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Fit-Out: A fresh new concept

Foodstuffs has launched a new small-format grocery brand linked to its existing New World offering called Fresh Collective by New World.

The spanking new Fresh Collective on Auckland’s Alberton Ave was a Four Square before Foodstuffs approached owner Steve McClean about the possibility of rebranding it.

The store was relaunched as a Fresh Collective by New World in August – it’s only the second store of its kind. McClean jumped at the opportunity, saying it has given him the option to provide more for his customers. 

“It has given me the ability to completely transform the store and give my customers a whole new offer in terms of new products and a fantastic environment to shop in. We’re better catering to their needs in terms of offering meal inspiration and solutions.”

The construction of the new Fresh Collective took nine weeks to fully complete. The store closed on June 20 while the 660-square metre area was stripped back completely to its shell, opening officially on August 20. 

From the beginning, Foodstuffs approached the design of the new store very differently. Designworks worked with the Foodstuffs marketing team for over a year to undertake market research and come up with the new brand and brand identity.

According to McClean, a new type of life-size prototype was constructed solely for the fit-out.

“They created a life-sized mock-up of the entire store made from polystyrene and cardboard, so that we could all walk around inside it and see where the counters would go, and how big the aisles would be. That was a first for Foodstuffs and it helped ensure there were no surprises,” McClean says.

The property teams then worked to deliver the final product. The team of contractors included Format Interiors, Owl Electrical, Thorn Lighting, Sharp Signs, FPG and Wanzl Shelving.

One of the key features is the state-of-theart water loop refrigeration system, designed and installed by Auckland company EcoChill. It’s the first time such a system has been installed in a New Zealand supermarket and was commissioned by Foodstuffs to be as environmentally friendly as possible.

“As well as saving on electricity, the new water loop system contains a refrigerant that has less than half the global warming potential of standard synthetic refrigerants.”

McClean says he’s blown away by what has been achieved. The new store has been built within the old footprint, but feels much larger. The gross floor area is 660 square metres yet the retail floor itself is only 480.

“The fact that we’ve taken out the ceiling panels helps. It makes the whole space feel bigger – and has given it a much more modern look.”

The small format grocery brand offers additional amenities such as an in-house barista, wine tasting and an extensive deli counter. It also allows customers to order fresh smoothies; grab some sushi; choose a meal kit for dinner tonight or pick up some premium cuts from the in-house butcher. Customers can also get their everyday, food-focused top-up grocery needs.

“For some time now, we’ve been analysing what we offer our urban customers,” Foodstuffs North Island CEO Chris Quin says.

“The store has fresh food at its heart, with an extensive deli counter, a full specialty cheese range and an extensive range of fresh fruit and vegetables. It brings the best of what New World offers to a small, local store.”  

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Courtney Devereux is a Communication Consultant at Clear Hayes and freelance business writer.