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Giant Food to close delivery fulfillment center in Milford

Katie Tabeling
Giant Foods will be closing three fulfillment centers, including a cross-doc location in Milford. It's unclear how many jobs in Delaware this will impact.

Giant Food launched its home delivery service, Giant Delivers, in 2019. The regional chain will close three fulfillment centers. | PHOTO COURTESY OF GIANT FOOD.

MILFORD — Giant Food is closing its fulfillment centers, including a small one in Milford, come Oct. 21.

Giant Food of Maryland, a grocery chain with 165 stores in  Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, and Washington, D.C., announced it was re-evaluating its options for grocery delivery services. The company has three fulfillment centers in Milford, Hanover, Md.; and Manassas, Va.; with a collective 400 employees.

Giant Food did not provide Delaware Business Times with exact employee numbers at the Milford facility. However, the Milford warehouse is a small, cross-dock center compared to the two other centers facing closure. The Manassas center is 80,000 square feet, while the one in Hanover is 150,000 square feet in size.

“Our ambition at Giant is to meet the changing needs of our delivery… faster delivery, more delivery time slots and a broader assortment. We are adapting our operating structure to better meet those needs and to provide this important service through a local fulfillment model,” Giant spokesperson Jon Arons told DBT on Tuesday.

Giant Food launched its home delivery service, Giant Delivers, in 2019 as the latest iteration of its former Peapod by Giant grocery delivery service. The D.C.-based regional chain boasted availability for next-day home delivery to 6 million shoppers living in the area. Customers could order online or through a smartphone app after entering their zip code.

Giant Delivers was one of the few services in place before the COVID-19 pandemic made grocery delivery an ideal option for vulnerable populations, and e-commerce and similar options have boomed in the three years since.

But for Giant, customers who ordered through the delivery service could expect their order to be fulfilled out of the small Milford warehouse or two others in Maryland or Virginia. 

The Manassas fulfillment facility opened in May 2023, with 200 employees and aimed to deliver 10,000 grocery orders per week. Plans this summer were to offer hyper-local foods in Virginia to online shoppers as well as beers from local breweries.

“Delivery is still an integral part of our omni-channel growth strategy, which strives to meet all the ways customers want to shop,” Arons added. “We are working to finalize the fulfillment model to best serve our customers.”

Exact jobs lost in the Giant Food network is unknown, as employees at the fulfillment centers will have the opportunity to apply for other positions.

Giant Food has six stores in Delaware: Wilmington, Bear, Middletown, Millville,  Millsboro, and Rehoboth Beach.

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