- Publix is closing two Greenwise Market stores in South Carolina, one in Mount Pleasant that opened last May and the other in Lexington, which just opened last December, according to Charleston's Post and Courier.
- The retailer told the Post and Courier that the stores were too small and will be shuttering at 7 p.m. on August 29. The closures will remove the Greenwise Market format from South Carolina entirely. Grocery Dive reached out to Publix for more information but did not hear back by press time.
- Employees were informed about the closures a few days ago and Publix is offering them positions at nearby full-service Publix locations in Charleston and Columbia, according to local reports.
Publix has been steadily expanding its Greenwise Market footprint, so closing two of its stores less than a year after they opened is a step back in progress for the retailer.
“Both locations were acquisitions that fit our needs at the time of opening,” Maria Brous, spokesperson for Publix told Post and Courier. “However, as our concept has evolved, the locations have space constraints that will not fit our current vision for GreenWise Markets.”
Publix’s vision for Greenwise Markets has been smaller-scale stores that sell natural and organic products, including selections from its private label line under the same name. Both the Mount Pleasant and Lexington locations are approximately 21,500 square feet while its most recent store opening in Marietta, Georgia is closer to 25,000 square feet. Publix has said its Greenwise Market locations could range in size from 20,000 square feet to 29,000 square feet.
Publix's vision for Greenwise has shifted over the years, and it could be undergoing yet another evolution. Its original Greenwise Market location in Boca Raton, which opened more than a decade ago, was 38,000 square feet.
The retailer is known for closing locations that aren't performing or don’t fit into its vision any longer. In 2018, it ordered the closure of its Greenwise Market in Palm Beach, Florida because it was underperforming.
But Publix is still expanding Greenwise Market in its home state, where it currently has five locations and three more set to open soon. Publix also acquired five former Lucky's Market locations in the Sunshine State that could end up becoming Greenwise stores.
After the South Carolina locations close, there will be just two Greenwise Markets located outside Florida — the store in Georgia and one in Mountain Brook, Alabama, that opened last summer.