NASHVILLE, TN -- Vistar's newest Merchant's Mart opened here today and is said to be the first one with an expanded food selection at competitive prices. Merchant's Marts are wholesale cash-and-carry outlets, open to the public and without membership requirements. They are used as one-stop shops by vending operators, as well as small restaurants, offices managers, concessionaires and nonprofit organizations, among other wholesale purchasers.
"This will be our first store to carry a broad inventory of food products -- not just candy, snacks and beverages," said Vistar president and chief executive Pat Hagerty. "The Nashville Merchant's Mart will feature frozen food and canned goods, pastries, condiments, as well as a limited selection of produce and perishable items. We'll even offer party supplies and concession items."
The Nashville store is 20,000 square feet and has about 3,000 SKUs in its aisles. It is located at 1800 Elm Hill Pike, near Interstate 40 and Briley Pkwy., and is open from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. from Monday to Friday and 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday. Vistar said its new store will initially employ five local residents, accept credit cards and offer delivery service. It will also provide pick-and-pull service for busy customers who prefer calling in orders, or faxing, for pickup 24 hours later.
Vistar is headquartered in Centennial, CO, and is a division of Richmond, VA-based Performance Food Group Inc. PFG now employs about 780 people in Tennessee at its operations in Lebanon, Memphis and Morristown. With the opening of the Nashville location, Vistar now has 13 Merchant's Marts nationwide.
Vistar will hold a brief ribbon-cutting ceremony at the Nashville store on Friday at 10 a.m.