Photo by Patti Stokes/NWO | The staff of Food Lion on U.S. 220 in Summerfield celebrates on the morning of Aug. 2 after a ribbon cutting for the newly remodeled store was held.
NW GUILFORD - The Food Lion stores on U.S. 220 in Summerfield and N.C. 68 in Stokesdale were among the 93 Food Lions in the greater Greensboro area to celebrate their grand reopening Aug. 1.
All 93 stores held their ribbon-cutting at 7:45 a.m., signaling the completion of a $178 million project that Food Lion representatives say includes fully remodeling the stores, lowering prices on thousands of items, expanding the variety of items the store carries, hiring more than 1,000 more associates and investing in "customer-centric" training, and giving back to local communities.
The first 100 customers at each store were given $10 gift cards and thermal tote bags. From 4 to 7 p.m., all customers at the Stokesdale store had their groceries placed in reusable bags.
"It's been a lot of hard work, but it's all worth it," said Kent Parks, who has been the manager of the Stokesdale store since January 2010, about a year after the store opened. "We're trying to make things better for the customers."
"We've been hiring for several months," Parks added. "It's hard to get enough people."
Parks said customers on the run will find grab-and-go selections and pre-sliced deli meats and cheeses, sliced fresh daily. There will also be more organic produce, fresh-cut fruit and vegetables, and hot meals with sides available seven days a week.
At a news conference Monday in Winston-Salem, the Salisbury-based company donated a mobile food pantry, valued at $100,000, to Second Harvest Food Bank of Northwest North Carolina. The mobile unit will provide food to communities in need throughout the 18-county region served by the food bank, from schools, to communities, to disaster locations, to communities without access to fresh, healthy food.
The mobile pantry donation is part of the grocer's commitment to provide 500 million meals to individuals and families in need by the end of 2020 through its Food Lion Feeds program.
Food Lion has more than 1,000 stores in 10 Southeastern and Mid-Atlantic states and employs 63,000 associates. The company was founded in 1957 as Food Town. Though it is now owned by Delhaize America, a U.S. division of Zaandam-based Royal Ahold Delhaize Group, it still calls Salisbury, North Carolina, its hometown.