Shop Talk

Retailers, consumers and prices

Meat worth getting into the car for


meatWal-Mart’s Sam’s Club is focused on winning the grocery business of cost-conscious shoppers, and Shawn Baldwin, the retailer’s vice president of fresh merchandising, knows what products are crucial to drawing shoppers into its stores.

“Most of the time where people decide to shop for food is determined by meat and produce. Both of those two we’ve spent the past couple of years really trying to upgrade the quality and that is something that resonates with everybody,” he told Reuters on the sideline of a media tour.

In an effort to improve its offering of fresh produce, Sam’s Club worked with grower Driscoll’s to develop a line of premium berries, like blueberries and raspberries, that it can now sell in its clubs almost all year round — and at prices that are competitive with every day fruits, like bananas.

But berries alone won’t bring the shoppers.

“Beef and produce decide where you shop,” he said. “But beef decides if you get in the car.”