Schnuck Markets Inc. will expand its presence in Indiana with the launch of Schnucks Fresh, a smaller-format store set to open this summer in a former Cash Saver location in Jasper, Ind.
The new Schnucks Fresh will focus on departments such as produce, meat, seafood and bakery, St. Louis-based Schnucks said in a news release. The leased store is 18,000 square feet and will employ about 30 people. In comparison, the company's EatWell, A Natural Food Store by Schnucks store that opened in Columbia, Mo., in June, is 42,000 square feet and employs about 80 people.
Schnucks in the past two years has closed several of its larger stores operating in markets where it has multiple locations, citing a lack of profitability for the affected stores and customers' preference to visit nearby locations. Most recently, in February, the company closed a 78,000-square-foot location in Green Park, Mo.
Schnucks' Indiana presence is concentrated in the Evansville area, where it operates six stores and employs nearly 800 people. Jasper is about 60 miles northeast of Evansville.
"As a new format for us, Schnucks Fresh will be a store that customers will be able to quickly and easily navigate where they will find an extensive selection of the same fresh products for which Schnucks is known throughout the Midwest," company Chairman and CEO Todd Schnuck said in a news release about the new Schnucks Fresh store.
Separately, following the Schnucks Fresh announcement, the company unveiled a new initiative to get more local products on store shelves. in partnership with RangeMe, an online platform that works to connect retailers and vendors, Schnucks will seek out suppliers located within 125 miles of a Schnucks store or based in one of the four states in which Schnucks operates. "Our communities depend on local businesses, and they depend on us to get their goods into the hands of customers," Schnucks Deli Category Manager Andy DeCou said in a statement.
Schnucks operates 111 stores in Missouri, Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin.