Consumer and retail news: 10 things you need to know today


Lululemon flagship store NYC


1. Walmart pies are flying off shelves and selling on eBay for $40.

Walmart is suddenly facing a widespread shortage of sweet-potato pies. The $3.48 pies starting flying off shelves last weekend. They are now sold out in many stores and selling on eBay for as much as $40

2. McDonald's and Starbucks face backlash after opening locations in a cultural heritage site in China.

Conservationists are protesting fast-food chains opening in an historic site in Hangzhou, China. Officials decided earlier this year to lease a cultural heritage site, which housed former Taiwanese president Chiang Ching-kuo for a short period in 1948, to McDonald's and Starbucks despite controversy.

3. Lululemon has unveiled its new store of the future.

Lululemon just opened a new flagship store in New York City's Flatiron District. At 11,500 square feet, it's the brand's largest flagship location. The area has many of the most popular boutique fitness studios - Flywheel Sports, Exhale, SLT, Pure Barre, and two SoulCycle studios that are mere blocks apart. And Lululemon is capitalizing on that.


4. Levi's wants to make it easier to get rid of that old box of clothes.

The iconic denim brand has partnered with Goodwill to facilitate donating clothes. Levi's and Docker's are utilizing what they're calling a "Give Back Box." People who purchase Levi's or Dockers items online will be able to use the boxes they receive to ship back any clothing they wish to donate to Goodwill.

5. A truck full of Domino's pizza dough crashes, sending dough everywhere.

In Indianapolis this morning, a semi-truck carrying hundreds of individual balls of pizza dough crashed into a highway overpass, spilling rising dough across the road. A video from the Associated Press shows dirty dough balls covering the street. The top of the truck peeled off, exposing blue bins full of dough. Workers had to peel spilled dough off of the truck's tires, street, and nearby infrastructure.

6. Former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle arrived at federal court in Indianapolis for his sentencing.

Former Subway sandwich spokesman Jared Fogle on Thursday is scheduled to be sentenced to prison after he officially pleads guilty to child pornography and sex charges. Fogle, who became famous after losing weight on a diet that included sandwiches from the fast food chain, agreed in August to a deal with prosecutors under which he would plead guilty to charges of child pornography and traveling for illicit paid sex with minors.


7. Customer sues Starbucks for $132,000.

A Starbucks customer is suing the coffee giant for $132,235 after being served a cup of hot water that she claims the barista made "far too hot for a person to drink." The incident occurred in April 2014 when the customer claims the top of the cup collapsed, causing the hot contents to spill on her thighs, abdomen, and buttocks; the lawsuit claims Garcia suffered first- and second-degree burns that caused blisters and scarring. She is seeking $125,000 for pain and suffering in addition to $7,235 for medical bills.

8. Hardee's introduces a new breakfast sandwich.

The new breakfast item is topped with thick-cut Applewood-smoked bacon strips, Swiss cheese, and a folded egg, all piled high on a freshly-baked biscuit.

9. Best Buy is crashing.

Best Buy reported third-quarter earnings before the market open on Thursday. The consumer-electronics retailer's top line sales were in line with analysts' expectations, although comparable-store sales - at locations open for at least one year - fell short of forecasts. Shares dropped by as much as 10% in pre-market trading.


10. The second largest diamond ever found was just recovered from a mine in Africa

A small Canadian diamond company has announced the discovery of the world's second-biggest gem quality diamond ever recovered. Lucara Diamond Corp said the 1,111 carat stone was found at its Karowe mine in north-central Botswana.