An estimated 3,000 people throughout California, Nevada and Arizona have lost their jobs as of Nov. 13 because the grocery chain Fresh & Easy filed for bankruptcy. The chain closed down its stores after suffering from inadequate sales and profit margins.
Fresh & Easy opened its first store in 2007, offering groceries such as fresh products and ready-to-eat meals. Out of 97 stores, the company will be closing 50 stores in total, with 30 in Southern California alone.
The company’s downfall has been attributed to its failure to personalize its merchandise selection by neighborhood, low supply of popular items and 20 percent price upcharge for its private-label products compared to name-brand counterparts.
The company also expected customers to adapt to its way of doing business, instead of adapting to how many local people preferred to buy their food. Yet there were still a few satisfied customers that found Fresh & Easy to be better than others.
Miranda Hughey, senior criminal justice major, was one of many California Baptist University students who frequently shopped at Fresh & Easy and said she was saddened to hear the news of the store’s closing.
“My family loved Fresh & Easy,” Hughey said. “(The store) was so convenient and provided certain items that no one else sold. We were very pleased customers.”
Although she and her family gave good reviews, there were still some customers who were left unsatisfied by the franchise.
“From the beginning they were really losing a lot of their loyal customers,” said Allin Anson, 34, former Fresh & Easy shopper. “I used to love their store but now I am looking for somewhere else to shop.”
For now, most customers are either going to have to find a new place to shop or travel miles to a Fresh & Easy still operating.
The remaining stores will be sold and the proceeds will be used to finance future developments for the company.