Foodarama, also known as Cox's Foodarama, is a supermarket chain in Texas, with its headquarters in Foodarama Store #1 in Brays Oaks, Houston. In Greater Houston, as of 2016 Foodarama operates ten stores. Carrol Cox is the founder and president of Foodarama. As of 2011, 1,000 people work for Foodarama. As of 2016 the Cox family are still the owners of the chain.
In 1993, after AppleTree Markets put many of its stores up for sale, Cox's Foodarama acquired one. Foodarama acquired the 1805 Ella Appletree, currently Foodarama #4. On February 28, 1999, Cox's Foodarama had seven locations. It had $74.4 million in annual sales and 1.4% of the grocery market. It also had 814 Houston-area employees. In the period between February 1999 and February 2000, Foodarama opened two locations and remodeled two locations. In 1999 Cox's Foodarama had 1.5% of the Houston grocery market. Foodarama occupied a Randall's location that was closed in 2006.
In 2002, 80% of the chain's customer base was Hispanic. To cater to Hispanics, the chain devotes large portions of its stores to meat and fresh produce. Ronnie Catlett, the vice president of Foodarama and general manager of the San Antonio division, said that the stores were intended to cater to groceries. Elizabeth Allen of the San Antonio Express-News said that the company's niche was "modest but profitable".
In order to cope with small profit margins, La Fiesta tries to reduce its overhead as much as possible. It uses bulk buying, requires store managers to work on the shop floor instead of in offices, and, as of 2004, has low labor costs. As of 2004 most of its locations are in western San Antonio, serving Hispanic populations there. La Fiesta's designated wholesaler, Grocers Supply, has a buying coalition which allows its customers to get goods at lower prices. Individual locations are permitted to make pricing and scheduling decisions.
Prior to 1998 La Fiesta operated a 16,000-square-foot (1,500 m2) location in Eagle Pass, Texas, a community along the Mexico-United States border. It was across the street from an H-E-B location that was, as of 1998, being remodeled. In addition the future of the Mexican peso as a currency was uncertain. Also the Government of Mexico enforced a $50 import limit upon Mexicans returning into Mexico, affecting La Fiesta's business among Mexican national shoppers. Because of the issues involving Mexico and competition from H-E-B, the Eagle Pass La Fiesta store was closed. As of 2004 it was the only location ever closed in the history of La Fiesta.
The chain's first store opened in 1981. In 2002 the chain had six locations. Starting in 2004 it laid plans to open two additional locations. As of 2004 the largest location is a 43,000-square-foot (4,000 m2) former Handy Andy at Callaghan and Ingram, which includes a bakery and restaurant. The store had replaced a smaller location that was across the street.
After a La Fiesta manager fired a pregnant employee, the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a lawsuit against Foodarama, saying that the termination was wrongful because the store did not accept a full medical release from a doctor that was intended to allow her to work without restrictions. Foodarama settled with the EEOC; it gave the employee $10,000 and posted notices saying that it is making a discrimination-free workplace.
Foodarama's headquarters are in Foodarama Store #1 in Brays Oaks, Houston. In February 1989, Carrol Cox, the owner of that Foodarama location, opposed the plan of a Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County (METRO)-implemented grade separation at Willowbend and South Post Oak since he believed it would reduce the number of parking spaces at the store. On September 10, 1989, a woman was murdered in a robbery in the store parking lot.
- Retail Merchandiser, Foodarama (3 August 2015)
- Monroe, Melissa S. "La Fiesta adds two S.A. sites Houston chain will be taking over Handy Andy stores on West and Southeast sides.." San Antonio Express-News. March 2, 2004. Business 1E. Retrieved on December 1, 2011. "La Fiesta is an affiliate of Houston-based Foodarama, which has nine stores [sic] in Houston. Catlett said La Fiesta also is successful because it's tight on[...]"
- Hassell, Greg. "CHRONICLE 100 LEADING COMPANIES OF HOUSTON / Grocers getting food for thought." Houston Chronicle. May 23, 1999. Special Section, Page 38. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- "Home." Foodarama. Retrieved on December 2, 2011.
- "Contact Us." Foodarama. Retrieved on December 1, 2011. "Mailing Address 10810 South Post Oak Rd. Houston, Tx 77035."
- Beachy, Debra and Greg Hassel. "Competitors carve up AppleTree/Nine rivals purchase 28 stores." Houston Chronicle. November 25, 1993. Business 1. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- Hassel, Greg. "AppleTree to hand over most stores this week." Houston Chronicle. January 4, 1994. Business 1. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- "Locations." Foodarama. 2. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- Sit-DuVall, Mary. " `Right' store was ripe for picking / Randalls joins trend with deal." Houston Chronicle. July 24, 1999. Business 1. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- Feser, Katherine. " DEAL OF THE WEEK / Gigantic 24 Hour Fitness on the way." Houston Chronicle. November 6, 2006. Business 5. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- " About Us." La Fiesta. Retrieved on December 1, 2011. "La Fiesta Corporate Office 5103 S. Flores Rd. San Antonio, TX 78214"
- "Locations." La Fiesta. Retrieved on December 1, 2011. "5103 S. Flores San Antonio TX 78214"
- Allen, Elizabeth. "In the shadow of a grocery giant A thrifty strategy La Fiesta caters to Hispanic market and keeps overhead to a minimum." San Antonio Express-News. December 31, 2002. Business 1E. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- Monroe, Melissa S. "La Fiesta's new store is near completion." San Antonio Express-News. February 14, 2004. Business 3D. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- "BRIEFS." San Antonio Express-News. March 18, 2004. Metro 2C. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
- "Brays Oaks District." Brays Oaks. Retrieved on October 23, 2011.
- "Locations." Foodarama. Retrieved on December 1, 2011. "Foodarama 1" and "10810 S Post Oak Rd Houston 77035"
- Greene, Andrea D. "Group rejects grade separation plan." Houston Chronicle. Tuesday February 9, 1988. Section 1, Page 15. Retrieved on December 1, 2011. "Carrol Cox, owner of the Foodarama at 10810 S. Post Oak,[...]"
- Asin, Stephanie. "Family of slain woman fights murderer's release." Houston Chronicle. August 31, 1993. A15. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.