Bread-er service for 100+ years at Bidgood’s
Posted on November 04, 2022 | By Alexander Chafe | 0 Comments
Whether grabbing groceries for the week, lunch at the Mug Up café or a loaf of freshly-baked bread, Bidgood’s supermarket is a staple in Goulds, Newfoundland. With operations dating back over a century, the Bidgood family has provided much-needed business services since the beginning.
For the community
The origin of Bidgood’s dates back to the 1920s when Maggie (Hannaford) Bidgood began operating a general store in Petty Harbour, Newfoundland. Wanting to serve the community, Maggie started a business from a table in her living room and offered everyday supplies.
In the 1940s, her son Roger became involved in the family business and started Bidgood’s wholesale food distribution services. Roger transported fish to St. John’s and other communities and traded it for coal, bread and other essentials for local fishermen. After marrying his wife Jennie, Roger took over operations of the general store. Soon afterward, Roger and Jennie moved to Goulds, built a warehouse and launched their first private-label product: Bidgood’s Salt Fish.
In 1963, the Bidgood’s supermarket that customers know and love today opened for the first time. The store was stocked with produce from local farmers, meats, traditional N.L. berries and game and fresh baked goods made at Bidgood’s Bakery. To ensure their bread was top-notch, Jennie recruited local women in the community who were experts at making homemade bread for their families.
In the 1970s, a craft and bookstore was added inside the supermarket and in 1986 renovations expanded the store to 28,000 square feet to accommodate the business’s growth.
Bidgood’s also continued to support its local community over the years. In response to the cod moratorium in 1992, Bidgood’s donated its salt fish plant and land in the area to the Town of Petty Harbour-Maddox Cove, so it could be used as a tourist attraction. In 2000, Roger and Jennie also donated 38 acres of land to the City of St. John’s, so it could be preserved as a park.
Roger and Jennie’s son Rick (Roger Jr.) took over the family business in 2012 and was joined by his daughter Leslie as owner and operator in 2015. Together they continued Bidgood’s growth and impact on the community.
In 2019, Bidgood’s announced a partnership with Canadian retailer Loblaws. The deal allowed the store to maintain independent operations and ownership, as well as offer customers Loblaws’ loyalty rewards and Presidents Choice and No Name products. Public reaction to the announcement was mixed, but Bidgood’s assured customers that the bakery, deli and specialty products will stay the same.
Today, Leslie Bidgood manages Bidgood’s operations and represents the fourth generation in the family business. Standing the test of time, what started as a general store grew to a supermarket, shopping plaza, wholesale, fish plant operations and a line of Bidgood’s very own products.
Over 100 years later, and here to stay.
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