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One store closes, another opens

The Dixon St location vacated by furniture and whiteware retailer Smiths City – which confirmed on Friday it is shutting up shop in two weeks – already has a new tenant.

New Zealand-owned independent grocery chain Reduced to Clear is on track to open its 12th and largest store in Masterton on May 1, according to company general manager Stephen Jones.

“If we can open sooner, we will, but this is a realistic timeframe at this stage,” he said.

The new outlet will employ about 20 locals, and the company will be meeting with Smiths City employees affected by that store’s closure about potential job opportunities.

Founded 15 years ago, Reduced to Clear sources products approaching their best-before and use-by dates from “top brand food manufacturers” in New Zealand, Australia and further afield and sells them for up to 80 per cent less than normal retail prices.

The grocery chain also offers a comprehensive core range of products – including bread, milk, eggs and other essentials – in order to offer customers a one-stop shop option.

Smiths City’s last day of trading will be on Sunday March 19.

Opening in Masterton is part of Reduced to Clear’s “ambitious expansion plans to open more stores around the country over the next few years”, Jones said, thanks to enjoying “considerable growth as more and more customers discover the significant savings they can make on their food shopping bill”.

At 1100m2, the location will be the chain’s largest yet – its average store size is around 650m2 – which provides the chance to offer an expanded product range. Online distribution from the site is also on the cards.

The grocery business opened its first outlet in Manukau, Auckland in 2008 with the aim of minimising food waste.

Now with 11 stores already trading with the North Island – including in Palmerston and Porirua – it still prides itself on the contribution it makes to reducing the amount of edible food that’s chucked out in Aotearoa each year.

The company estimates it has prevented around 50,000 tonnes of products from being needlessly wasted – the equivalent of shipping containers stacked on top of each other to the height of Mount Everest.

Reduced to Clear taking over Smiths City’s Dixon St site was facilitated by Gollins Commercial and Bosch Property Management.

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