Food Ranch, Orangeville’s well-known grocery store, announced on Thursday that it will close its doors on Jan. 24.
“Today is a sad day for all of us at Food Ranch and the community,” the store shared. “January 24 will be our final day in business.”
The store had been in operation for 36 years before past owners Drew and Val LeRoy passed the torch to Clark and Julene Heringer in July of 2017. The Heringers relocated to Orangeville from Pleasent Grove after purchasing the store from the LeRoys as they entered retirement.
The Heringers released a letter to local residents last week stating that if there was not sufficient sales over the weekend, the store would need to close its doors due to financial hardships.
“If we do not have a great weekend in grocery sales this weekend, we will have to look at shutting the store down,” the Heringers shared. “Our fate and the survival of the store and all of the 30 employees’ jobs are at risk.”
The letter described that the financial hardship had come about through many factors. First, the Heringers credited that when they took over, employees were underpaid. Each employee received a raise under the new ownership, they stated. The Heringers also attributed the financial hardships to a lack of grocery sales, repair of store equipment and overall inexperience in the grocery business.
Following the letter, Food Ranch reported that sales had increased over the weekend, but they would need to continue throughout the week to stay afloat. Then, on Thursday, the owners announced that the sales had not been enough and that the store’s doors would soon be closing.
“We have tried everything that we can to keep the store open,” the Heringers shared. “We have been struggling for the past several months and we don’t have the financial resources to keep the store going any longer.”
Beginning on Thursday and running through the store’s last day of operation, Food Ranch will be offered everything 30% off to clear inventory. The store will be open each of those days from 6 a.m. to 8 p.m.