Much like other retailers cooperatives, such as ShopRite, each Foodtown is independently owned and operated, with some owners operating multiple stores. Foodtown's parent company, Allegiance Retail Services, supplies Foodtown-branded items and acts as a supplier for other independent grocers that do not operate under the Foodtown banner.
In the 1980s and 1990s, Foodtown was a major grocer on Long Island and in New Jersey. In 1994, Foodtown's parent company, Twin County Grocers, was headed by Martin Vitale and was supplying 165 Foodtown stores, resulting in a wholesale revenue of over $1 billion. Mayfair Supermarkets and Melmarkets operated 45 of those stores, and combined were the cooperative's two largest owners.
In the mid-1990s, two major incidents nearly resulted in the demise of the Foodtown cooperative. The first incident came in 1995, when the Dutch retailer Ahold purchased all of the Foodtown stores operated by Melmarkets and Mayfair Supermarkets. Shortly following the purchase, the 45 supermarkets were converted to Ahold's Edwards Super Food Stores. As these stores made up nearly half of Twin County Grocers' volume, the cooperative took a severe financial hit. The second incident came when, in the chaos resulting from the Ahold purchase, a scandal was uncovered where members of Twin County's corporate hierarchy were found to have been embezzling money from the cooperative.
In 1998, the lost volume from the Ahold acquisition and damage from the embezzlement scandal forced Foodtown's parent, Twin County Grocers, into bankruptcy. Following these events, many Foodtown stores converted to other banners or simply closed.
The Twin County CEO, Martin Vitale, eventually pleaded guilty to stealing $4.2 million from the cooperative, as well as bribing a leader in the United Food and Commercial Workers union in New Jersey. In 2004, Foodtown closed its supply warehouse.
In 2012, various independent grocer cooperatives came together to form Allegiance Retail Services, with the Foodtown cooperative being the largest founding member. Allegiance is responsible for advertising, marketing programs, technological services, and negotiating with suppliers on behalf of its members. It is also responsible for producing various products under the Foodtown brand name, which are provided to all of the different members in the cooperative.
On February 10, 2016, it was announced that Allegiance Retail Services had purchased the intellectual property of former A&P division Pathmark through a bankruptcy auction. The sale included the Pathmark logo, trademarks, brand names, pathmark.com domain, and all other intellectual property associated with the Pathmark name.
Garfield, New Jersey: Originally weathervane-style A&P, store closed after A&P, which still owned the property and had returned to Garfield after taking over an old Pathmark, refused to renew the store's lease; store and adjacent strip demolished and taken over by Garfield Board of Education, school occupies site.
Oakland, New Jersey: Was Grand Union, then Foodtown, the Jules Market. Now split in half with a Staples and Zeytinia.
Passaic, New Jersey: There were two former Foodtowns in Passaic. One, located on Main Avenue, originally became Pioneer Supermarket, then El Unico market; space now occupied by laundromat and Rite Aid. The other, located on Van Houten Avenue at Broadway, is now a Salvation Army Thrift Store.
Wayne, New Jersey: Store located on Valley Road; became Treasure Island; store divided after Treasure Island moved to Route 23 and is now occupied by Walgreens. (Foodtown has returned to Wayne with a location on Route 23, a former Michaels location, originally Pantry Pride.)
Wharton, New Jersey: Store location currently split between Rite Aid and a farmers market. Was located in strip mall on North Main Street near Route 15 North ramp.