Safeway and Thriftway improve the grocery shopping experience for locals
By Lauren Brown
The two largest grocery stores in Burns have both had some new additions this summer that make the shopping experience for customers a little more enjoyable.
Erickson’s Thriftway has implemented some new changes that will help both customers and checkers.
The store recently installed new checkstands that allow customers to unload groceries onto conveyor belts, which eases the burden on the checkers. Bigger display screens also allow customers to see their items as they are scanned, so they can check to make sure the prices are correct.
Burns Store Manager Tom Rogers said the new checkstands speed up the checkout process and are much more efficient. He noted that Madras, Bend and Prineville Erickson’s stores have all been upgraded to the new checkstands.
“Almost everyone has thanked us for investing in our store and our community,” Rogers said.
The most prominent remodel took place at Safeway, which hosted its official grand re-opening on Aug. 28. The store was the 91st Portland Division store to be re-modeled to Safeway’s lifestyle store format. The deli was completely re-vamped and has added numerous products, the most notable of which is fresh baked French bread.
The store has new flooring throughout and has had upgrades in the produce, floral and meat departments as well.
According to a press release, “Safeway launched its lifestyle store concept in late 2003 to showcase its commitment to quality, particularly in the perishables departments, with high-quality fresh produce, meat, seafood and floral departments.” The stores feature an earth-toned décor with lighting to highlight products and departments, custom flooring and display features.
Burns Store Manager Merle Reid said that the grand re-opening was phenomenal. “A lot of people were excited about the fresh bread,” he said. The store will now offer fresh baked French bread at 10 a.m and 5 p.m. daily.
Safeway has operated a store in Burns since 1924, and opened the store in its current location in 1978. “We’ve had loyal Burns customers here for nearly 90 years. We’re proud to reinvest in Burns and we thank our local customers for their continued support,” said Safeway Division President Steve Frisby.
Currently, the store employs 79 people and 24 percent of those employees have been employed by Safeway for more than 10 years. Safeway increased the workforce during the store remodel by 22 employees, which is 29 percent of the workforce. Safeway will permanently retain those employees.