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CALGARY-- Sobeys West is hosting a special open house for invited guests today from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. to view the retailer's new store at SAIT (Southern Alberta Institute of Technology) Polytechnic here. The store officially opens to the public tomorrow.
The 3,000-square-foot location is the first small-format store for the Sobeys banner in western Canada. As well as offering basic grocery and fresh foods for students and guests staying in on-campus residences, the store will carry an assortment of fresh store-made meal solutions, among them roasted chickens, pizza, sandwiches, and salads.
Mike Lupien, director, communications at Sobeys West, told Progressive Grocer, that the retailer has a number of small-format stores in the eastern part of the country, but that they were convenience stores and didn't operate under the Sobeys banner. By contrast, the SAIT Polytechnic store is a "small grocery store," according to Lupien.
Sobeys' Web site notes that the Stellarton, N.S.-based company operates 285 convenience-format stores under the Needs, Marché Bonichoix; Les Marchés Tradition banners in Atlantic Canada and Quebec.
The opening of the store marks the start of a new working relationship between Sobeys and SAIT Polytechnic. Lupien explained that this meant the company would become involved in the institution's culinary arts programs, such as carrying product cut by students enrolled in the meat management operations course.
Sobeys West president, operations Gary Kerr and SAIT Polytechnic representatives will attend the open house, at which guests will sample a selection of the store's prepared foods.