Red Food

Red Food
Industry Retail (Grocery)
Fate Merged into BI-LO
Founded 1908 Chattanooga, Tennessee
Defunct 1995
Headquarters Chattanooga, Tennessee
Products Bakery, dairy, deli, frozen foods, snacks, meat, pharmacy, produce, seafood, bath and body care, movie rental (very few locations), pet food, cleaning products, disposable products, tobacco products, alcoholic beverages, flowers, greeting cards and general grocery.
Website None

Red Food Stores, Inc. (or simply Red Food) was a supermarket chain company headquartered in Chattanooga, Tennessee. It operated stores mostly in northwest Georgia, northeast Alabama, and southeast Tennessee. Around 55 stores were operated in the same three states.[1] According to The Chattanoogan, Red Food was a longtime icon in Chattanooga history.[2]


Red Food started in 1908 by Frank McDonald.[3] During World War II, for their first time, Red Food sold turkeys for forty-five cents per pound to customers for Thanksgiving. They also told customers to "invite a soldier and serve turkey this Thanksgiving."[3] In 1979, Promodès, a food distribution firm based in Caen, France, made a bid to buy Red Food Stores, Inc. for $23 million. By 1980, the acquisition was completed, for a total of $36 million. The Red Food purchase gave Promodès 23 supermarkets centered primarily in southern Tennessee, plus additional stores in Georgia and Alabama as well. In order to finance Promodès' expansion, which would invest more than Ffr 2 billion between 1979 and 1984, the company went public in 1979.

On April, 1989, Red Food Store's purchase of seven supermarkets in its hometown owned by Kroger Co. was halted at virtually the 11th hour by the Federal Trade Commission, which decided the merger would substantially hamper competition in the market. The FTC action came unexpectedly.[4] A month later, the FTC issued a complaint, challenging Red Food Stores' $6.5 million acquisition of all seven Kroger Co. grocery stores in Chattanooga, Tennessee. The commission lodged the complaint after a Federal appeals court rejected its request for an injunction blocking the transaction.[5]

In 1994, Red Food Stores, Inc. was bought by Ahold for $129 million, while Red Food stores were changed into Ahold's BI-LO stores in 1995.[1][6] Advertisements showed a paper bag with the BI-LO logo (currently used today) standing in front of a paper bag with the last Red Food logo on it. BI-LO's slogan during that time was "BI-LO. The name fits."


The 1994 logo.

The first logo used by Red Food Stores, Inc. was similar to the second one (as seen in this article), but with a rooster in the middle of it. The last logo used was plain red with little or no curves around the inside and outside of the letters. It was introduced a year before Ahold bought the company.


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