Weigel's Eyes Commissary Concept

Plans to tackle lunchtime foodservice opportunity

Steve Holtz, Editor in Chief, CSP Daily News

POWELL, Tenn. -- Following on the heels of Weigel's Convenience Stores' success with its recently rolled out breakfast biscuit sandwiches--the made-from-scratch Bun-on-the-Run--the Tennessee retailer said foodservice will be a key growth category this year.

"It has to be foodservice. That's the only opportunity we have," chairman and CEO William Weigel told CSP Daily News. "Our cigarette volume is leaving, and we think foodservice is the only alternative to increasing the gross-profit dollars that we have to replace."

And so, Weigel's is attacking a new day-part.

"We've rolled out breakfast. We're baking on-premise, fresh-to-go every morning," he said. "That's been a big success."

Recently, Weigel's promoted a sausage, egg and cheese Bun-on-the-Run for $1.19.

"We're now attacking lunch, and that's a little tougher," Weigel said.

Fresh sandwiches are a key option for this year, but Weigel said he'll look at other foodservice opportunities, as well.

"We'll be putting a commissary program together, and we hope that will be our lunch solution," he said.

Currently, Weigel's foodservice program is mostly self-serve, grab-and-go offering, such as prepackaged sandwiches. Weigel's Kitchens is the chain's brand of sandwiches delivered fresh daily to Weigel's Stores, according to the company website. The chain also has three locations that offer Subway sandwiches, according to CSPedia.

Weigel's also highlights its coffee program whenever possible with the tag "The Best Cup of Coffee in Town--Guaranteed."

Powell, Tenn.-based Weigel's Stores is a third-generation, family-owned business operating 57 dairy and convenience stores throughout Knoxville, Tenn., and surrounding communities.

Steve Holtz, CSP/Winsight By Steve Holtz, Editor in Chief, CSP Daily News
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