He loves his supermarket so much, he set up a fan Web site for it

MyDemoulas.com is done by a Market Basket fan, who apparently grew frustrated at the chain's lack of a proper Web site.

Via Supermarket News via Lin Dolin.

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Supermarket Fetishes

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Gee...think anyone in JP will start one up for WF?

I might just have to start up a Purity Supreme nostalgia site.

[You know as a kid you just accept certain words without thinking of them all that much. Purity Supreme sounds like some Aryan Youth movement or something. Johnny's Foodmaster brings to mind really third rate superheroes.]

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waitaminute

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....Heartland'? Homeland...Fatherland...>gasp< it is a white supremacist plot!!

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Heartland

Wasn't that the "warehouse store" version of Poverty Supreme? I remember that I used to go to the one out on Rt. 1 to stock up during the summer months when I was in college.

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ah yes..

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I've never seen a .. pilgrim who could use a staff the way you did.

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As long as..

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..we're name dropping supermarkets (oh dear god is THIS what my life has descended to??), the Chelsea Market Basket gives me a bit of Nostalgia for the old Cerentani's Market on Revere Beach Parkway (route 16) by the back of Suffolk Downs. Always lots of sawdust on the floor and complete chaos in the aisles. Nanna haggling with Deli guy over how lean the corned beef was or wasn't...

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First National

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My melancholia is triggered by the old First National chain. It's amazing the things that remain in your head for no good reason. I can "smell" the air that hit me every time my mother dragged me through the automatic doors of the First National in Dorchester Lower Mills. The layout of the place is as clear to me now as it was when I was four years old, and the sound the green stamps made as they were issued from the cash register can be recalled with ridiculous ease. And there was always a middle-aged guy selling the Record American just outside, 8 cents was the price in those days, and...

Hey! You kids throw that ball into my yard one more time and I'll keep it! Little bastids...

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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Gold star

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Sul, I gotta tell you - you've made me LOL like 14 different times this week. Thanks for your comments, I've really enjoyed them. (Seriously, no sarcasm.)

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I'm Blushing

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No, not really, but this is the internet. I can lie as much as I want.

Seriously, and no lie, thanks for the nice compliment.

Suldog
http://jimsuldog.blogspot.com

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Suldog's comments made me flash back

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to the supermarkets in West Roxbury:

Where the CVS is now (and was Roche Bros for years before that) was an Elm Farm grocery store
Walgreens on Centre St. was a Capital Market
The A&P was on Spring St. where the senior housing development is
First National was on Centre where the Hyde Park Savings Bank is.

I got lost in the A&P when I was a little tyke and never forgot the horror of it!

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Aye...

My dad has worked for Shaw's for over 20 years and Market Basket is pretty much destroying Shaw's/Star right now. He's terrified about his job now because Shaw's locations are dropping like flies due to the Market Basket dominance.

Any Market Basket talk just sickens me to my stomach.

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Well, then..

you have to ask yourself why? Why is Market Basket destroying Shaw's?
It might have to do with the fact that Shaw's consistently has higher prices on everything! I live in Belmont and there are 3 Shaw's that are a 5 minute drive from my house, and I don't see them going out of business anytime soon.

Market Basket is a runaway success because they have operated on a lower prices bring more volume business model and they have shown more concern for their low income shoppers than Shaw's ever has or ever will. Also, I would rather drive the 20 minutes to the Woburn Market Basket for a $2.99 MB gallon of milk than pay $4.49 for the Shaw's brand in a store I can walk to.

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Well that's the problem. I

Well that's the problem. I know why. They're undercutting them in prices. I originally had that in my post. The company is struggling due to Walmart Supercenters and Market Basket and they have no option but to have higher prices. They're stuck on the path to destruction.

It's just too bad. You think it'll never happen to you and then suddenly your father is facing unemployment.

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Think about it for a minute.

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Think about it for a minute. Why is Market Basket able to offer groceries at 1/3 - 1/2 less than the same product in Shaw's?
Shaw's has much greater overhead due to the fact that they are being sucked dry by the union. It happened to Purity in the early 90's, and it will happen to Shaw's.

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Sorry to hear that your Dad's

Sorry to hear that your Dad's job is on the line. It is always sad when the corporate machinations and poorly placed bets don't pan out and the little guy is the one who gets the ax and not the idiot corporate executive who made the bad decisions.

The DeMoula family's ability to outmaneuver a corporate empire won't keep me from going to Market Basket, though. Reasons: don't need a stupid tracking card, ample affordable ethnic food selections, good quality produce and meats, and CHEAP. Sure, they don't have the latest variation of asiago and herb doritos ... but who cares when this also means that you don't have to find a stock person who then has no idea what dried beans ARE let alone where they can be found in the two-acre store.

Market Basket isn't "undercutting prices": they are showing that a frugal business can pass along the savings to customers. Johnny's Foodmaster is a union shop and they still come in far cheaper than Shaws and Star because they run a tight ship - stock slightly less bewildering variety, cater to ethnic and urban customers, focus on groceries, and don't build huge fancy stores at great expense.

Shaws/Star/Stop and Shop all went with the Ginormous Super Duper Store model and rejected locations where those didn't fit and tried to force cities and towns to accept them where they didn't fit. They are now paying for loads of retail space that isn't for groceries and that is reflected in their high prices.

In other words, don't blame Market Basket, Hannafords, etc. - blame the "bigger and bigger and bigger MUST be better" business decisions made by Star/Shaws. Don't forget as well that Market Basket is a locally owned entity - not a big box. Star/Shaws is the big box. Your loyalty to your dad has become conflated with a loyalty to his employer, who made their own messy bed. The sad part is that your Dad will be the one paying for his employer's poor decisons.

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I've never seen a Market

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I've never seen a Market Basket with a good selection of fresh produce. Last time I went there to buy ingredients for veggies and dip, they didn't sell carrots that weren't already cut up into small pieces in a bag! Bye bye freshness. Pre-cut veggies lose their flavor and nutritional value fast. What kind of grocery store doesn't sell fresh carrots? Sorry, but that is NOT a good selection! Are they cheap -- hell, yes. As far as shelf-stable basics, you can't beat the price. (I guess I'm a little bit overly worked up over this.)

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You are worked up and confused

I just bought a two-freaking-pound bag of carrots at Market Basket the other day - the kind you have to peel? I also got a big tub of fresh greens, a bundle of leeks, 5lbs of onions, a bag of six very fresh green and red peppers, and a hugeass bunch of bananas. Then there are the potatoes in 10lb bags and the big multipacks of pears and apples. If anything, it used to be a problem to buy in lesser quantities at Market Basket when I didn't have the dualing teen pacmans.

I think you are confusing Market Basket with Trader Joes. Seriously.

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It's been my experience that

It's been my experience that variety at Market Basket varies wildly. Sometimes they don't have a particular item for days or weeks (MB branded Fritos-like corn chips and Shake-n-Bake have been recent examples for me). So it doesn't surprise me at all that they'd be out of carrots or something for a day.

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Not confusing Market Basket with TJ's. Seriously.

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Nope, it wasn't Trader Joe's since there was no Trader Joe's in Lowell at the time... it was a Market Basket in Lowell a few years back. Fact: this particular Market Basket did not sell fresh carrots. How do I know this? I inquired while I was there because it was the first time I had ever seen a grocery store not sell them and I was in utter disbelief.
Next!

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Which One?

The Acre or the one on 3A?

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Heck, it was 3A... I was

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Heck, it was 3A... I was shopping for veggies not heroin! Most familiar with Lowell steer clear of the Acre.

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Rolls eyes

I used to bike through the Acre to get to the train station from campus on a regular basis. Just people out walking around, some noisy, some not bothering to look where they were going. Young people and old. I never had a problem.

The Acre MB is the flagship, jewel, favored child and teacher's pet of the MB world. Believe me, your paranoid ignorance cost you more than some carrots.

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sigh

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Maybe you didn't meet many people during your college stint in Lowell. I know plenty of people who work there and grew up there, including cops who warned me to stay away from the acre. I've never met anyone familiar with Lowell who didn't know this, but of course you're far superior to us all. It has nothing to do with paranoid ignorance, it's called being smart, safe and well-informed. Not sure what size you are, but at 110 and 5'4" I'm not going to fuck around with my safety for a bag of carrots. I simply drove to Dracut to buy carrots which was on my way to where I was headed anyway.

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Market Basket flagship

These days that designation has to go to the new Chelsea store, reportedly the largest supermarket in all of New England.

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Shaw's failing? Not where I live

The Shaw's in Porter Square seems as busy as ever. Enough folks are willing to trade off price for convenience (this one's right by a T station and a short walk from lots of residents) to keep it in business.

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Here here

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The Shaws in both Chestnut Hill and Allston are always hopping. This sounds like a North Shore issue. Welcome to Universal Suburb.

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Shaw's and Stop & Shop are overpriced.

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Market Basket has its fans for good reason. Its stores are no frills and they have the best prices by far. It's almost fitting that they don't have a website, considering that most Market Baskets were designed sometime around 1973 and haven't changed since. It's part of the charm though. Growing up, it's where my mother did all her food shopping. She went to the one in Billerica, even though there was a Purity Supreme in Woburn that was closer to home. There's now a Shaw's in Burlington Center, about 1/2 mile from their house, but she still goes to the Billerica Market Basket, about four miles away. I stopped by the Woburn Market Basket a couple of weeks ago on my way back from an appointment in Burlington and spent about $30 on what would usually cost me $50 at Shaw's or Stop & Shop. Needless to say, I'll be schlepping up to Chelsea, Somerville or Woburn to do my major food shopping from now on.

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They co-existed for so many

They co-existed for so many years and then Market Basket started opening up new locations and that's when things went downhill.

But yes, I don't blame you for going for the lower prices. I was once in a Wal*Mart Supercenter with my dad and said to him "wow the stuff is so much cheaper here, why don't we just buy food here?" and his response was "I'd be jobless." It's just a hard situation when your family is involved in a sinking company.

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Believe me..I feel you

My father was in the retail music biz his whole life and we all know how that turned out.

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yep

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Tower Records moved in the next town over and drove out the local record store. The owner did everything he could to compete, but an independent shop can't compete with big box. Big box undercuts prices, sells product for less than what they pay just to get people in the door and cut out the competitor. They can absorb the hit, but the little guy can't. If you shop big box, then you're not supporting independent local shops. Period. Of course this was years ago and Tower is gone as well now.

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"an independent shop can't

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"an independent shop can't compete with big box"

Newbury Comics finds your theory fascinating.

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Newb Comix

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IS a big box store now! It's a shadow of its former self. You can go in there and get CDs, DVDs, Red Sox foam fingers, WWE toys, coffee mugs. Oh yeah, and comics. It's basically Best Buy minus the HDTVs and vaccuum cleaners.

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It is? I think Mike Dreese

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It is? I think Mike Dreese would be surprised to hear that his 33 year old regional company with 29 locations is on par with Best Buy.

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Ok then.

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Part Best Buy, part Hot Topic. Happy?

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Best Buy has ~19% of the

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Best Buy has ~19% of the consumer electronics market with nearly $50B of income (2010), 180,000 employees (2010), around 1,200 locations in the United States, and several subsidiary/partner companies.

So, yeah. No.

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Tower Records

Why is there still a Tower Records sign in the little shopping center across Mall Road from the Burlington Mall? Appropriately, the sign is on its own little tower. That store has been gone for years. Surely that space's current occupant would want to put up its own sign instead?

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$$$$

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Stores typically have to pay extra rent to put their sign on the pylon (what the free-standing sign is called). The landlord leaves up the old sign panel to protect the guts of the pylon (sometimes they turn the panel around).

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Also part of the charm

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Every time I've been in a Market Basket, it's been as hectic and crazy as any other supermarket would be 1/2 hour after they announced a comet was about to hit the Earth. Great prices? Maybe. But what price my sanity?

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It's either one or the other

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You can support small local businesses that keep the money in town, add value and character to the neighborhood and cater to specific needs, or you can save a few bucks and shop big box. But don't bitch when the big guys know they are the only game in town and sell only what they want to sell--good luck with that customer suggestion thing.

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You can support small local

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You can support small local businesses that keep the money in town, add value and character to the neighborhood and cater to specific needs

And Tewksbury based Market Basket is a local, small business, when compared to Shaw's, aka Albertsons in other parts of the country (owned by SuperValu of Eden Prairie, MN), or Ahold of Amsterdam's Stop & Shop.

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The Quest for Food is Not Ours!

"Within these walls you will find your happy hunting ground."

A quote from a mural in a former supermarket somewhere in the Boston area. Can anybody say where it was?

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Easy Peasy

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But then, I did go to college in Waltham, and remember the S&H building right next door.

And, so, of course, the murals, which featured Eskimos hunting walruses (whales?) and the artist's conception of Africans hunting on the Savannah.

Oh, and the bargain basement that always stocked velvet portraits of Elvis.

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S&H

Makes me think of Green Stamps -- dated, I know. What's the local translation (and story)?

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Wasn't it S&H Green Stamps?

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I bet somewhere up in the attic I still have a bunch of books of the things - filled in part with all these stamps a roommate once gave me after he took a trip or rented a car somewhere and he got sheets of 'em.

The Waltham place was the Waltham Supermarket on Main Street, which you'd pass on your way to Moody Street for Jordan's furniture. It's now a chain supermarket (Hannaford's?) and the quaint murals that would probably be considered kind of racist these days are long gone, as is "the world's largest meat department" (and it was - it was about 40% of the entire store).

Also, the entire quote: "The Quest for Food Is Not Yours - Within These Walls You Will Find Your Happy Hunting Grounds."

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