Recent moves by the nation’s biggest supermarket chain echo the disruption rippling through grocery and mass-market retailing.
This year alone, Kroger acquired British online grocer Ocado Group to process its e-commerce orders; purchased meal-kit company Home Chef; and set plans to blow out its Simple Truth house brands on store shelves.
Campbell's, reportedly on the selling block, has been losing market share in the grocery aisle amid changing consumer tastes. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
Meanwhile, big legacy consumer products brands are scrambling to consolidate their way to solvency and rejuvenation via mega-mergers like Kraft Foods-H.J. Heinz, SABMiller-Anheuser-Busch amid whispers that Kraft-Heinz might purchase the faltering Campbell Soup Company.

Longtime CPG giants have been hobbled by the rise of alternative retail channels from Amazon to Whole Foods (now one in the same), and European grocers like Aldi, just as scrappy niche brands, direct-to-consumer e-tailers, and higher-end private-label lines appeal to changing consumer tastes, while chewing away at their market share.
To varying degrees, the consumer brands that line merchants’ shelves have been sucker punched by disruption.
“There’s a grocery war that’s taking place, and there’s a risk of winning or losing,” said Jerry Wolfe, founder of CEO of Vivanda, which powers digital food and beverage customer experiences, during the SAP podcast hosted by Bonnie D. GrahamChanging the Game in Consumer Industries: Consumer Products Industry Under Attack: Time to Reclaim Market Share. “If you don’t participate you’re going to lose.”