8 defunct grocery chains you remember

Before chains like Walmart, Publix, Winn-Dixie and Whole Foods dominated the grocery business, these names once anchored shopping centers and street corners throughout our cities.

Florida Choice Food and Drug

A closed Florida Choice store in Titusville, Florida. Courtesy of Hiveminer.com.

Florida Choice was a supermarket chain first established by Cincinnati, Ohio-based Kroger as SupeRx Food and Drugs in 1980. The first location was opened in the city of Indian Harbor Beach, Florida. Early locations were known for their distinctive rounded awning over the entryways. In 1983, the chain’s administrative offices were relocated from Melbourne to Maitland, Florida. When Kroger sold off its subsidiary SupeRX, the name of the Florida grocery stores was changed to Florida Choice. In 1987, the chain expanded with Kroger’s acquisitions of A&P’s Family Mart chain, bring the total number of Florida choice locations to 43. Unable to compete in Florida’s competitive grocery industry, Kroger sold stores in the western part of the state to Kash N’ Karry and Goodings in the central and eastern areas of the state in 1988.

Gooding’s Supermarkets, Inc.

The last Goodings location in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. Courtesy of Hiveminer.com.

Gooding’s was an upscale Central Florida-based supermarket chain established by Jonathan Gooding in Maitland, Florida in 1964. It was the first in the area of offer 24-hour shopping, a bakery and delicatessen. The chain had expanded to 18 locations before it ran into financial difficulties in 1992. By 2000, most its stores had either been closed or sold to Jacksonville-based Winn-Dixie. In 2005, the two location chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy with $22 million in revenue and 175 employees in its food service and catering divisions. Today, Gooding’s operates one location catering to tourist in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.