1916: John Wegman opens the Rochester Fruit & Vegetable
Co., which marks the beginning of Wegmans Food Markets.
His brother Walter joins him a year later.
1921: John and Walter Wegman purchase the Seel Grocery
Co. and expand operations to include general groceries and
1931: Wegmans stores are incorporated, and feature meats,
produce, groceries, dairy products and baked goods.
1950: Robert Wegman becomes president of the entire
company at the age of 31.
1957: A store opens in March in Newark Plaza, Wayne
County, N. Y., the first shopping plaza and supermarket
developed outside of Monroe County by Wegmans
Enterprises. It is the eleventh and largest supermarket in
1959: Wegmans purchases its first truck trailer and displays
its sunburst logo for the first time.
1961: Wegmans joins Staff Supermarket Associates to
obtain their own “Staff” brand for private label products
ranging from frozen food to sponges.
1964: Danny Wegman joins the company.
1967: Robert Wegman is elected president of the Super
Wegmans has received countless awards for
charitable work in its hometown—and elsewhere—and for its commitment to sustainability and affordable healthy eating. It has
appeared 19 times on Fortune magazine’s list
of the Best Companies in America to Work
For, and is at the top of American Customer
Satisfaction Index list. Forbes has pegged the
chain as one of the top 10 employers in the
country and it is consistently ranked as one of
the top supermarkets in the country by both
Consumer Reports and the Food Network.
It is for these reasons, and many more,
that Grocery Headquarters is proud to honor
Wegmans as our 2016 Retailer of the Year.
After 100 years, the Wegmans story is far
from over. In fact, the company is opening the
book on a new chapter with expansion of its
stores and venerable reputation into new mar-
keting areas like North Carolina and a down-
sized urban format for New York.
The 88-store chain, which had annual
sales of $7.9 billion in 2015, is poised to easily
top the $8 billion mark this year. Its growth
is expected to continue with new stores in
the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Southeast
regions in marketing areas that are anxious
for the Wegmans experience.
The chain’s story began in 1916—the same
year Clarence Saunders launched Piggly
Wiggly, one of the first self-service supermarkets. A year after peddling produce from
president, Private Label Manufacturers Association
I think everyone in the industry firmly believes that Wegmans has been among the industry leaders for
many years and their private label is really the best that private label can be.
There are few companies that are so responsive to their customers and creative in terms products they
have developed for their store brand. And they are very aggressive about marketing their own brand.
Based on their expansion in recent years, I am sure this strategy will continue as they enter new marketing areas. A good example was their entry into New Jersey years ago. They offered the best products
and assortment and people responded to it. They will do exactly the same thing elsewhere.
They are not going into North Carolina just to serve transplanted Yankees. They are going in because
they believe there is an opportunity for high quality products. It is what Wegmans is famous for and they
will not compromise.”