“We try to get as involved in the community as possible, because they support us so well,” says Store Director Kevin Brown, who spent the morning of PG’s visit at a leadership day at a local elementary school.
It’s a valuable partnership: “We do store tours, one class at a time,” Brown says, explaining that many area teachers include the visits in their yearly curricula. “All the teachers shop here, the principals shop here.”
In addition, there’s plenty of hot food to grab and go: meatloaf, sausage and peppers, pizza, side dishes, and what Cosentino says is the “best fried chicken in town.” (Sampling it for lunch, PG is hard-pressed to argue.)
Additionally, the single-serve dessert category is getting “bigger all the time,” with growing sales of pie and cake slices. “People might not want to pay $8.99 for a pie, but they will pay $2 for a slice.” Custom-decorated cakes are also a key offering of the bake shop and its expertly trained team.
Staffed by in-store butchers, the meat department offers KC Pride meats, locally raised Valley Oaks beef cuts and Certified Angus Beef. There’s also house-made Italian sausage:
“Our family recipe, been doing it for years,” Cosentino says, noting that the daily made cased meats once won first place at a local barbecue contest.
The store partners with Instacart for home delivery, although Cosentino says the company is looking into bringing the service in house. Delivery has been embraced by the community, Brown notes: “Instacart people are here multiple times a day. Some people in this rural area, they can’t get out, so they just love the service.”
‘The Local Guys’
The goal with this store was to “provide a first-class grocery operation for the area,” Cosentino says. “Our family has been looking at the Grain Valley market for many years, so when the opportunity presented itself, we were ready to move forward.
The Grain Valley store is creating new best practices for the company. “We really like the size and flow of this store, so we will probably use this as a starting point for future locations, along with the customary tweaks of new stores,” Cosentino says.
Price Chopper has more than 55 stores across the greater Kansas City metro area and Des Moines, Iowa. The banner’s 51 Kansas City stores are locally owned by the Ball, Cosentino, McKeever and Queen families, all of whom live in Kansas City and oversee daily store operations. The stores are serviced by Associated Wholesale Grocers, also based in Kansas City.
Cosentino’s Food Stores began in 1948, when Dante Cosentino Sr., an artist who made his living painting frescoes on the ceilings of Catholic churches, purchased a small fruit stand for his children to operate in downtown Kansas City. With the help of Dante’s brothers, Jim and Jerry, the enterprise would eventually grow into one of the country’s best regional community grocers.
Today, the company is led by the family’s second generation: Donnie, David, Victor, Jamie, Jimmy and John Cosentino. Cosentino’s Food Stores currently operates 30 stores in the Kansas City area under the Price Chopper, Cosentino’s Market, Sun Fresh Market and Apple Market banners.
The owners and more than 10,000 employees of Price Chopper are “passionate about providing the best selection of products at the lowest prices with the friendliest customer service. Feeding the communities we serve is at the heart and soul of what we do.”
Offerings include produce, much of it procured locally from more than 150 family farms; in-house butchers; on-site scratch bakeries; deli departments with catering services; and professional floral designers.
To fight hunger in Kansas City, Price Chopper partners year-round with Harvesters, the Community Food Network through the CHOP Hunger initiative. Stores collect canned goods, gather perishable food donations with the Fill the Fridge drive, and host an annual fundraiser to fight summer childhood hunger through the No School = No Lunch program.
corporate facts sheet; www.cosentinos.com