July 11, 2011

Fighting Supermarkets: If You CanÕt Beat Them Ð Join Them

New York…Not every market can sustain a super kosher store as well as bakeries, butchers, takeout, and fish and even if it can incorporating these stores into super stores assures greater traffic and ultimate profitability. It is a model that is working well in Cedarhurst LI (Gourmet Glatt) and in Monsey NY (Rockland Kosher). Kosher food sources say that they can very well see this emerge “as the trend of the second decade of the 2000’s.” The feedback from customers has been nothing short of extraordinary even if the vendor is a florist as the store within a store helps eliminate a stop or two for the customers and also gives new life to the merchant who might otherwise succumb to the bigger competitor. Matt’s Bakery in Columbus Ohio is getting a new lease on life as he plans to move into a 1,500-square-foot space inside the Kroger supermarket. “For us, this was a great opportunity to build our business,” said owner Matthew Cooper, who opened the bakery with his wife Mindy in 2005. “They obviously have a lot more foot traffic than we do.” The move is expected to happen later this year when Kroger completes the overhaul of its kosher offerings. The Coopers will own and manage the facility, are bringing both of their employees with them and expect to hire more once reopened. Kroger will remodel, shifting its Nature’s Market section elsewhere in the store to make way for the bakery. Mel Bomprezzi, vice president of merchandising for Kroger, said the move “allows the store to expand its selection of kosher products to the Jewish community.” The store already has a kosher market for deli and dairy products, dry goods, pizza, sushi and chicken. Cooper said the Vaad Hoir of Columbus, the kosher certifying agency, raised the idea of moving the bakery after seeing similar arrangements in other cities. “We thought it was an intriguing idea,” he said. One distributor told Kosher Today that this is a win-win idea, win for retailers and win for customers.”