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What Happened to Safeway’s Private Brands?

October 23rd, 2009 · 13 Comments

By Garland Pollard

RESTON - So we haven’t been in a Safeway in years, but go in to grab some things while traveling. And I am curious about brands, and I look to see what has happened to some of the valuable private labels that Safeway was known for.

They all seemed to be gone; sadly, the store packaging was quite un-imaginative, and all the company did was stick a Safeway logo on its store products. I could not find Cragmont nor Crown Colony, and was afraid to go in the dairy section and look for my old friend, Lucerne milk.

A dreary effort by what was once a great grocery company.

In the early 1990s, Safeway made a major effort at jazzing up the private labels, but we guess the effort fizzled and the changes in packaging just confused the consumers, and turned them off. Note to grocery folk; if you have private label packaging that is pretty classic, you need to leave it as is, and people will still buy it.

Some Safeway brands we think were/are exceptional are:

  • Crown Colony. Such an evocative name for spices, don’t you think?
  • Lucerne milk. What is better?
  • Kitchen Kraft flour
  • Town House canned goods
  • Busy Baker cookies
  • Nu-Made mayonaise
  • Cragmont soda

The above Cragmont picture is from online; see more at the following website www.flickr.com/photos/roadsidepictures/ / CC BY-NC 2.0

Tags: Grocery

13 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Garland Pollard // Oct 29, 2010 at 7:45 am

    Dollar Tree has Busy Baker cracker products.

  • 2 Bruce // Dec 18, 2010 at 9:13 am

    I fondly remember the Safeway brands as well, particularly the Cragmont sodas. It was always a treat to go over to my grandmother’s house, open the refrigerator to get a drink, and have the whole top shelf full of a huge variety of soda flavors! My favorites were always the Sparkling Punch and the Cream Soda. The label in the picture above really brought back memories of the 1970s!!

    Didn’t Safeway also have their own brand of frozen foods?

  • 3 Adam Vandenberg // May 31, 2011 at 10:58 pm

    Lucerne is still Safeway’s dairy brand.

  • 4 Andrew // Jul 5, 2011 at 7:52 pm

    Safeway Select is the branding they started using for several of their “premium” products while I was working there in the 90’s and continues today. They still have Lucerne, but I think that is the only old brand that still exists. Look at the bottom third of this page ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Safeway_Inc. ) for a long list of their current store brands.

  • 5 Kathy // Dec 8, 2011 at 5:33 pm

    I went into Safeway today looking for the Craigmont sodas but didn’t see any. I did see a brand called Refresh. Are they taking the place of Craigmont now and are they as good? Thank you!

  • 6 Wayne // Dec 29, 2012 at 6:30 pm

    Do You Remember Page Chipper Ice Cream? I Believe It Was Only Sold At Safeway.

  • 7 Garland Pollard // Dec 31, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    I dont remember Page Chipper..maybe someone out there does?

  • 8 Robert // Jul 15, 2013 at 11:14 pm

    Those simpler times made life seem magical to me. Now it just seems like marketing.

  • 9 Jay Couk // Feb 3, 2014 at 12:20 pm

    We too always seemed to have a case of assorted Cragmont sodas on hand, as my mother’s stash of Pepsi was strictly off limits. Bel Air was Safeway’s proprietary brand of frozen foods, I seem to recall. And yes, it is a small world indeed.

  • 10 Garland Pollard // Feb 9, 2014 at 6:48 pm

    Jay…we always had the Cragmont around too. Safeway was the leading chain those days, and all the brands sort of omnipresent. I do remember the Bel Air brand, as my grandparents always had it around, and their house and farm on the Rappahannock was named Bel Air.

  • 11 Evie // Mar 2, 2014 at 5:29 pm

    I live in San Jose, CA and the other day I was in a downtown Grocery Outlet. While there, I came across 12 packs of Cragmont Sodas. (4 different flavors to choose from.) So if you want Cragmont Sodas, try any Grocery Outlet. Call first before you go though to make sure they have them in stock.

  • 12 David // Oct 12, 2014 at 1:42 am

    Grocery Outlet carries Cragmont sodas. Just bought the cola on 10-11-14 in San Diego county

  • 13 Jay Vissers // Nov 15, 2014 at 3:48 pm

    As a boy, I thought the name “Cragmont” was so funny because of the word’s menacing overtones. Not the scenic and happy “mountain”, “peak” or “summit”, but the dark-sounding “crag”. Evil Lord of the Rings creatures live in crags. Climbers fall to their deaths from crags. Say it and tremble. Crag! I do miss the cheap, tasty soda, though!

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