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BUSINESS
June 29, 2007 | Ronald D. White, Times Staff Writer
Contract negotiations between representatives of Southern California's three largest supermarket chains and 65,000 union workers continued at a secret location Thursday. But as the give-and-take continued for a second day, there was no word of any breakthrough. New proposals had been delivered to the Vons, Ralphs and Albertsons chains, United Food and Commercial Workers spokesman Mike Shimpock said, but he offered no details.
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BUSINESS
October 2, 1989 | HARRY ANDERSON, Times Staff Writer
You can tell a lot about a place by knowing a little about the people who started the best-known businesses there. The knowledge tells you, for instance, what it has taken to succeed and survive in the local economy. Although Southern California is sometimes accused of having a short memory about its past, not all its businesses have been flashes in the pan. In fact, it has no shortage of long-established, successful companies.
BUSINESS
June 23, 2007 | Jerry Hirsch, Times Staff Writer
As Southern California's grocery workers union readies for a strike vote Sunday, there are already efforts to restart negotiations with the big supermarket chains, possibly as soon as Wednesday, according to people familiar with the negotiations. Talks broke off Thursday between the United Food and Commercial Workers union and Albertsons, Ralphs and Vons over a contract for 65,000 workers.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 28, 2006 | Peter Y. Hong, Times Staff Writer
A Ventura County jury on Friday awarded $18 million to a Vons clerk who claimed he was fired because he said a female supervisor sexually harassed him. James Stevens, now 48, filed a lawsuit in 2004 alleging that a supervisor, Laura Marko, had taunted him daily with sexual gestures and remarks. Stevens said Marko suggestively held a feather duster between her legs and made crude statements regarding his body.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 19, 2003 | Cecilia Rasmussen, Times Staff Writer
Two of Southern California's leading "supermarkets" -- a term that caught on nationwide -- started out as two little family-owned grocery stores. Ralphs and Vons are part of huge corporations today with tens of thousands of workers and front-page labor troubles. But they brought their founding families a measure of regional immortality. George Albert Ralphs -- with an S and without an apostrophe -- was born in Joplin, Mo., in 1850.
BUSINESS
September 4, 1991 | NANCY RIVERA BROOKS, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Vons Cos., Southern California's largest supermarket chain, plans to grow bigger by heading north. It agreed to acquire 18 stores of the Santa Maria-based Williams Bros. Markets chain for about $48 million, the companies announced Tuesday. "We view the acquisition of Williams Bros. as an important addition to our existing store network," said Roger E. Stangeland, chairman and chief executive of Arcadia-based Vons.
BUSINESS
February 5, 1993 | DENISE GELLENE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Until his two young daughters became seriously ill after eating contaminated hamburgers at a nearby Jack in the Box restaurant, Joseph Dolan of Kent, Wash., never doubted that any meat was fit to eat. Meat is inspected by the government, he knew, stamped with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's seal of approval. "You just assume everything is safe," Dolan said.
BUSINESS
March 22, 1988 | MARTHA GROVES, Times Staff Writer
Vons and Ralphs supermarkets are offering a new incentive for hungry insomniacs and any others who find it difficult to get to the grocery before midnight: around-the-clock shopping chainwide. Lucky Stores, too, has been testing a policy of staying open 24 hours a day in six stores since February and might extend the strategy throughout its Southland locations.
BUSINESS
September 3, 1988 | MARTHA GROVES, Times Staff Writer
Back in January, a few weeks after Vons Cos. announced its plan to take over Safeway's Southern California stores, some Safeway workers unpacking a case of catsup made an unusual discovery. On one bottle, packed by a company that provided both grocery chains with private label products, Safeway's Town House label was peeled back to reveal the Vons brand name.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 28, 2006 | Peter Y. Hong, Times Staff Writer
A Ventura County jury on Friday awarded $18 million to a Vons clerk who claimed he was fired because he said a female supervisor sexually harassed him. James Stevens, now 48, filed a lawsuit in 2004 alleging that a supervisor, Laura Marko, had taunted him daily with sexual gestures and remarks. Stevens said Marko suggestively held a feather duster between her legs and made crude statements regarding his body.
BUSINESS
December 7, 2004 | Nancy Cleeland, Times Staff Writer
Three major supermarket chains have agreed to pay $22.4 million to settle a class-action lawsuit by janitors who said they were illegally classified as subcontractors and systematically underpaid at hundreds of Southern California stores. The money will be split among at least 2,100 janitors who worked at Albertsons Inc., Ralphs Grocery Co. and Safeway Inc.'s Vons supermarkets from 1994 to 2001.
BUSINESS
January 15, 2004 | James F. Peltz
Another California public pension fund called on the supermarket chains to end a 3-month-old strike and lockout that the fund says is harming its investments in the chains. The Los Angeles County Employees Retirement Assn. voted to urge the stores -- Safeway Inc., which owns Vons and Pavilions; Kroger Co., the parent of Ralphs; and Albertsons Inc. -- to solve their dispute with the United Food and Commercial Workers union.
BUSINESS
January 12, 2004 | James F. Peltz, Times Staff Writer
Secret talks aimed at ending the supermarket strike and lockout in Southern and Central California broke off with no resolution Sunday, three months from the date the job actions began. "We're extremely disappointed," said Ellen Anreder, a spokeswoman for the United Food and Commercial Workers union. Representatives of the UFCW and three supermarket companies "were trying to develop some kind of common ground" before resuming formal negotiations with a federal mediator, Anreder said.
BUSINESS
December 2, 2003 | Nancy Cleeland and Ronald D. White, Times Staff Writers
California Atty. Gen. Bill Lockyer said Monday that he would investigate whether supermarket companies violated antitrust laws by agreeing to share profits and losses during the grocery workers' strike. His announcement came as the United Food and Commercial Workers union and the three companies prepared to return to the bargaining table and as the effects of a week-old Teamsters sympathy strike rippled through stores in Southern California.
BUSINESS
November 21, 2003 | James F. Peltz, Times Staff Writer
A union-backed consumer lawsuit filed Thursday against the three supermarket chains in the 6-week-old strike and lockout alleges that the chains' unusual mutual-aid pact violates California antitrust law. The suit casts a spotlight on a key element of the labor dispute that has seldom been mentioned since the strike began Oct. 11 and that executives at the grocery stores -- Kroger Co.'s Ralphs, Albertsons Inc. and Safeway Inc.'s Vons and Pavilions -- refuse to discuss publicly in any detail.
BUSINESS
November 6, 1993 | DENISE GELLENE, TIMES STAFF WRITER
Sonia Zepede is the sort of shopper Vons Cos. had in mind when it opened its Tianguis markets six years ago. Her roots--and culinary tastes--trace to Mexico, and she looks for native foods when she shops. But Zepede prefers her neighborhood Lucky store to a nearby Tianguis, despite its broader selection of Latin foods. "Tianguis is too expensive," said Zepede, 26.
NEWS
January 23, 1993 | TOM GORMAN and DOUG CONNER, TIMES STAFF WRITERS
Food poisoning caused by contaminated hamburger patties--which so far has stricken about 150 people in the Northwest and on Friday claimed its first victim, a 2-year-old boy--probably had its roots in a slaughterhouse and not in the restaurant chain where the hamburgers were sold, Washington state health officials said. But most of the bacteria could have been destroyed if the meat had been properly cooked, officials said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 19, 2003 | Cecilia Rasmussen, Times Staff Writer
Two of Southern California's leading "supermarkets" -- a term that caught on nationwide -- started out as two little family-owned grocery stores. Ralphs and Vons are part of huge corporations today with tens of thousands of workers and front-page labor troubles. But they brought their founding families a measure of regional immortality. George Albert Ralphs -- with an S and without an apostrophe -- was born in Joplin, Mo., in 1850.
BUSINESS
October 16, 2003 | Michael Hiltzik
In business, as in football and magic, misdirection is often the key to success. That's especially true when you're trying to rationalize lousy performance, which is why 9/11, national tragedy that it was, has been such a godsend for corporate managements looking for a scapegoat for their own poor records. This phenomenon often emerges prominently during labor negotiations in service industries, where labor costs tend to be a huge component of overall expenses.
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