Tops Markets Plans to Buy More from Local Growers

Buffalo, NY – The news last week that Tops Markets will return its headquarters to Amherst means more jobs for Western New York. But Tops says it will also mean a more truly "homegrown" operation.

Tops Markets is one of the latest to benefit from the state's efforts to boost business in the region. The chain, which is once again under new ownership, will get $1.2 million to relocate its corporate offices in Amherst. Tops officials say bringing all facets of its operation back home to Western New York will be better for Tops and its customers. Frank Curci is president and Chief Executive Officer for Tops. He says the changes will be noticeable.

Curci says one of the biggest improvements will be a commitment to purchase from local growers. But that is something Tops has falsely claimed in the past. In a story first reported by WBFO four years ago, Tops Markets was found to be advertising locally "homegrown" produce that was actually grown and hauled in from other states. Following our story, Tops removed its signs reading "homegrown" from any of its produce that was not, in fact, grown locally. Curci says they can now define homegrown more accurately.

Making good on that promise could prove to be a bit of a balancing act, given the store's commitment to also be more competitive, bringing shoppers more of what they want. Curci says that, of course, will mean not everything can be locally grown.

Curci says, unfortunately, the stores had been undermanaged in recent years. But he says under its new local control, Tops will return to its past glory as one of the great brands in Western New York history.

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