10 major Kroger updates impacting shoppers in 2017

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

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What you need to know.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

As online shopping continues to disrupt the grocery industry, Kroger had another major year of changes.

From new store openings to restaurant concepts and curbside pick-up services, Kroger’s growth trajectory continued to skyrocket in the Miami Valley in 2017. Kroger has already invested upwards of $53 million in its regional presence just in recent years, and employees more than 8,100 associates in the Dayton region.

These are 10 updates about Kroger that impacted the region:

1. As Kroger opens, Cornerstone of Centerville continues to boom

Kroger opened its newest store at the Cornerstone of Centerville, marking the finish line for much of the development in the popular area. The 115,000-square-foot store joins other retail giants Cabela’s and Costco to anchor one of the fastest-growing areas in the Miami Valley.

2. Kroger adds hundreds of jobs in Dayton in 2017

Tim Brown, president of Kroger's Cincinnati/Dayton division, on Thursday gave the keynote address at the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce annual meeting. Brown's roots run deep with the Midwest grocery store chain, starting his career as a bagger in an Illinois store at 17 years old. READ MORE

3. All Kroger stores in Dayton area now offering free fruit for kids

Kroger is promoting healthy living through a new initiative that gives kids free fruit to munch on while their parents do the grocery shopping. All stores throughout the Dayton area division are now participating in the program, according to a company spokeswoman. READ MORE

4. Kroger launches comfort food restaurant concept

Kroger has opened its first-ever restaurant concept, which serves up American comfort foods. Cincinnati-headquartered Kroger's Culinary Development team announced it will open Kitchen 1883, which is located at 9003 U.S. Highway 42 in Union, Ky. The restaurant will operate daily offering lunch and dinner along with brunch on Saturdays and Sundays. It is scheduled to open in late October. READ MORE

5. Fairborn Kroger marketplace opens

The new Kroger marketplace, located at 1161 E. Dayton-Yellow Springs Road in Fairborn, opened and is a 134,000-square-foot facility — the largest Kroger in the Dayton region. The store is a $23 million investment for the Cincinnati-headquartered grocery retailer, and will employ approximately 350 workers. READ MORE

6. Kroger closes Kettering location

The Kroger store, located at 2100 East Whipp Road, closed when the Cornerstone of Centerville location was completed. Kroger provided a temporary rider program for customers who relied on the Whipp Road Kroger, according to Kroger spokeswoman Patty Leesemann. READ MORE

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7. Kroger competes with Whole Foods, Lidl

Lidl's expansion is yet another store heating up the competition after online retailer Amazon bought Whole Foods earlier this year. Major grocers — including Kroger, Meijer, Whole Foods, Aldi, Fresh Thyme Farmers Market and Costco — have all added stores to Southwest Ohio within the past several years, and are battling to get customers through the doors. READ MORE

8. Kroger’s longest-serrving employee retires

After working for Kroger more than 63 years, the grocery retailer's longest-serving associate retired in Ohio. Larry Arnold, who works as a dairy clerk at the Pickerington Marketplace in Muskington County, started working for the company in 1953. He accepted a job as a clerk in a Zanesville store just a week before his 16th birthday. READ MORE

9. Kroger ranks as one of healthiest workplaces in U.S.

Cincinnati-headquartered Kroger was named one of the "Healthiest 100 Workplaces in America" by the Healthiest Employers, which evaluates employers' efforts in corporate health. Kroger has been honored twice in three years for the award. READ MORE

10. Kroger sees leadership changes

Liz Ferneding has been appointed as the new ruler division president. She succeeds Paul Bowen, who was replaced in May. The ruler division is headquartered in Seymour, Indiana, with 48 stores operating in IllinoisIndianaKentuckyMissouriOhio and Tennessee. The Cincinnati-headquartered grocery chain also announced the retirement of Central division President Katie Wolfram and the promotion of Pam Matthews, the QFC division president, to succeed her. Suzy Monford will join the company to serve as the president of the QFC division. READ MORE

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