Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Ontario (inc. Toronto) >
Jun 2, 2009 05:01 PM

Peterborough Superstore (new Loblaws)

Ok, so I'm not a regular Loblaws shopper. The new Peterborough Superstore opened sometime late last winter and I'd been in only once before today - and the previous time I was just running in and out. Anyway, today I was shocked - SHOCKED - at how truly abysmal a store this is. I'm not sure what kind of "super" they had in mind when they redesigned this store but it is, in every way, a seriously yukkier shopping experience than the regular Loblaws it replaced. The produce is really really awful - I mean REALLY awful. Wilted, disorganized, not price-labelled, a big horrible mess. The vegetables are all relegated to the side walls where they sit, shrivelled, in measly composting heaps. The fruit was just slightly better, but I tell you both No Frills and Price Chopper has them beat by a mile.

And don't get me started on the fish counter. Are they kidding? Everything looked sad and old. Nothing is on ice; there are just nasty little stainless bins filled, halfheartedly, with a few flabby fillets of whatnot. I actually went in there for some fish but ended up coming home and defrosting some salmon I had in the freezer instead.

What were they thinking? Is it just me?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. I know what you mean... Then again, all these grocery stores are just... well... food factories. So we go for certain sales on otherwise overpriced items, but we like to shop a little closer to home when we can and ironically, the prices aren't a lot more to shop in a smaller store (like the Market in Lakefield... for fruit and veg.)... or Flannigan's for meat. Get their capon chicken some time (there is one in Bridgenorth too). They are THE BEST!

    2 Replies
    1. re: kawarthagirl

      Oh I know. I do much of my shopping at the farmers market and buy from local producers as much as possible. But there are things that you need from a supermarket. And when they rebuilt the old Loblaws I really expected it to be, if not a huge improvement, at least a reasonable place to shop. The new store not only has dreadful lighting and horrible fresh meat and fish counters but the produce is just abysmal. I was honestly surprised at how bad it is. The fresh fruit and veg at No Frills is a million times better - and the prices are better too. I went to Superstore because I was in a hurry and was in the area - but I won't be back.

      If I'm in Bridgenorth or Lakefield I'll check out Flannigans. It's a bit of a hike from Millbrook, so I'd have to have another reason to be passing through.

      1. re: Nyleve

        True... I have yet to have a good experience at the superstore... or the independent... or metro... sometimes I feel like we have to leave town to get a good experience...

    2. Welcome to shopping at Loblaw's Peterborough food distribution warehouse.
      I've been there several times, and find most people just walk around disoriented and confused.
      I had thought the new store may have some of the merits of the Loblaws in Lindsay, which is a superb store, they have people play a grand piano on the mezzanine! BUt no, were left with a grey, grocery walmart that caters to Peterborough's blue collar ethos.

      7 Replies
      1. re: Tinpot

        OMG! Too funny - my husband calls the 'blue collar ethos' something else entirely, but you are so right. And it's funny that you would mention Lindsay - we actually used to drive to that Loblaws because there was a time when it was the only place to get things like arugula... or parmigiano reggiano... The Superstore in Peterborough leaves me cold and uninspired. It makes me want to eat food out of a box, or order Chinese! Maybe it's owned by restaurants in an attempt to get all of us to eat our more... a conspiracy... yes... that's it! :)

        1. re: kawarthagirl

          Shee...and there I was feeling all superior over Lindsay. Who knew?

          1. re: kawarthagirl

            In less polite forums I call it something else too.
            While I work quite close to The Loblaws Stuporstore, we live between Ptbo and Lindsay and often go there to grocery shop. What's ironic, is that I believe statistically, Lindsay is worse off than Ptbo in factors that contribute to the blue collar demographic.
            At least Herma's is not that far...

            1. re: Tinpot

              You know, I haven't loved most things at Herma's either. We go there once in a while and we always walk away uninspired. Most of the frozen stuff we have tried at one time or another, some of which we found totally inedible. Are we missing something?

          2. re: Tinpot

            The Lindsay Loblaw's, as best I can tell from a distance, is the new high end Loblaw store format. They haven't quite perfected this format. The Victoria Park/Gerrard Loblaw's in Toronto recently got this reno. Then they closed it for a couple of days in May to do a major reconfiguration, with staff getting triple time. It was just a few months after the opening.

            The Peterborough store seems to be a "Loblaw's Superstore". This translates as a "Real Canadian Superstore" (read "Wal-Mart killer that didn't work") with most of the non-supermarket stock eliminated from the mix. The Superstore in Don Mills has been open for several years and its enormous, nonsensical layout is still in place.

            I suspect you can write off any expectations of improvement in the near future. When they put the "Superstore" banner on a new location, it's mainly about being able to reduce wages.

            (If any UFCW members from a Loblaw's Superstore are reading this and they didn't cut wages, please correct me. My comment was true as of about a year ago.)

            1. re: embee

              I didn't find store layout half as annoying as the checkout. Lots of checkouts and only two open?!? Are you kidding?! To make it even worse you have to wait while the person ahead of you bags their own groceries! This is a superstore? Super for who? It can't be that hard to do it right the first time can it? Why wait until they lose half their customers before they even pretend to care. Typical for Peterborough I'm afraid. We get lots of big name stores but they're all 2nd class.

              1. re: golly

                I hate bag your own - I have a 6 month old. It's impossible. I need to shop with someone if we go there. Plus the cheesy put a quarter in and get a cart thing drives me crazy. Plus they don't have the infant carts, so I have to drag along a separate car seat. All in all, not worth the drive to Lansdowne.

                Luckily I've got 2 excellent veggie markets (1 year round, 1 not), a good butcher and a bulk store for 80% of what we need. The rest we go to the smaller and yet far more personable Valu-mart, where the sales are the same but the "valu" is in the service.