August 15, 2019

In 2017 Ricky Lopez opened a Top Round franchise in San Francisco’s Mission District. With all sorts of well-established competition in the area already, the chef and entrepreneur says that his roast beef business lost tens of thousands of dollars in its first eight months. Then last year a representative from Uber Eats informed Lopez that his area had a high demand for burgers and ice cream that was going unmet. To take advantage of this opportunity, the food delivery Continue reading

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June 27, 2019

Last week, the U.S. Justice Department intervened in a class-action lawsuit against some of the nation’s largest poultry producers. The plaintiffs in the case claim that companies like Tyson Foods, Perdue Farms, and Pilgrim’s Pride conspired together to fix the price of chicken. Given that these allegations involve some of the top firms in a huge industry, the federal government decided to take over legal proceedings for the rest of the year. “The Justice Department wants to make sure they Continue reading

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For more than a decade, the British chef Jamie Oliver has been world famous for his global empire of restaurants and campaigns against junk food. But while he remains committed to using his platform to promote healthy eating, his name doesn’t appear to hold the same branding power as it once did. A few weeks ago, the celebrity chef announced that 22 of his 25 U.K. eateries would close after the Jamie Oliver Restaurant Group filed for bankruptcy protection. Although Continue reading

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In the 1980s Coca-Cola was losing market share to its rival Pepsi at an alarming rate. Blind taste tests performed by Coke even showed that consumers seemed to prefer Pepsi’s sweeter flavor. So in 1985 the Atlanta-based company scrapped its classic formula in favor of a sugary but smooth cola that came to be known as “New Coke.” The change shocked soda lovers across the country, prompting boycotts and letter-writing campaigns that did significant damage to Coke’s brand image. After Continue reading

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In recent years retailers both large and small have struggled to compete against the low prices and convenience offered by e-commerce outlets. But even as Amazon disrupted all sorts of stores over the last decade, supermarkets such as Kroger managed to survive and thrive. Along with the troubles of delivering fresh produce, online retailers couldn’t convince customers to buy their food sight-unseen.

That is until startups like Instacart made grocery delivery more accessible to the average consumer. Although online purchases Continue reading

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April 18, 2019

The grocery chain Stop & Shop began in 1892 as a small store in Boston’s North End neighborhood. Since then the company has expanded to more than 450 locations throughout the Northeastern United States. Last Thursday, however, operations at many of those stores were thrown off course as more than 31,000 Stop & Shop employees went on strike. After negotiations over a new contract reached a stalemate, members of five local United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) unions walked out Continue reading

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March 5, 2019

A few weeks ago, PepsiCo announced the annual results of what turned out to be a very profitable year. The beverage and snack giant saw revenues increase 1.8 percent to a whopping $64.4 billion, resulting in a profit of $12.6 billion. On top of this 158 percent increase in annual profit, Pepsi also predicted organic growth at a rate of 4 percent for the coming fiscal year.

But while the company had plenty of good news in store for investors, Continue reading

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March 1, 2019

Red Bull has grown into one of the world’s most powerful beverage brands thanks in no small part to its innovative approach to marketing. This video takes a close look at the Austrian company’s trailblazing sponsorship of extreme sports events and how the Red Bull brand is about a lot more than just selling energy drinks.

Questions:

  1. Why did Red Bull choose to sponsor extreme sports events rather than well-known leagues like the NFL or NBA?  
  2. How did Red Continue reading
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February 21, 2019

Since its founding in 1995, the Colorado-based chain Illegal Pete’s has expanded to 11 locations throughout the state thanks to its delicious Mission-style burritos. According to founder Pete Turner, though, the company’s employees have played just as vital of a role in its success story. So in 2011 he decided to show his appreciation by gradually raising wages across the board. “After 15 years, we were able to look forward and say, ‘What do we want this business to look Continue reading

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February 12, 2019

With its signature stack of three buns and two beef patties covered in special sauce, there are few fast food items as famous as the Big Mac. That’s why over the years McDonald’s has tried to protect its flagship burger by pursuing legal action against any possible imitators. One of the company’s latest targets was Supermac’s, an Irish chain that sold a suspiciously similar sandwich called the Mighty Mac. Unfortunately for McDonald’s, though, this particular case didn’t go exactly as Continue reading

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