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Home   About   Membership   Meetings   Government Affairs   Members Only Jan. 25, 2013
Executive Briefing

President's Message


We are beginning to see the pressure on the budget hit each of the Services budgets as cost reductions are dictated to the field. We understand that DeCA has been directed to look at efficiencies to "reduce or eliminate" the appropriation. This is a real-time exercise with real time consequences. As is the case with all actions along these lines, there will be unintended consequences. Some of those unintended consequences could be to reduce the value of the resale benefits. These are indeed unique and difficult times. Those who have been the strongest supporters of these programs are finding themselves silenced by even greater concerns in the budget deliberations. We can only hope that the proposed actions to reduce spending take into account the unintended consequences before it is too late.

Military officials issue orders to cut costs
Read the Full Story
The Washington Post via Early Bird, Ernesto Londono
Bracing for the possibility of steep congressionally mandated budget cuts, senior military officials have issued directives for fiscal retrenchment that include a 30 percent cut for Army base operations this year, personnel reductions and a halt to unnecessary fighter jet swoops during special events.

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House to vote on plan to suspend debt limit until May
Read the Full Story
The Washington Post, Lori Montgomery and Rosalind S. Helderman
House Republicans are advancing a novel plan to suspend enforcement of the federal debt limit through May 18, a move that would lift the threat of a government default and relieve the air of crisis that has surrounded their budget battle with President Barack Obama.

The next 4 years will be crucial ones for the government workforce
Read the Full Story
The Washington Post via Inside Business, Joe Davidson
President Barack Obama begins his second term with a solid series of accomplishments related to the federal workforce, but with more crucial questions facing federal employees than at any time in the past four years.

Patrick B. Nixon
President, American Logistics Association

Washington Update

Budget doubts shut down DoD health conference
Army Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
An annual military medical conference is an early victim of the Pentagon's budget problems. "This conference is an important element in bringing together the uniformed medical leadership at all levels of the Military Health System, along with our other federal partners and contractors," defense health officials said in a statement. "We are disappointed that we needed to take this step." More

Just don't call him Mad Dog
UT-San Diego    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Mad Dog Mattis. The Warrior Monk. Married to the Marine Corps. It's all hype that embarrasses Gen. James Mattis, the chief of U.S. Central Command, who is preparing to retire this spring after one of the most productive four-decade sprints in uniform of his generation. More

Direct Mail Reaches Military Families Where
They Live

Shoppers want information and coupons in advance to help them save money by planning at home. Active duty families living in military housing receive Judy Johnson's Military Family Mailbox envelopes in the mail. Active duty families are an important segment of the market with the most potential new commissary shoppers and new brand users. Young active duty families are your core customers. Reach them at home! Direct mail gives you a “first strike advantage” over your competitors marketing only inside the store

Sources: Carter, others expected to stay
Defense News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Although the transition between presidential terms is usually marked by large-scale personnel turnover at politically appointed government posts, sources said that this time, many of the most important leaders at the Pentagon are likely to stay, creating continuity in a time of fiscal uncertainty. More

Wary Defense Department slows spending
Politico    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Every day at 5 p.m., when the Defense Department announces the day’s contracts, it's not uncommon for the total sum to exceed $1 billion. But now, with the budget process upended on Capitol Hill, the Pentagon is trying to slow the rate at which money is leaving the building until it has a better sense of what to expect for this year's funding. More

Army report raises possibility of major troop cuts at Fort Bragg by 2020
Fayetteville Observer    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Fort Bragg could lose as many as 8,000 soldiers and Army civilians by 2020 under alternatives outlined by an Army report on possible force cuts. Military officials have made known their plans to cut the Army from about 560,000 troops to 490,000 for over a year, but the report is the first to make public where those cuts could come from. It examines the effects of different scenarios at 21 different military installations. More

JBLM could lose 8,000 soldiers within decade
Tacoma News Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Joint Base Lewis-McChord could lose some 8,000 soldiers by the end of the decade, according to an Army study recently released. The study is based on a proposal that lays out how the Army could meet Pentagon goals to reduce ranks over the next seven years. More

Aircraft dominate shrinking Army base budget
Army Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The reality of a diminishing defense budget is starting to set in. The 2013 National Defense Authorization Act includes $17 billion in the base budget for Army procurement and an additional $2.9 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations procurement. More

Commissary News

New 'eating culture' emerges
Progressive Grocer    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
We're no longer a cooking culture — we're an eating culture, and it's something retailers will have to grasp in order to better serve their shoppers. That's the overarching theme based on the findings of a comprehensive food culture study presented Monday at the Food Marketing Institute’s Midwinter Executive Conference in Scottsdale, Ariz. More

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Consumers share key thoughts on snack aisle
Supermarket News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Merchandising categories by product type, rather than brand, would help consumers shop the snack aisle better, according to an SN consumer focus group. Arranging snacks based on health attributes — such as reduced-fat or reduced-sodium — would help consumers find what they desire, according to the research, based on in-store interviews with seven primary household shoppers (four women, three men). More

5 easy ways to save money at the grocery store
The Stir    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Bottom line is: Food's expensive. Unless you're going to subsist on ramen noodles and 99-cent menu fare, you're going to have to drop some cash. The following are some tips from author Nicole Fabian-Weber and her husband. 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.

How well do you know your shopping cart?
Care 2 Causes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Corporate consolidation is occurring in numerous U.S. industries, but one of the places where it's particularly obvious is in the food chain. A combination of deregulation and consolidation has made it hard to find independent brands in the grocery store, and that makes it difficult to "shop better." There are often few alternatives available to consumers in conventional food settings, because so much of the marketplace is controlled by distant corporations. This may not be a problem that can be solved with a wallet, although decisions about where and how to use money can certainly play an important role. More

Commissary Announcements

Commissary Web Posts

The following commissary items were posted to the ALA Website as of 10 a.m., January 23, 2013.

DP #5, Promotion & Shipper Quantities.
Spring Club Pack, Far East & Alaska Quantities #2.

13-42, Cancellation of Store Reset Dates.

Store Class List, WW (DODAAC, Area, Code w/notes), 17 Dec 12.
FY 2013 Reset Schedule, updated 11 Jan 13.
December 12 Sales Data.
DeCAF 40-16 40-15 with Worksheet, dated 11 Jan 13.
Adds/Changes/Deletes for Week 13-04.
Guard & Reserve On-Site Sale Schedule updates.
CRV Values.

April 23, 2013: ALA/DeCA Customer Appreciation Golf Tournament, Fort Lee, Va.
Registration open - April 25–26, 2013: ALA Commissary Roundtable, Marriott Hotel, Richmond, Va.
June 18, 2013: ALA Congressional Caucus, Washington, D.C.
Sept. 30-Oct. 2, 2013: 66th ALA National Convention, Hyatt Regency, New Orleans, La.

Exchange News

Target hits bull's-eye with online-only brands
Retailing Today    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Target has debuted six brands that will be available exclusively online. The one-stop shop is not taking its e-commerce site for granted. While continuing to draw people into its physical stores with sales and other incentives, the retailer acknowledges the need to change as shoppers' habits change. More

Showrooming becoming a mainstream retail practice
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Brick-and-mortar's latest weapon against showrooming: puppies; sweet, adorable, puppies. "Anyone who comes in with the intention of showrooming looks at that puppy's eyes and the showrooming is over," Herman Nell, Petco Holdings's chief information officer, said recently at the National Retail Federation's annual meeting during a session on the practice of comparing prices in stores before buying online. While pet supplies may not immediately spring to mind as being showroomed, pet products retailers see their adoption services as a surefire way of softening hardline shoppers who come in just to get prices before buying online into shoppers who stick around to make purchases in the store. More

Online leaders of the pack: Lessons from Amazon, Nordstrom and Wal-Mart Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Few can rival the experience and e-commerce "chops" of Fiona Dias, who offered her perspective on "Lessons from the Leaders of the Pack" at Retail's BIG Show. Currently Chief Strategy Officer with ShopRunner, Dias has been involved in and observing our industry's evolution from senior leadership vantage points ranging from her current gig to GSI Commerce and Circuit City. The hallmarks of e-commerce pack leaders? Dias boiled down pack leader strategies to just four: leadership, perseverance, product and customer experience. More

McDonald's adds QR codes to packaging for access to nutritional info
QSRweb    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
McDonald's is introducing new packaging designs on all carry-out bags and fountain beverage cups that include QR codes directing mobile users to nutritional information and other content. The launch began recently in the U.S. and will continue rolling out worldwide through 2013, with the text being translated into 18 different languages. More

Culver's, Chick-fil-A score high among consumers
FastCasual    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Market research firm Technomic Inc. has presented its inaugural Chain Restaurant Consumers' Choice Award winners. Selected by consumers, the winners were recently recognized at the Consumer Trends & Directions Conference in Newport Beach, Calif. Based on analysis of consumer ratings in four key areas — food and beverage, service, atmosphere and brand image — Technomic has named the following brands as this year's Consumers' Choice Winners. More

Fewer discounts on tap for American Eagle Outfitters
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
After reining in discounts last year, teen-apparel retailer American Eagle Outfitters Inc. plans to be even less promotional going forward as it tries to break away from the aggressive deals that are a hallmark of the teen sector. Last year's less promotional environment should contribute a 1 percent improvement in margin performance for 2012, Chief Executive Robert Hanson said Wednesday at the ICR XChange conference. More

Personalized underwear seen aiding Nordstrom discounts war
Bloomberg Businessweek    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Personalized merchandise is proliferating as the likes of Nordstrom, Williams-Sonoma Inc. and Burberry Group Plc try to differentiate themselves — and persuade discount-addicted shoppers to pay full price. By allowing customers to monogram merchandise and "build" garments from a range of styles and colors, stores are catering to shoppers' yen to put an individual stamp on what they wear and put in their homes. More

Loving Amazon — National retail award changes perceptions
Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Here is the National Retail Federation, which recently hosted its huge annual event, honoring Amazon with its Gold Medal Award. Time magazine noted the irony coming from the brick-and-mortar giants that have considered Amazon an above-average enemy. If traditional retailers consider one another enemies, which they do, Amazon is in an entirely different class. More

Apple retail executive resigns
Los Angeles Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Apple's retail division has taken another hit with the resignation of a top executive once thought to be a candidate to head the unit. First reported by tech site AllThingsD, Apple confirmed that Jerry McDougal, vice president of retail, had resigned this month. AllThingsD said sources had said McDougal left because he "wanted to spend more time with his family." More

Harnessing happiness: How Coca-Cola creates shared value with retailers
Retail's BIG Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
When it comes to iconic brands, Coca-Cola is one of the most recognizable in the world. Coca-Cola is not just a drink; it's an experience. And most importantly, it's one that's shared by billions of people around the world. In a keynote session at Retail's BIG Show, Coca-Cola Refreshments Chief Retail Sales Officer Melvin Landis and Coca-Cola Company Senior Vice President for North America marketing Alison Lewis discussed how the brand is finding new ways to work with retailers that want to "harness a little bit of happiness in their business." More

DSW tries to increase e-sales in stores
The Columbus Dispatch    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
DSW spokeswoman Christina Cheng explains it this way: "If you happen to be in a store and they didn't have your size, they can look up the store within the nearest proximity and complete the sale for you from that location in a seamless transaction." VendorNet, a Web-based supply-chain management firm, and its StoreNet software represent the engine behind the online-sales concept. More

Designer collaborations: Real team players
Los Angeles Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
It has been more than a decade since Target launched its first designer collaboration, sparking a seemingly endless number of imitators. And although a few of last year's efforts fell a bit flat — Neiman Marcus and Target's highly touted holiday collection went on mark-down after only three weeks, for instance — pairings are still going strong. The following are some of the most alluring style collaborations planned in the first half of this year. More

'Made in America' becomes more fashionable with luxury brands
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Discounter Wal-Mart Stores Inc. isn't the only company taking steps to buy more goods made in America. It's also on the minds of luxury and upscale retailers and brands. With the industry under pressure to respond quickly to fashion trends and seeking to shorten the period between designing a product and getting it on store shelves, there's a growing appeal to buying U.S.-made products, retailers said. More

What shoppers really want from your store
American Express OPEN Forum    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
When they head to your retail store, what are shoppers really hoping to find? A new Cisco survey has some answers. First, showrooming is a very real concern: Forty percent of respondents research in-store, then purchase online. However, more shoppers actually shop the other way around: Sixty-five percent research online and buy in-store, up from 57 percent last year, while the percentage of showroomers has stayed the same. More

5 tips for small retailers to grow their brands
Retail's BIG Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
It was standing-room only during the Main Street Retailing Forum, recently held during Retail's BIG Show in New York. One of the highlights of the forum was a session with three of the winners from NRF's "This is Retail" video contest. While the contest itself told the stories of retailers all around the country, attendees learned in the process that these small business owners all had unique ideas that helped them connect powerfully with their customers. More

Without four fundamentals, text message marketing efforts could falter
Internet Retailer    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Retailers investing their promotional dollars into text message marketing may want to consider four lessons Experian PLC, a marketing services firm, has culled from its work with retailers. Text message advertising is a popular element of many retailers' mobile commerce strategies. Approximately 23 percent of retailers surveyed for the "The State of Retailing Online 2012" by Forrester Research Inc. use it. More

Visa, MasterCard modify rules to allow surcharging by merchants
Convenience Store News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Big changes could be on the way for consumers who pay with credit cards. In response to the proposed $7.2-billion swipe fee deal, Visa Inc. and MasterCard revealed they will change their rules to allow merchants to begin charging consumers a surcharge. More

Exchange Announcements

Army & Air Force Exchange Service, US Army partner to open 'Wounded Heroes Service Center'
Public Affairs    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
After more than a decade of war, the military continues to adapt to the changing needs of service members. Even the 117-year-old Army & Air Force Exchange Service is adjusting to address new realities as it opens a new facility designed specifically for wounded warriors. Just a short drive from Landstuhl Medical Center, the military's largest hospital outside of the United States, the Exchange partnered with the Department of the Army to open a first-of-its-kind facility for wounded Soldiers in Kaiserslautern, Germany at Kleber Kaserne. More

ALA Exchange E-Blast week 1/25/13

ROUNDTABLE ROOM RATES and registration EXPIRES February 13

ALA Executive Briefing (archive link)

AAFES Press release Archive 2010-2012

AAFES sales flyers (to view click below) Receive money saving offers via text

Join your local Exchange Buddy List

Join our Online Savings Club

Military Life Resource Directory page

Exchange Online Store

Exchange Online Store — Savings Center

Exchange Online Mall

Join the Exchange Online SAVINGS Club (receive exclusive COUPONS)!

MCX Mailers

Find a store

View our latest market surveys

Product recalls and alerts (Exchange)

Save the dates:

March 6-8, 2013 — All Exchange Round Table, Grand Hyatt, Dallas/Fort Worth Airport

Round Table Golf Outing details: The ALA DFW Chapter will be hosting the "2013 Roundtable Golf Tournament" on Wednesday, March 6, at Bear Creek Golf Club in Dallas. The tournament will be a best ball/scramble format with first and second place prizes for two flights. Prizes for longest drive and closest to the pin will also be awarded. Sponsorship opportunities are available for the hole sponsors, longest drive and closest to pin and co-sponsorships are also available. Please join us after your spectacular round of golf for lunch, the awards reception and silent/live auction. Donated items are always welcome and very much appreciated and proceeds from the auction benefit the AREA Scholarship Fund. Attached is the registration form and additional information, so if you plan on attending, please submit form and payment by Friday, Feb. 22. If you have any questions or are interested in donating items for the auction, please contact Julie Fox at or 469-221-4122.

Click here for the 2013 Roundtable Golf Tournament flier

Click here for the 2013 Roundtable Golf Tournament registration form

Operation Come Back Home — Enjoy Your Benefit!
The 2013 Exchange Roundtable webpage is packed with all the information you need to make the Roundtable an educational and networking success for YOU!
Click here for more info!

March 6, 2013 — Bear Creek Golf Club
3500 Bear Creek Ct., Dallas, Texas, 75261
10 a.m. Shotgun Start
For more information, call Julie Fox at 469-221-4122, or email at

Date change: April 24, 2013 — ALA/DeCA Customer Appreciation Golf Tournament, Fort Lee, Va.

Date change: April 25–26, 2013 — ALA Commissary Roundtable, Marriott Hotel, Richmond, Va.

Aug. 19-22, 2013 — 2013 Hawaii Trade and Food Show, Honolulu, Hawaii

Sept. 30-Oct. 2, 2013 — 66th Annual Convention, Hyatt New Orleans, New Orleans, La.

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

Washington Update

Army leaders say civilian employees will be furloughed 'as last resort'
Alabama Live    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Furloughs for the Army's civilian employees will only be considered as a last resort to cut costs, according to an Army memo released yesterday. However, other drastic measures are in the works if Congress can't reach an agreement by March 1 and massive defense cuts are automatically triggered. More

Job fairs offer opportunities for transitioning soldiers, veterans, family members
U.S. Army    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Are you a soldier transitioning from active duty and looking for your next job? A veteran? Or a family member wanting to continue your career? Garrison Army Career and Alumni Program and Army Community Service offices support hundreds of job fairs on or near our installations every year. The following is a list of events for transitioning soldiers, veterans and family members coming up in the next three months. To find out about other events or all the services ACAP offers, visit the ACAP website at or contact an ACAP center at More

Digital age prompting closure of base theaters
Sioux City Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Stacey Darling loves watching family movies at the Ellsworth Air Force Base theater in South Dakota because it's so much more affordable than taking her three children to the multiplex in nearby Rapid City. Darling, whose husband is an airman, has been catching second-run films on base for about 2 1/2 years, and was there recently for the theater's last showing: A screening of the animated movie "Hotel Transylvania." The movie theater is among 60 around the globe run by the Army and Air Force Exchange Service that is screening its last picture show amid the industry's conversion to digital projection. More


Executive Briefing
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