Central Grocers Cooperative
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Central Grocers Cooperative, founded in 1917 as "Central Wholesale Grocers", is a retailers' cooperative based in Joliet, Illinois, near Chicago. It distributes both brand name and private label goods branded as Centrella and Silver Cup Value Buy to about 240 member-owner grocery stores in Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, and Wisconsin.
It supplies several grocery stores in Indiana and Illinois including: Strack & Van Til (acquired in 1998), Town & Country, Key Market, and Ultra Foods. It also purchased a number of former Cub Foods locations in the Chicago area, some of which it operates as Strack and Van Til and Ultra Foods. Fellow co-op Certified Grocers Midwest merged into Central Grocers in 2008. Prior to 2009, the company was headquartered in Franklin Park, Illinois.
As of 2013, it was the seventh largest grocery cooperative in the United States, with over $2 billion on consolidated annual sales.
- Smaller grocers circling Chicago: Stores open in outlying towns; are burbs next? by H. Lee Murphy in Crain's Chicago Business, 2 16, 2006
- National Grocers Bulletin, Volume 19 (1932) ("The initial capital was $25,000 in 1917. This was doubled two years later. ... favorable reputation for safe operating and fair dealing have brought the Central Wholesale Grocers to their present very enviable position.")
- Lazarus, George (16 August 2000). Central Grocers Puts Sterk Chain Into Its Basket, Chicago Tribune
- Central Grocers, Certified Midwest to Merge
- Manor, Robert (19 March 2008). Grocery cooperative may move from Franklin Park, Chicago Tribune
- Okon, Bob (26 Jan 2011). More than 1,000 try for 50 union jobs in Joliet, Chicago Sun Times
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