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Are Grocery Stores Shrinking? - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Are Grocery Stores Shrinking?

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Have you walked around a new grocery store and thought, "this place is seems a bit snug?"  It's not your imagination, grocery stores are getting smaller.

Remember those charming neighborhood markets you see in old movies? In that same spirit, many mega supercenter grocery stores are now going mini.
After years of grocery stores expanding in physical size -- they are now shrinking.

Money magazine reports that a few years ago the typical size of a grocery store was 45,000 square feet, up from 35,000 in the 90's but now, it says stores across the country are downsizing.  For example, according to Money magazine, Trader Joe's are now typically under 20,000 square feet and other chains, like Hy-Vee have a concept called "Hy-Vee Mainstreet", with stores under 14,000 square feet total.

These chains are hoping to cash in on a more small town neighborhood feel to compete with larger local grocers.   Even big, 60,000 square foot stores like Publix are working on smaller versions of their brand. Companies are hoping this smaller environment will mean a customer will drop into the store many times in one week instead of one big shopping trip once a week.

Now -- as a customer in these smaller stores we'll likely not see the same variety in products.   But the stores believe many people, especially millennials, want a more personal and less time-consuming process for their shopping -- which these smaller shops would help with.

And smaller stores mean smaller footprints, which may mean more opportunities for grocery story locations in places that might have previously seemed too small.

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