Port McNeill's Super Valu will close on Nov. 5

Port McNeill’s Super Valu set to close

The store, which has stood in the Town's central mall for decades, is closing in November

  • Oct. 10, 2015 8:00 a.m.

The Super Valu grocery store in Port McNeill is closing Nov. 5.

That closure is going to put 15 people out of work and put the nearest President’s Choice products about 200 kilometres away in Campbell River.

“It’s unfortunate,” said Port McNeill Mayor Shirley Ackland, who only heard from Loblaws about the coming closure a couple of weeks ago.

“They didn’t come to the community,” Ackland added. “I find that to be problematic.”

Ackland added she has hopes that another grocery store might take its place – the community has had two grocers going back decades.

Employees were given eight weeks notice and severance packages, according to Loblaws.

“The store has been unprofitable for a number of years and we don’t expect it to turn around,” said spokesperson Catherine Thomas.  “It wasn’t an easy decision,” Thomas added.

The closure will have consequences outside of Port McNeill, also hitting the Port Hardy Harvest Food Bank. Despite Super Valu’s small size, the grocer was a major donor to the Food Bank, along with its neighbour, the IGA. The stores’ donations are worth “in the six figures annually,” said Andy Cornell, the food bank’s manager.

“With the impending closure of Super Valu, we expect to experience a significant decrease in donated food,” Cornell said in an email.

“How much this will affect our programs remains to be seen, but clearly it is not a positive development.”

And some people’s palates and wallets will be left hurting from the loss of the President’s Choice brand, said local insurance broker Diane Forsberg, who has had two of her kids work at the supermarket. Leaving the store last month, Forsberg explained that Super Valu stocked bulk products she couldn’t get elsewhere. And her taste buds have grown fond of President’s Choice – “It just tastes better than Kraft,” she said.

“Besides the kids losing their jobs, it’s going to be a blow.”

One consolation is that Port McNeill’s IGA, which stands just across the parking lot from Super Valu, expects to start hiring as it takes over some of its old competitor’s business.

“Once they actually close down and we start getting busier, we definitely will be,” said Jordan Wills, IGA’s owner and manager.

 

Just Posted

OPINION: Ten signs that Port Alice has changed

“Right now, our lack of amenities is holding back economic growth in our village”

Striking Western Forest Products workers could lose benefits in September

Union, forest company at odds over Vancouver Island benefit payments as strike enters third month

Port McNeill council discusses ‘bear aware’ and what you can do to stay safe

Port McNeill’s Conservation Officer Brad Adams gave a presentation about being ‘bear aware’.

Port Hardy RCMP release tips to prevent fraud and theft from vehicles

In many of the incidents reported, “the vehicles that were broken into were unlocked.”

Stranded hikers rescued by helicopter on Mt. Schoen

Campbell River Search and Rescue used hoist operation to rescue trio

VIDEO: Ride to Conquer Cancer rolls into Hope

Thousands of cyclist descend on small town for annual cancer fundraiser

VIDEO: Ride to Conquer Cancer rolls into Hope

Thousands of cyclist descend on small town for annual cancer fundraiser

Island murder victim’s mom expresses outrage over mental fitness decision of the accused

Smith vows to keep fighting until justice served for Descoteau

B.C. VIEWS: Pipelines set to roll as federal politicians posture

Projects to drive B.C., Canadian economy in years ahead

B.C. Lions fall to 1-9 after 13-10 loss to Ticats

Lowly Leos have dropped six straight CFL contests

VIDEO: B.C. woman meets biological mother, 38 years later

Mother never gave up hope of finding daughter, despite all the obstacles

B.C. man who died after rescuing swimmer was known for helping others

Shaun Nugent described as a dad, a coach, a hero and ‘stand-up guy’ at celebration of life

B.C. RCMP plane chases fleeing helicopter as part of major cross-border drug bust

The helicopter eventually landed at a rural property near Chilliwack

Vancouver Island man dead after reported hit-and-run incident

Oceanside RCMP seek public’s help gathering information

Most Read