California Fresh to replace Haggen in SLO

April 29, 2016

California FreshCalifornia Fresh Markets, a locally-owned grocer, will open a new store in the Foothill Boulevard location vacated by Haggen. Last year, Haggen filed for bankruptcy and closed its Central Coast grocery stores shortly after opening them.

Company officials announced this week that California Fresh signed a lease for the empty grocery store at 768 Foothill Boulevard. The store had been an Albertsons before Haggen purchased it last year.

The new California Fresh is expected to open in late August, according to a press release issued by the grocer. The company currently operates grocery stores in Pismo Beach and Santa Ynez.

Three partners, each with ties to the Central Coast, own California Fresh Markets. Alfred Holzheu is a Cal Poly alum and the son of a former meat manager at a San Luis Obispo Safeway store; Greg King, the radio voice and television face of California Fresh, grew up in Pismo Beach and graduated from Arroyo Grande High School; and Sean Walwick has lived in the Santa Ynez Valley for the past 18 years.

The California Fresh store in San Luis Obispo will offer a self-serve salad bar; organic and gluten-free products; and a deli with sandwiches, full dinners and fresh made sushi. California Fresh also offers its own fresh roasted coffee beans, fresh brewed coffee, scratch baked breads, fresh squeezed orange juice, Cabernet and Chardonnay wines, smoked tri-tip and chicken, handmade sausages and chips and salsas.

California Fresh’s liquor aisle will contain wines, spirits and craft beers.

Following the Haggen bankruptcy, Smart & Final purchased one store each in Atascadero, Paso Robles and San Luis Obispo. Former Haggen locations in Arroyo Grande and Los Osos remain on the market.

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It changes nothing for me. I personally find California Fresh overpriced for what I want. If there is a market for the market, then it will do just fine.

The Cal Poly students will love it….no doubt about it.

CA Fresh is going to make a killing off the college students with their prepared meals like they have in Pismo. The prepared meals are overpriced but college students usually suck at cooking so they will pay $7.98/lb for enchiladas.

CA Fresh sometimes has good deals on meat and produce on specific sale days. Their meat dept is better than the crap you find at VONS.


Bunch of whiners. It’s a fresh item grocery store. Always people saying “we need” “they should” yawn. Have you ever paid rent on a building on the coast? I’m surprised the cost of the food isn’t double? We’re getting a good deal.

Not sure we have a “bunch” of whiners, but I do agree that RENT is the single largest factor in most businesses around here. Every time something changes hands, the new sale cost is passed on to the renter, which is passed on to the consumers.

I think the whole Albertson/Vons/Haggen scam was to prune away some union employees, but that’s a bit “out there” I will admit. They cut some fat, and used Haggen as the cutting board. When they were done, their inside man fleeced the company and screwed them over… I’d love for the “inside truth” to come out, it’d make a great movie / TV series.

I do like California Fresh, and I miss the Spencer’s in SLO; so I often am driving all the way to Pismo to shop for the “healthier” items that I need. I’m not a fan of Whole Foods, but am far more impressed with CA Fresh in general. They are pricey, but then again, Vons was never the best price, and now (I believe) quality has started to take a hit. I only go to Vons when there is a sale on something in particular. I’ll do general shopping at Food 4 Less and CA Fresh.

All should be happy it’s grocery store regardless of your personal whining. It could have easily been divided into a smoke shop (let’s put unregulated, potentially explosive lithium batteries in our mouths), a nail salon, a payday lender, and a couple of fast food chain restaurants,

Another over priced independent grocer that noone will shop at. SLO needs an ALDI store!!

1. And where, pray tell, is the nearest Aldi? Do you have any clue how grocery chains operate? They don’t just have one store in the middle of nowhere because how would they stock it?

2. Ignorant rant: Trader Joes is same company as Aldi, so in a sense we already have one in town.

3. Ignorant rant: the neighbors are thrilled about CA Fresh moving in there. It’s a real grocery, not a beer store like Albertson’s. So if you don’t like it, just keep out of the neighborhood.

“Trader Joes is same company as Aldi”, I can only guess you have never shopped at an Aldi. I have shopped at both and they are nothing alike.

He did say they were the same COMPANY, not the same store…

ALDI and Trader Joe’s are completely different in roots and concept.

Trader Joe’s started out in SoCal and appeals to yuppies with crap like goat yogurt.

ALDI is like a dollar store concept in a grocery store, but the food is good and there is no frills. You have to bag your own groceries at ALDI and put a quarter in the shopping cart to get it out, just like in Germany, they don’t want to send a worker out to retriece carts.

I see your point but when the comment goes, “so in a sense we already have one” that tells me they think the two places are the same type as well as owned by the same company.

ALDI is expanding into SoCal. If the SoCal expansion goes well, ALDI will be on the Central Coast soon. Their smaller stores mean ALDI can operate in just about every town.

I lived in Germany and miss ALDI. Great, but cheap food with no frills.

Aldi is on it’s way. They know how poor the area is.

Your name is “demiseofslo” and yet you are lamenting the growth of a local independent grocer. YOU are the demise of slo my friend. Independent stores have higher costs, and higher prices, that is a fact of life. If you want responsible businesses that keep the profits within the community, sell quality products, and treat their employees fairly, then you will quite your whining and pay the higher prices. Low prices and convenience come at a cost. Integrity requires some sacrifice.

San Luis Obispo managed to retain its character for so many years because there was a solid understanding in the community about keeping chain stores out. Instead, now our politicians are focused on courting outsiders and making it increasingly difficult for locals to do anything.

Oh yay. Another one of their locations to have our debit/credit card info stolen . . . again.

I suggest you bring cash only when shopping there.

Did you ever wonder why the well-known “El Rancho” market in Solvang changed its name after a few weeks or months after taking over the former Scolari’s location in Pismo?

My thought was they didn’t do any market research before deciding on a name, and shortly after opening discovered the name didn’t fit their customers profiles. The only problem now is their prices are too high.

Because rich, beach-vacationing Whitey doesn’t shop at El Anything, and the Mexicans who showed up almost had a heart attack at the prices. It was not pretty.

“Whitey doesn’t shop at El Anything”

You got that right.. If you want to see local people with money, so they can afford decent groceries, move up to the bay, down to LA, or east to Texas.

Poor SLO… Literally, figuratively, and actually, is just economic toast. My guess the folks in SLO are worth 10-12 bucks an hour on the whole, so when the $15 hits, it over here.

The store should change back to El Rancho soon. What’s left of Whitey will be bolting soon.

That’s fantastic!

While you may laugh, replace the brothers with low skilled white folks and you can do this same video today. The brothers are doing better than ever while white America is falling so far so fast, no one knows what to do about it.

Slo is whiter than white.

The brothers had crack which killed them in the 80’s, and today “whitey” has prescription oxy.