantities.
    Halloween, Update #3.
    Superbowl, Update #2.
    Thanksgiving/Christmas – Chill/Freeze/Prepackaged Meat, Update #2.

    None Received.

    Adds/Changes/Deletes for Week 12-36.
    Guard & Reserve On-Site Sale Schedule updates.
    CRV Values.

    Oct. 1–3, 2012: 65th Annual Convention, Omni Shoreham, Washington, D.C. Registration available on the website.
    April 24–26, 2013: ALA Commissary Roundtable, Marriott Hotel, Richmond, Va.

    Exchange News

    Toys R Us waives fee for layaway program
    The Associated Press via ABC News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Toys R Us is making it easier for shoppers to use its layaway program ahead of the crucial holiday season, waiving its service fee and minimum purchase requirement. As brick-and-mortar stores face increasingly tough competition from online retailers, chains like Toys R Us, Wal-Mart, Sears and others have been expanding services such as layaway to draw customers into stores. More

    The average college student is spending a record $907 on dorm decor
    Business Insider    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    College students used to focus on utility in their dorm rooms. An egg crate and some twin XL sheets would do. Now, students are spending an average of $907.22 turning their dorm rooms into luxury suites, according to a new report by the National Retail Federation. More

    RadioShack begins wireless service
    The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    RadioShack Corp. recently launched a wireless service under its own brand, staking more of its future on the highly competitive mobile-phone business. The service, called RadioShack No-Contract Wireless, will use Leap Wireless International Inc.'s Cricket network, which already offers discount prepaid phone plans in the U.S. (Subscription required.) More

    J.C. Penney can go ahead with plans to sell Martha Stewart goods
    Chain Store Age    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    New York State Supreme Court Justice Jeffrey Oing on Thursday denied Macy's Inc.'s attempt to block J.C. Penney Co. from proceeding with plans to sell a number of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia home goods products in its stores. More

    AT&T opens 10,000-square-foot flagship in Chicago
    Chain Store Age    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Telecommunications giant AT&T is setting up shop on Chicago's Magnificent Mile, opening a flagship on Sept. 1. The 10,000-square-foot store, at 600 N. Michigan Ave., is designed to showcase what consumers can do with AT&T's products and to educate them about future wireless technologies and services. More using new search engine — sees increase in completed purchases
    Chain Store Age    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Wal-Mart announced a new search engine for The new engine, named Polaris, was developed by a small team within @Wamart Labs, the research and technology hub for innovation at Wal-Mart. It uses semantic search technology to anticipate the intent of a shopper's search to deliver highly relevant results for them. More

    Go upscale in a recession? Sounds crazy but this unlikely retailer made it work
    Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    The rich don't feel economic recessions the way everyone else does, and that's one reason investors in companies like Coach and Nordstrom made out like bandits in this muddling recovery while Wal-Mart Stores investors got merely good returns, despite its increased store traffic. But PetSmart, the big box pet store, has done a brilliant job of having it both ways. More

    Jos. A. Bank's affordable men's wear defies economic woes
    Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Jos. A. Bank Clothiers just continues to defy the sluggish economy. Sales of its private label suits, ties, shirts and all manner of sartorial sundries snapped back after a (very) short slump as the men's wear retailer posted an impressive 12.9 percent gain to $260.3 million. More

    Wal-Mart gives cardholders gas discount through Dec. 24
    Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Wal-Mart will soon cut gasoline prices by up to 15 cents per gallon for drivers in 20 U.S. states who pay with its cards in a bid to appeal to loyal shoppers hit by big price increases at the pump. More

    In defense of social shopping: Driving sales and loyalty
    Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Social shopping, just hype not so long ago, is now being embraced by online retailers. For consumers, social shopping simply means involving others in your shopping experience through a variety of social channels. More

    How Crocs is building a brand bigger than the clog
    Retail's BIG Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Crocs, the company that skyrocketed to footwear fame for its innovative rubber clog, turns 10 this year. And in that short time, through some ups and downs, it's grown from a quirky Colorado-based shoe company to a billion-dollar global business. More

    Dunkin' Donuts is going to get bigger in Texas
    QSR Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Dunkin' Donuts announced the signing of multiunit store development agreements with four franchise groups to develop 29 new restaurants in Houston and Waco, Texas, over the next several years. More

    Retailers turn to 'soft surveillance' to fight customer anonymity
    Harvard Business Review    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    If a shopper leaves without making a purchase, is there any way for a store to know she was there? And why didn't she become a paying customer? Until recently, customer intelligence has focused on understanding consumers through historical data. But that approach doesn't tell a firm about a new or transient customer. In retail environments, companies are aiming to be able to identify all shoppers, connect them with their shopping profiles, and either sell them something or at least gain enough data about them to help make a sale during the next visit. More

    When it comes to reservations, time is money
    The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    While airlines and hotels have figured out how to vary prices to fill flights and rooms, restaurants' methods have largely remained in the icebox age. Now, some restaurants are borrowing a tactic from other hospitality businesses and charging different prices for meals at different times. More

    Gas prices inch higher — but biggest price hikes of 2012 likely behind us
    ABC News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    The weekly average price of a gallon of regular gasoline is $3.84, up nearly 7 cents from a week ago, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, and up 17 cents from a year ago. Prices have inched up in recent weeks because of refinery problems brought on by Hurricane Isaac, which shut down most oil production and refining along the Gulf coast. Experts expect prices to start coming down toward the end of September. More

    Wal-Mart rolls layaway fee back to $5
    Chicago Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is trimming the fee for its holiday season layaway plan to $5 after customers complained that the $15 it announced two weeks ago was too high. Layaway, which allows a customer to keep a product on hold at the store and pay for it over time, helped boost holiday sales for Wal-Mart when it brought the service back in 2011 after a five-year hiatus. More

    What online shoppers really want
    American Express OPEN Forum    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Don't see much difference between free shipping or a discount when it comes to promotions? Customers do. More

    Chapter Announcements
    Click here for flier to the Hampton Roads ALA Benefit Luncheon for AREA & NEREA

    Exchange Announcements

    Exchange service feedback
    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    We are reaching out to our vendor partners in an effort to gauge the level of service that the Exchange Logistics directorate is currently providing. We ask that you please provide us with feedback on any logistics issues that you may be having with the Exchange, such as assigned commercial carriers, consolidation centers, the Exchange Fleet or Exchange distribution centers.

    When providing feedback, please include the name of your Exchange buyer so that we can involve them in the process of resolving any issues.

    If you have any questions, you may contact me directly.

    Thank you for your time,

    Jason Spencer, CTL
    Sr. Transportation Analyst
    Army & Air Force Exchange Service
    O: 214-312-3786 M: 972-261-8933

    Coast Guard notice
    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    To all:

    I regret to let you know our Consumer Electronics buyer, Sean Sommer, resigned on Friday. Some unforeseen issues have arisen and he needs to move back to New York. If you know of anyone that may be interested in the buying position, please have them go to our website to apply, The position will be posted in the next couple of days. Thanks for any assistance you can offer!

    Sarah Malbon Mikus
    Director of Merchandise
    USCG Community Services Command
    Coast Guard Exchange System
    510 Independence Parkway, Suite 500
    Chesapeake, VA 23320

    NEXCOM named 1 of 'Top 50' best companies for Latina women
    America's Navy    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    LATINAStyle Magazine has named the Navy Exchange Service Command as one of the 50 best companies for providing the best career opportunities for Hispanic women, Sept. 4. Of NEXCOM's nearly 14,000 associates worldwide, more than 11 percent are Hispanic and seven percent are Hispanic women. In acknowledging the award, Robert J. Bianchi, NEXCOM's chief executive officer said, "NEXCOM is committed to supporting the diversity policy of fostering an inclusive workforce, building an environment that respects the individual and offering opportunities for associates to develop to their full potential." More

    Exchange recognized as Top 50 organization for diversity by LATINA Style Magazine
    Public Affairs    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    The Army & Air Force Exchange Service's focus on diversity is being recognized again as LATINA Style magazine has named it one of its LATINA Style 50 for 2012. The annual evaluation, which analyzes more than 800 corporations, identifies organizations that provide the best career opportunities for Hispanic females in the United States. More

    New SEAL book to be sold in military exchanges
    Army Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    Top Pentagon officials are deeply troubled by a former Navy SEAL's publication of a book about the May 2011 raid that killed Osama bin Laden — but that won't stop troops worldwide from buying the book at local exchange service stores. More

    ALA Exchange E-Blast week 9/07/12

    ALA Executive Briefing (New archive link)

    Convention Sponsorships still available

    AAFES Sales Flyers — to view click below: Food court info

    Military Newcomer's Guide

    • Store Locator
    • Sales Flyers
    • Exchange Restaurants
    • Military Clothing Store
    • Reel Time Movies
    • Mystery Shopper-I want to apply!
    Product Recalls and Alerts (Exchange)

    VCS Sales August 2012

    Save the dates:

    Oct. 1-3, 2012 — 65th Annual Convention, OMNI Shoreham Hotel, Washington, D.C.

    Go to:, sign in and CHECK OUT the information.

    Washington Update

    Almost 3,000 participate in 'Run with the Chiefs'
    The Flagship    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    A sea of blue and gold flooded the streets of Naval Station Norfolk as runners lined up for the ninth annual "Run with the Chiefs" 5K Aug. 24. More than 2,900 chiefs, senior chiefs, master chiefs, chief petty officer selectees and participants from throughout the region, ran in support of the fiscal year 2013 CPO selectees, singing cadence along the way to celebrate the selectees' pride and camaraderie. More

    Jobs for military family members
    Turret    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    The ACS Employment Readiness Program provides employment information and other supportive services primarily to Family members who are relocating as a result of a military or civilian sponsor's permanent change of station. Other categories of personnel who are eligible for services are non-transitioning military personnel, retirees and their spouses. In order to assist clients in finding suitable employment, local employers are encouraged to send job listings which are then posted on an employment bulletin board. More

    SmartPay card plus the Exchange equals mission accomplished
    Goodfellow Air Force Base    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
    The Army and Air Force Exchange Service has a mission to provide quality products and services at competitive prices. This same mission can also apply to authorized GSA SmartPay card holders who are looking for a one-stop source for products or services their agency or organization needs, at the best price. More
    2012 Warrior — Family Symposium

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    Executive Briefing
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