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King Kullen to close stores in Syosset, Commack in March

The King Kullen store at 271 Jericho Tpke.

The King Kullen store at 271 Jericho Tpke. in Syosset on Tuesday, Feb. 28, 2017. It will close March 30. Credit: Chuck Fadely

The King Kullen stores in Syosset and Commack will close on March 30, after 20 years in business.

The two stores were “underperforming,” and the Bethpage-based chain does not expect to shutter any more locations, Brian Cullen, co-president of King Kullen Grocery Co., said in a statement Tuesday.

Each store employs about 60 people, and most or all the workers will be offered jobs at other locations, a company spokesman said.

Workers learned Tuesday that the store at 271 Jericho Tpke. in Syosset is closing. The 41,000-square-foot space is being offered for rent.

The closing of the store at 120 Veterans Memorial Hwy. in Commack had already been reported. High-end supermarket Whole Foods is expected to take over a portion of King Kullen’s 60,000-square-foot Commack space in 2019.

“Thanks to our fiscally conservative growth strategy, King Kullen’s 32 remaining stores in Nassau and Suffolk are now stronger and better-positioned to meet the needs of our valued customers,” Cullen said.

King Kullen is installing LED lighting in its stores, expanding home delivery and pickup services, installing credit card chip readers and offering more meals-to-go, according to the family-owned company.

The union that represents most of the workers is in talks with the company about whether one or two pharmacists in Syosset will remain employed, said Tony Speelman, president of Westbury-based United Food and Commercial Workers International Union Local 1500.

“We’re trying to save those jobs,” Speelman said.

The union had known the Commack location was closing, but workers were “a little surprised” when the union was told on Tuesday that it would happen so soon, Speelman said. Previously, the store had been expected to close when its lease expires in September.

The broker for King Kullen’s Syosset location, Jeremy Isaacs of Ripco Real Estate, could not be reached Tuesday.


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