Spartan, Nash Finch Have Entered Bids for Farmer Jack: Report

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Spartan, Nash Finch Have Entered Bids for Farmer Jack: Report

MONTVALE, N.J. -- Spartan Stores and Nash Finch have submitted bids for A&P's Farmer Jack stores in Michigan, with Nash Finch considering the purchase of 18 locations and Spartan interested in buying stores for independent grocers, according to a published report.

Wisconsin-based grocery consultant David Livingston told the Detroit Free Press that the Midwestern supermarket operators had entered the bids. Additionally, A&P is selling a chain of stores in New Orleans, according to Livingston. When contacted by Progressive Grocer, A&P declined to comment, while officials from Spartan and Nash Finch didn't return calls.

Facing fierce rivalry from Meijer, Kroger, and specialty stores, Farmer Jack has struggled financially in recent years.

"I don't think [A&P] ever had any intention of keeping [the Farmer Jack stores]," Livingston told the Free Press. "They were just buying time with unions. They're too expensive, rents are too high, and union labor is too expensive. No prudent retailer will pay those outrageous rents."

Farmer Jack is expected to make an announcement in late April about bids, the newspaper reported.

The banner currently operates 66 stores and has 5,000 associates in Michigan.