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    A&P Opening Three More Food Basics Supermarkets in North Jersey

    MONTVALE, N.J. -- Based on successful tests in Passaic and Paterson, N.J., the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. is opening three additional no-frills supermarkets in North Jersey in the next month.

    A&P Opening Three More Food Basics Supermarkets in North Jersey

    MONTVALE, N.J. -- Based on successful tests in Passaic and Paterson, N.J., the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. is opening three additional no-frills supermarkets in North Jersey in the next month.

    The first of the stores, which operate under the Food Basics label, opened Tuesday in Belleville, with additional stores scheduled to open in Glen Rock next Tuesday and in Wallington in mid-November.

    Each replaces a store the chain operated under its A&P banner.

    The openings come at a time when the Montvale-based chain is struggling in the face of the nation's economic slowdown and a step-up of competitive pressures in its key service areas, including North Jersey. Last week the company posted a loss of $144.7 million, or $3.76 a share, in its fiscal second-quarter ended Sept. 7, compared with a loss of $1.7 million, or 5 cents, a year earlier.

    Food Basics stores, which have been successful in Canada, allow the chain to profit from stores that are undersized by today's supermarket standards. Customers trade frills and choice for savings. "The older stores really didn't lend themselves to expansion," said Richard DeSanta, a company spokesman.
    The opening of the three new sites is the continuation of a testing process for the Food Basics concept in different demographic settings, DeSanta said. The stores "fit all the criteria for this test, and they are close to us, so they're easy to monitor," he said.

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