Modesto, Calif.-based Save Mart is closing its pharmacies. The retailer announced that all pharmacies at Save Mart and Lucky stores will move to Walgreens.
“Walgreens entered into a definitive agreement with Save Mart to acquire pharmacy files and related inventory from 89 of their California and Nevada locations. This agreement is subject to review and customary closing conditions,” according to a statement by a Walgreens spokesperson.
“We are committed to providing a seamless transition and look forward to welcoming former Save Mart patients into our Walgreens pharmacies in the coming weeks. Prescription file transfers start this month (August 2022) and complete by September 2022. Patients do not need to take any action,” according to the statement. “Their pharmacy files will automatically transfer to the nearest Walgreens. They will receive a letter in the mail with more details on their prescriptions and new services available to them as Walgreens customers.”
In a statement to ABC10, Save Mart officials said that pharmacy staff members will work with patients to conveniently transition services to Walgreens.
“We value our pharmacy staff and the service they have provided to our patients. Walgreens expressed great interest in hiring and has the intention to hire as many of our pharmacy associates as possible, which will enable our patients to continue being served by our associates,” the statement said. “We remain committed to serving our local communities in health and wellness for all their grocery needs, as well as further developing our innovative technologies and tools that enhance the lives of our associates, customers and communities we serve.”
Save Mart pharmacists and pharmacy staff will have an opportunity to apply for any available positions at Walgreens, the ABC10 report said.
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Save Mart operates approximately 200 stores under the banners of Save Mart, Lucky California and FoodMaxx. In addition to its retail operation, it also operates Smart Refrigerated Transport and is a partner in Super Store Industries, which owns and operates a distribution center in Lathrop, Calif., and the Sunnyside Farms dairy processing plant in Turlock.
In a notice issued to members, officials with United Food and Commercial Workers, the union that represents Save Mart employees, encouraged members to promptly transfer their family’s prescriptions to Albertsons, Bel Air, Rite Aid, Safeway or Vons pharmacies.
“We have reached out to the company to discuss how their decision impacts our members,” the notice said. “We have been in contact with Union companies to help facilitate hiring members working in the closing pharmacies. We will reach out directly to members in the coming days with additional information about hiring opportunities at other Union pharmacy locations.”
In a statement to ABC10, UFCW-8 president Jacques Loveall said not all pharmacies will close at the same time, and that they stand with the impacted workers.
“UFCW 8-Golden State stands by our affected members in this tough time. We understand this is stressful for members who work in the Save Mart pharmacies, and we are working closely with the company to ensure they will have opportunities to work at other Union stores in our jurisdiction. Our goal is to retain their seniority, as well as wages and benefits,” Loveall said.
In March, Save Mart announced that after 70 years as an independent company headquartered out of Modesto, it had been acquired by Kingswood Capital Management, a private equity firm from Los Angeles.