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Weingarten's was a supermarket chain in the Southern United States until it was acquired by Safeway in 1983. J. Weingarten, Inc. had its headquarters in what is now the East End in Houston, Texas.[1][2][3] The company survives to this day as a real estate developer, after leaving the retail grocery business in 1980. Weingarten Realty is a developer of retail shopping centers.


Harris Weingarten and his son, Joseph, opened a grocery store in Downtown Houston in 1901. A second store opened in 1920. Advertising "Better Food for Less," Joseph Weingarten pioneered self-service and cash-and-carry shopping. Weingarten's chain of stores in Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana grew by 1926 to six; by 1938 the company had 12 stores; by 1951 there were 25 stores; and by 1967 the chain operated 70 stores.

To concentrate on real estate development for retail shopping centers, Weingarten Incorporated sold its stores, which had grown to a chain of 104 stores in five states, to Grand Union in 1980.[citation needed] In 1980 Weingarten had 18% of the Houston area grocery market share.[4] Grand Union then resold most of the stores to Safeway (Safeway, which later left the Houston market, acquired 43 of the stores), Randalls (purchased by Safeway when they reentered Houston, but at that time, an independent company), and Gerland's Food Fair in 1983, including 55 stores in the Houston area. However, lease provisions at several locations barred the automatic transfer of leases between operators. Because Weingarten's and Rice Food Markets could not agree on a disposition of the Post Oak Center lease, Weingarten's continued to operate the store at that location until the end of March 1986.[5]

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  1. ^ Pike, James Albert, Henry Gold Fischer, and John William Willis. Pike and Fischer Administrative Law, Second Series, Volume 21. Bender, 1951. 125. Retrieved from Google Books on July 10, 2010. "J. Weingarten, Inc. (hereinafter sometimes called "Weingarten") is a corporation organized and existing under the laws of the State of Texas, with its principal office at 600 Lockwood Drive, Houston, Texas."
  2. ^ "District Boundary Map." Greater East End Management District. Retrieved on July 10, 2010.
  3. ^ "News Digest." Securities and Exchange Commission. Issue No. 68-174. September 5, 1968. 1/6. Retrieved on July 10, 2010. "J. Weingarten, Incorporated, 600 Lockwood Drive. Houston, Texas 77011"
  4. ^ Sit-DuVall, Mary. "`Right' store was ripe for picking / Randalls joins trend with deal." Houston Chronicle. Saturday July 24, 1999. Business 1. Retrieved on December 1, 2011.
  5. ^ Crown, Judith. "The last Weingarten 's: It's now a Rice". March 30, 1986 Houston Chronicle

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