McDonald’s packaged coffee headed for grocery stores

Move over, Starbucks. McDonald’s is putting its packaged McCafe coffee in grocery stores next year.

With the help of Kraft Foods, the hamburger giant will roll out bags of ground and whole-bean coffee, as well as single-cup pods, to compete with fast-food chains including Dunkin’ Donuts and Starbucks that sell packaged coffee at retail locations.

Hoping to tap into the $11-billion-plus U.S. retail coffee market, McDonald’s and Kraft started testing the bagged coffee at a few supermarkets earlier this year.

McDonald’s said last year that its coffee sales had risen 70 percent since the McCafe launch.

Packaged in 12-ounce bags, McCafe will be offered ground in premium roast, breakfast blend, French roast, Colombian, premium roast decaf and French vanilla and hazelnut plus a French roast whole bean. The chain did not disclose pricing.

Investor pressure may lead to sale of Ariz.-based PetSmart

PetSmart says it is considering putting itself up for sale after receiving pressure from investors.

The pet supply chain said it will weigh “strategic alternatives” after a board review that included conversations with shareholders.

Investment firm Longview Asset Management and hedge fund Jana Partners have both pushed PetSmart to think about a sale.

The company also says it plans to cut costs and is focusing on pet food, exclusive brands and services, online shoppers and a loyalty program.

The Phoenix-based company said that its second-quarter earnings rose 5.1 percent to $98.1 million, or 98 cents per share, while revenue rose 1.4 percent to $1.73 billion.

Home Depot prospers from productive spring season

Home Depot’s fiscal second-quarter net income surged 14 percent thanks to a rebound in its spring selling season.

The nation’s largest home improvement retailer also raised its annual profit guidance.

“These results support the view of a continued recovery in the U.S. home-improvement market,” Frank Blake, Home Depot’s CEO, told investors.

In Louisiana, State Farm accused of unfair trade

Attorney General Buddy Caldwell filed a lawsuit Tuesday against State Farm, alleging Louisiana’s largest auto insurer is illegally steering customers involved in car accidents to repair shops that use junkyard parts and choose cheap fixes over safety.

The lawsuit filed in Baton Rouge, accused the insurance company of violating Louisiana’s unfair trade practices act with a systematic effort to lower its costs at the expense of its customers.

Caldwell said his office’s investigation started in March after receiving complaints from around the state about shoddy repair work.

—From news service reports