Saturday, 11 January 2014

News: Sobeys Introduces Sobeys Extra

Canada's second largest grocery chain opens Sobeys Extra, a new larger format 58,000 square foot store in Burlington.

Sobeys Extra
The new Sobeys Extra replaces a smaller store and will be used as a potential model for more locations across the country. Sobeys Extra will differentiate itself by offering an in-store chef, a wellbeing counsellor, a cheese expert, a natural food department, and special events.

"The grand opening of the first Sobeys extra is a significant milestone in our journey to bring better food to all Canadians," said Marc Poulin, President & CEO, Sobeys Inc. in an official release. "Our new store concept offers customers an inviting atmosphere of food discovery while also offering many extras that will help customers to eat better, feel better and do better.

The store has an increased emphasis on produce, a large bakery, and an expanded section of prepared meals at Sobey's Kitchen (including oven baked pizza, a sushi bar, and a roast beef carvery.) The store's naturals department (the aisles are colour coded in light green) features over 4,000 organic foods, natural healthcare products, gluten-free items, and vitamin supplements. A special events centre will host events by a team of food and health experts.

Sobeys Extra
Sobeys recently signed celebrity chef Jamie Oliver to represent the chain and promote its ethos of "better food for all." The campaign includes a national advertising, new products, and in-store signage focusing on healthier food options.

The Canadian grocery sector has been in a period of tremendous pressure and consolidation. Sobeys recently acquired Safeway stores in Western Canada, Metro is closing some stores while converting others to Food Basics, Loblaw announced its purchase of Shoppers Drug Mart, and all grocers are bracing for intense competition from an expanding Walmart and new entrant Target.

[Images via Sobeys]