May 25, 2016 - Albertsons Florida, an Albertsons division last based out of Maitland, Florida before being merged into the Houston Division, passed away peacefully on May 24, 2016. Albertsons Florida was born in Clearwater, Florida on October 9, 1974 as a partnership between Albertsons Food Stores and Skaggs Drug Centers to bring a one-stop shopping experience to the people of Florida under the name Skaggs-Albertsons. By the end of the 1970's, Albertsons had stores in every major market in Florida from Pensacola to Jacksonville and from Miami to Tampa. In 1978, Albertsons and Skaggs parted ways, leaving Albertsons solely in charge of growing their Florida presence. By the late 1990's, Albertsons had grown to over 120 Florida locations and was the third largest grocery chain in Florida in most markets. However, as the 2000's wore on, Albertsons began to crumble. Their quirky theme sales, giveways, oversized decor props, and bonus buys just weren't enough to keep them afloat. Their 100+ stores slowly began to shrink every year until they were left with only three locations statewide by 2015. After 41 1/2 years in Florida, Albertsons did achieve some marks in Florida supermarket history. They were the most successful non-Florida based traditional grocer to operate in Florida, and they were the last remaining outside holdout of the Great Florida Grocery Wars of the 1970's and 1980's. Many Floridians fondly remember Albertsons through the years, and their legacy won't be forgotten. Albertsons Florida was preceded in death by many other Florida supermarket competitors such as Food Lion, Sweetbay Supermarkets/Kash n' Karry, A&P/Family Mart, Kroger's Florida Choice/SupeRx, Grand Union, Jewel-Osco, Super Saver, and the list goes on... Albertsons Florida leaves behind their sister chain, Safeway, to take over where they left off in the Sunshine State. Services will take place the morning of May 25, 2016 at the grand opening of your local Safeway Florida store. Condolences can be left in the comments section of this post.
So today marks a big day for Florida supermarkets as Safeway Florida makes its official debut, replacing the last three Albertsons stores in Altamonte Springs, Largo, and Oakland Park. I'm hoping for the best with Safeway, and hopefully they will grow to more than three locations. Detailed coverage of a Safeway Florida store will be coming to the blog in July, however tomorrow and Friday I will have two mini-posts featuring some Safeway photos that have been sent into the blog from our contributors over the last few days.
So until then,
The Albertsons Florida Blogger