Will Giant Eagle Grocery Stores Survive 2022?

The pandemic has affected not just our health, but countless aspects of our lives. It's impacted the economy, fundamentally changed how we socialize, and of course, caused plenty of supply chain issues. As NorthJersey.com puts it, "the food supply chain is a tangled mess right now, affecting nearly every aspect of the food industry" including our grocery stores, one of those being Giant Eagle

The grocery chain has been a staple in the industry since 1931, but has been forced to close some stores. While the reasoning behind this is yet to be announced, it appears to be related to the COVID-19 pandemic. The closures — which include turning some locations into "dark" fulfillment centers — began around April 2020 for Giant Eagle and other grocery chains in order to automate processes and keep up with the changing environment, but there may be signs that these closures won't be slowing down anytime soon.

A steady string of closures

While nothing has been confirmed, the Giant Eagle closures highlight a downward trend for the grocery chain and an outlook that may not be so great. In August 2021, a Pittsburgh outpost of the chain closed Market District Kitchen & Bar, a sit-down restaurant space on the store's second floor, according to NBC4i

The Times Online reported that another Giant Eagle in Beaver County, PA closed after 25 years in business, and Biz Journals noted the closure of another one in Pittsburgh, so it seems the restaurant part of the store isn't the only thing being shuttered. Those two closures happened in early January 2021, but Eat This Not That noted a bevy of Giant Eagle stores closing as early as September 2020. Though these reports seem to have quieted as of late, one has to wonder if the closures of the last two years will trickle into 2022 as well, and what that might mean for the fate of this decades-old grocery store chain.