Cost Savings on all aisles
By Caitlin Davis, Senior Staff Writer
Oct 28, 2013, 13:21
Farmer’s Foods in Hopewell changed its name to Food Depot.
HOPEWELL — Wednesday morning, a new grocery store will open its doors to the residents of Hopewell and the Tri-Cities, a grocery store that will offer shoppers bargains that cannot be found anywhere else, and that is a guarantee from Buster Madison, chief operating officers of Farmers’s Foods.
Food Depot, formally Farmer’s Foods, will offer shoppers cost plus savings, which means the cost it takes the store to buy the product and have it shipped to the store and to that price, the store adds 10 percent.
Madison, who has been with Farmer’s Foods for three years, saw the cost savings grocery store in Tennessee and Georgia. The concept was then brought to Virginia with the first store being opened in Louisa and the second in Kenbridge; and it is a concept that Madison said is not targeted to any specific demographic.
“The concept is not just right for Hopewell. The concept is right for anybody that really wants spectacular bargains on groceries. There’s really no true demographic fit,” Madison said. “We’ve seen these things done in suburbs, inner-city stores and in between … regardless of your social, economic class, people like a bargain.”
CAITLIN DAVIS/HOPEWELL NEWS/NEWS-PATRIOT Buster Madison, COO of Farmer’s Food, explains the concept of Food Depot, a new cost savings grocery store opening tomorrow on Oaklawn Boulevard in Hopewell.
On Saturday afternoon, just days before the grand opening, employees were busy stocking the shelves and as Madison walked the aisles, he could not help but remain enthusiastic as he compared the prices, which he calls “eye popping,” on the shelves to the prices at other grocery stores.
“I’ve been with the company three years and 43 years in the grocery business and I will tell you honestly I have never seen anything that is this amazingly effective at getting cheap prices to the consumer,” Madison said.
The success of the stores in both Louisa and Kenbridge is not only because of the prices on the shelves, but because of word of mouth. Madison said once shoppers see the prices and see the savings on their receipt, they will tell everyone they know.
“The whole store is on sale,” Madison said. “We don’t do those tricks that says here are those three or four items that are on sale. The whole store is on sale.”
Another way the store keeps items at such low costs is by keeping other expenses at bay, such as store loyalty cards. Other ways that Food Depot keeps the prices so low is refraining from selling lottery tickets or money orders. Madison said this ensures customers are getting the “best possible cost.”
Madison offered up a challenge to the shoppers that will be coming into the store in the coming days. He said once customers get their groceries to the checkout counter and see the savings, they will walk out of the store will a huge smile spreading from ear to ear.
If that does not work, Madison said Food Depot offers a double money back guarantee if a customer can find an item cheaper at another store. However, Madison does not seem worried as he said that challenge has never been brought to either of the other stores in Virginia.
The frozen food aisle is shown inside the store.
“Now we know we got the formula right. We got the concept right and we are just enthused about bringing it to Hopewell because in today’s world any bargain you bring to people, it makes their life a little bit easier,” Madison said.