Confusion surrounds the future of the Real Canadian Wholesale Club location at Frontier Mall after workers were given notice that the supermarket is closing this fall.
Norm Neault, president of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 1400, says he has been informed the supermarket will be closing Sept. 11. Workers were given their layoff notices Tuesday, June 8.
Neault said the union met with the employer and "we were given 90 days notice pursuant to the Trade Union Act, of closure of that facility."
Economic reasons were cited for the closure in the notice given to the union. Loblaws, through Loblaws Properties West Inc. (Westfair Foods, Ltd.) owns Real Canadian Wholesale Club.
Neault said his union will now be negotiating details of the closure agreement and severance packages, among other items, with the chain. He said 45 jobs at the location are affected.
The news of the closure is a surprise to many in the Battlefords given the commencement of construction on the Northland Power baseload plant to the southeast of the city, a project expected to employ up to 600 people, as well as continued construction of SaskPower's Yellowhead plant. Members of the business community expected both projects would be a boon for supermarkets throughout the Battlefords because of the increased demands for food to meet the expected influx of workers.
There has been some speculation Loblaws might be contemplating opening another supermarket or store in the Battlefords under a different brand name, but so far there has been no comment from Loblaws on the situation.
Management at Frontier Mall have said they are not commenting at this time.