Before exiting the U.S., Fresh & Easy Neighborhood Market is taking a road trip.
The British-owned supermarket chain, which is up for sale, is launching a summer street festival program featuring a Fresh & Easy-branded food truck, the company plans to announce today. The first two Orange County food truck stops are July 18 in Fullerton and July 19 in Orange.
"We wanted to do something fun and exciting and thought that a street fair would be a great way to keep delivering the Fresh & Easy brand message," company spokesman Brendan Wonnacott said Tuesday.
At each event, the truck will hand out free food samples made from products and ingredients found at Fresh & Easy. Items on the menu include chicken tacos, spicy Soyrizo tacos, Thai lettuce wraps, bleu cheese sliders and mango carnitas stuffed peppers. Tents will also be set up for shoppers to get tips from a nutritionist and for free chair massages. A Fresh & Easy "runner" will be available to fetch groceries while customers enjoy the festivities.
The food truck will travel to stores in California, Nevada and Arizona through Labor Day. Shoppers can follow the truck's whereabouts through its Twitter handle, @fneasytruck. The truck debuts Thursday in Whittier.
Tesco, the British parent company of Fresh & Easy, recently announced plans to exit its U.S. operations for good.
The company is seeking bidders for its failing American supermarket experiment, which launched in 2007 and has cost the company $1.5 billion.
Though the small-format grocery stores enjoy a loyal following, the ambitious business venture has not turned a profit.
Various media have reported that interested buyers include Whole Foods Market and investors tied to the defunct Wild Oats brand.
On Tuesday, Wonnacott said Tesco continues to entertain bidders, but declined to name them.
Locally, Fresh & Easy operates 16 neighborhood and express markets.
The July 18 Fullerton truck stop is at 1207 S. Euclid Ave.
The July 19 Orange stop is at 146 S. Main St. Events will be 4 to 8 p.m. on weekdays and noon to 4 p.m. on weekends.
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