Last Genuardi’s Supermarket to Close

Goodbye old friend.

Goodbye Genuardi's.

Goodbye Genuardi’s.

The end of a supermarket era has arrived.

Before Whole Foods became a household name, before Wegmans became a force and before Giant stores sprouted up everywhere — Genuardi’s had a reputation for being the family-owned, veggie-focused option that healthy people turned to.

Now, the last Genuardi’s in the region is set to close.

Genuardi’s certainly lost some of its luster in 2001, when it sold to Safeway Inc. In 2012, Safeway sold 16 Genuardi’s stores to Giant for $106 million and the company converted some locations and closed others.

The Delco Daily Times provides some history:

Until this month, the Audubon Village Shopping Center store, which had debuted at the Pawlings Road end of the center in 1965, on the heels of Jeffersonville, Sandy Hill and East Norriton’s Swede Square and relocating to a larger facility at the opposite end 30 years later, had been hanging tough, like a little mom-and-pop enterprise that time and corporate acquisitions happily forgot.

Longtime fans of the legacy with roots in Gaspare Genuardi’s horse-drawn produce wagon that roamed the streets of 1920s Norristown had helped to keep the lone survivor in business these many years since the sale.

The Philadelphia Business Journal says that the last Genuardi’s location has 40 employees who “have reportedly been offered positions at other Safeway or Albertson stores.” The paper also discussed the store’s strange final days.

Over the weekend, a few scattered shoppers checked the near-barren shelves for the store’s few remaining items, marked at a deep discount. Some people showed up just to say goodbye to many of the employees, some who had worked at Genuardi’s for decades.