Cub Food, Wal-Mart in Local Food Fight

MINNEAPOLIS — Supervalu here and the landlord of one of its Cub Food Stores in St. Paul, Minn., have filed a complaint charging that a Wal-Mart in the same shopping center as the Cub is violating its lease by selling too many food products.

MINNEAPOLIS — Supervalu [3] here and the landlord of one of its Cub Food Stores in St. Paul, Minn., have filed a complaint charging that a Wal-Mart [4] in the same shopping center as the Cub is violating its lease by selling too many food products.

According to the complaint, filed in U.S. District Court in Ramsey County, Wal-Mart’s lease allows it to sell packaged food items in no more than 7,500 gross square feet, including aisles, or no more than 10% of lineal feet of shelving; it also specifically prohibits the discount store from selling fresh baked goods, fresh or frozen meat, fish, poultry, produce or dairy products.

Wal-Mart officials could not be reached for comment. One executive told a newspaper here, “We believe the sales at the St. Paul store are appropriate, allowed and authorized under the lease.”

The suit was filed by Supervalu and DDR MDT Midway Marketplace, based in Beachwood, Ohio.

The complaint says Supervalu signed the agreement covering the Cub store in 1994, at a time when Kmart Corp. was a tenant in the same shopping center. When Kmart assigned the lease to Wal-Mart in 2003, Wal-Mart agreed to “keep, perform, fulfill or cause to be performed all of the terms, covenants, conditions and obligations contained in the lease,” the complaint quotes the agreement as saying.

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