Stop & Shop Says It’s Evaluating Future of King Kullen Stores

Stop & Shop said Saturday it  is evaluating stores but hasn’t yet made a decision about the future of any sites, after Friday’s announcement about the company’s takeover of the King Kullen chain.

King Kullen Co. operates excellent grocery stores, and Stop & Shop is eager to continue to build upon the grocer’s service to its customers,”  Jennifer Brogan, a spokeswoman for Stop & Shop, said.

What is also undergoing evaluation is the future employment of King Kullen workers. “It is too early to speculate on the outcome of individual associate decisions; however, Stop & Shop is committed to retaining as many associates as possible through this transaction,” Brogan said.

In November, Stop & Shop announced plans to remodel stores on Long Island as part of a multi-year initiative to refresh the brand. It also added Peapod delivery services to its East Northport store in November.  “Stop & Shop will evaluate the King Kullen stores and make decisions on remodeling in the near future,” Brogan said.

The Stop & Shop move is the second  purchase of a Long Island-based grocery chain in recent months. In November, Lidl acquired Best Market stores and plans remodeling and other changes in those stores. It said then and again in December that it had committed to retainiing all Best Market workers.

The purchase of the King Kullen chain resonates with Long Islanders who have grown up shopping at what is often described as “America’s First Supermarket,” and acknowledged as such by the Smithsonian Institution. Founded in 1930, the company opened the Wild by Nature stores in 1995.

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