Battling The Big Evil Corporate Giant Monster
A The321.com Exposé
By Damian Dunn
Local mom and pop grocery stores everywhere are fighting for their
life. Today these small operations are crumbling under grocery giants
like Kroger and Publix. Even the regional mid-sized chains, which
are substantially well equipped for the fight, are disappearing. Survival
is a hard-fought battle.
|The sign says it all.
Ed's IGA at the corner of Briarcliff and Clairmont has been around
forever it seems. It's sister store on Lavista road has existed
for the same eternity. Many people agree with Bethany Lipscomb,
a resident at Overlook Assisted Living Home, "Ed's is that grocery
store just down the street, where the cashiers know you by name
and the freezer section seems a little thawed out." When you make
it through the barely working automatic door (installed in the mid
'80s to keep with times) you are greeted with the familiar smell
of Grandma's house. Often times the produce seems infested and the
meat is out of date. Aisles are not neatly stacked and are poorly
organized. It's not unusual to find household-cleaning products
sitting right next to children's cereals. Admittedly, Ed's has its
imperfections, but its honest charm and character keep the locals
Ed's is entering a new Millennium. Currently Ed's is undergoing
a massive reconstruction. What brought
this on? Why... why are they doing this? But, will Ed's still be Ed's?
Ben Brown, an employee for two months, explains, "We're trying to
keep up with the big chains, but the mom and pop feel will remain."
With the sister store on Lavista closing down early this year, there
has been increased traffic, not to mention rampant fears that this
Ed's is not far behind. Ed's is renovating
to show that they will not succumb to the same fate as the Lavista
store. As part of the overhaul, scheduled to finish by end of the
summer, shoppers will notice expanded shelf space, new floor and wall
tiling, and completely renovated freezer and produce
sections. In addition the following are being installed: new cash
new beer cooler (with doors), a fresh ground coffee dispenser,
a prank section (see more in Ed's
Purchase of the Week), and a whole aisle of dollar deals. In this
day and age grocery store theft is as common as the West Nile virus.
To keep a close watch on its suspicious customers and provide a Safe
Shopping Environment (SSE), Ed's is constructing an elevated
security command center. "These additions to the store are testimony
that we care about our customers and will do everything possible to
make their experience pleasant and safe. We've implemented SSE as
a store-wide policy," says storeowner, Ed.
|Ed and Ben Brown
Ed's is in a constant struggle for life, while the opposition
(Evil Kroger and Mean Publix) throw money and shelf space around
like they're nothing. Everyday Ed's must fight to keep a dying tradition
|Ed's is gone. What will take its place?