BLOOMFIELD, NJ — Although not everything is in place yet, a new Foodtown opened this week on Glenwood Avenue in the downtown redevelopment project. Its manager, Richard Saus, 53, has been in the food market business for 35 years, 30 of those years with Foodtown.
The store is 26,000 square feet, Saus said, with two entrances, one on Glenwood Avenue and the other from the parking deck.
A wide range of customers is anticipated to be served, according to Saus, with specialty and value-added items being offered.
“Our meats are Angus beef,” he said. “That’s a high-end product.”
An example of value-added items, Saus said, would be the pick-five meat display. Here, a customer can purchase five packages of beef, pork, chicken or seafood for $19.99. If the packages were paid for individually, they would cost around $25. A Foodtown customer card is required for pick-five savings. Foodtown will also double a manufacturer’s coupon up to 99 cents.
“I think we offer a wide variety and cater to everyone in some fashion,” he said.
Foodtown stores average about 11,000 customers weekly, but in Bloomfield, with the location, Saus expects 15,000 a week.
Interestingly, he said that laying out the products in the store was not easy because the length of the aisles varied. But aisle 9 will have a scanner and there are seven check-outs, including one at the courtesy counter.
The store will have about 60 employees. Ron Sikorski is the assistant store manager. He has been in the food market business for 43 years. Saus said either one of them will always be on duty. Store hours are 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week. Saus said the store will always open at 6:30 a.m. although for three or four holidays, closing time will be shortened. It has not been determined yet if there will be a police presence in the store, he said.
“Because of the holidays, our grand opening will be sometime in January,” Saus said. “This weekend, there will be special prices.”
He did not know in what areas the advertising went out for his store because that was done on the corporate level.
“Most of the customers will be in the immediate area,” he said.
He expects the majority of his customers to be millennials, a term he applied to people under 35 years of age. The owner of the store is Jack Shakoor, Saus said. Shakoor also owns Foodtowns in Caldwell, Wayne and North Arlington.
“We will have delivery shopping by Jan. 1,” he said.
There will also be a coffee bar in place by the new year, he said, where people can sit down for a quick bite. Baking will be done on the premises and sandwiches made to order will be available, as well as a sushi bar.
Parking was a concern for customer Alba Tempel, although she said she only lived a short distance away. Still, if she came to do some serious food shopping, she said she would drive over. Saus told her the store will offer a free hour of parking, $1, for every $20 spent.
“I came to check out the place,” Tempel said. “Visually, the store is clean for consumers. You have to feast the eye if nothing else.”
She said she was looking for a particular cheese, but could not find it in the dairy case. Saus said what she wanted was in the cheese display case and pointed her to it.
Tempel said she hoped the prices were comparable with where she has been regularly shopping.