Longo’s a big winner at retailer awards

10/26/2011

Longo’s Maple Leaf Square 48,000-sq.-ft. store beside the Air Canada Centre in Toronto took the gold in the national large size category at Tuesday’s Canadian Independent Grocer of the Year Awards (To see and read more about the store, CLICK HERE!)

It was one of many awards the retailer took home last night.

In his acceptance speech, Anthony Longo dedicated the award to Longo’s founders: his two uncles, Gus and Joe; and his father, Tommy, who passed away earlier this year.

Other winners in the national, large surface category included:  IGA des Sources, Quebec City, Que. (silver); and Quality Foods–Courtenay, Courtenay, B.C. (bronze).

The awards night is the highlight of the two-day Grocery Innovations Canada conference and tradeshow put on annually by the Canadian Federation of Independent Grocers.

Along with the award presentations, John Scott, CFIG president and CEO, announced that for the association’s 50th anniversary, the show would move from the Toronto Congress Centre to the Toronto Convention Centre. Next year’s gala theme will be “welcome home” as Scott encouraged all delegates past and present to come to the show. He also unveiled a new CFIG logo to mark the occasion with the tagline: “Bold past, brilliant future.”

Also, the show would run Oct. 1-2, instead of later in the month to accommodate the new venue. The centerpiece of the anniversary next year will be a book highlighting the top 50 independents in the country. “The book is about 50 independent grocery entrepreneurs who are in business today,” said Scott.  In selecting the 50 grocers, criteria included looking at how involved they were in CFIG, and the work they did to further the independent grocer at the association.

The book is set to launch Jan. 12, 2012.

Three stores were recognized with a Hall of Fame award: Longo Bros. Fruit Markets–Hwy 7, Markham, Ont.; Longo Bros. Fruit Markets–York Mills, Toronto; and Sharpe’s Food Market, Campbellford, Ont. Scott noted that owner Steve Sharpe’s mother is the only remaining founding member of CFIG.

Among other winners last night:

National Awards, small surface:

Bronze: Quality Market–Campus Hill, Thunder Bay, Ont.

Silver: Blind Bay Village Grocer, Blind Bay, B.C.

Gold: L. Dufresne et Fils, Val David, Que.

National Awards, medium surface:

Bronze: Safety Mart Foods, Chase, B.C.

Silver: Metro Plouffe de Sherbrooke, Boul. Bourque, Sherbrooke, Que.

Gold: Port Carling Foodland, Port Carling, Ont.

Arnold Rands Heritage Award: Valu-Plus Foods, Keremeos, B.C.

Platinum achievement awards:

Galati Market Fresh, North York, Ont.

Gimli Super A Foods, Gimli, Man.

Longo Bros. Fruit Markets, Burlington, Ont.

Longo Bros. Fruit Markets, Maple, Ont.

Longo Bros. Fruit Markets, Markham, Ont.

Longo Bros. Fruit Markets–York Mills, Toronto

Longo Bros. Fruit Markets–Rutherford, Woodbridge, Ont.

Mike Dean’s Super Foods Stores, Chesterville, Ont.

Mike Dean’s Super Foods Stores, Winchester, Ont.

Quality Foods–Bowen Road, Nanaimo, B.C.

Quality Foods–Nanoose Bay, B.C.

Sharpe’s Food Market, Campbellford, Ont.

49th Parallel Grocery, Ladysmith, B.C.

The Canadian Master Merchandiser Awards were given out to retailers that demonstrated exceptional point-of-sale merchandising:

Gold small surface: Freson Bros. Manning IGA,  Manning, Alta.

Gold medium surface: Quality Foods Bowen Road, Nanaimo, B.C.

Gold large surface: Moncion’s Your Independent Grocer, Ottawa

Platinum: Freson Bros. Manning IGA, Manning, Alta.

Specialty store awards went to:

Bronze: Galleria Supermarket, Toronto

Silver: Market by Longo’s–King St. W, Toronto

David C. Parsons Award of Excellence in Specialty Food Retailing: Sunripe, Sarnia, Ont.

Upon accepting his award, Sunripe’s Will Willemsen said that grocery is all about the people. “Our job is to create a vision and give our people the tools and get out of the way,” he said.

Regional winners in small surface:

Blind Bay Village Grocer, Blind Bay, B.C.

Nesters Market, Banff, Alta.

Quality Market–Campus Hill, Thunder Bay, Ont.

Vince’s Market, Uxbridge, Ont.

L. Dufresne et Fils, Val David, Que.

Powell’s Supermarket, Harbour Grace, N.L.

Regional winners in medium surface:

Safety Mart Foods, Chase, B.C.

Market Street Vulcan, Vulcan, Alta.

Port Carling Foodland, Port Carling, Ont.

Longo Bros. Fruit Markets–York Mills, Toronto

Metro Plouffe de Sherbrooke, Boul. Bourque, Sherbrooke, Que.

Colemans, Stephenville, N.L.

Regional winners in large surface:


Quality Foods Courtenay, Courtenay, B.C.

Freson Bros. Hinton Hill IGA, Hinton, Alta.

Rome’s Independent Grocer, Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.

Longo’s Maple Leaf Square, Toronto

IGA des Sources, Quebec City, Que.

Colemans at the Gardens, Corner Brook, N.L.

The CFIG awards program recognizes stores in specialty, large, medium and small surface categories. Each store entry is evaluated on retail excellence, customer service, staff, department management, store layout, merchandising, creativity, cleanliness and community involvement.

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