You might notice something different when you walk into the Save-On-Foods store on 10th Avenue in Port Alberni this Friday.
“We’ve got a fresh, full-service meat counter, three soup bowls at the front, self-service wings and 12 feet of fresh sushi,” says Port Alberni Save-On-Foods’ manager Zack Jones.
It’s been a plan in the making since Save-On-Foods took over the former Safeway store a little over a year ago.
“We want to offer customers more options—and they’re telling us that they want more choices,” said Jones.
“It’s easy meal solutions, you can come in and you can have chicken. It’s all sorts of different varieties from sun-dried tomato to butter chicken to stuffed portobello mushroom caps.”
The goal is to get people on their way home after work.
“You can come in at 5 p.m., grab four chicken breasts and have them done in a flavour you like.”
Jones is hoping to increase the store’s focus on local foods with the new meat options.
“We’re supporting Hertel’s [Meats] so it’ll be all local.”
To Jones, it’s the customization of options available and the expertise of the employees behind the counter that will differentiate Save-On’s new fresh food options from similar set-ups in other grocery stores.
For example, in other stores “you’re not going to have a guy behind the meats counter who can actually cut things up for you and do different marinades.”
“[Save-On] is more of a full service approach.”
Save-On-Foods’ new look will launch on Friday, Dec. 4, said Jones.
Save-On-Foods’ ladies night takes place from 4–8 p.m.
But it won’t be the last of the changes.
“In January, we’re going to have a Starbucks to-go kiosk,” said Jones.
Unlike the Starbucks kiosk in Safeway, Jones said that the one at Save-On-Foods will only include brewed coffee.