Giant Eagle will end Foodperks grocery rewards program

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Giant Eagle is offering more gasoline discounts to its loyalty cardholders but discontinuing its Foodperks program this month.

In a letter sent to some customers, CEO Laura Karet said customer feedback indicated that the Foodperks program, begun in 2009, was "a little too complex." It offered a 1 percent discount on grocery purchases for every 10 gallons of gasoline purchased by cardholders at the chain's GetGo convenience stores.

The last day to earn Foodperks will be Feb. 13 and discounts must be redeemed by May 31, the letter said.

The chain's popular Fuelperks program, which typically offers a 10-cents-per-gallon discount on gas for every $50 spent at Giant Eagle stores, will remain. It will be augmented by a 3-cent discount on gas for Giant Eagle Advantage Card holders on occasions when they don't use Fuelperks, starting Thursday.

That discount mirrors one that has been offered by Sheetz convenience stores to its loyalty cardholders since 2011.

"What Giant Eagle was hearing from customers is they would like to be able to save more frequently," spokesman Dick Roberts said Sunday. "The 3-cent program gives them that."

Recipients of the Giant Eagle letter also got coupons for $20 in savings at the store and a free 7-inch sub sandwich at the chain's GetGo convenience stores, and a promise that 25 cents per gallon would be added to their Fuelperks balances.

Not all of the chain's 4 million Advantage Card holders were sent the letters, Mr. Roberts said. He did not know on Sunday what criteria were used to decide who got the letters.

Giant Eagle last month ended a free antibiotics and diabetes drugs program, shifting them to its $4 and $10 generic prescription lists.

"While these medications are no longer free of charge, customers with qualifying prescriptions continue to save more than 50 percent when compared to many chain drug retailer prices," spokesman Dan Donovan told The Plain Dealer of Cleveland.

Giant Eagle pharmacies still offer an up-to-90-day supply of prenatal vitamins for free to expectant mothers with prescriptions who have the Advantage Card.

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Jon Schmitz: or 412-263-1868. First Published February 4, 2013 5:00 AM


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