Progressive Grocer Independent

JUN 2016

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36 | Progressive Grocer Independent | June 2016 G rocery stores stopped be- ing places customers go simply to stock their pan- try shelves many years ago. Te modern super- market serves many needs, whether as a pharmacy or a convenient loca- tion for a franchised cofee chain like Starbucks or Dunkin' Donuts. It may even be a place where shoppers can grab an ice cream from Dairy Queen. Customers now look to supermarkets to fll more than just their basic food needs, and savvy retailers are capital- izing on this trend. While food remains at the heart of every supermarket, many indepen- dents are expanding their horizons to grow sales in an increasingly competi- tive market. Consumers have more choices than ever as to where they can go to purchase food, and full-service supermarket operators are asking themselves what they can do to draw more customers through their doors. Many have turned to foodservice operations within the store by open- ing grocerants, or expanded the beer section to include a variety of the wildly popular craft brews. Others, where state law allows, are open- ing full-on bars to attract the lunch and after-work crowd, or those who just want to relax while someone else from the household does the shopping. Wine and Dine Angelo Caputo's Fresh Markets, with eight stores in the Chicago suburbs, introduced the Bar Angelo concept a couple of years ago, when it was building its store in Carol Stream, Ill. "We were ac- tually looking at putting in a brewery, a microbrewery to brew the beer right there, but the licensing wasn't possible," says Dan O'Neill, director of marketing and merchan- dising. Instead, Caputo's decided to install a full-service bar ofering beer, wine and cocktails as well as a full menu of food items. Te bar is located just inside the main doors and next to the prepared foods department. Bar Angelo's menu items difer from the oferings in that department, but are made in the prepared foods kitchen by its staf. Te bar has a dedicated bartender, who has to go through some extra training and certifcation to serve alcohol and food, but with the bar's position next to the cofee shop and the pre- pared food department, the store can shift employees among the three locations as needed. Operating hours are from 10 a.m., when the bartender arrives and starts prepping for the lunch crowd, until 10 p.m., when the store closes. Te Carol Stream location has seat- ing for about 100 and an outdoor patio that's open in the summer. Customers order at the bar, with the Nontraditional Sales Business "A lot of things are fads, and you have to hit it when the irons are hot. But for us, [the Bar Angelo concept] is a success, and we're going to expand on it and customize it a little bit more." — Dan O'Neill, Angelo Caputo's Fresh Markets Independent retailers are growing business by turning to unique categories. By Katie Martin NEW Categories, NEW Products, NEW Sales

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