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TOUR: Food Universe Marketplace - Fresh Meadows West, NY

Now for our second Food Universe Marketplace in Fresh Meadows. (See the first here if you missed it.) The 25,000 square foot location originated as some chain store, though I don't know which. It later became a Met Foodmarket under the ownership of Cranford, NJ-based Kevin Kim, whose store failures have been well documented in Fairview, Plainsboro, and Belleville (with Garwood and Edison coming soon to the blog). Kim converted the store along with an interior renovation to a Pioneer-affiliated "Natural Foods Supermarket" with a cherry motif and a suspiciously similar look to Cherry Valley Marketplace. Soon thereafter, it was converted to just Pioneer, before switching to Food Universe in 2014. In 2018, Kim sold the store to another operator, Jin Park, along with his Associated-turned-Key Food a few blocks south. Park has not done any significant renovations or changes, and in fact, the store is still branded Natural Foods Supermarket inside. That said, Park runs far better stores than Kim did.
We enter to a large and extensive produce department, with deli along the right side, bakery (formerly seafood) in the back corner, meats on the back wall. Dairy is in the last aisle, though not on the perimeter wall; frozen takes up one side of the second-to-last aisle and the front wall beyond the checkouts.
Though the decor is quite attractive, you can tell the bones of the store are very old. Probably 1950s-era. The section where you can see the seafood signage is now a bakery section.
Small but complete deli, with packaged baked goods in the case next to it and in the former seafood case.
This actually works quite well, though the decor ought to have been changed when the switch was made.
A look across the back of the store. In the first aisle, on the reverse side of the produce department sign, is a large promotion for Natural Foods Supermarket. Which, of course, should've been changed to Pioneer and then to Food Universe, but oh well.
It's also worth noting that that logo is not the same as the one previously on the exterior, which as I mentioned is really, really, really similar to the Cherry Valley Marketplace logo and branding.
Nice flooring in the grocery aisles.
Beer in the back corner.
Frozen foods in the second-to-last aisle. These fixtures are very old, but in very good condition. Also notice that the aisle markers are Natural Foods Supermarket-branded.
Bread and dairy in the last aisle. Notice that bread, usually in the aisle, is actually on the wall and dairy backs up to the freezer cases. More freezer cases line the front wall at the front of this aisle.
I actually very much like this decor. The base color scheme is almost the same as that we saw at Bell Farms, which makes me wonder whether this decor package was supposed to be put into Bell Farms as well.
Very small and cramped front-end, which is odd given the size of the store. I also have no explanation as to why Avenue A (the Associated storebrand) is being sold in this Key Food affiliated store. Probably just a random shipment they got in.
And that about wraps it up! Up next we have Park's other store, the Key Food Marketplace on Aguilar Ave.

Food Universe Marketplace

70-63 Parsons Blvd, Fresh Meadows, Queens, NY
Photographed December 2019