Tucson: As the Grocery Store Turns

food safety - cucumbers

Cucumber salmonella in 27 states

But first a word about me: Tucson Foodie featured me (thanks CJ Hamm) in a Nine on the Line interview last week. Check it out!

Haggen closed two of its three recently opened stores on the eastside. The stores took over Safeways which are now owned by Albertsons. Circle of Food visited the furthest eastside location at Broadway/Houghton one Saturday morning about two months ago and it was empty. Most grocery stores are brimming with customers on Saturday morning. This huge immaculate store might have had a dozen shoppers. Sad.

So it was no surprise when Haggen closed. What happened? Haggen also opened many stores in the So Calif area and closed most of them. Why?  There seems to be lawsuits between Haggen and Albertsons

Natural Grocers Open September 8
Natural Grocers another fairly new comer to Tucson opens its second location on Oracle/Orange Grove with festivities and gift cards to the first 100 people. Its first location is Broadway/Kolb. I also was in the eastside location on another Saturday and that store was practically empty.

The Oracle Road location is one or two signals south of Safeway and Whole Foods Market at Ina Road and a little further from Sprouts and Trader Joe’s. I’m wondering what niche Natural Grocers fill that those other four nearby stores don’t?

Natural Grocers has a small all-organic produce section, a huge vitamin and supplement section, some pre-packaged prepared foods to go, and many brands that I have not come across before. There are also classes and a nutritional coach, if you have questions. BYO bag or your purchases will be packed up in a box a la Costco style.

This location will be the chain’s 101st location in the country and its sixth in Arizona.

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Killer Cucumbers
Speaking of grocery stores, more than 300 people in 27 states (including Arizona), have sent 53 people to the hospital and so far resulting in one death caused by salmonella cucumbers sold at grocery stores and served in restaurants.

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Scream for Ice Cream
Good news for Screamery fans. Now you won’t have to schlep all the way to the far eastside. Last week Whole Foods Markets in Tucson began stocking Screamery ice cream. Pint size flavors include: Sweet Cream Honeycomb, Ooey Gooey Buttercake, Coffee Toffee, Sonoran Chocolate and Burnt Bourbon. Screamery ice cream is made from milk from grass-fed cows. It’s rich, creamy and dreamy popping with flavor. Follow the Screamery on Facebook.

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