The current logo (2002-present)
|Founded||1946 Newark, New Jersey, United Statesin|
|Headquarters||Keasbey, New Jersey, United States|
Number of locations
|Northeastern United States|
|Parent||Wakefern Food Corporation|
ShopRite Supermarkets (formerly Shop-Rite and Shop Rite) is a retailers' cooperative (co-op) of supermarkets in the northeastern United States, with stores in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, and Pennsylvania. Based in Keasbey, New Jersey, ShopRite consists of 48 individually owned-and-operated affiliates with over 296 stores, all under its corporate and distribution arm, Wakefern Food Corporation. Wakefern itself owns and operates 33 of the locations through subsidiary ShopRite Supermarkets, and is the largest affiliate in the cooperative. Several Wakefern members own and operate single ShopRite stores, while most own multiple locations. The average Wakefern member operates 6 stores.
ShopRite has been the largest retailer of food in New Jersey for close to 20 years and are also number one in the entire New York metropolitan area. Since 2011, ShopRite is also the largest retailer of food in Greater Philadelphia, pushing long-dominant Acme Markets to second place, and in 2013, to third place. As of 2011 , Wakefern was ranked 17th by sales among all supermarket operators in the United States.
ShopRite originated in 1946, when a Del Monte Foods sales representative talked to independent grocers in Newark, New Jersey. The grocers were having problems getting reasonable prices for wholesale goods. The Del Monte representative suggested the grocers try cooperative buying. Seven of the grocers agreed; paying $1,000 each to launch Wakefern Foods, which was incorporated on December 5, 1946. In 1951, the name ShopRite was created.
In 1958, ShopRite cut prices by 10% as an alternative to giving away trading stamps, which other supermarkets in New Jersey were doing. The move was successful, drawing customers and helping create more ShopRite stores. By 1961, Wakefern had 70 members, totaling $100 million in annual sales.
One large member, Supermarkets General, pulled out of Wakefern in the late 1960s, halving the number of stores. The Supermarkets General stores became Pathmark in 1968. The remaining Wakefern members redoubled their efforts, adopted "one member, one vote" as a management principle, and expanded aggressively. By the late 1970s, the volume lost from Supermarkets General's departure was restored.
For many years, ShopRite and Pathmark were extremely competitive on price in the New York Metro area, and each one had its loyal customer base. A highly leveraged management buy-out in the late 1980s left Pathmark saddled with too much debt, and the supermarket chain had no cash to fix up its stores, or invest in lower prices. At the same time, ShopRite stores were being replaced and rebuilt, stealing market share away from Pathmark.
The Pathmark chain was sold to A&P in 2007. A&P ran Pathmark as a division, but was unsuccessful in turning around the banner's fortunes. A&P filed for bankruptcy and sold or liquidated its stores in 2015, including approximately 150 Pathmark stores. Wakefern and its cooperative members acquired nine Pathmark locations along with several other former A&P banners with the intention of opening ShopRite, Price Rite and The Fresh Grocer locations.
In 1971, ShopRite introduced their Can-Can Sale, where canned goods (and eventually other products) were placed on steep discounts, and is held in January. Until the early 1990s the sale was held in the second and third weeks of January but expanded to the entire month. Animated commercials for this promotion feature a chorus line of cancan dancers and a French artiste, though the style changed on several occasions over the years. In 2002, ShopRite expanded that sale to twice a year when they introduced the Summer Can-Can Sale, held in July.
In 1989, ShopRite introduced the Price Plus Club Card, which eventually merged with the Check Cashing Card (for those that use it for that purpose as well); it is free of charge to acquire. Having a Price Plus Card enables shoppers to receive special weekly discounts, listed in circulars mailed with local newspapers. Most sales are chain-wide regardless of owner but sometimes in a particular region, valid for all area ShopRites, however some stores choose to put special items on sale based on stock. The Price Plus Card also tracks purchases.
In 1996, ShopRite launched its own line of deli meats, cheeses and complements with its private label, Black Bear of the Black Forest, to compete against the expansion of Boar's Head in competitor's supermarkets. In 2011, over 15 million pounds of Black Bear slicing meats and cheeses were sold at ShopRite.
Since 1999, ShopRite has offered an online grocery shopping service on its website, under the service name ShopRite from Home. For an extra charge, a ShopRite employee fulfills a customer's shopping order at a local ShopRite; the customer then schedules either a home delivery or an at-store pick-up.
In 2007, Klein's Supermarkets, a local chain of family-owned supermarkets in Harford County, Maryland, joined the Wakefern cooperative, expanding the ShopRite banner into the Baltimore metropolitan area. The 7 original Klein's Supermarkets that are now ShopRite supermarkets are located throughout Northeastern and Central Maryland, and the company has opened 2 additional Maryland ShopRite stores. In addition, Wakefern member Collins Family Markets has opened a Maryland ShopRite store in Glen Burnie, and another member, Village Supermarkets, acquired 2 former SuperFresh stores in Lutherville-Timonium and Silver Spring and converted them to ShopRite Supermarkets.
As a result of the cooperative system, there has been no set format for building architecture, store layout, or color scheme of the storefronts. Most stores are the product of the era in which they were opened, and the owner's style. For example, the ShopRite of West Caldwell, New Jersey has a Japanese motif inside and outside of the store (including rickshaws, an exit sign reading "Sayonara" and two Japanese-style phone booths). The Ronetco family of stores (Netcong, Byram, Newton, Franklin, Flanders, Mansfield, and Succasunna, New Jersey) have different looks on the outside (including the shopping carts and cart corrals), although the stores themselves have a similar layout. ShopRite stores that were previously other stores usually contain elements of the previous occupant. As large corporations buy up stores, recent years have brought a homogenization in building design and store layout.
Currently, ShopRite's base stretches northeast from the Washington metropolitan area in Maryland to the Hartford area in Connecticut, extending as far north as New York's Capital District. While New Jersey is home to the most ShopRite stores, the chain also has a strong presence in the New York City suburbs, and in Pennsylvania (mostly in the Philadelphia area). In 2010, ShopRite expanded its presence in Connecticut through the purchase of 11 former Shaw's stores.
In 2011-2013, ShopRite returned to the New York Capital District after exiting the market 23 years earlier. The SRS operating division opened stores in Niskayuna, Albany, Slingerlands, and Colonie. The Albany store opened on April 26, 2012; the Slingerlands store opened on September 30, 2012; and the Colonie store opened April 7, 2013. ShopRite currently has gas stations at the Albany and Colonie locations. Plans for additional future store locations had not been announced in late 2010. In 2013, ShopRite was the only unionized supermarket in the area.
On July 20, 2015, competitor A&P filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy and announced plans to close or sell off all of its stores. ShopRite acquired 13 supermarkets in A&P's bankruptcy auction, including some that had been ShopRite locations before Supermarkets General (later acquired by A&P) broke off from the cooperative.
Wakefern also manages its wholly owned subsidiary, Price Rite, which is a limited-assortment chain of stores found only in Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Virginia, and Rhode Island. As of October 2017, there are currently 65 Price Rite stores; 62 of those are owned outright by Wakefern.
The Price Rite stores in New Jersey are operated individually by Wakefern's cooperative members; in 2014, Wakefern announced that the Price Rite banner would be made available to all of those members, so they can open and operate their own outlets. The North Jersey locations, in Garfield and Paterson, are operated by Inserra Supermarkets, with the South Jersey location, in Camden, operated by the Ravitz Family.
The Price Rite name was first used in the early 1990s on Wakefern's failed warehouse club concept stores.
For many years, Foodarama operated a very small ShopRite Garden Center on Route 130 in East Windsor, New Jersey. In 2004, with the construction of a massive Home Depot directly adjacent to the small store, a decision was made to close the store and Foodarama moved its garden center operations into a 55,000-square-foot (5,100 m2) former Frank's Nursery & Crafts store. The store had operated as a Franks location for four years before the company was liquidated, and the large building combined 23,000 sq ft (2,100 m2) of interior selling space with 32,000 sq ft (3,000 m2) of covered outside selling area, for a total of 55,000 sq ft (5,100 m2). The ShopRite Garden Center closed in 2008.
Wakefern members also operate a cooperative chain of stores which offer wine, beer and spirits called ShopRite Wines & Spirits. Most stores are located adjacent to or inside of ShopRite Supermarkets; however, there are several freestanding stores. One store (in Pennington, New Jersey) offers a bar inside the ShopRite store.
Sunrise ShopRites of West Caldwell also operates three (Parsippany, New Jersey, Caldwell, New Jersey and Westfield, New Jersey) ShopRite Sunrise Wine-Cellar locations which offer an expanded selection of high-quality and specialty wines. These stores are generally smaller than their normal ShopRite counterparts, and specialize in wines and related alcoholic beverages.
In December 2013, Wakefern launched the ShopRiteDelivers.com website to expand their digital footprint outside of their traditional markets in the Northeast. The website, focused on electronics, bulk order baby care, specialty foods, and health and beauty, has been well received, and has shipped orders to customers in all 50 states.
Wakefern acquired the trademarks of this supermarket chain which operates primarily in the Philadelphia area when its former owner, Pat Burns, joined the cooperative as its 50th member in August 2013. At the time, the chain had eight stores: five in Philadelphia, one in suburban Upper Darby, one in Wilmington, Delaware, and one in New Brunswick, N.J. The Upper Darby store became a ShopRite, and the New Brunswick and Southwest Philadelphia stores have since closed. The Fresh Grocer stores are smaller than modern ShopRite stores and place a greater emphasis on fresh and organic foods, upscale specialty items and extensive prepared-foods offerings than regular ShopRite stores, giving Wakefern and its members a format that can work in smaller urban locations. Wakefern executives were also quoted in the press as saying that as several The Fresh Grocer stores are located near college campuses, the chain would give Wakefern "new insight into the next generation of consumers" and enable it to reach new customers.
ShopRite is the title sponsor for the ShopRite LPGA Classic.