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Large crowd attends Fresh and Easy grand opening

Original post made on Mar 2, 2011

Fresh and Easy Neighborhood Market opened its much-anticipated Danville store Wednesday morning to an excited crowed who waited outside with shopping carts and bags in hand.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Wednesday, March 2, 2011, 3:49 PM

Comments (21)

Posted by Don Wellington, a resident of another community
on Mar 2, 2011 at 7:47 pm

Fresh and Easy was a disappointing experience on the first day. Hope it gets better.
Product labelling was insufficient and probably illegal in US.
Checkout line was inefficient.
Left my cart with two items and left store.

Expected much better.
Back to Trader Joe's I go.

Posted by jo, a resident of Danville
on Mar 3, 2011 at 8:20 am

Was surprised I had to check myself out... don't like self checkout for over ten items!! You need customer service ...

Posted by TJ Shopper, a resident of Danville
on Mar 3, 2011 at 9:11 am

Any store other than Safeway is desperately needed in our community. Safeway has been the only major player in town for decades and trust me, we are paying for that in their prices. It is common knowledge in the industry that Safeway has been taking advantage of their customer base with extremely high prices for years. Hence, the "lower prices" and "just for you" campaigns to keep their customers in their stores.

Self Checkout lines are the way of the future. In 20 years, there will only be self checkout. You may not like it, but it is reality. It is one of the main ways a company like F&E can keep their prices down.

Fresh & Easy is a great store but I have two complaints. They are a British Company (the Walmart of the UK) I wish that it was a US company as I like to keep as much of our money in the country as possible. The biggest issue this store will have is the parking situation. It is the worst parking lot in the city and adding F&E will only make it worse.

I am now an official Trader Joe's/Costco/Fresh and Easy Shopper.

Posted by adam reith, a resident of Danville
on Mar 3, 2011 at 11:13 am

Trader Joe's is a foreign company as well (germany).

Posted by Hal Bailey, a resident of another community
on Mar 3, 2011 at 11:42 am

Dear Jessica,

The people of Fresh and Easy are very welcoming!

The store's offering is limited and simply does not compare to Trader Joe's or our Alamo Safeway. Produce was not appealing especially the tomatoes. Wine is limited. Bread lacks the broad offering of other stores. Meat and seafood was very limited.

Parking makes it a difficult stop for a quick purchase and the Home Depot styled self-check out will likely not work without constant attendance and service.

I applaud the staff for their welcome and enthusiasm,

Posted by SALLY, a resident of Danville
on Mar 3, 2011 at 1:36 pm

I just returned from my first visit to FRESH AND EASY. Really impressed with the selection ( great choices--especially single serving items ) Plus the cashiers were friendly--had great attitudes ( Luckys and Lunardis take note ). Will continue to shop at FRESH AND EASY !!

Posted by collins, a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Mar 3, 2011 at 1:46 pm

As i have been extremely disappointed with Trader Joe's since the recent buy out by foreign company, I look forward to trying Fresh and Easy. My husband went and really liked it. I also have been told that they carry Gluten Free products. Yipppeee!

Posted by American, a resident of Danville
on Mar 3, 2011 at 1:46 pm

Would like a clarification from posts above: Are there actual cashiers at Fresh and Easy at check out, or does everyone have to do self check out line? Maybe I am old fashioned, but I prefer having actual human beings as cashiers, rather than some automated computer. Even with cashiers, often some elderly person or other customer has a problem with their ATM or credit card, and if all lines are self check out lines than it is guaranteed that there will be people having problems and slowing up the lines. Overall, I think the cashiers at Lunardi's and Safeway do an excellent job, and if Fresh and Easy is only self check out line, I do not plan to shop there.

Posted by Derek, a resident of Danville
on Mar 3, 2011 at 2:48 pm

Despite an incredibly long line last night, we were through it and out of the store in no more than six or seven minutes. I too am not a fan of self-check-out, and people of all ages & creeds often have trouble with these beastly robots (Home Dee-Pot a case in point). So the question I have is this: are all those very nice, helpful employees that took care of us last night going to lose their jobs when F & E decides we no longer need them?
As for the comment that these guys are the "Walmart of England", sorry, but not true. That would imply that 99% of the store was Chinese made goods - clearly not the case. Or that Fresh & Easy controlled entire cities in the People's Republic of Cheese, again, untrue.
Overall we had a completely different, and very positive experience compared with Don't post, and I really have no clue what he is gibbering about regarding labeling. But it was very difficult to move a cart through the store last night, even worse than Trader Joe's, that much I will crab about.
I think this store will impact Lucky's far more than Safeway, since the former is much closer to F & E.

Posted by Derek, a resident of Danville
on Mar 3, 2011 at 2:50 pm

Sorry for the typo - meant to say "Don's post"

Posted by collins, a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Mar 3, 2011 at 4:32 pm

Just had the most delicious shortbread cookie! And it was Gluten Free! I bought it at Fresh & Easy. So good to be in a grocery store at the Green Valley Center once again.

About the self check out, a very nice employee came and helped me. (I didn't really need the help since I'm used to Home Depot.)

I already go to Walgreen's, so Fresh & Easy is convenient.

Goodbye Trader Joe's (learn to stop being so rude to old time customers!), Hello Fresh & Easy!

Posted by shopper, a resident of San Ramon Valley High School
on Mar 4, 2011 at 12:31 am

Some things were impressive: the checkout clerk was helpful but forgot to give me the discount, the line moved quickly, the packaged foods looked very appealing, staff was very friendly, gluten free products, but... I was disappointed in the limited selections of the items I had planned on purchasing. Very limited pasta items and no whole wheat pasta, no gel deodorant, bread selection very limited, and it seemed like every section had only a few choices. Admittedly, it is a relatively small store and was packed to the gills with merchandise and people. Very few British items. I'll still stick to the Farmer's market, TJ's and Safeway.

Posted by Jan, a resident of another community
on Mar 4, 2011 at 6:33 am

I haven't had the pleasure to shop there yet, but I will! My Son is a team leader for the Danville Store. He he, like the store Manager worked at Safeway for many years! They trained their team leaders extensively for many weeks! And their training spanned from San Jose to Bakersfield. They are a family orientated store, and stress their customer service.They cater to each specific neighborhood, so, If there is something that they do not have, than ask, and I'm sure that they will do there best to accomadate! I have a lot of confidence that they will do well.

Posted by shopper, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 6:44 am

Trader Joe's is local from Pasadena, CA.

Posted by Anne, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 7:09 am

I am grateful to have a grocery store in the neighborhood again. 3 years without a store down the street has been inconvenient. The staff was very friendly and working hard. I like the fact that they offer quick, healthy dinner options that are perfect for a family of 3 and also offer everyday items one would find at Lucky's or Safeway. It may not be perfect as some are quick to point out but is any store? How often I have had to plan my Sunday shopping around 2-3 different stores to get what we need. As for Trader Joe's, I still love them too. Why do we have to pick one store? We can't support both? They are different and that's ok.

Posted by Bill, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 7:53 am

Doesn't matter to me that much, but, just so you know, Trader Joes is owned by the family trust of a German billionaire: Web Link

For American, I asked and was told that there will always be clerks to help with checkout and bagging if you want or need it. During the busiest times on opening day there were clerks at every station doing checkout and bagging to make sure the line moved fast.

As for parking, you'll want to wait a week until store traffic stabilizes. I have a feeling that parking will be just fine. For those who don't know, there are many spots behind Walgreens also.

Posted by Grace, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 8:19 am

Happy Fresh & Easy opened, we needed a grocery store in that shopping center. I am very frustrated and disappointed, though. Fresh & Easy advertises that they are neighborhood friendly and hire people in the area. I live in Danville and have applied twice to work for this store. I have been out of work for almost a year. I have all the requirements and can practically walk to this location. I never even heard back from anyone at this location regardig my resume or at least come in for a interview. I also emailed the company twice. Anyway, I guess I will give them my business occasionally but it would have been nice if they gave me the same courtesy.

Posted by Costco & TJ & Lucky Shopper, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 8:46 am

I agree with the comments about the self-checkout; BAD IDEA! They still need employees there to assist and then it takes twice as long. Bad design of the conveyor belt and basket placement too. I see a change if they want to see customers reture after the grand opening hype. Selections were very limited, especially the breads. TJ's rocks in that department and all others as well. I did see mold in some of their pre-packaged grapes. Bottom line is I can walk there but will choose TJ's. I disagree with the comment about employees not being friendly at TJ's. They are SO NICE and I love the little samples they have and coffee. I do agree about the extremely unfriendly staff at Lunardi's though. Wish not so Fresh and not so Easy wasn't there and it was still Lucky's!

Posted by Self-Checkout Bob, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 10:43 am

Have not been to F&E yet but I have used Self-Checkout @ Home Depot & now at Safeway (Tassajara). When my wife sends me out for a few items (less than 10 or so) I go right through the Self-Checkout. I have not been through the regular Checkout routine in months and I wouldn't have it any other way ... unless it was Tracy checking me out! She's tops!

There are six stations @ Safeway and some times all six are being used and there is an ever so slight wait. Do it a few times for a small number of items & you will be sold. I love it. Boom ... I'm in & out of Safeway in no time.

Now I do acknowled, I'm still learning and a youngster nearing the BIG 70 !!

Posted by Zurich, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 11:56 am

Trader Joe's is a completly (100%) owned German company.

Posted by Mary, a resident of Danville
on Mar 4, 2011 at 4:03 pm

FRESH and EASY. Great store. I was at the opening and did not get a good look at all the produce etc, but did buy milk and their instant dinners. Also bought delicious Oatmeal cookies. I think instead of negative comments give the store a chance and see what happens. I think and hope it will do well. RE: Parking...have you tried to park at Trader Joe's...impossible sometimes so hopefully there will be good parking at F & E. I like the fact that there are no preservatives in their brand. As far as Trader Joe...I love the store when I can get to it and park...their store clerks are not as friendly and need customer service training. But between Lunardi's, Trader Joe and now F & E. We have lots of choices. We are indeed very lucky to live in Danville. No complaints here.

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