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QUINCY, Mass. - Rising costs are prompting the Stop & Shop Supermarket Co. here to switch some of its seafood sections from service to self-service in the course of this year. Further details of the planned changeover, including how many departments are converting and when, are still pending, according to the retailer.
Citing technology and freshness issues as reasons for the change, Stop & Shop spokesman Rob Keane told Progressive Grocer that with "decreasing [seafood] supply driving up costs," the self-service model is "the most viable format to deliver fresh-quality seafood at affordable prices."
Union representatives said they are opposed to the supermarket chain's plan due to what they said are potential negative effects on employees and store operations. James Riley, secretary-treasurer of Providence, R.I.-based United Food and Commercial Workers Local 328, referred in press reports to the switch as "an incredibly stupid idea."
Employing more than 58,000 associates, Ahold banner Stop & Shop operates 385 stores in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire, New York, and New Jersey.