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Johnnie's Foodmaster Closing All Locations

Whole Foods will replace the location in Charlestown, but all Johnnie's are closing. Liquidation sales have already begun.

If you thought you could drive to a different Johnnie's, you're out of luck.

A week after Johnnie's Foodmaster officially announced that its Charlestown location would become a Whole Foods, Boston.com has reported the Chelsea-based supermarket chain is closing all its locations.

Boston.com says an Illinois-based company, Hilco Merchant Resources, which specializes in liquidation services, has begun closing sales at all of the Johnnie's Foodmaster markets.

There will be discounts of up to 30 percent, and closing sales begin Nov. 2, Boston.com reports.

The closure of Johnnie's Foodmaster will leave West Somerville without a supermarket.

A petition drive started in Charlestown had demanded Whole Foods send shuttle busses to take residents to other area supermarkets while Johnnie's is closed. 

John Leary November 02, 2012 at 05:29 PM
Any idea what will happen to the Johnnie's that was just built in South Boston? It hasn't even opened yet.
I aint got time for dat November 02, 2012 at 08:07 PM
I have been a partime employee at Johnnies on Alewife Brook Parkway for 10 years. This store is being closed and not replaced with anything at the moment. It'll probably sit there as an eye sore just like the Star Market on Broadway in Somerville. This guy didn't inform the employees one way or another. You would think he would've had some form of communication with us to at least send a note informing us we will no longer have jobs. I"m fortunate enough to have a full time job, what about the employees who this was there only job. Who have given Johnnies Foodmaster years of quality service. The patrons who live and shop around there. All I can say is he is going down in my history as The Grinch who Stole Christmas.
Velvet Jones November 02, 2012 at 09:01 PM
Good riddance, Johnnies is an overpriced dump ! What is everybody crying about ? WF is 10 times better !!! Yeah, buying quality meats, fish, fruits and vegetables is such an elitist un Townie thing to do ? And the prices are about the same. I hope the Johnnie's workers make out , but this is capitalism, Johnnie's closes, WF moves in deal with it. Maybe WF will drive out the junkbombs too.
Judge Amy Gray November 03, 2012 at 02:27 PM
I would mention it doesn't matter what replaces Johnnies. Walmart will open grocery stores and put them all out of business. It's already happening in California.
Joshua D November 03, 2012 at 02:57 PM
Joshua Doran - To Velvet Jones - WF is way overpriced and won't offer most of the items johnnies offered ......many in town who have lived here their whole lives will be without an option to a close reasonable supermarket .......I have a car and prefer market basket over all ......but "this is capitalism " ?????? No !!! This is a community !!!! Capitalism does not have a heart !!!! Opinion of those who live here should have been accounted for.......most were against this vehemently !!!!
Joshua D November 03, 2012 at 02:58 PM
Joshua Doran To Velvet Jones - what is this "drive out the junk bombs" comment ???
Velvet Jones November 03, 2012 at 04:36 PM
The prices are about the same, Johnnies is WAY overpriced and WF has better quality. The ''opinion'' of those who live here means NOTHING , Johnnies is closing ALL locations , not just Ctown. And YES this is capitalism, survival of the fittest not always fair, remember A&P before Johnnies ? Well A&P went under and Johnnies took it's place, it's the same thing . Please, Ctown is a tough town stop acting live ''victims'' or that ours is the only one closing, we'll survive. And what's with all the hate for WF ? They are filling a need with SUPERIOR products, and again Johnnies was no bargain it was overpriced. And the ''drive out the junkbombs'' comment is directed to ''junkie pavilion'' in front of CVS, please, you know what I'm talking about.
Velvet Jones November 03, 2012 at 04:54 PM
Also these ''demands'' for shuttle buses, seriously ? Talk about entitled ! I wonder what the opinion would be if a supermarket closed in Roxbury or Dot. and black people ''demanded'' free rides to do their shopping ? Puhleeze.
Joshua D November 03, 2012 at 07:19 PM
To Velvet Jones - the fact that you say the opinion of the people who live here means nothing .... Sais it all. Fact is ..... A large portion of our community lives in public housing here......most don't own vehicles . So they will be the ones forced to pay up or shut up. My grandparents grew up in the north end, poor Itslian immigrants who helped build this city, my Irish half from winter hill Somerville ......my parents ran a foster home do 14 years caring for children of the state .......I am on food assistance myself......I know a little about the lesser half of the pie . These are those who will find feeding themselves a bitter challenging. But like you said " their opinion doesn't matter.......survival of the fittest"
Joshua D November 03, 2012 at 07:27 PM
To "I ain't got time for dat " - But like Mr Romney said "corporations are people" ....... Lol - what ??? Johnnies didn't negotiate a severance for its employees ?? What about job offers from whole foods ?? No ??? I'm with you bro, my best to you n keep your head up.
ctownBOS November 04, 2012 at 01:17 AM
Amen Velvet. All your posts are right on. This entitlement crap is nauseating. Boo hoo. Has no one had a real struggle in their lives?
B. Ke November 04, 2012 at 12:13 PM
I agree more or less with velvet jones. I will miss Johnnies..there are some things we won't be able to get at WF but that's life and we'll adapt. Re the demands for bussing to other supermarkets once Johnnie's is closed: sure- let WF bus folks to the WF on Cambridge St in the west end!! I do worry about the staff- i only know them by "face"..and i hope WF does offer them employment!!
B. Ke November 04, 2012 at 12:39 PM
One more thing...at least a replacement is coming. Sounds like other locations will remain empty with no certain plans for the stores!
Joshua D November 04, 2012 at 05:36 PM
I grew up with parents running a foster home caring for children of the state, watching my mother care for some lady 's drug addicted sexually  abused child as if they were her own. We were always one slap away from the projects. People on the short end of the stick - ie; food assistance / assisted living/ public housing cannot afford whole foods prices - I grew up like that so this is bit personal, here in Town we have a parallel you see in most areas of s y city - Haves and Have nots - Unfortunately the Have nots will be the ones (as always) who suffer here.......
Dan November 04, 2012 at 06:33 PM
Yes, we're lucky here.
johnro6659 November 05, 2012 at 03:48 PM
It's a shame Johnnies will be replaced with a store that caters to the rich and clueless. Sorry but, I have shopped at Wholefoods and it's much more expensive than Johnnies or any other grocery store as a matter of fact. I spent $45.00 at WF got one bag of groceries and a 6 pack of root beer. The food I got from WF was mediocre at best! For the same money I can get three to four bags of groceries at Johnnies and brand names I recognize not stuff from companies I never heard of. Don't fall for that organic food is better crap I have read enough on the subject to know it's not worth paying 5 times the prices for it. I think people should check the facts Johnnies was cheaper than all the supermarket chains in New England with the exception of DeMoulas. Be careful WF loves to get people to push their stores. When they took over Hi Lo in JP they paid people to come to JP and lobby for them just like they are probably doing on these blogs! WF in JP is always dead IMO it's amazing they can keep it open.
Joseph November 05, 2012 at 04:02 PM
I find it hard to believe that those with a large bank account are clueless.
Velvet Jones November 05, 2012 at 04:13 PM
In other related stories Sunnyhurst closed, so has Snapper's, Uncle Ned's , and LorryAnne's, and Charlestown now has the internet. Get a grip people.
Hashmir Garza November 05, 2012 at 08:49 PM
Joshua, you said, “I grew up like that so this is bit personal, here in Town we have a parallel you see in most areas of s y city - Haves and Have nots - Unfortunately the Have nots will be the ones (as always) who suffer here.......”. You should be happy that Boston, unlike some cities, chooses to have neighborhoods that are economically diverse. Would you prefer it if all of the poor people were clustered into one neighborhood in the city? Then, the rich neighborhoods would have nice stores and the poor neighborhoods would be run down ghettos with nothing decent available. Is that a better model for Boston? Anyway, 17% of the people are below the poverty line in CTown and “most” of them are in the projects. Should all of the decisions be made based on this 17% that already receives some form of government assistance? By your logic, we should rip out Olives and Tangierinos and replace them with Burger King and McDonalds so that everyone can afford to eat out. Don’t get me wrong… I feel bad for poor people who are TRYING to get out of a life of poverty and are having a hard time. However, the problem in CTown is that “some” (note how I said SOME) people make government assistance a family birthright. My daddy and my daddy’s daddy lived in the projects so I guess that is my lot in life. This thinking is a problem. Public housing should be a temporary solution (2-5 years max) and not a lifetime entitlement.
Owen November 05, 2012 at 11:49 PM
Those are valid concerns, but like you said "as always". As a community we should do what we can for them, but a higher quality grocery store in Charlestown will go a long way from a lot of people. Not to sound cold, but part of what got this country into such a mess is that we constantly focus on the "have nots". While I sympathize (and in some ways empathize since I grew up ina rough South Philly neighborhood) with "have nots" , we can't do everything for them all the time. At some point we all much take responsibility for our lives and actions.
Owen November 05, 2012 at 11:50 PM
How dare you. I am not rich, but I will shop at WholeFoods. I've bene serving in the U.S. Coast Guard for almost twelve years. Glad to hear you think those serving their country are clueless.
Owen November 05, 2012 at 11:51 PM
Joesph, Right on. I can't believe people are still acting like such babies over this. Like they won't be taking advantage of WholeFoods' ridiculously good salad bar and awesome prepared foods section.
johnro6659 November 06, 2012 at 12:03 AM
Part 1. The only reason Johnnies is closing has nothing to do with them loosing money, the revenues were GREAT, it's because John DeJesus sold out to greed. WF offered him much more than the stores are worth just to get a foot hold in the communities and rid themselves of any competition. WF could have opened stores in nearby areas they are building up now in Ctown but they knew Johnnies would get all the business so they had to squash the competition by buying them out so there is no competition. As far as Foodmaster goes Johnnies was a great place to work, They took care of their employees hired elderly and the handicap, I know dozens of people who worked for A few of the Johnnies stores, including friends and relatives they all loved working there. The only ones who didn't are the ones who got fired and have an agenda. As far as shuttles go, The shuttles for Johnnies shuttled the elderly, handicap and less fortunate from several of the elderly housing complexes from outside of Charlestown. One of the ones that got shuttled were the people I know well from the Amy Lowell apartments in the West End. They have a Wholefoods basically right behind their apartment building and they can't afford and won't to shop there. I know people who work for Wholefoods and they tell me they suck to work for. The people who loose their jobs at Johnnies will probably not be hired at Wholefoods especially the handicap and elderly.
johnro6659 November 06, 2012 at 12:11 AM
Part 2 Aside from the poor in Ctown there are plenty of middle class families that won't shop at WF especially when they see the crap they have to offer and when they find out it will cost them 30% or more to shop there. For example: You can't buy a box of Ronzoni pasta there for 99 cents you have to pay 3 to 6 bucks for some unknown brand that really not that good. Everyone seems to know Ctown very well but I have been here and lived it since the 60s I have seen improvements and mistakes this is one big mistake! If Johnnies was hurting I could understand them selling out but they did well, REAL well. This is just another case of squashing the little guy to take over an area. The good thing is WF will never squeeze out the smaller mom and pop retail stores because they are so expensive people will travel to other supermarkets and probably shop at Tedesci's, I know I will and I'll tell everyone I know to avoid WF but most will realize how bad it is once they shop there and get hit with the high costs. The median income in Ctown is a little over 55 thousand dollars per family. If you take out the income for the ultra rich in the Navy Yard that would be much less. Ctown is not full of rich people like people think mostly people just making it, just a handful are wealthy.
Owen November 06, 2012 at 01:58 AM
Are you serious? First off, what are your sources here? Your own opinion? Second, since you're obviously such a huge Johnnies fan, you no doubt are familiar with their produce section (or lack their of), and the fact that it was not uncommon to have expired perishibles on the shelves. Several times I got a package of meat home and saw that it was expired. Silly me for not ensuring that the product that the store should guarantee being fresh on the self was still good. You're just trying to hold on to what you percieve as a "golden age" and refusing to accept the future.
steve andrews November 23, 2012 at 06:41 PM
charlestown johnnies filled w rats!!!!
Working Man November 23, 2012 at 10:41 PM
With all this talk about people needing rides and this store is better than that store ... Lets NOT FORGET the others Stores at the mall while what ever Supermarket is closed. A lot of there traffic came from people going food shopping. Dont forget to continue to shop there or if you have not been stop in and help them out I am sure DD and CVS will be fine and can weather a bad year but a FAMILY owned store like ACE might struggle. So DONT FORGET THEM AND SHOP THERE, Say Hi to Norma or Wyatt Baars. Just my 2 cents so Dont forget the other stores .... Have a great day....
dawn pyne January 08, 2013 at 07:35 PM
dont argue with her joshua.she is an idiot who has an opinion about everything.she has commented on almost every single article on the patch website.and everything out of her mouth is about "junkies" and "junk bombs".velvet you mom was probably a "junkie"who prostituted herself while you sat at home babysitting your 4 illegitimate siblings while begging for food.you have such a hard time with townies because you probably had no friends and you where so desperate for friends and all of us real charlestown girls told you to beat it.does that sound familiar.anybody on here know velvets real name since shes so scared to put her real self out there.
Velvet Jones January 08, 2013 at 08:14 PM
WOW, Dawn do you sound ignorant. I born and raised in Ctown, and STILL live here you closed minded idiot ! What is ''real'' Ctown anyway ? A live long PR? A heroin addict ? Please enlighten us . So in your world (Corey St. to Polk St.) anybody who bought a house here 25 years ago should have ''no say'' ??? If you think that ignorant PRs like you are ''real Charlestown'' Charlestown is in trouble. WF takes EBT cards so you'll be OK. It ignorant attitudes like yours that give Charlestown a bad name, and makes us ''real'' Townies cringe every time you dopes open your uneducated mouths.
dawn pyne January 08, 2013 at 08:25 PM
velvet your an idiot.Your not a real townie so stop faking it.Corey st to polk st?what are you even talking about.You make no sense .I'm uneducated?I'm at school right now stupid.You condradict yourself by saying your a real townie but than you do everything you can to bash charlestown.You make sense.PR's? what is a PR?You say your from charlestown and still live here but if that was true you would know who I am and what I will do to you.But oh ya, I forgot.Your a coward hiding behind a screen name.Or your stripper name. Im closed minde?Do you even work?Because you spend a lot of time on the Charlestown Patch.You say you bought a house 25 years ago?what street?Your useless.None of your comments are relevant and karma is a bitch.find you soon.

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