Just nine months after filing Chapter 11 in mid-November of last year, C&K Market emerged from bankruptcy on Aug. 10 with a full slate of new initiatives on the docket.
In an effort to expand its offerings and further meet consumer needs, the Brookings, Ore.-based grocer has unveiled its Ray's Healthy Living program, which supplements traditional groceries with natural and organic offerings.
Such items feature gluten-free, low-carb, low-sodium and GMO-free labeling, which C&K President Karl Wissmann says will provide the "convenience of a community one-stop store," where shoppers can find "local, regional and natural products, as well as their conventional favorites."
“C&K’s strategy is simple. We want to listen to our customers and give them what they want from their neighborhood market," Wissmann told Progressive Grocer. "Ray’s Healthy Living initiative integrates and identifies the items our customers are looking for and makes it easy for them to find and shop.”
The company also said its stores will provide more organic items, Certified Angus beef, a larger selection of general merchandise, and an expanded wine selection, as well as salad bars, hot prepared food and sushi in some stores.
Eat Fresh Eat Local
Wissmann further made note of the company's farm-to-store produce program, dubbed Eat Fresh Eat Local, which brings fresh items from local family farms to store shelves, including more than 100 varieties of local fruits and vegetables. The initiative was launched recently at 11 Ray's Food Place stores in Oregon, and complements the grocer's Pick 5 CSA (community-supported agriculture) program, which lets shoppers select five fruits and vegetables every Saturday morning.
As the supermarket industry becomes further segmented and competitive, C&K's new initiatives are likely an effort to cater to shoppers' evolving needs and contend with both big-box retailers as well as smaller, specialty stores.
“By listening to our customers and catering to their preferences, shoppers are buying more when they shop with us," Wissmann added. "I’m confident that we’re delivering what our customers want and will continue to make enhancements that will keep them shopping in our stores."
C&K Market operates 43 grocery stores in Oregon and northern California under its namesake banner, as well as the Ray’s Food Place and Shop Smart brands.