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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Spartan Stores, a grocery distributor and retailer with 54 retail supermarkets and 21 deep-discount drug stores in Michigan and Ohio, has appointed Brian Haaraoja v.p. fresh merchandising.
In this position Haaraoja will be responsible for merchandising meat, seafood, deli, bakery, produce, and floral departments. "One of the next steps for our corporate brands program is evaluating the perimeter, and Brian's wealth of experience will help us in that area," Spartan's v.p. marketing Sally Lake told Progressive Grocer.
"Brian has broad experience in executive management of merchandising and category management," said Spartan e.v.p. marketing and merchandising Dennis Eidson. "This appointment completes the executive team leadership for merchandising, adding the appropriate level of focus on fresh foods while continuing the important work on center store under the leadership of [v.p. center store merchandising] Alan Hartline."
Most recently Haaraoja served as v.p. of sales, southern region for Giant Food in Landover, Md., where he was responsible for the performance of 112 stores. Also at Giant he served as v.p. deli/bakery, responsible for planning and developing the merchandising of the deli and bakery departments for 185 stores. Prior to this he spent five years with Shaw's Supermarkets, as v.p. and director of meat and seafood.