Texas Retailers Association

March 2020

In This Issue...

  1. Letter from the President
  2. Special Announcements -  Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources for Retailers
  3. Advocacy Update - Advocacy Summit Gallery
  4. Free Resources - Coronavirus Risk Mitigation from Marsh Wortham
  5. Grocery Industry Update -  SNAP & Health and Produce Trends, Dairy Industry

Letter From the President

Hello Texas Retailers!

Its March and spring is almost here, if not here already. The interim period of the Texas Legislature is well underway, and there have been hearings on several of TRA’s legislative priorities, having already occurred or scheduled to occur soon. Additionally, TRA’s signature event during the interim, our biannual Texas Retailers Advocacy Summit, took place this month and was a success. Click here for more information and a photo gallery from our 2020 Advocacy Summit. Lastly, the COVID-19 virus, commonly known as the Coronavirus, has and continues to significantly impact our society and retailers are certainly not exempt. More details on what TRA is doing to be a resource for our members and industry during this time are below and in this newsletter.

TRA is actively engaged on being a key resource for retailers in Texas on how to manage through the increasing impacts of the Coronavirus. As we all know, the impacts so far include cancellation and/or postponement of large scale events such as the SXSW festival here in Austin, and the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo, in addition to companies restricting corporate travel and asking employees to work from home.  The retail sector and TRA’s member companies have not gone without impact thus far. We are in close communication with our members so that we can be aware of measures they are taking to manage through this disruptive time. Additionally, TRA is actively engaged with our national retail and food industry trade association partners to stay aware of everything that is happening related to the Coronavirus on an industry-wide basis, as well as at the federal government level. These resources, which are continually updated, are available on the TRA website. Specific to Texas, TRA is coordinating with state and local authorities, to monitor actions that are taken at the state and local levels regarding the Coronavirus, as well as serving as a resource where we are asked. It is our hope that the current disruptions and impacts related to the Coronavirus will be a temporary situation, but TRA is here to help Texas retailers get through this challenging time.

Lastly, and on a more positive note, registration for the annual Texas Retailers Forum is now open. Join us this summer, here in the Austin area at the Hyatt Lost Pines Resort on July 20th for our annual industry showcase event. The TRA Forum will provide retailers with timely, topical and quality sessions and speakers. Attendees will have the opportunity to meet with and learn from retail industry leaders from across the state and country. Make plans to be there to help us honor our industry champions at networking functions such as our Awards Luncheon, networking breaks, and our closing Happy Hour. Secure your spot at this can’t miss retail industry event.

As always, thank you for supporting TRA and please feel free to reach out to the TRA team anytime.


Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources for Retailers

Check out the TRA Coronavirus Member Update Dashboard. View the latest up-to-date information directly from each member company and TRA affiliate posting updates related to the Coronavirus pandemic.

See comments from: H-E-B, National Retail Federation (NRF), Walmart, Kroger, Lowe's Markets, Albertson's Markets, Target, Brookshire's, Brookshire Brothers, National Grocer's Association (NGA), Retail Leaders Association (RILA), Officer of the Governor Greg Abbott, The Hill, Food Marketing Institute (FMI), Center for Disease Control (CDC), JCPenney, The Home Depot, Walgreens, Dollar General, Lowe's Home Improvement, Academy Sports & Outdoors, Macy's 

If your company would like to be added to the Coronavirus Member Update Dashboard, please contact TRA.

Additional Resources: 
Updates from the White House regarding COVID-19 Outbreak
Updates from National Retail Federation visit Coronavirus Resources for Retailers 
Updates from National Grocer's Association visit Coronavirus Resources for Grocery Industry

 Advocacy Update

Advocacy Summit

Pictured above from Left to Right:  TRA Legislative Panel: Roland Gonzales (Cokinos Law Firm), Lynn Krebs (Tax Advisors Group), State Rep. John Raney, State Rep. Drew Springer, Jim Sheer (McGuireWoods)

Thank you to all the members and sponsors who participated in the 2020 Advocacy Summit. This event is a great opportunity to spend a weekend networking with Texas’s most retail-friendly members of the Texas Legislature and Members of Congress. The event was held at the Horseshoe Bay Resort in Marble Falls, TX  on March 6-8, 2020 and featured panels with guests from various Texas agencies, media and the Texas Legislature. 

Check out the Picture Gallery from the 2020 Advocacy Summit.

Thank you to all the sponsors once again, for making this event a success!

Altria | Kroger | Lowe's Home Improvement | National Retail Federation | Outdoor Advertising Association of Texas | Pepsico | Retail Industry Leaders Association | Tax Advisors Group | Target | Southwest Financial | Walmart


Free Resources from Marsh Wortham


Marsh has excellent resources to assist clients with response and risk mitigation surrounding these and other Pandemic outbreaks.  Marsh is providing TRA members some free resources below: 

If you want to follow up with Marsh Wortham regarding their resources, please contact David Hebert using the contact information below. The Marsh Wortham Pandemic Risk team is the best in the business!

Texas Retailers Association is still exploring opportunities to source best-in-class benefits for members, including medical, vision, dental, life insurance, and more. But WE NEED YOUR HELP

Please click here to take this five-minute survey.
If you are not the right person to fill this out, please pass the message on to human resources or operations manager to assist us with gauging interest in the program.

More Information about Marsh Wortham: 

Marsh Wortham is a division of Marsh USA Inc. the largest insurance broker in the U.S., and provides insurance placement and employee benefits, and risk management consulting services. 

  • We are comprised of offices across Texas, and in Oklahoma and Louisiana. Our parent company is Marsh & McLennan Companies (NYSE: MMC), the leading global professional services firm in the areas of risk, strategy, and people. 
  • Marsh places more than $1 billion in premiums every year for our retail clients which comprise more than half of the top 100 retail companies in the U.S. and all of the top 10.

David J. Hebert, Vice President - Client Executive
Office 713.276.8012
Cell: 281.606.2247
[email protected]

Christina Scott, Vice President - Client Executive
Office 572.379.2698
Cell: 512.497.4626
[email protected]

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 A TRA-endorsed service provider since 2002, Amerex is the largest OTC (wholesale) natural gas, electricity and emissions trader in North America. Their real-time involvement in the wholesale energy market and their customized service has consistently yielded significant cost savings to TRA members. Click Here to Learn More

Email: Brandi Peck,
281.340.5208 phone
713.560.2772 cell


 Grocery Industry Update


The Texas Retailers Association has been focused on how our industry is responding to the COVID-19/Coronavirus situation.  Please reference Coronavirus Member Update Dashboard for up to date information and direct comments from our member grocers. TRA has been working with FMI and NGA regarding any temporary changes/expansion to SNAP/WIC due to COVID-19.  As more details develop, TRA will immediately communicate with members.

Last month SNAP distributions actually increased from the prior month by 1%.

SNAP participants: 3,284,136  Distribution: $370,312,549  This was about 6% less than last year.

WIC participants: 681,113.  This was 1.4% less than prior month and about 3% less than last year.

Dairy Industry Update

The Dairy category continues to change with the increase customer demand for plant based product like Almond Milk.  Below is an interesting article on the changing face of Dairy.

Study: Health And Pleasure Are The Focus For Dairy Top Trends

Also Produce continues to be at the forefront of customer interest.  The Texas Department of Health/Human Services is promoting clients to buy more fresh fruits and vegetables.  Below is an article on the power of produce.

FMI Research Attributes Produce Category Success To Certain Trends

For questions on Grocery Industry Issues, please contact Gary Huddleston


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