By Andrew Harris
As I’ve mentioned before, I am a grocery store aficionado. With three ravenous children, I must shop to keep the family nourished, but I really like running through the store everyday. So as a consumer and almost daily Giant Food Mart shopper, I understand why this is big news.
Today I had the glorious experience of being a shopper and a reporter, a first for me. As I shopped, I chatted with employees: The deli crew were excited, they thought the Giant Food Mart name would remain and all expected to keep their jobs. While they were startled by the sudden announcement and brief closure for inventory, the Deli department was optimistic and energized by the change in the air.
The produce department was looking pretty good for a holiday Monday without deliveries. No staff member was on hand for me to query but someone was totally redoing the potato section. If you like potatoes, it seems things will be changing, perhaps more selection is coming, French fingerlings would be nice.
Being a national holiday, it was a ghost town. Searching the store for new management types or signs of the new owner, I found nothing. Picked up my pierogis, some other staples, extra creamy oat milk, but beer sales were not allowed.
This sent a brief panic through me, considering that the new owners might not be carrying on the Giant Food Mart tradition of having the best beer selection in Wellsville. I looked around for anyone who could put my fears to rest and immediately spotted one of the most dedicated employees in the history of Giant Food Mart.
Because this is new, please accept that using names isn’t going to happen. Of course the first question I asked was, “will you be selling beer again?” I’m relieved to confirm that beer sales will resume any day now, there was a simple licensing switchover delay and a national holiday.
So who are the new owners? That big question was answered, a Buffalo-area family grocery store business has purchased the Wellsville and Cuba stores. The Kusmierski family, owners and operators of Market In The Square stores, located in West Seneca and North Tonawanda, have purchased the Giant Food Mart. A quick look at those stores in Erie County indicates a loyal customer base and lots of great reviews. You can visit Market In The Square on Facebook to get a better idea about the new ownership. We look forward to meeting the new owners!
The next big question is, will anyone lose a job? So far that answer appears to be no. It is business as usual, in fact it is likely the Giant will still be hiring. They have dealt with acute staff shortages and constant covid-related issues, like every retail operation in the nation. Current employees seem hopeful that their jobs were safe, but without confirmation from the new owners that isn’t official.
Another major question myself and readers had was about the weekly sales flyer…. Will it still be the same prices? Will the sale be honored? The answer was a solid yes, the weekly Giant sales flyer(which is advertised on this site) is valid, see that below with a link to the full flyer at GiantFoodMart.com
In general, the current crew at Giant Food Mart were anxious, but hopeful for the future. As one of the most dedicated grocery store shoppers in Wellsville, I’ll be paying close attention to the “goings-on.” Stay tuned for more about this historic business deal, the people involved, and the impact on downtown Wellsville.