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Lunds & Byerlys NE Puts on a New Face

Article and photos by Merle Minda

Lunds & Byerlys Northeast has spruced up its 12-year old store with a new look, new fixtures, a more open traffic pattern and hundreds of new items. It is now ‘on-trend’, one might say – and in the swing with the newest popular products and opportunities for shoppers.

But in actuality, it is more than that. The remodeled grocery store has a cross marketing perspective. So if you are buying grapes, for example, several cheeses are right there as well. You no longer have to go halfway across the store to get them. Also, hamburger buns are in the meat department, and mini angel food cakes sit next to fresh strawberries. It’s handy and it gives shoppers ideas.

Store Manager Katie Swenson is rightfully proud of the remodeled store.

As Store Manager Katie Swenson notes “It was time for a redo; our first in the 12 years we have been here.” Amazingly the store never closed throughout this renovation, even among some of the more aggressive construction.

Ike Wagner, cheese guru, has been with this store since it opened.

The new, wider aisles for fruits and vegetables are unbelievably tempting. The fresh or “wet” racks are easier to reach and not stacked so high with product. This makes everything incredibly good to look at, almost like a country market stand or a sidewalk veggie store in New York City or even Paris. Smaller amounts of stock on the racks mean they are refilled more often making products fresher too.

Produce Manager Chris Dehart takes in fresh deliveries daily.

Ripe avocado stand takes the guesswork out of when to use them.

There are over 800 new grocery products which add a boon to any shopping experience. For example, the new Kombucha station has been installed. Fill up your “Growler” mug and take off. Coffee now comes in cold brew cans for a quick buzz – cold brew coffee is another hot new product line. And hey, how about the new vintage soda section, with interesting sodas I have never seen before. Lots to try and taste.

Cold brew coffee is a new “thing.”

Vintage sodas are fun to try.

You will find heaps of new Lunds & Byerlys branded products throughout the store – they are so appealing, from cook-it-yourself, ‘Hello Fresh’ style, to fresh pizzas or pop-in-the-oven quiches. Yet to be installed on my walk-through is a new food bar with the makings of tacos and salad options and all the hot food. One of the new installations I love is the Poke Bar, with its sushi-like fixings that you put together yourself, a first in grocery stores in our market. Bachman’s flower and plant bar installation is now like a real flower shop, expanded to twice the size and beautifully laid out. I see the Bachman’s people there daily, watering, trimming and adding fresh stock. And how many kinds of yogurt? Mind-boggling.

Pop in the microwave shrimp steamer is a delicious new product.

The Poke Bar makes for a delicious choice.

Bachman’s flower stand bigger and better than before.

With the newly installed flooring and LED lighting, the whole atmosphere is improved, making it quieter to walk through with your new smooth-moving cart. Seems like more staff on the floor to help customers as well. Or shop on your Lunds & Byerlys phone app with free drive-through pick-up. Do-it-yourself checkouts too, if you wish. Very handy, 26% of customers are using them so far!

Shoppers Kathy and David Cooper were away for a few months and returned to a totally revised store.

Plus lots of small touches, a revised product layout, with all the cold and frozen stuff behind big easy-to-open doors, keeping them much colder and the store warmer, says store manager Katie Swenson. And large new signage throughout – so you know where you are and can find things. There is clearly a lot of thought and marketing know-how behind these changes – and it all benefits the customer. The other handy installations at this location still there include Caribou Coffee, the very complete Pharmacy and drug store, the Wells Fargo ATM and St. Croix Cleaners.

At Lunds & Byerlys NE, you can do it all in just one stop! Open from 6am to midnight, just about every day of the year. (They close only on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.) Get over here; it is beautiful.

Northeast Minneapolis, 25 University Avenue SE, Minneapolis, MN 55414

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About Merle Minda

Journalist and free-lance writer Merle Minda writes about travel, business, people profiles and other subjects for a number of national and regional publications, including Delta SKY, Mpls/St. Paul Magazine, Twin Cities Business, Star Tribune, Twin Cities Statement, Minnesota Monthly, and now Mill City Times. She can be reached at or on the web.

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