As supermarket chains continue to expand their presence across the United States, shoppers are simultaneously saying goodbye to grocery stores in several places. Since the year kicked off, both regional and national retailers have announced numerous store closures, with multiple chains citing financial underperformance as the driving force. And the list of grocery store shut-downs has grown again.
This week, retail giants Walmart and Whole Foods announced closings in two major cities, and one location has already shut its doors. Here's a look at the stores ceasing their operations within the next few days.
About two weeks after confirming that it will be closing 15 stores in the U.S., Walmart shared that it will be shuttering four additional locations in Chicago.
"The simplest explanation is that collectively our Chicago stores have not been profitable since we opened the first one nearly 17 years ago," the retailer said in a statement. "[T]hese stores lose tens of millions of dollars a year, and their annual losses nearly doubled in just the last five years."
Walmart will be closing the four Chicago-area stores by Sunday, April 16. The locations include three Neighborhood Market stores in Kenwood, Lakeview, and Little Village, as well as one Supercenter in Chatham. The pharmacies will remain open for up to 30 days, and employees will be eligible to transfer to any other Walmart or Sam's Club facility.
Walmart added that although the four remaining Chicago locations "face the same business difficulties," it believes that closing the other stores "gives [the company] the best chance to help keep them open and serving the community."
The four upcoming Walmart closures aren't the only ones to hit the Chicago area this year. In February and March, Walmart closed the doors of its Lincolnwood, Homewood, and Plainfield locations, as well.
On the West Coast, Whole Foods closed its Trinity Place location in San Francisco on Tuesday, April 11, in order "to ensure the safety of [its] Team Members," according to a company statement published by SFGATE. The grocery chain said the closure was a "difficult decision," adding that all employees will be transferred to a nearby location.
This 65,000-square-foot store, which was one of the largest supermarkets in downtown San Francisco, had opened as Whole Foods' local "flagship store" on March 10, 2022. The location's website is now deleted.
Although Whole Foods did not provide additional information about the employee safety concerns, The San Francisco Standard reported that "the company cited deteriorating street conditions around drug use and crime near the grocery store," according to a City Hall source.