Cub Foods

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Cub Foods, Inc.
IndustryRetail, Grocery
Founded1968 (51 years ago) (1968) in Minneapolis, Minnesota
HeadquartersStillwater, Minnesota
Number of locations
OwnerUnited Natural Foods

Cub is a supermarket chain with 77 stores in Minnesota and Illinois.[1] The company is a wholly owned subsidiary of SuperValu Inc., based in Eden Prairie, Minnesota. The store was famous for being "no frills; bag your own groceries...."



Cub Foods was founded by Minnesota-based Hooleys Supermarkets in 1968 in the riverside city of Stillwater by brothers Charles and Jack Hooley, brother-in-law Robert Thueson, and Culver Davis, Jr. The name “CUB” originally stood for Consumers United for Buying, and Cub Foods was one of the first total discount food stores in the United States[1] The chain was bought by Minnesota-based SuperValu in 1980 with five stores in the Twin Cities. After the purchase, the chain expanded to 83 stores in three states. Until 1999, WinCo Foods operated several Cub Foods stores. Cub Foods also operated eight stores in Colorado until 2003, when they sold most of their stores to Kroger.

The chain also had locations operated by Delhaize Group in parts of the Southern United States, namely in the metro Atlanta and metro Nashville areas in the 1980s and 1990s.[2] The distinctively curved aqua-green tin roof on the front of a red brick façade can still be seen on many of these buildings, including the Big Lots in Woodstock, Georgia and the Northeast Cobb YMCA.

Cub Foods operated four stores in Columbus, Ohio: 3600 Soldano Boulevard (W. Broad at Wilson Road), Consumer Square East (Brice Rd. and Tussing), 2757 Festival Lane (Sawmill at SR 161), and Columbus Square (SR 161 at Forest Hills Boulevard). On May 23, 1997, all four stores were acquired by Kroger. The Kroger at Columbus Square closed in July 2011.[3][4] CUB Foods also had some stores in the Milwaukee, Wisconsin area. This included one store on Greenfield Ave. in West Allis. Cub Foods is credited with many innovations.[citation needed]

Effects from Albertsons merger[edit]

As part of SuperValu's acquisition of New Albertsons, including its Chicago-based Jewel-Osco stores, SuperValu divested its Chicago-area Cub Foods locations to an investment group headed by Cerberus Capital Management, to avoid market concentration issues. (The Cerberus-led group later acquired New Albertsons from SuperValu in March 2013, reuniting the two Albertsons companies under the common holding company Albertsons LLC.) Since Cerberus took control, four locations (Algonquin, Bedford Park, 87th Street in Chicago, and Naperville) closed, and Cerberus then announced that it was selling the remaining Illinois stores to other operators.[5] The last of the Chicago-area Cub Foods stores closed on December 10, 2006. A majority of them were sold to Central Grocers Cooperative and operated as Strack & Van Til and Ultra Foods by a wholly owned unit of the cooperative, and as Garden Fresh Markets by one of its members;[6] others were sold to Grand Mart International Foods. However, only four of the eight stores sold to Grand Mart ever opened under that company's ownership, and all were closed after less than five months of operation. Central Grocers Cooperative subsequently went bankrupt in 2017.

As of June 2009, the only remaining Cub Foods stores in Illinois which were still owned by SuperValu were one store in Peoria (a second store in Midtown Plaza in Peoria closed in March 2009 after just six-and-a-half years of operation) and one store in Freeport.

On October 9, 2010, the Cub Foods in Peoria, still owned and operated by SuperValu, changed its name to Shop 'n Save and continued to operate under that name until it closed in 2016. This made the Freeport store the only remaining SuperValu-owned store in Illinois to continue to operate as a Cub Foods location. And with the closure of the last stores in Madison, Wisconsin in 2012, the Freeport Cub store is now the only Cub store outside Minnesota.

Three Springfield, Illinois, stores independently owned by Niemann Foods (two of which are former Jewel-Osco stores acquired from the Cerberus-led group) had a franchise to use the Cub Foods name as part of the stores' branding. These stores also carried selected Cub Foods-branded products under the same agreement. As of recently, these three stores no longer use the Cub Foods name; instead, they are now called County Market (another trademark owned by SuperValu but franchised to independent grocers). A Niemann-owned store in Bloomington, Illinois, used the Cub Foods name under license from SuperValu until it closed in 2015.

In 2018 the word "Foods" has been dropped from the name. The signs and ads now simply say “Cub,” and the remodeled stores reflect the broader assortment of goods that it needs to compete not just with Hy-Vee but Target, Walmart, Aldi and even Amazon. Cub is the biggest chain in Supervalu's retail portfolio. Its sale of the Save-A-Lot discount chain for $1.3 billion “fundamentally changed our leverage,” Chief Executive Mark Gross said this year. Some of that is going toward updating Cub. As of 2017, new stores have opened in Blaine and Oakdale, while 18 Twin Cities locations have been remodeled. Nearly all of Cub's remodels are in areas where Hy-Vee opened stores nearby, including Maple Grove, Plymouth, and Brooklyn Park. Cub brought elements to the remodeled stores that customers liked — more grab-and-go foods, a larger produce section and a drive-up pharmacy — but those were reactions to Hy-Vee. Stillwater is an exception. The new 88,500-square-foot store includes ideas that Cub executives are trying out before adding to other stores.[7]

On July 26, 2018, it was announced that parent company Supervalu would be purchased by United Natural Foods for $2.9 billion. As a result of this purchase, Cub and other Supervalu retail properties will be divested from the company. It is still unclear as to who will eventually purchase Cub Foods.[8]

Former slogans[edit]

(Incomplete list)

  • "Cub Foods. A new way to run a supermarket."
  • "The Low Price Leader"
  • "Great Food, Great Prices"
  • "Save More, Get More"
  • "Where the Great Taste of Food Costs Less"
  • "I ♥ My Cub" (made a brief return as a promotion for CUB's 40th birthday)
  • "The Store Next Door"[5]
  • "Bring more to your table"
  • "Your Holiday List For Less" (2009 holiday slogan for all Supervalu stores)
  • "The People You Trust, the Store You Know" (Cub Pharmacy slogan 2006-2009)
  • "Helping hands are just around the corner" (Cub Pharmacy slogan 2009-2010)
  • "Good Things Are Just Around The Corner..."
  • "Plenty Fresh For Plenty Less" (Cub Foods slogan 2010-2011)
  • "For People who Love to Save Money" Current Dayton Market Slogan
  • "My neighborhood. My Cub."
  • "Better Fresh, Better Value"
  • "For Your Life" (current Cub Foods slogan)

Customer data security breaches[edit]

Parent company SuperValu sent a letter to customers on August 25, 2014, that My CUB Rewards members who provided their data and shoppers who used credit cards during the period between June 22, 2014 (at the earliest) and July 17, 2014 (at the latest), at 209 SuperValu stores and stand-alone liquor stores may have been affected by a data security breach. SuperValu posted this information on their website in a press release dated August 14, 2014. Information on the affected stores and eligibility for customers on identity protection programs are available on SuperValu's press release site.[9]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "SuperValu:Cub Foods Corporate Banner".
  2. ^ "History". Delhaize Group. Archived from the original on 20 July 2012. Retrieved 19 July 2012.
  3. ^ "Kroger's Columbus Square store to close; county offices may fill gap". This Week. May 11, 2011. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
  4. ^ "Kroger to close Columbus Square location". The Columbus Dispatch. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
  5. ^ a b "Topic Galleries". Chicago Tribune.
  6. ^ Holecek, Andrea (2007). "Four Sterk's stores changing hands". NWI Times.
  7. ^ "Remodeled Cub grocery in Stillwater tests new concepts". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2018-07-18.
  8. ^ Ewoldt, John; Painter, Kristen Leigh (July 26, 2018). "Sale of Supervalu puts future of Cub Foods up in the air". Star Tribune. Minneapolis. Retrieved July 26, 2018.
  9. ^ "SUPERVALU INC. - Grocery Retail and Supply Chain Services - Security". Retrieved 2018-07-18.

External links[edit]