Market Visit Report – Chalo FreshCo Store Opening

FreshCo just celebrated its 88th store opening with a new store focused on serving the South Asian population in the Brampton area just northwest of Toronto.

Named “Chalo FreshCo”, where “Chalo” means “Hello” in many South Asian languages, the store is big, bright and full of many unique products that you will not find in most FreshCo stores or other traditional grocery stores in the market.

The 50,000 sq. ft. store also includes fresh seafood, halal meat and a restaurant under the banner of established businesses in the South Asian community lending more credibility to the concept.

The on-line and flyer presence is fun and irreverent and the colors tie in with the bright colors on display in-store.

While back in January, Texas retailer HEB was in Canada to visit Sobeys to investigate small format retailing, we suspect that there was some inspiration / collaboration between the two on the Chalo FreshCo concept with Sobeys drawing on HEBs knowledge and experience in serving the large Hispanic market in the Lone Star State. Indeed Paola Llamas Vidales – International Category Manager at Sobeys is a former HEB staffer.

While the concept is one of its own it will serve as a great experiment for Sobeys as they start to address the growth of Ethnic grocers as Canada’s population grows more and more diverse.

We hope you enjoy this Virtual Store Tour!

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