In the bakery area, the one that represents the core business of Arrebo, we find self-service displays BAKERY with customized SLIM scale holders, islands and shelves for packaged products customized specifically for the customer.
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We must resign ourselves to paying more furniture makers, carpenters and carpenters in the coming months than we have ever done so far. In the United States, in fact, wood futures have had a sudden acceleration; the price grew by 49% in the space of three weeks, reaching a value that is more than double that of last year in the same winter period: $ 1,000 for 1,000 board feet, equal to 2.36 m³. The same dynamic is recorded in Europe where the cost of raw materials on the market, mainly construction wood (both solid and glued), has increased by 60-70% compared to the commercial negotiations of September 2020. To give an example, wood lamellar, one of the most used, has gone from 400 to 700 euros per m³.
The reasons for the boom in wood prices
It seems that everything starts with the abundant snowfall in the mountainous areas of the northern hemisphere which led to a shortage of material and very low stock levels. To this was added a construction boom in North America starting from the last months of 2020, so much so that last year Europe sent 54% more sawn coniferous wood to America (for a total of 3, 5 million m³). The phenomenon was further aggravated after the ban on wood exports gradually implemented by Russia and which particularly affects China, Finland and the Baltic states. An upward trend in prices that is likely to be confirmed and worsened during this year.
China changes course
For the first time, in 2021, global demand for sawn coniferous wood will exceed production and could exceed 350 million m³. All this is due to China’s choice to convert to timber construction. In 2021, therefore, Beijing’s demand for structural wood could reach 70 million m³ and 75 million m³ in 2022. In the current year there is also a massive demand from the European sector of wooden houses and prefabricated houses. Data from German industry, the most advanced in this sector, recorded a + 42% turnover in 2020 and an estimate of further growth in 2021.
Italian companies suffer
Italian companies are suffering from the sudden spike in costs. “A fluctuation in prices of up to 10% – says Angelo Marchetti, president of Assolegno – is physiological and bearable by companies in the sector, but here we are faced with something much more serious: this sudden growth has a heavy impact on procurement costs of our companies, already hit hard in recent months by the crisis linked to Covid ». For this reason Assolegno (FederlegnoArredo’s national association of primary processing industries and wood builders) has asked the government to intervene: the possibility of reviewing the contracts already signed, both with private individuals and with the public administration, so that absorb this extraordinary price dynamics.[Source: CORRIERE ECONOMIA April 2021 | https://www.corriere.it/ economy | by Domenico Affinito] [Source: myfruit.it]
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Covid-19 has changed the way people shop around the world. In the United States, online sales also increased by 40% in August compared to the previous year. Americans have spent 107 billion dollars more online than in 2019. The days of lazily strolling through the aisles are over, at least it will be so for a while longer. And this trend is most evident in Walmart’s new stores, which the company unveiled last Friday. Project that will be adopted in 200 stores by the end of 2020, and in another 800 by the end of 2021.
New design tailored to the App
Stores will still have narrow aisles and unfinished warehouse-style ceilings. But the news concerns the way in which we move in this space. Walmart is rearranging many items across the store, consolidating categories like electronics, toys, and baby products into dedicated sections. But it is also introducing clearer signage. In particular, the signs correspond to the exact categories and icons found within the Walmart app. The effect is a seamless shopping experience between the digital and physical store.
“We’ve always known that customers want to get in and out of a Walmart store as quickly as possible. Not in a bad way, they just don’t want to waste time, ”says Janey Whiteside, Walmart’s chief customer officer, who adds,“ This desire has increased during the pandemic because people want to feel safe. Speed and clarity become much more important than what we had argued before, namely experience “. In short, there will still be areas in which to test products, but it is certainly not the experiential approach to retail pioneered by companies like Apple and even Walmart’s competitor, Target. Walmart began redesigning its store about a year ago, long before the pandemic. The goal was to make shopping at Walmart a unique experience, in which the app and the store itself spoke the same language. “We’re trying to save time for our customers, which we know is important to them, and to use less cognitive load, which we know is just as important,” says Whiteside. “People walk around the store with smartphones in their hands looking up and down, and we wanted to integrate these things so when they look at the phone they can see the same thing as the store.”
The app that acts as a compass
The Walmart app will direct customers to the exact locations of items within the store, with the aisles more easily identifiable thanks to numbers and letters to help people find their way. But even without the phone in hand, customers will be accompanied around the store by new signs almost everywhere. Once inside, in fact, an information panel indicates the main sections. It looks a lot like the kind of welcome you see in a theme park or airport.
“When we first started doing this, the team spent a lot of time experimenting with places where large groups of people are gathered that need to be quickly sorted, or directed somewhere,” continues Whiteside. “We thought about airports because you don’t spend much time in them, so you don’t know the routes. But people have to move in a timely manner ”.
Walmart has called these tools “navigation efficiency”. And they will be seen at the entrance, but also in the new oversized blue signs on the areas that indicate, for example, the “Cheeses” or “Pescheria” area. For people who don’t read English, these giant writings may not be of much help, but by having the same icons in the multilingual Walmart app, people should be able to translate the various sections more easily.
Finally, the new design also leaves its mark on the outside of the store. A large blue arch marks the retreat area, which should be visible from the parking lot. But Walmart’s sign has also changed, from the large Walmart wordmark to a blue square that mimics its app icon. Walmart has therefore marked an important point: shopping at Walmart does not mean staying in one of its stores, sitting in the car, browsing the Walmart app or using a PC browser. But all these things together or – occasionally – some of these things at the same time.
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Wood arboriculture is a technical discipline, branch of arboriculture, which deals with the creation and management of plantations of tree species aimed at the production of certain wood assortments in the maximum possible quantity.
These are generally contemporaneous and monospecific or oligospecific plantations, located on farms or agro-forestry companies on fertile, flat or slightly sloping land and in any case easily accessible by mechanical means. The purpose of wood arboriculture, unlike forestry, is the maximization of the production of the wood material, which at the time economically and commercially optimal, is totally removed.
Main cultivated species:
The wood plantations are governed by fustaia or coppice. The most used tree species in Italy are some North American conifers belonging to the genera Pinus and Pseudotsuga, among the broad-leaved trees mainly poplar and to a lesser extent other species such as eucalyptus, walnut and wild cherry, the last two considered to be valuable wood species, below is a list of the main cultivated tree species, listed in alphabetical order according to the scientific name with the common name next to it:
Chamaecyparis lawsoniana Parl. (Lawson cypress)
Cryptomeria japonica Don (Crittomeria)
Pseudotsuga douglasi Carr. (= Pseudotsuga taxifolia britt.) (American scented fir or Douglasia)
Taxodium distichum Rich. (Tassodio)
Acacia sp. (Acadie)
Aesculus hippocastanum L. (Horse chestnut)
Ailanthus glandulosa Desf. (Ailanthus or Tree of Paradise)
Arbutus unedo L. (Strawberry tree)
Betula alba L. (Birch)
Celtis australis L. (Bagolaro or Spaccasassi)
Ceratonia siliqua L. (Carob tree)
Cercis siliquastrum L. (Siliquastro)
Corylus avellana L. (Hazel)
Dalbergia sp. (Rosewood)
Eucalyptus sp. (Eucalyptus)
Fagus sylvatica L. (Beech)
Paulownia sp. (Paulownia)
Populus sp. (Poplars)
Prunus avium L. (Mountain Cherry or Wild Cherry)
Robinia pseudoacacia L. (Robinia)
Salix sp. (Willow)
Tilia sp. (Linden)
Triplochiton scleroxylon (Ayous or Obeche)
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(source: Sole 24 ore Economia)
Aggregations between brands, partnerships, new purchasing centers: the risk of large-scale organized distribution (large-scale distribution) has seen a marked acceleration in recent years, both internationally and in Italy. And the operation announced last Tuesday by Conad, which will acquire almost all Auchan stores in our country – it is only the last piece of a mosaic still to be built. The real challenge for operators in the sector, however, is not played on the level of corporate structures, but on that of content: new technologies, environmental and social sustainability, the Italian nature of products, traceability and transparency. It plays on the ability of the brands to establish a new pact of trust with consumers, the theme at the heart of the 35th edition of Linkontro, the annual consumer forum organized by Nielsen Italy in Sardinia. The challenge is complex, because it is based on radically new paradigms, after the advent of e-commerce and technological innovations have undermined those in force for centuries. “The future of large-scale distribution must be imagined – says Mario Gasbarrino, CEO of Unes -. Almost like Jules Verne: even with some gambling, with proposals that could be denied ». Because the “mass market” as we have known it until yesterday does not exist and will no longer exist. “We are experiencing an epochal transition – adds Gasbarrino – and in the face of transformations of this magnitude, rationalization and concentration operations risk being an already old response”. Necessary, but not sufficient.
E-commerce, Nielsen points out, today in Italy represents 1.6% of the total value of large-scale distribution (which stands between 100 and 105 billion euros) and grew by 27.7% in the first quarter of 2019 Its diffusion has broken the traditional duopoly between the brand industry and the distributor: «The roles are mixing – observes Gasbarrino -: the producers will be able to act as distributors and vice versa, moreover the” pure players “that can do both have appeared what’s this”. Finally, the time within which I get hold of an asset becomes the discriminating variant in the choice of the product or retailer itself.
The very terrain of competition has changed, Giorgio Santambrogio, CEO of VéGé and president of ADM (Modern Distribution Association) points out: «Today competition is no longer just between brands, but at 360 degrees. It is between physical stores, but also between physical and online stores or multi-channel stores, between catering and distribution, between these and food delivery ».
Specialization, the distinction of the offer and the roots in the territory will be the elements capable of making the difference. As well as attention to sustainability, quality, transparency and product safety. For example, Nielsen certifies that, after the food boom, the world of home and personal care products also benefits from the “green” label, with a 3.1% growth in eco-sustainable products and 24% peaks, 5% for those with less plastic. While sales in the so-called Special Drug, the specialized chains, recorded a 4% increase in value. The shops will be less and will be smaller, they will be omnichannel and more specialized, more and more touch points and experiential, more and more showrooms and single-brand stores. “Those who do a little bit of everything will not resist. Whoever wins the trust of customers will win, “says the CEO of Unes. The very way of hiring them will change: if the epoch of Carosello has ended for some time, now that of Trip Advisor and influencers has also ended: the influencers of the future are called Alexa and use artificial intelligence.
This is why the road of aggregations – inevitable and necessary in a context like the Italian one, characterized by an extremely fragmented distribution system, with numerous regional operators deeply rooted in their territories – alone is not enough. “To feel good on the market you need to have a distinctive and interesting proposal for the customer – says Marco Bordoli, CEO of Crai Secom: -. The focus is on the product, not on corporate transactions. Our product is the shop and we must make it innovative, so that the customer can choose it ». According to Lucio Fochesato, general manager of Despar Italia, “the future of large-scale distribution passes through stores capable of exciting the customer, such as the one that will inaugurate in a few weeks in Carpi, which will represent a new concept of superstore – he explains -. Always in the logic of being close to the territory and to values such as quality, safety, innovation and environmental sustainability “.
However, operations such as that announced by Conad are destined to leave their mark on the Italian distribution market. “A domino effect is likely to trigger with further movements by operators – speculates Nielsen Italia’s Retailer services director, Romolo de Camillis -. Moreover, I think it is inevitable to go towards a scenario in which the number of brands will decrease, but I do not expect the intervention of some giant of distribution from abroad, which will buy small Italian stores. Rather, the major national brands will move, able to bring together the smaller or troubled ones, harmonize the offer and help them develop. ” A future therefore made up of concentration of signs, but always in a context of widespread entrepreneurship, with many small and medium-sized operators linked to the territory.
Even according to Marco Pedroni, president of Coop Italia, «it did not end here: in a distribution context like the Italian one, made up of regional realities and associated chains, a process of rationalization is natural, driven by the fact that the market no longer grows. I think that in the future there will be a selection of operators ». The large-scale consumer market in large-scale distribution seems to have recovered, with a 2% growth in value sales in the first four months of 2019 compared to the same period last year, according to Nielsen surveys, and an estimate of + 1.5% by year end. However, traditional distribution has been struggling and for years, with the same network, it has not grown, undermined by several factors: the competition of e-commerce and discount stores on the one hand; the threat of an increase in VAT and Sunday closures on the other. An unsustainable scenario for a pulverized system like the Italian one. This is why «we are witnessing an accelerated domino process of aggregations and acquisitions – notes Santambrogio, which plans new operations on the Italian market in the coming months -. And this is positive, but it seems to me that sometimes things go a little confusing. The fear is that daughter unions may occur not of real common needs, but only of the need to come together to make critical mass. Unification rather than partnership ». With the risk of a flattening of the offer and a loss of those specializations which are an important lever to keep up with the competition.