Cleveland: Fisher Foods HQ

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Daniel
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Cleveland: Fisher Foods HQ

Post by Daniel » 10 Nov 2007 01:53

Found the remnants of this sign on an old warehouse in Downtown Cleveland. It says, in case you can't make it out: HOME OF FISHER FOODS with "Offices" and "Bakery" above that.

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rich
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Post by rich » 10 Nov 2007 12:06

Yeah--was it on Lakeside around 22nd? That was their long time HQ/warehouse; a huge multi-story building. One side faced the Shoreway (Rt 2 freeway) and had a big sign that was a local landmark, along with the animated Burdett Oxygen welder, which graced a nearby building for many years. After the Fazio-led group bought the chain they moved to a more horizontal site in Bedford Heights--late 60s I think. It was some other warehouse for many years. Last time I was around there--a couple years ago--it looked mostly unused.

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Post by krogerclerk » 10 Nov 2007 16:55

There was a time when due to the low margin nature of the industry, grocery chains had their corporate and regional offices in their warehouses. Even the old A&P hq in Jersey City had utilitarian functions, though I'm not sure about the relocated hq in Paterson. The current hq in Montvale in purely white collar in function. For Kroger, the Kroger building in downtown Cincinnati was built in the mid-50's to serve as corporate offices, though many of the divisions continued to be housed in the regional distribution centers until the 1970's and 80's. Safeway kept its corporate offices in the Oakland warehouse for many years. Supermarkets have the lowest margins in retail, and the frugality of the measure was a neccessity, nor was any level of grocery retailing considered to be glamorous, all the way to the top level of management, it was often a "hands-on" business that avoided unnecessary costs.
It was only after the larger chains went public, did any effort to create an executive level of management occur, adding overhead to the operation of stores.

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Daniel
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Post by Daniel » 10 Nov 2007 17:44

Rich, that's exactly where that was. The other signage is long gone. I forget what is in the space now, but it's nothing to do with retail now. I bet there was some cool vintage Fisher stuff in there after they left...

And I know this is getting off topic, but I was in the Giant Eagle on Clifton near 117th, almost at the Lakewood border and noticed several carts with "FAZIO'S" engraved in the metal near the bottom of the basket. I wonder where these came from, since this store was originally a Stop-N-Shop.

rich
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Post by rich » 10 Nov 2007 22:55

The major Stop-n-Shop co-op members (Rego & Rini), along with their supplier Seaway, bought Fisher Foods, Inc (operator of Fazio's). There probably would have been various pieces of Fazio's floating around Stop-n-Shop stores. Cleveland super market chains had a lot of cross-pollination in times past, so it wouldn't be a surprise that people associated with Seaway & the Stop-n-Shop group also were part of the Fazio syndicate/management team that bought Fisher in the first place.

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Post by Toby Radloff » 11 Nov 2007 11:44

A&P used to have a headquarters and warehouse near the East 34th Street rapid transit station. That building was torn down in the 1980's...up to th end you can see "The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company" painted on the building. Kroger once had its headquarters and warehouse at East 55th and Truscon Avenue, in the building where Corlett Movers is now. Kroger moved to Solon in the 1950's, and closed their warehouse there in the late 1980's...I think they kept some baking operations open a couple of years after the stores closed. The former Kroger bakery in Solon, which they once called the "North Coast Bakery", is now a Schwebel's facility.

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Post by rich » 11 Nov 2007 18:56

Toby--who supplies independents in Cleveland now? I know some are supplied by Giant Eagle--do they use the old Seaway facility? The only sign I've seen around there was on the Heinen's warehouse which used to be practically next door to Seaway.

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Post by Toby Radloff » 11 Nov 2007 23:06

I believe it is still Riser...which is now part of Giant Eagle. They supply Dave's and Sparkle with Food Club and Valu Time brand items. Bi-Rite uses Nash Finch ("Our Family" brand items). I think Zagara's (an upscale independent) uses both IGA and Supervalu as suppliers. Don't know offhand about other indies.

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Post by Toby Radloff » 11 Nov 2007 23:09

Riser and Giant Eagle use the former Fisher Foods facility on Richmond Road in Bedford Heights. Sysco (a restaurant supplier) is in the old Seaway warehouse on Aurora Road.

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Post by Toby Radloff » 14 Nov 2007 21:26

As far as Heinen's, they have been using ShopRite (the same ShopRite that is a huge East Coast co-op) as a supplier. Heinen's carries a lot of ShopRite branded items.

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