Checked in to the Magnolia Hotel in Dallas and picked up the registration materials for the United Fresh 2012 show. The exhibit hall was under construction and looked plenty big, with United, FMI and AMI all on the same floor.

"Official" United Fresh discussion thread and other newsSpeaking of the United Show, all readers be sure to leave impressions about the United Fresh show show here.

Have you heard of the "broccoli cam"? A Tesco exec discussion the management tool in this video, which also takes a peek at electronic shelf labels and other high tech innovations at retail.

There is news that BrightFarms and Homeland Stores have teamed up to build a greenhouse to supply local produce to the Oklahoma chain. It appears the local greenhouse concept BrightFarms is selling to retailers is gaining steam. Details here. From the release:

 BrightFarms will finance, build, and operate a greenhouse at a Homeland Stores location, supplying them with fresh, local produce year-round. Homeland Stores committed to buy BrightFarms' produce by signing the grocery industry's second long-term Produce Purchase Agreement (PPA).

The USDA FAS issued this helpful report about the state of Indian supermarkets.From that report:

Retail food sales are estimated at $270 billion which equates to 60 percent of total retail sales and a $225 per capita annual expenditure on food. The figure reflects the relatively high percentage of disposable income spent on food as well as the estimated 800 million Indians who live in rural areas where on-farm consumption and non-retail sales account for a significant percentage of food use. Estimates indicate that modern grocery retailers managed to carve out an estimated one percent share of food retail sales in 2005 and that share has increased to two percent in 2011 or $5.4 billion.

The April edition of the agricultural prices report was released by the USDA today, and it showed that the "fruits qnd nuts" index was up 4.3% from March and 17% higher than the same time a year ago. The agency said price increases for oranges and strawberries more than offset the price decrease for apples.

On the other hand, the index for commercial vegetables was 4.3% higher than March but still 18% below March last year. Price increases during April for onions and lettuce more than offset price declines for sweet corn and tomatoes, the agency said.

For potatoes, the USDA said the "all potato" price, at $10.57 per cwt, is up 59 cents from March but down 60 cents from last April.

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