Don L. Day
BOISE - After a long hiatus, Boise-based retailer Albertsons is relaunching home grocery delivery in the Boise market.
The grocery giant originally offered the service in Boise in 2003 - but it was later scuttled shortly after the company was broken up into three pieces and sold off in 2006.
After a long, somewhat complicated road, the grocer is back under the control of managers in Boise, and in early 2015 acquired Safeway. Though Albertsons is the name on the corporate HQ building door, and many functions have been relocated back to Boise - much of Safeway's infrastructure is being adopted, including private label brands, technology systems and a unified marketing campaign.
Albertsons LLC had been relying on Minnesota-based Supervalu for much of that backend, but after buying most of SVU's grocery stores, Albertsons has been working to wean itself from Supervalu. The Safeway merger allowed it to acquire much-needed systems.
Safeway has been chipping away at online delivery since 2002, gradually expanding across its network. Now, the service is being offered on the Albertsons banner. Details are a bit scarce, as the company has not yet made a public announcement.
The service works in a straight-forward manner, with shopping by "aisle" and a product search. New users can enter a promo code and get free delivery on their initial order.
Online delivery is available to homes and businesses between 9am and 10pm, with one-hour delivery windows. Orders have to total at least $49 to qualify for delivery. After a free trial, delivery will cost $9.95 on orders over $150 - and $12.95 under $150. (There's also a somewhat confusing fuel surcharge).
Trucks are already on the road - after I started work on this story, I spotted one on ParkCenter Blvd. Thursday evening.
A spot check of ZIP codes shows Boise, Nampa, Caldwell and Meridian are serviced with delivery - but Twin Falls, McCall and Hailey are not (for now).
This is the latest in a series of moves of investment by Albertsons in the Boise market - including the sponsorship of Albertsons stadium, a new hanger at the Boise Airport, a remodel of its headquarters on ParkCenter, a new "set store," purchase of Paul's Market, remodel of several local outlets and a complete tear-down and rebuild of its Broadway store.
Header file photo by Flickr user jeffkole