Following Supervalu Inc.’s announcement that the company will sell its 36 mostly St. Louis area Shop ’n Save stores, the presidents of three United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW) locals are vowing to fight to protect good union jobs at the stores.
UFCW Locals 655, 881 and 88 represent approximately 3,300 Shop ’n Save employees and about 46,000 combined members in eastern Missouri and Illinois.
UFCW Local 655 President David Cook (representing approximately 2,000 Shop ’n Save employees); UFCW Local 881 President Ron Powell (representing approximately 700 Shop ’n Save employees); and UFCW Local 88 President Dan Telle (representing approximately 600 Shop ’n Save employees) issued the following statement:
“Announcements impacting this many hard-working families are always concerning. It’s times like these that the men and women working for this company need their union family the most. Locals 655, 881 and 88 are committed to protecting the good union jobs at Shop ’n Save. We will remain in close contact with Supervalu as well as any future employer to ensure the promise that unions make to all workers: a better life for them and their families.”
Supervalu Inc. had reportedly been pressured by an activist investor in recent months to break itself up, according to Bloomberg Business Journal
The company provides products to more than 1,800 stores, Bloomberg reported, and operates almost 200 locations.
Supervalu is best known in St. Louis for its Shop ’n Save grocery stores, but those businesses, and a handful of others, have been a shrinking part of the company's overall operations, with the company selling most of its brick-and-mortor locations in recent years.
According to the St. Louis Business Journal, Shop ’n Save was saddled with high levels of debt following SuprValu’s multi-billion-dollar acquisition of Albertsons a decade ago, prompting the company to close or sell off most of its retail stores in recent years, including its Albertsons and its Save-a-Lot locations, while buying up regional distributors to boost its wholesale business.