Panera Bread Co.'s membership in its customer loyalty program is nearing the 10 million mark and growing, according to the bakery cafe chain's founder Ron Shaich.

In an interview today with Jim Kramer on the CNBC cable television program Mad Money, Shaich, the executive chairman of Panera's board of directors, said between 40 and 45 percent of all of Panera's transactions now are tracked through the customer loyalty program by swipe cards presented during check-out.Sunset Hills-based Panera, which operates as St. Louis Bread Co. locally, rolled out the "MyPanera" loyalty program nationwide in November 2010 after testing the program for about 18 months.

The number of members has grown from 9.5 million a month ago to close to 10 million, Shaich said. READ THE FULL ARTICLE HERE.

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