Sprouts Farmers Market last week opened a new distribution center in Aurora, Colo., marking its first center in the state and its sixth across the country.
The opening of the 135,000 square-foot facility builds on the Phoenix-based retailer’s goal of having all its stores located within 250 miles of fresh distribution hubs.
“As we grow our footprint, we will strategically place new stores and distribution centers closer together to maximize our owned fresh product network. This will better serve our customers who are looking to Sprouts for the best quality and value in fresh and organic produce,” said Chief Fresh Merchandising Officer Scott Neal.
The Aurora facility services 45 of the chain’s more than 360 stores, including all locations in Colorado, five stores in Utah, and eight in New Mexico. It has 55 degrees Fahrenheit and 34 degrees Fahrenheit storage and fruit ripening rooms to support Sprouts’ fresh produce offerings.
“The location of our Aurora facility, combined with features such as ripening rooms for bananas and avocados, two of our top-selling produce items, will immediately provide our stores with an expanded selection of affordable organics,” Neal added.
In addition to fresh, seasonal and specialty produce, such as organic cotton candy grapes, lychee and starfruit, Sprouts will distribute local produce and floral from the new hub.
“With a distribution center in Colorado, our truck routes are shorter and allow us to cross fewer state borders, enabling us to partner with our local and regional farmers with more synergy,” said Joe Hurley, SVP of supply chain for Sprouts. “We’re looking forward to engaging with our community of local vendors further to better serve our neighbors and customers.”
Sprouts is partnering with Penske Logistics as its third-party logistics provider for the distribution center and dedicated transportation fleet, which created 70 new full-time jobs in the market.
A seventh distribution center will open in Orlando, Fla. Sprouts also operates distribution centers in Colton and Union City, Calif.; Glendale, Ariz.; Wilmer, Texas; and Atlanta, Ga.
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