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New Jersey-based Pathmark Stores closed three of its New Jersey locations on Friday, including the only supermarket in the so-called "food desert" of Camden.
Pathmark's parent company, Montvale, N.J.-based Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Co. (A&P), announced two months ago that the Pathmark stores -- in Camden, Cherry Hill and Edgewater Park -- would close. A&P cited underperformance as the reason.
A total of 355 employees worked at the three closing Pathmarks, according to published reports. The Camden store employed just over 100.
Camden is notorious for its high levels of unemployment and poverty, and has been designated a "food desert" by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). A food desert is an area where it’s nearly impossible to eat healthy due to lack of supermarket options.