Strack & Van Til

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Strack & Van Til
IndustryRetail, Grocery
HeadquartersHighland, Indiana, U.S.
Number of locations
20 (19 SVT, 1 Town & Country)
Key people
Jeff Strack, President/CEO
Phil Latchford, CFO
Michael Tyson, CMO
ProductsGrocery, Dairy, Frozen, Organic, Produce, Deli, Meat, Bakery, Floral, Alcohol, General merchandise

Strack & Van Til is a grocery store chain with locations in Northwest Indiana. Stores operate under the banners of Strack & Van Til and Town & Country Food Market.

On May 2, 2017, an involuntary petition under Chapter 7 of the US Bankruptcy Code was filed against Central Grocers, Inc Parent company of SVT, LLC. in the US Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Illinois. The petitioning creditors were The Coca-Cola Company, General Mills, Inc., Mars Financial Services, and Post Consumer Brands.

The stores were sold in bankruptcy auction to the Strack and Van Til families and the Indiana Grocery Group.



In 1930, Meinhard Nissen and Ernie Strack opened the Royal Blue grocery store in downtown Griffith, Indiana. Their partnership lasted until 1943. In 1946, Strack built an additional store. In 1936, Nick Van Til, a grocery delivery boy, entered into a partnership with his employer. His partner later sold him the store. Van Til grew the business by adding many product lines and opening earlier in the day. In October 1960 Ernie Strack and Nick Van Til partnered and opened their first Strack & Van Til in Highland, Indiana.[2] Strack & Van Til has grown to be one of the leading grocery chains in the Chicago metropolitan area.[3][2]


By 2012, the chain reached 30 stores. On November 27, 2012, it was announced that Strack & Van Til would purchase seven stores from WiseWay Supermarkets. WiseWay Supermarkets started in Gary, Indiana, in 1940. Before the acquisition it operated eight stores in the region under the name WiseWay and PayLow. WiseWay Supermarkets retained ownership of one store located in Winfield, Indiana. Both WiseWay and Strack's were supplied by Central Grocers Cooperative.[4] WiseWay stores in Chesterton, Hobart and Valparaiso were rebranded as Strack & Van Til, while PayLow stores in Gary and Merrillville were rebranded as Ultra Foods (The Merrillville location later re-opened as a Strack & Van Til in 2017). As a result of the acquisition, one Ultra Foods location was closed. It was located across from one of the acquired stores. By 2014, the chain had 38 stores.[5]

Store closures and sale to Strack and Van Til families and Indiana Grocery Group[edit]

On March 2, 2017, Strack & Van Til announced the closure of six stores, four Ultra Foods stores and two Strack & Van Til stores.[6] Following the announcement of those closures, parent company, Central Grocers announced the closure of nine Ultra Foods stores located in Illinois. In addition, 22 Strack and Van Tils will be up for sale.[7] On May 15, 2017, Jewel-Osco made a bid to purchase all 19 Strack & Van Til grocery stores for $100 million.[8][9][10] The Jewel-Osco bid was ultimately unsuccessful and the stores were sold in the bankruptcy auction to the Strack and Van Til families and the Indiana Grocery Group.

As Central Grocers went bankrupt after being around for 100 years in 2017, Strack & Van Til made an agreement with Associated Wholesale Grocers, Inc., makers of Best Choice and Always Save brands of items to compensate for the now gone Centrella.


  1. ^ "Company Overview of Strack & Van Til Super Market Inc". Bloomberg Businessweek. May 25, 2017. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
  2. ^ a b "A History of Commitment to Community". The Times of Northwest Indiana. February 19, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
  3. ^ "Strack & Van Til Super Market Inc. Company Profile". Yahoo Finance. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
  4. ^ "Strack & Van Til to Acquire 7 Stores". Supermarket News. November 30, 2012. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
  5. ^ Napoleon, Carrie. "Strack & Van Til continues to grow in Northwest Indiana". Sun Times Media. Archived from the original on August 8, 2014. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
  6. ^ Caffarini, Karen (March 2, 2017). "Supermarket chain the close Merrillville store, four others". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved June 19, 2016.
  7. ^ Trotter, Greg (April 19, 2017). "Central Grocers will close 9 Ultra Foods stores, sell 22 Strack & Van Til sites". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved June 19, 2017.
  8. ^ Marotti, Ally (May 15, 2017). "Jewel-Osco makes bid to buy 19 Strack & Van Til grocery stores". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
  9. ^ Pete, Joseph (May 14, 2017). "Jewel attempting to buy Strack & Van Til for $100 million". The Times of Northwest Indiana. Retrieved May 25, 2017.
  10. ^ Frost, Peter (May 15, 2017). "Jewel bids on 17 Strack & Van Til stores". Crain's Chicago Business. Retrieved May 25, 2017.

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