CANTON, Ohio — Fishers Foods, a local grocery store chain in the Canton area, announced it is closing one of its final two stores. 

What You Need To Know

  • Fishers Foods is closing one of its two final locations

  • Local stores closing seems to be a trend across the state and country

  • The pandemic and increased prices are among two of the reasons many of the stores have closed

Michael Goldberg, an associate professor at Case Western Reserve University, said that the closing struck a nerve in the Canton community, but explained that this is a trend across the state and country.

“The state of family-owned retail, particularly in the grocery business, has been in decline for a long time,” he said.

Goldberg explained that there are a few factors that are the reason that cause stores like Fishers Foods to close.

“The pandemic certainly accelerated this decline as many of us began to order groceries online,” he said.

Along with the pandemic, Goldberg said that increased prices play a role as well.

“Prices are not increasing at the rate they were over the last year, prices are still high. So, if folks can save money on their groceries by shopping at a large chain or Walmart Supercenter, they are doing that,” he said.

Goldberg noted that it’s hard for small grocers, such as Fishers Foods, to compete, even though many community members say that they want to shop local.

“We really desire, you know, small retail in our communities. We want to have places we can walk to and we say that we want and that it’s important to us,” he said.

He explained that people’s actions don’t always show that they want to shop local.

“If we’re not using our wallets to actually buy local, then it’s really difficult for these companies to stay in business,” he said.

Goldberg said that this is a trend that will probably continue and that it is concerning when local retail goes away, but he’s not sure what there is to do about it.