So what’s in store for 2008?

I never expected this site to generate such interest or acceptance. What started as a hopeful attempt to get in touch with other owners and learn about their experiences has turned into a platform for exchanging ideas and has lead to open discussions about this industry and what we can do to help ourselves.

This site started off with a very simple idea in mind – provide a way for store owners to talk about this industry without being on their guard and thinking they were giving something away. I figured I would be a lone voice, but I see there are plenty of us out there. So I thank you all for reading and making comments and turning this site into something useful and beneficial (at least I hope it is).

So where do we go from here? Well, I think 2008 very well could be a scary year for this industry. I think owners will face some real challenges in trying to win customers back, in trying to establish new ones and seeking a point of either economic success or a point where they can sell or close their store.

But even though the news articles about meal assembly seem to be waning I think there is plenty of information out there.

  • I plan on tracking a lot of those store closures that I anticipate will be coming.
  • I plan to write quite a bit more about my experiences with meal assembly such as how I got involved and some of the more enjoyable aspects of it. I also hope other stores owners will join in and write about their experiences as well.

And of course I think there will be plenty to discuss with changes to the industry as we make our way through the year.

  • Will we see more MAs in grocery stores?
  • Will we see a change in the franchising fees?
  • Will we see a change in the number of stores being sold per region?
  • Will we see a in the menu structure and the services provided?

I think there is a lot to keep track of and a lot for owners to “digest” in the new year. Is it make or break? For the industry as a whole, it quite possibly it is. It certainly is for many owners. I have already seen multiple stores in my area close and those that are left barely have a trickle of customers. I think the hype is over and the reality is setting in. If the corporate franchises want to save their industry there is a lot of work to be done and not much time to do it.

So here is to the New Year and I hope it offers a lot of prosperity and success.

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