Fresh & Easy's 1st, 100th

Grocery/c-store chain reaches first birthday as it is about to hit triple-digit store count

FULLERTON, Calif. -- Tesco's Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market Inc. is marking its first year in business with the debut of its 100th store, opening in Fullerton, Calif., on November 12, reported The Orange County Weekly. The retailer kept its promise to open 100 stores within 12 months of its initial grand opening, as attested by the June 2006 CSP Daily News headline: "Tesco's One-Year Plan: 100 Stores." (Click here to read the story.)

The British retailer opened its first Fresh & Easy in early November 2007 in Hemet, Calif. The chain, with U.S. headquarters in El Segundo, Calif., is currently focusing on the Southwest, with stores in California, Nevada and Arizona. Two of five stores are set to open in early December in the Bakersfield, Calif., area. And Tesco isthought to be planning stores for the Chicago area, New York and Florida.

At roughly 10,000 square feet, Fresh & Easy markets are smaller than the typical supermarket, but larger than the traditional convenience store. In addition to fresh, prepared meals and produce, Fresh & Easy offers national-brand products and 200 private-label products. Deliveries are made daily to each store to ensure all products are as fresh as possible.

And Fresh & Easy just announced that it has rolled out five new wine blends all under $9 and a promotional discount of 10% on six or more bottles of wine. Fresh & Easy now offers 70 specially selected wines which are blended with the help of a Certified Master of Wine. The company has already won nearly 60 wine awards, including one award-winning wine that retails for under $3. The five Fresh & Easy wines are Corvina-Merlot Cantina di Merlara, $8.99; Lancewood Cabernet Sauvignon, $8.99; La Parra Loca Tempranillo-Shiraz, $6.99; Roslyn Family Vineyards Cabernet Sauvignon, $6.99; Ca' Miani Garganega-Pinot Grigio, $4.99.

"Everyone should be able to enjoy quality wines at budget prices," said Simon Uwins, chief marketing officer. "With the holidays approaching, our customers can celebrate with great wines without having to compromise. Our new wine bag helps customers think green at a price that is easy on the wallet."

The retailer also has introduced a new line of "mix and match," ready-to-eat products that can be combined to create more than 200 meal ideas. The line includes 30 different varieties of fresh pastas, sauces, meat and vegetarian dishes and sides which pair to create meals for two for about $10.

Click herefor a CSPTV segment on Fresh & Easy. Andclick here to read the January 2008 CSP magazine cover story on Fresh & Easy.