Have you asked yourself recently “Hey, what happened to the “s” in my local Loblaw’s sign?” If so, you probably live in Toronto or Collingwood and are curiously attentive to detail.
The missing “s” comes as Loblaw Corporation, parent company of Loblaw’s grocery chain, tries out a rebrand at three of their stores. Two of the locations are in Toronto, one on Burnamthorpe, and the other at Yonge Street and Yonge Boulevard (between Lawrence and York Mills), with the third store in Collingwood. The most immediately apparent difference is that the name has changed from the possessive “Loblaw’s” to the more corporate “Loblaw,” and now sports the addendum “Great Food.”
However, it’s not just about nomenclature. According to Elizabeth Margles, VP Communications at Loblaw, the pilot stores are intended to “test new initiatives, such as sourcing pastries from local bakeries, improving the fresh flower offerings, increasing the scope of produce, and improving the ethnic representation in both produce and products.”
Torontoist checked out the store at Yonge and Yonge and it was…nice. There are new food stations, most of them decked out with massive, slightly intimidating photos of the relevant comestibles. There are also more specialty, Pusateri’s-type items, which likely won’t work everywhere but might attract some attention in the tonier parts of town.
Loblaw has been suffering lately, what with profits down and investors racing for the exits like a shoplifter with a T-bone down his pants, and even ads featuring Galen Weston’s billionaire puppy dog charms have thus far proven unable to resuscitate the floundering supermarket giant. Will Great Food be the ticket to raise Loblaw back to grocery greatness? Keep your eye on the “s.”
Thanks to reader Denise Psaila for the tip. Photo by Patrick Metzger from the Torontoist Flickr Pool.