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A&P Reopening 10 Detroit Farmer Jacks as Food Basics Stores

DETROIT - Farmer Jack Food Markets has announced that it's bringing Food Basics to the Detroit region with the announcement that 10 of its 13 Farmer Jacks slated to close in mid-February in southeast Michigan will be transformed into the deep-discount format by early April.

"I am excited to bring Food Basics to the Detroit-area marketplace, affording customers a choice in grocery shopping," said Mike Carter, president of the Michigan-based operating unit of the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co., headquartered in Montvale, N.J.

Carter said a new agreement with UFCW Local 876 "made it possible for Farmer Jack to introduce Food Basics to the Detroit metro area, and both the employees and Farmer Jack will benefit from its successful implementation. The Food Basics stores provide our Detroit-area customers with a new, no-frills option."

The Food Basics format, company officials say, aims to save consumers as much as 30 percent on the grocery items they buy most. The format is already used in 105 stores in New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia, and the Canadian province of Ontario.

Earl Weissert, president of Food Basics USA, says the format offers a variety of fresh produce, meat, and poultry; the most popular national brand groceries; and seafood and baked goods.

Selections of food items are limited to the regular grocery items shoppers buy most frequently, with about 20,000 products available compared with about 45,000 at the average supermarket. Food Basics is 100 percent self-service. Shoppers bag their own groceries in bags they bring or purchase at the store.

Weissert said Food Basics will retrofit 10 stores to accommodate the Food Basics format, while adding that the stores will have approximately the same retail space as they had when operated as Farmer Jack Food Markets.

"Our stores may be simple, but we have clean operations with value-priced merchandise," Weissert said, noting that those stores which currently have in-store pharmacies and banks will continue to operate during the remodeling process.
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