Food 4 Less opening in Arroyo Grande

July 24, 2016

Food 4 LessThe parent company of discount grocery Food 4 Less has purchased the Haggen lease at the Five Cities Center on Branch Street, according to a press release. The purchase price and the date the new store will open were not disclosed.

In late October, as part of a bankruptcy, Haggen Food and Pharmacy shuttered its Arroyo Grande location leaving city residents without a full-service grocery store.

Currently, Arroyo Grande residents have three grocery store shopping options: specialty grocery store Trader Joes, discount grocery store Smart & Final or they can leave the city to shop at a full service grocery store. Full service grocery stores include service delis where customers can purchased items such as cooked meats, salads and deli sandwiches.

The October Haggan’s closure has led to residents leaving the city to shop, lower tax revenue for the city, and problems with reduced income for neighboring businesses.

In the past, grocery stores at the site brought in about $2.4 million per month in revenue making it one of the city’s top five tax revenue generators. While food items on the shelves are not taxable, food from the hot delis, pharmaceuticals and nonfood items are taxable.

However, replacing a full service store with a discount grocery is likely to reduce the amount of tax revenue the store generates. In addition, Arroyo Grande residents seeking to shop at a full service grocery store will still have to leave the city to do their shopping.


True…Jim Hill got bad press from another council member for really just trying to move the process along, award the highest bidder to move his market in, and start bringing tax revenues and more jobs to Arroyo Grande. It’s been vacant too many months , and still will be a few more months before we see it opened.

And it’s not like the people got something new. Food 4 less is a glorified Smart and Final. Not even a good trade for Albertsons or Haagens. We got short-changed.


Oops, this was a response to timB below


Could be worse, could be the Food-4-Less / FoodsCo owned by Kroger…

I guess we want the best stuff for the lowest price, all while demanding they pay the employees the best wages. I suppose the general public’s inability to grasp the basic accounting formula is what is most worrisome.

I still think that whole Haggen fiasco was a massive insider deal to eliminate dead union weight…


What a relief. Cal Fresh is the most expensive grocery store I have ever been into. It’s cheaper to buy food at a restaurant then buy groceries at Cal Fresh.


California Fresh is my favorite market. True, if one is not watching what they are buying, it can add up fast; however, like every other market, one truly needs to do their homework and shop around for different items at different places. Sales, coupons, etc. are all needed to really save anything.

I’d love one place to be the best at everything, but I’ve not really seen it. So I get some items on sale here, some items on sale there… it’s more work, and I love to be lazy as the next person, but that will cost more money.


Leave the city and take the arduous journey to Von’s.


And be prepared to pay big $$$$’s, at least not as big $$$$$’s as compared to California Fresh Market


Food 4 Less absolutely SUCKS. What a cesspool. Now with Walmart, Marshall’s, and a F4L as the anchors, we have just received a complete package of ghetto-quality shopping. Welcome to Santa Maria North.

Russ J

I agree that food for less isn’t for me. Long lines, self bagging, maze like layout and crappy meat department. That said, looks like your small town shopping public may have a different opinion. The market surveyors must have given a green light to the corporate brass on 5 cities. My store favorite is Rancho Market. Even though selection and prices aren’t their strong suit, quality, service and store layout beats every one hands down.


Simply put, competition is GOOD. It insures quality, quantity, and affordability.


“…or they can leave the city to shop at a full service grocery store.”

LOL, What drama queens! That should read “or they can cross the street and shop at Vons.”


Arroyo Grande City Council… something is better than nothing so we will have to accept Food For Less, but I would have prefered a full service grocery store like Spencers. I know you do not have much say so but I for one am very disappointed that my tax dollars will go to Grover Beach or Pismo Beach just when we need more revenue for our city. Please people in Arroyo Grande let’s vote in more forward thinking candidates like LeAnn Akins and Major Hill and John Mack and hopeful Ken Sage. This election will determine the direction of our city for the next 4 years, you have seen what blunders the current majority have done let us say No More for the next 4 years. Your Voice Really Does Count.


Spencers…full service, hardly, they fought to stop Food For less, then left the residents of Arroyo Grande high and dry, that kind of service I don’t need. If Spencers had moved in I would not have shopped there, but I will shop at Food For Less. Plus given the city is raising are water rates, our sewer rates are going up and if that ridiculous road tax passes I will need to cut my food costs


Food 4 Less is not what you think it is. All the Food 4 Less’s on the central coast are owned by a company out of Stockton. They have just as much if not more variety than most regular grocery stores, and they do an excellent job of sourcing local items as well as organic products. Their produce sections are far superior to most grocery stores.


I wonder if councilwoman Harmon has any regrets for throwing her tissy fit when Mayor Hill tried to expedite granting the lease to the highest bidder, Spencers. I wonder if she will be shopping at Vons in Grover Beach now!


Maybe if AG Mayor Jim Hill hadn’t butted in with his letter to the Federal Trade Commission, Albertson’s would have been allowed to return. Fire Jim Hill.


Do you have some theory as to how Jim Hill’s letter would have had this effect? Or, better yet, some real evidence? Or are you just throwing out an anonymous political attack from the blue based on some sort of tortured, speculative reasoning?


this is not factual.

The FTC said that Albertsons had to go a long time ago.

The council has no say on who leases the space, so anybody that says that is playing politics not being honest .

This issue is being used to drive a wedge into the community.

I expect that from national politicians not local people trying to serve community.

shameful ….


If what you say is factual and “council has no say on who leases spaces” then why did AG Mayor Hill butt in and write the FTC letter which showed favoritism to a certain grocery store?