Historical Albion Michigan
By Frank Passic

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Any photos not otherwise credited are from the personal collection of Frank Passic, Albion Historian.


Morning Star, March 3, 1996, pg. 17

It certainly has been a boon for the citizens of Albion to have the former Foodland supermarket open again as Save-A-Lot. The parking lot full of cars and traffic in the vicinity of the store sort of reminds us of the glory days when A & P was at that location doesn’t it? In fact, the store is even decked with the old A & P colors. Shoppers seem to know what they are doing, as they keep coming back for more, for the lowest prices in town. The money that has been spent in renovating and re-wiring the building is an indication to us that they are here to stay, and we all wish them success.

Albion entered the supermarket era in November and December 1954, when within a one month period, three supermarkets were opened: A & P, Felpausch, and Maker’s IGA. The A & P operated until March, 1976. Older Albion residents will remember that A & P had come to Albion in 1921, and had been at various downtown locations until the supermarket building was opened.

Foodland opened in October 1976, and was in operation until it was closed by the IRS on August 24, 1994. The facility was re-opened as the Southfork Store, but was not able to receive the proper financial backing, and closed on June 6, 1995.

This week here in our Historical Notebook we are featuring a momento from the Foodland era our readers might remember. Beginning in 1977, Foodland issued food stamp tokens, which were used from 1977 until the beginning of 1979, when the USDA declare them illegal. Their purpose was so food stamp users couldn’t buy a food item for a dime, and pocket the 90˘ change in U.S. coins to purchase non-food or alcoholic items.

Foodland tokens were manufactured by the Personalized Plastics Company of LaCrosse, Wisconsin. The size of all tokens were 28.5 mm. diameter. The colors and denominations are as follows: black-1˘; green-5˘; blue-10˘; red-25˘; and pink-50˘. The obverse features the text “ALBION FOODLAND,” while the reverse contains the numeral in the center, and the edge text stating, “Food Stamp Credit in Eligible Foods.” How many of our readers remember these tokens?

Albion Foodland Tokens

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