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On the heels of its inaugural store in Allston, Mass., which made its debut in September, bfresh, a small-format grocery concept focusing on fresh food, smart value and local convenience, has opened a second location in Fairfield, Conn. The 8,600-square-foot store will hold its official grand-opening ceremony on Friday, Nov. 6.
The Fairfield store carries more natural and organic options than a typical market, along with a large selection of vegan, gluten-free and international items. Among the offerings are fresh organic produce, full-service meat, seafood, and deli departments offering organic, antibiotic-free meats, and fresh, sustainable seafood.
Additionally, bfresh customers can shop for freshly prepared foods in the Little Kitchen. Based on a model from La Place, a fresh food restaurant concept in the Netherlands and other parts of Europe, the section offers scratch-made, fresh seasonal meals. Shoppers can order fresh smoothies, salads, pizza, Asian stir-fry, breads, desserts and coffee, among other items.
In the area of design, the concept boasts a streamlined, simple layout. Before the Allston and Fairfield stores opened, Fresh Formats, the Ahold company that created and operates the bfresh banner, developed an independent learning lab in Center City Philadelphia where teammates and customers can experiment with and evaluate new ideas regarding the shopper experience. Ahold established the company in 2014 to explore and develop new formats.
"Whether in the city or the suburbs, grocery shoppers today are met with many obstacles: a desire to shop local, balancing a budget with increasingly complex food and dietary needs, seemingly impossibly busy schedules," noted Suzi Robinson, "marketing magus" for Fresh Formats and a developer of bfresh. "We sought to provide a one-stop, easy-to-shop solution for the Fairfield community. bfresh is designed for anyone who loves food and wants healthy, affordable, locally sourced options in their neighborhood."
Despite the two recent store openings within a short time of one other, a company spokesman told PG that there were currently no plans to expand bfresh to other markets.