CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
The first Foodland location in Hawaii is reopening today at the Market City Shopping Center in Kaimuki. The revamped store will offer a Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, and a wider selection of organic produce. Above, employee Micah Lyman displayed yesterday a tray of certified Angus beef.
First Hawaii Foodland reopens
The landmark market now has a variety of competition, which includes big-box stores
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Foodland Super Market Ltd. today reopens its first store with a new look at Market City Shopping Center in Kaimuki.
The celebration helps mark the 60th anniversary of Foodland's founding and first store by Maurice J. "Sully" Sullivan in 1948.
Foodland's new Market City store features new offerings, including fresh, made-to-order specialties in its deli, meat and seafood departments.
Besides a new Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf at the front entrance, it also will offer more natural and organic offerings, locally grown produce, and fine food specialties from around the world.
Foodland remodeled itself to remain competitive with other stores in Hawaii. Whereas 60 years ago, the Foodland Market City was Honolulu's first modern supermarket, today it competes with a 64,000-square-foot Safeway just half a mile away, as well as an up-and-coming Whole Foods Market at Kahala Mall.
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After eight months of renovations, a newly remodeled Foodland
opens its doors today at the Market City Shopping Center in Kaimuki.
The new Foodland, which measures nearly 28,000 square feet, will offer a Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf at its entrance, and still will be open 24 hours, seven days a week.
Foodland at Market City was the first modern supermarket to open in Hawaii in 1948, according to its parent, the Sullivan Family of Cos., which marked its 60th anniversary in May.
Sullivan celebrates with the reopening of the original Foodland Market, which has a new look and offerings, said Foodland's chief executive, Jenai S. Wall.
"Our new store incorporates the best and newest ideas and offerings," said Wall, "and we are pleased to provide our customers with a comfortable and inviting environment, friendly service and great products that are all part of the Foodland experience."
The Foodland at Market City felt the impact on its customer market share when a new Safeway, measuring about 64,000 square feet, opened on Kapahulu Avenue, just half a mile away in November.
Supermarkets are all on a level competitive playing field, according to market analyst Marty Plotnick.
CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STAR-BULLETIN.COM
The first Foodland location in Hawaii is reopening today at the Market City Shopping Center in Kaimuki after extensive remodeling. Oswald Pantelon, above, restocked the produce section yesterday.
While Foodland was smart to remodel its store, the supermarkets in Hawaii still compete with big boxes like Costco
and Sam's Club
, which now take up the greatest market share for middle-class families, he said.
Foodland, however, has a very strong identity locally, said Plotnick, and bringing in the Coffee Bean was a good move. The latest Coffee Bean at Market City, which is slated to open Aug. 30, brings the total number to 17.
The new Foodland offers more fresh, made-to-order specialties in its deli, meat and seafood departments.
The new deli department will offer more than 20 different plate lunch selections, including ethnic dishes, an in-house sushi chef, more than 30 salad toppings, panini, flat bread pizza and a larger assortment of olives and antipasto.
Like many other supermarkets, Foodland is also expanding its natural and organic offerings, which includes a new bulk foods section, organic baby food, cheeses and healthy meat alternatives, along with all-natural Asian and Indian foods.
In its wine section, Foodland offers Kaena wines by a Hawaii-born winemaker as well as organic and solar-produced wines.
Local produce showcased in the new Foodland include Kula onions and strawberries, Sugarland watermelon, Big Island avocados and Hamakua Springs tomatoes and mushrooms, along with Rainbow papayas and Keeau bananas.
There also will be fine foods from around the world, including Kunii Estate Kona Coffee exclusive to the R. Field Wine Co., gourmet chocolates and truffle oil.
Tickets already are sold out to a fundraiser celebration of the new Market City Foodland this evening, which is to benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities of Hawaii, a favorite charity of Foodland founder Maurice J. "Sully" Sullivan.
Sully founded and opened the first Foodland at Market City with the Lau family -- and the crowds in 1948 were reportedly so large the front door had to be locked for restocking.
But today, the supermarket landscape in Hawaii is a different one, with more competition from big-box stores as well as new players from the mainland. Whole Foods Market is expected to open at Kahala Mall in September.
The Sullivan Family of Cos. owns 30 Foodland and Sack N Save stores on all four islands, in addition to gourmet specialty shops such Foodland Farms on the Big Island and Lahaina Farms on Maui. It employs 2,500.
Sullivan is also developing Kapolei Village Center, a 55,000-square-foot retail center to be anchored by Foodland, in 2010.