17 March, 2018
Southeastern Grocers, the parent company of Winn-Dixie, announced Thursday it will close 94 stores in seven states, including 10 in the Tampa Bay area.
A press release announced that it is part of their financial restructuring plan, which includes closing 94 underperforming stores across the country.
Southeastern Grocers' spokesperson Joe Caldwell says the company wants to keep as many employees as possible.
Shoppers who frequent the Harveys on Edgewood Avenue are taking advantage of the store's location while they still can.
Jacksonville-based Southeastern Grocers had not filed its bankruptcy petition as of Friday morning.
Grocery store is all but empty and the carts are all inside at the Winn Dixie in Tavernier, Florida on September 7, 2017.
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Food deserts are areas, typically located in urban communities, where there's no access to fresh produce and other staples of a healthy diet because of a lack of grocery stores and farmers' markets, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. It said it intends to file with the bankruptcy court by the end of March. In doing so, the company is pursuing an objective of reducing debt and bolstering the "long-term health" of their business.
No date was given when the stores will close for good, but the company said it is their goal to emerge from this process within the next 90 days.
Southeastern did say the restructuring will reduce its overall debt by more than $500 million.
Officials have announced that a number of BI-LO stores in SC are closing, including one location in the Pee Dee.
Four of the stores closing are in Northeast Florida.
In total, 35 stores will close in the state of Florida. "We will continue every day to provide our associates with a great place to work and our customers with a store experience they can count on".