SB 553 Compliance Toolkit

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Workplace Violence Prevention Resources

In September 2023, the State of California enacted a Workplace Violence Prevention Law (SB 553) which creates onerous requirements for nearly every California employer. By July 1, 2024 employers must establish, implement, and maintain an effective written Workplace Violence Prevention Plan to be enforced by Cal/OSHA. Additionally, employers must train their workforce about the company’s prevention strategies. 

CGA put a toolkit together for members with resources for compliance and implementation. Click the members-only link below to access the toolkit.

Workplace Violence Prevention Webinar

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SB 553 Compliance

Wednesday, May 1 | 10:00 – 11:30 am

The State of California recently enacted a Workplace Violence Prevention Law (SB 553) which creates onerous requirements for nearly every California employer. By July 1, employers must establish, implement and maintain an effective written Workplace Violence Prevention Plan to be enforced by Cal OSHA. Additionally, employers must train their workforce about the company’s prevention strategies.

During CGA Educational Foundation’s upcoming webinar, CalOSHA experts Rachel Conn and Andrea Chavez of Conn Maciel Carey LLP will provide an in-depth overview of the requirements of the law and practical implementation advice including:

  • Workplace violence definitions and types
  • Elements of a written workplace violence prevention plan
  • Employee training obligations
  • Recordkeeping requirements including details on maintaining a violent incidents log

Presenters: Rachel Conn and Andrea Chavez, Conn Maciel Carey LLP

Join us on Wednesday, May 1 from 10:00 – 11:30 am PST for this presentation.

Free for CGA members | $75 for non-members.

CGA Sponsors Food Access Bill

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Through year-round advocacy at the State Capitol, CGA works to ensure that grocers and their local communities thrive in California. With more than 11 million Californians residing in food deserts according to recent USDA data, CGA is supporting a legislative effort to expand food access and help bring grocery stores to food insecure areas.

CGA is sponsoring The Food Desert Elimination Act (SB 1419) in collaboration with Senator Rubio, which seeks to provide financial assistance to grocery stores operators who wish to establish a store within a delineated food desert or areas at risk of becoming food deserts.

You can help the effort by urging your legislators to support The Food Desert Elimination Act. To take action, click here to submit a letter to your elected officials in support of SB 1419— it takes less than 60 seconds. Stand with California’s grocery community in calling for new incentives for grocers to expand food access across the state!

2024 Store Leader Training Seminars

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Sessions and Guest Speakers

The 5 Rules

Leaders want results, but only 5% have plans in place to develop their teams.

It doesn’t take a complex plan to create transformation – it just needs The 5 Rules. Based on over 45 years of leading thousands of employees, Steve Black has distilled essential principles that produce results into this one book.

Unlock the potential within yourself or in others by introducing these five rules into all aspects of life – you won’t regret it! For families looking to strengthen generational bonds or individuals searching for personal growth, these five rules can revolutionize any life they’re applied to.

  • Do Your Job: A simple rule but there’s more to it than you think.
  • Be Kind: Kindness is important to your success as a leader and the success of your team.
  • No Surprises: The importance of communicating.
  • No Drama: How exaggerated facts or feelings can do harm within your team.
  • Protect the Brand: In everything you do, you represent the brand.

Steve Black

Author, Coach, Leader & CEO

With 45 years of expertise in the retail grocery arena, Steve Black has had a remarkable career.

He’s been an integral part of companies that are true innovators and trailblazers, such as Rouses Markets, Lucky’s Farmers Markets, Sprouts Farmers Markets, and Sunflower Farmers Markets, to name a few.

His leadership-focused mindset and hands-on experience have enabled him to contribute valuable insights at every turn-impacting businesses through coaching & training teams dedicated towards personal growth on both individual & organizational levels.

Steve Black and his wife, Melanie, along with their daughter, Taylor, live in Colorado and enjoy spending time outdoors on their four-wheelers, trout fishing, photography, and traveling to see their two sons, daughters-in-law, and six grandchildren.


The Game-Winning 3 – Making It Count … In Business and In Life

Success can be defined in its simplest form as making life better for someone else. Whether it comes in creating a better product, helping to relieve someone’s stress or pain, bringing someone laughter or joy or helping someone get more out of their life, success is always about serving.

This being the case, the key to success in any business lies not only in the development of great products and services, but more importantly in the development of great people. In this insightful presentation, Dave Davlin shares three essential ingredients for developing a purpose-driven mentality to achieve a fulfilling career and balanced life.

Three Learning Outcomes:

  • Developing vision and defining one’s sense of purpose
  • Recognizing and embracing the importance of creating positive and memorable experiences with fellow workers and family members
  • Understanding and embracing the value of service in the pursuit of success

Dave Davlin

Over 25 years ago, Dave Davlin began bringing smiles to faces with a form of entertainment he developed as a young boy. From NBA and major college arenas across America to the Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea— and even to the world-famous Branson Strip— “Travelin” Davlin has entertained people of every age and background. His amazing ability with basketballs even landed his name and picture in the 1990 Guinness Book of World Records.

Dave began to hone his speaking skills in the early 90’s as a national speaker in the public schools across America. Combining his entertainment ability with a powerful message, he was instrumental in the fight for education and against drugs. From public school students to CEOs, Dave’s message has made a difference in the lives of thousands, and his impact continues to grow each year as he shares his philosophy and wisdom through speaking and writing.

Grocers Advocate at the State Capitol

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Grocery retailers and suppliers traveled to Sacramento in early April for CGA’s Grocers Day at the Capitol event to advocate on behalf of California’s grocery industry.

Grocers met with lawmakers and staff to educate them on the grocery industry’s most pressing issues and speak to their firsthand experience running a business in California. While the day’s top priority was sharing the impacts of retail theft on stores and communities, grocers also asked for legislators’ support on two food access bills, and asked for opposition on harmful self-checkout and store closure bills that would negatively impact stores and customers.

In addition to legislative meetings, attendees were joined by guest speakers from the Capitol community. Journalist Laurel Rosenthal, Sacramento bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times, joined us to share her insights on the legislative landscape and takeaways from the March primary election. Members of the Assembly Public Safety Committee Asm. Rick Chavez Zbur and Asm. Juan Alanis joined us for a candid fireside chat around retail theft.

This year’s event also featured the inaugural Legislative Bagging Competition with Senate Candidate Christopher CabaldonAsm. Greg Wallis, and Asm. Tom Lackey, judged by our friends at Nugget Markets. Our day of advocacy wrapped up with a President’s Reception back at CGA Headquarters to mix and mingle with lawmakers and members of the Capitol community.

Thank you to all who joined us for a productive advocacy day! Check out event photos below.

CGA Educational Foundation Raises $375k for Industry Students at Awards Gala

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CGAEF honored executives from Safeway Northern California and Kimberly-Clark

The California Grocers Association Educational Foundation (CGAEF) inducted Karl Schroeder, president of Safeway Northern California Division, and Denny Belcastro, vice president of industry affairs and customer development for Kimberly-Clark Corporation, into the prestigious Hall of Achievement on Thursday, March 14, 2024 in Alameda, California. 

This year’s awards gala took place aboard the USS Hornet, a historic decommissioned aircraft carrier and museum docked in the San Francisco Bay. In addition to honoring Karl and Denny, attendees raised more than $375,000 during the awards gala which will help fund the Foundation’s signature college scholarship and tuition reimbursement programs to support future grocery industry leaders in their pursuit of higher education.

Karl and Denny, both respected leaders within the grocery industry, are outspoken proponents of industry education, mentorship, and professional development. Having gone back to school to complete the University of Southern California Food Industry Management Program and ultimately earn his bachelor’s degree from the University of San Francisco years later, Karl has mentored hundreds of his own staff and encouraged their continued education. Denny has long supported grocery industry organizations, including California Grocers Association, offering his expertise, career development guidance, and industry funding for scholarships and continuing education opportunities.

“Karl and Denny are the embodiment of influencers in the grocery space. Both have dedicated their careers to developing their teams through mentorship and the encouragement of education, thus lifting all ships in the industry,” CGAEF President Ron Fong said.  “This honor is a testament to their tremendous impact on the industry and influence on creating the next wave of industry leaders.”

Recipient of CGAEF’s fifth annual $10,000 Legends of the Industry Scholarship, Rosita Szatkowska, addressed the crowd during the event to share how the industry’s support will help her fulfill her education and career ambitions. Szatkowska, who previously struggled with homelessness and addiction, now oversees thousands of employees as a District Manager for Albertsons. Simultaneously, Rosita is pursuing a degree in Business Administration from Brandman University.

The Hall of Achievement recognizes grocery leaders for their tremendous contributions to the grocery industry and within their local communities. 

New Issue of California Grocer Magazine

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The View From Here

The first quarter of the year is a natural time to take stock of leadership within our organizations and ourselves. California Grocer magazine’s latest issue, “The View From Here,” is packed with wisdom from leaders in the grocery industry, highlighting both new faces and seasoned veterans.

CGA Chair Lynn Melillo pens her first column about her recent experience on a retail theft panel, leadership guru Steve Black imparts his top five rules for transforming culture, grocery rising stars — from family-owned stores to national retailers— share their takes on the industry, industry influencer Kevin Coupe muses about retailers balancing authenticity and new opportunities, and Headlite of The Illuminators Greg Siegel speaks to his calm yet confident outlook. The issue also takes a look at the state of the industry, exploring new dynamics in restructuring and consolidation.

Be sure to check out the following must-read sections from Issue 1:

  • State of the Industry
    • Pg 16 | Michele Fuller
  • The Five Rules for Leading Culture Transformation
    • Pg 22 | Steve Black
  • Grocery Industry Rising Stars
    • Pg 26
  • Greg Siegel Brings Serious Energy and Good Fun to The Illuminators
    • Pg 36 | Dorsey Griffith

Advocate With Us on Grocers Day at the Capitol

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Share Your Story

With more than 30 bills introduced this session aimed at finding an answer to retail theft, everyone wants a piece of the retail theft puzzle. However, few are as intimately familiar with the lived experience of retail theft as California grocers.

We need your voice at Grocers Day at the Capitol on April 3 to educate lawmakers on the grocery industry’s most pressing issues— including retail theft— during face-to-face meetings. CGA’s premiere advocacy event gives grocers the opportunity to candidly share with legislators the severity of retail theft and its impacts on constituents and communities.

The Agenda

  • Gather in the morning for a legislative briefing from CGA’s government relations and lobbying team to cover retail theft, PAGA, packaging and more.
  • Stay for a Senate leadership overview from Sen. Angelique Ashby and a retail theft fireside chat with Asm. Rick Chavez Zbur and Asm. Juan Alanis.
  • Compete for “Best Bagger” during our Legislative Bagging Competition.
  • Join peers for a full afternoon of in-person meetings with legislators.
  • Unwind with CGA during our evening President’s Reception from 5-6:30 p.m.

ERP: CONNECT

Enterprise Risk Protection professionals— join us a day early in Sacramento for CGA’s inaugural ERP CONNECT event on April 2. We’ll help connect enterprise risk protection challenges to real solutions and engage on pressing issues including retail theft policy solutions and partnerships, implementation of state-mandated Workplace Violence Training (SB 553), and new best practices for grocers.

Sacramento County Sheriff Jim Cooper will join us for a retail theft conversation, and legal and OSH expert Rachel Conn will provide a workshop on workplace violence plans and compliance. Our event is free for CGA members and includes free attendance to grocers Day at the Capitol. Contact Tim James to RSVP.

California Grocers Association Endorses Reusable Plastic Bag Ban Bill

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CGA Helps Drive the State Towards a Common Sense and Sustainable Approach to Bags

Sacramento, CA (February 8, 2024) — Today during a press conference at the California State Capitol, the California Grocers Association announced its support of Sen. Catherine Blakespear’s (D-San Diego) and Asm. Rebecca Bauer-Kahan’s (D-Alameda) proposed bill banning the distribution of plastic film reusable bags for grocery retailers.

As consumer demand for sustainability evolves, CGA is helping guide this shift as a natural next step for grocery bags in California following the passage of SB 270 ten years ago, which eliminated single-use carryout bags. Without compromising convenience, this bill encourages a thoughtful approach to bags by prompting shoppers to bring reusable bags they already own from home. Consumers will still be able to purchase paper bags if they do not have a reusable bag.

“Beginning with the passage of SB 270 in 2014, California’s grocery industry has played a leading role in driving the state towards a common sense and responsible approach to the use of plastics and packaging by consumers,” said California Grocers Association VP of Government Relations, Daniel Conway. “We know that even the best policies may need to be updated over time to reflect changes in our society, so today marks the continuation of the work that started with SB 270 and is an important new chapter in our efforts to support the communities grocers serve and our environment.”

Effective January 1, 2026, the bill proposes that grocery stores may not provide a plastic film reusable grocery bag to consumers at the point of sale. To continue incentivizing waste reduction, grocers can offer non-plastic film reusable grocery bags or recycled paper bags to a consumer for no less than 10 cents at the point of sale. Reusable bags must meet certain requirements, like being made of washable material. Recycled paper bags are to be made available at no cost to WIC and SNAP customers.

“Consumers are calling for sustainable practices from California businesses, but still value a convenient shopping experience. This bill bridges the two to meet consumers where they are while demonstrating care for the environments in which our stores reside,” said CGA President and CEO Ron Fong.

About CGA

For more than 125 years, the California Grocers Association has served as the voice of the state’s grocery community. A nonprofit, statewide trade association, CGA’s membership is comprised of over 300 retailers operating more than 6,000 brick-and-mortar stores, and approximately 150 grocery supply companies.

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Ron Fong Named a Most Admired CEO by Sacramento Business Journal

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President and CEO of California Grocers Association Ron Fong was named a Most Admired CEO for 2024 by Sacramento Business Journal. The award celebrates and recognizes local CEOs who have positively impacted their respective industries and contributed to the growth and success of Sacramento’s greater business community.

Honorees are selected by a peer group of CEOs, comprised of last year’s honorees, external nominations, and nominations by Sacramento Business Journal staff, that identifies influential local CEOs.

“Ron is a champion of the grocery industry in California and respected voice in the capitol community,” said CGA COO and Senior Vice President Doug Scholz. “This recognition from the Sacramento Business Journal is well deserved.”

The award comes as Ron begins his 16th year at the helm of CGA. During his tenure at CGA, Ron is credited with overhauling the government relations program, including the appointment of a new veteran lobbying and political team. In 2020, Governor Gavin Newsom appointed Ron to serve on his bi-partisan Task Force on Business and Jobs Recovery to help plan the state’s economic recovery following the financial calamity resulting from COVID-19. Ron also serves as President to the CGA Educational Foundation, which supports education opportunities for grocery industry workers, and oversees the Foundation’s expanding education, research, career development, and college scholarship programs.

Ron was honored alongside 20 other honorees at the Most Admired CEOs awards ceremony on March 7, 2024 in Sacramento. Honorees include: Kenn Altine,  Sacramento SPCA; Derek Chase, OnSight Technology Inc.; Ethan Conrad, Ethan Conrad Properties; Brad DesJardin, DesCor Builders; Dawnté Early, United Way California Capital Region; Linda Farley, Girl Scouts Heart of Central California; Ronald Fong, California Grocers Association; Ginger Elizabeth Hahn, Ginger Elizabeth Chocolates; Lisa Hausmann, Mercy Hospital Folsom, Dignity Health; Preet Kuar, Pacific Staffing; Shobha Mallarapu, Anvaya Solutions Inc.; Heather Mauel, Dutch Bros Coffee Gold Country; Tony Moayed, Tricorp Group; Mymy Nguyen, Saigon Alley Kitchen & Bar; Michael Strech, North State Building Industry Association; Darrell Teat Jr., The Safety Center; Kim Tucker, Impact Foundry; Ali Wing, Oobli Inc.; and Rachel Zillner, Clutch.

View the Sacramento Business Journal press release here.