Food retail may never be the same. This week Rite Aid showed off its latest concept of wellness retailing, unveiling a remodeled store that is says is it’s store of the future. Yes, the stores has updates that include larger departments for pharmacy that include private consulting rooms and over the counter medicines but it the fresh food that Foodservice Solutions® Grocerant Guru™ thinks is ground breaking for the chain.
Rite Aid has added a café and patio area, serving coffee, tea, baked goods, sandwiches and ice cream. Following the industry leading success of Duane Reade ( a division of Walgreens) and Walgreens subsequent success launching fresh prepared food in select stores around the country.
The café will complement Rite Aids focus on ‘better for you’ food such as gluten-free and organic foods. Rite Aid President and Chief Operating Officer Ken Martindale stated “"The Beverly Hills store is a great example of how we are aggressively evolving the Wellness store format to identify concepts that perform well and can be broadly applied to future remodels and test new concepts, like our Fresh Day Café,” … the ultimate goal of delivering a more personal and engaging customer experience."
Plans are for another 450 Wellness stores set for conversion by the end of fiscal 2015. The company has 4,600 stores in 31 states. If all 4,600 store eventually ad fresh prepared Ready-2-Eat and Heat-N-Eat fresh food and a café this will contribute to ongoing retail food industry disruption.
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