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Channel 13 News in Rochester, NY, reports that Wegmans is using its Pittsford, NY, store to test a new “pod” concept that will bring a greater level of foodservice to the store’s fresh food departments.

Wegmans Executive Chef Eric Wendorff describes them as “bars that are quick meal solutions,” and that will offer meals in seafood, salads, and perhaps in the future, Italian food.

Wegmans CEO Danny Wegman said, "We don't just want to move a store or make it bigger. We want to add new things to it that are more helpful to customers."
KC's View:
When we spent time in the Pittsford store this summer, we actually had dinner one evening at the seafood bar – and the food was excellent, the service friendly, and the general atmosphere helps to build on the sense of community that Wegmans long has encouraged. In fact, we felt like the only one at the bar who didn’t know the chef from some other life.

This is a concept that is similar to the fresh food bars used to great effect by Whole Foods in its flagship Austin, Texas, store. It raises the ante on things like food service and food safety training, but strikes us as a savvy investment in the right markets.

Kudos, once again, to Wegmans for not just having a vision of the future but acting on it.