Save Mart Supermarkets

Save Mart Supermarkets (also known as The Save Mart Companies) is an American grocery store operator. It owns and operates stores under the names of Save Mart, S-Mart Foods, Lucky and FoodMaxx. The stores are located in northern California and northern Nevada.

Save Mart Supermarkets
IndustryRetail / Grocery
FoundedJanuary 17, 1952; 68 years ago (January 17, 1952)
Modesto, California, U.S.
FoundersMichael Piccinini and Nicholas Tocco
HeadquartersModesto, California, U.S.
Number of locations
Key people
Nicole Pesco (CEO)[1]
ProductsBakery, dairy, deli, frozen foods, general grocery, meat, pharmacy, produce, seafood, snacks, liquor
RevenueU.S. $4.6 billion (2019)[2]
Number of employees
23,000 (2020)[3]

Albertsons acquisitionEdit

On November 27, 2006, Save Mart announced an agreement to acquire 132 Albertsons stores in California and Nevada. Save Mart officially began operating the stores in late February 2007, and the acquired stores were to be re-branded during the year.[4] Those in the San Francisco Bay Area were rebranded as Lucky, and the rest would operate under the Save Mart banner.

Company historyEdit

This Pacific Grove, California supermarket was one of several former Albertsons stores acquired by Save Mart in 2007.[5]
  • 1952 – First Save Mart store opens in Modesto, California.
  • 1973 – Yosemite Wholesale opens in Merced.
  • 1981 – Bob Piccinini is named president.
  • 1984 – Save Mart partners with two other retailers to launch Mid-Valley Dairy, producer of Sunnyside Farms products. SMART Refrigerated Transport opens in Turlock, California.
  • 1985 – Bob Piccinini purchases Save Mart Supermarkets and becomes CEO.
  • 1986 – Opens its first two Food Maxx stores in Bakersfield, California in partnership with the Fleming Company.
  • 1988 – Partners with two other retailers to open Sunnyside Farms Dairy product plant in Turlock.
  • 1989 – Acquires 27 Fry's Supermarkets in the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • 1991 – Helps found and becomes a voting partner in Super Store Industries (SSI).
  • 1997 – Acquires 10 Lucky stores in California.
  • 2003 – Acquires 25 Food 4 Less stores and rebrands them as FoodMaxx.
  • 2007 – Acquires Albertsons stores in the Sacramento, California area, San Francisco Bay Area, Central Valley and northern Nevada and converts them to Lucky and Save Mart stores.

Banners and brandsEdit

Checkout lanes inside a Save Mart (formerly an Albertsons) supermarket in Pacific Grove, California.

Save Mart Supermarkets includes a number of store banners and private label product brands.

Save Mart stores are full-service grocery stores with a broad product offering, including fresh produce, bakery goods, deli foods and ethnic foods.

Lucky Stores are full-service grocery stores with a broad product offering, including fresh produce, bakery goods, deli foods, and ethnic foods.

FoodMaxx is a warehouse-concept grocery store.

MaxxValue Foods offers products at warehouse-store prices without a store club membership fee.

Store brandsEdit

  • Sunny Select – grocery products
  • Market Essentials - grocery products
  • Valu Time – packaged foods and general merchandise
  • Sunnyside Farms – dairy and frozen foods
  • Bayview Farms – dairy and frozen foods
  • Pacific Coast Selections – fresh and packaged foods
  • Pacific Coast Café – coffee
  • Full Circle – organic packaged foods
  • Master Cut – meats
  • Maxx Value – meats
  • Master Catch – fish and seafood
  • Top Care – over-the-counter medications
  • Paws Premium – pet food
  • Bohemian Hearth - bread
  • Lucky California - specialty deli

Distribution infrastructureEdit

Super Store Industries (Lathrop) also produces and packages bottled beverages, cultured dairy products, and frozen dairy products for several brands, including Sunnyside Farms yogurt, Stater Brothers ice cream, and Minute Maid orange juice. SSI owns and operates Sunnyside Farms (Fairfield) and Sunnyside Farms Dairy (Turlock).[6]

  • Yosemite Wholesale (Merced) is a dry and packaged good warehouse servicing all of the company's stores.
  • Save Mart Supermarkets Distribution Center (Roseville) services all of the company's stores.
  • SMART Refrigerated Transport (Lathrop) is a trucking firm that transports dry groceries, frozen foods, ice, and novelties to all of Save Mart Supermarkets’ stores. The company also works as an outside contractor hauling products for other retailers.

2011 Lucky Stores card-swipe theftsEdit

In November 2011, hundreds of Lucky customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area were reported to be victims of card-swipe thefts the previous month. The crime resulted from the surreptitious placement of card-scanning modules at the stores' self-serve checkout stands. Card information of customers, including personal identification numbers (PIN) may have been retrieved by the criminals. Some customers reported having money withdrawn from their accounts. The company advised affected customers to contact their financial institutions.[7] Lucky also advised some customers to close their accounts.

Store closuresEdit

Since 2010 the company has closed stores in Bakersfield, Clovis, Delano, Elk Grove, Folsom, Fresno, Kerman, Merced, Milpitas, Modesto, Sparks, Sanger, San Carlos, Tracy and Yuba City, due to competition, higher prices and other reasons.[8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16][17][18]


In a 2013 settlement with 35 California district attorneys, the company agreed to pay $2.55 million in civil penalties, costs and expenses for violating state law on storage, handling and disposal of hazardous materials, including bleaches, batteries, electronic devices, ignitible liquids, aerosol products and cleaning products.[19][20]

In 2015 the company agreed to pay $277,319 in back pay and damages to distribution center workers in Vacaville (now closed) and Roseville. A U.S. Department of Labor investigation found the company failed to include bonuses in the employee rate of pay when computing overtime.[21][22]


Employees at the company's stores are represented by labor unions.[23] These include: United Food and Commercial Workers, Teamsters, Service Employees International Union and Machinist Automotive Trades District.


  1. ^ "Leadership, Save Mart Supermarkets". Retrieved 2019-05-03.
  2. ^ "Save Mart Supermarkets on the Forbes America's Largest Private Companies List". Forbes. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  3. ^ "#91 Save Mart Supermarkets".
  4. ^ Save Mart Supermarkets confirms sale of Albertson's Northern California division (PDF) Archived July 3, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, Save Mart Supermarkets, February 23, 2007.
  5. ^ Calderon, Victor (2007-07-09). "Save Mart in, Albertsons out". The Salinas Californian. p. 1. Retrieved 2011-04-30.
  6. ^ "Hey Moo!". Super Store Industries. Retrieved 30 November 2011.
  7. ^ Ho, Vivian (December 9, 2011). "500-plus victims of card-swipe scam at Lucky". The San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 21 December 2011.
  8. ^ "Save Mart Closing Two Stores". Supermarket News. 2010-09-28. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  9. ^ "Local News". Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  10. ^ North, Mike. "Save Mart closing two Merced stores". The Merced Sun-Star. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  11. ^ "Save-Mart To Close Store In Elk Grove". CBS Sacramento. 2012-06-01. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  12. ^ Bowers, Wes. "Milpitas Save Mart to close". San Jose Mercury News. Archived from the original on 2016-01-18. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  13. ^ Stapley, Garth. "Save Mart to close grocery store in downtown Modesto". The Modesto Bee. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  14. ^ Garaygordobil, Gene; Ahumada-Garaygordobil, Maria. "Delano Save Mart sells to competitor, closing later this month". Archived from the original on 2016-01-18. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  15. ^ Vodden, Eric. "Yuba City's Save Mart will close in March". Appeal-Democrat. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  16. ^ "Local News". Archived from the original on 2014-08-01. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  17. ^ Rizzo, Denise Ellen (2015-02-19). "Biz Buzz: FoodMaxx to replace 11th Street Save Mart – Golden State Newspapers: Tracy Press News". Golden State Newspapers. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  18. ^ "Save Mart Supermarkets closing grocery store in Folsom". Sacramento Business Journal. 2015-04-22. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  19. ^ Bonnett, Jennifer (2013-04-04). "$2.6 million settlement in Save Mart lawsuit". Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  20. ^ "Save Mart to pay $2.5M from hazardous waste suit". Archived from the original on 2013-09-20. Retrieved 2019-10-12.
  21. ^ "Save Mart to pay thousands in back pay, damages to distribution center workers in Vacaville, Roseville". Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  22. ^ "Central Valley Business Times". Central Valley Business Times. 2015-04-13. Retrieved 2015-04-28.
  23. ^ Fact Sheet Save Mart Supermarkets. Retrieved December 31, 2016

External linksEdit