Who is the Grocery Chain Behind Foodland? Unveiling the Ownership Mystery

Local Business


Besedky Team

Who is the Grocery Chain Behind Foodland? Unveiling the Ownership Mystery:Are you curious about which grocery chain is the proud owner of Foodland? Well, you’ve come to the right place! In this blog post, we’ll delve into the fascinating world of Foodland’s ownership and uncover the secrets behind this beloved grocery store. From its humble beginnings to its controversial flyer, we’ll leave no stone unturned. So, grab your shopping cart and get ready to explore the intriguing story of Foodland’s ownership. Let’s dive in!

Exploring the Ownership of Foodland

If you’ve ever shopped for groceries in Hawaii, there’s a high chance you’ve visited a Foodland store. Known for its strong local presence, Foodland has carved a niche for itself as the largest grocery chain in the islands. But who owns this ubiquitous brand that has become a household name?

The answer lies with a company not based in Hawaii, but one with a national footprint. Foodland is owned by the United Natural Foods Corporation (UNFI), a significant player in the food distribution industry. UNFI acquired SuperValu in 2018, which has been the main wholesale distributor for Foodland, thereby bringing the supermarket chain under its extensive corporate umbrella.

Foodland’s Founding and Legacy

While Foodland’s ownership has shifted over the years, the roots of the company trace back to a family name synonymous with the brand. Foodland Hawaii is owned by Jenai S. Wall, daughter of the founder Maurice J. “Sully” Sullivan. Since taking the helm, Wall has continued to build on her father’s legacy, maintaining Foodland’s commitment to its local customer base and unique island culture. Foodland continues to embrace the motto “Food, Family, Friends & Aloha,” reflecting its dedication to the Hawaiian community.

The Sullivan Family’s Vision

The story of Foodland is a testament to the entrepreneurial spirit of Maurice J. “Sully” Sullivan. Since its inception in 1948, Foodland has grown from a single store to a state-wide institution. While ownership has transitioned beyond the Sullivan family, the values and vision imparted by its founder continue to guide the brand’s operations.

Metcash and the Foodland Brand Name

Though the Foodland brand is a stalwart in Hawaii, its name has traveled across the Pacific and landed in Australia. In 2005, the Foodland brand name was bought by Metcash-owned IGA, a separate entity from the Hawaiian chain. This acquisition has no bearing on the operations of Foodland in Hawaii, but it does speak to the strength and appeal of the brand that it was chosen to represent a significant supermarket force in Australia.

Foodland’s Controversial Flyer

Foodland is not just known for its grocery items but also for its marketing strategies. The grocery store chain owns a controversial flyer, which has been a topic of discussion among consumers. While the details of the controversy are not provided, it’s clear that Foodland’s approach to advertising and customer engagement is a matter of interest and sometimes debate.

Foodland’s Presence in Hawaii

Addressing a common question among those unfamiliar with the brand, Foodland’s presence is indeed primarily in Hawaii. The chain operates 32 stores across the state, encompassing the “Foodland,” “Foodland Farms,” and “Sack ‘N Save” banners. This makes it the largest grocery retailer in Hawaii and the only one that is locally-owned.

Foodland’s Commitment to Local Employment

With 33 stores and counting, Foodland is not just a place to shop but also a significant employer in the local economy. The company takes pride in offering a variety of job opportunities to the Hawaiian community, contributing to the welfare and growth of the islands.

Foodland’s Slogan and Philosophy

Building on its strong family-oriented foundation, Foodland’s slogan “Food, Family, Friends & Aloha” encapsulates its business philosophy. This slogan is more than just marketing; it’s a reflection of the company’s approach to providing a shopping experience that resonates with the values of the Hawaiian people. Foodland has become synonymous with the spirit of Aloha, blending quality products with a warm, community-focused environment.


Foodland’s journey from a family-owned business to being part of a national corporation while retaining its local charm is a robust case study in maintaining brand identity amidst change. Owned by UNFI through its acquisition of SuperValu, Foodland stands as a testament to the enduring legacy of its founders and the loyalty of its customers. As Hawaii’s largest grocery retailer, Foodland continues to serve the islands with a spirit of Aloha, underpinning its commitment to food, family, and friends.

Whether it’s a discussion about ownership, legacy, or local impact, Foodland remains a fascinating subject as a business that has managed to flourish while staying true to its roots. As it moves forward, the company is likely to maintain its focus on serving the unique needs of Hawaii’s diverse population, ensuring that it remains an integral part of the state’s fabric for years to come.

FAQ & Common Questions about Foodland

Q: Is Foodland only in Hawaii?

A: No, Foodland operates 32 stores throughout the state of Hawaii under the “Foodland,” “Foodland Farms,” and “Sack ‘N Save” names.

Q: Why is Hawaii grocery so expensive?

A: Retailers and restaurants in Hawaii face higher operating costs such as rent, utilities, and labor compared to other states, which are often passed on to consumers, resulting in higher prices for food and other goods.

Q: Is Foodland owned by Drake’s?

A: No, Foodland is not owned by Drake’s. The company employs over 5,500 staff nationally and was the largest owner of Foodland stores until it split from the brand in 2019.

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