Frontline Express. Employee newsletter for K-VA-T Food Stores Inc.

Kevin Stafford, Vice President, Marketing at K-VA-T Food Stores, Inc.

Kevin Stafford, Vice President, Marketing at K-VA-T Food Stores, Inc.

It’s Bristol Baby - August saw the return of Food City Family Race Night, NASCAR’s premier pre-race event to downtown State Street in Bristol. What a fantastic evening, filled with driver autographs, show cars, free food sampling, the new Food City Kid’s Zone, and of course, being in the birthplace of country music, musical entertainment on two stages – all concluding with our first ever fireworks celebration! We would like to thank our Food City associates who volunteered their time in support of this great event! The Food City 300 was the best attended Xfinity races in several years. As the Official Supermarket of Bristol Motor Speedway, we were certainly delighted to see over 100,000 fans watch the race on Saturday night.

It’s Football Time in Tennessee (sorry you Kentucky and Virginia Tech fans – we still love you) – Food City is proud to announce a new three-year partnership with the University of Tennessee. With this new agreement, we are now the Official Supermarket of The Vols! We are also excited to continue to serve as the Official Supermarket of both East Tennessee State University and University of Tennessee Chattanooga. We wish everyone the best of luck this football season - GO VOLS, GO BUCS, GO MOCS, and just for fun, GO CATS AND GO HOKIES!

Associate Spotlights


Associate Spotlight - Victor

In February 2018, Victor began working at Food City as a cashier at the age of 17.  He recently transferred to our Gas 'n Go, and there excelled in his responsibilities.  By the end of this month, Victor will be transferring back to the Front End with a promotion to Front-End Manager.  

While working with Food City, Victor has set many goals and achieved those goals in a short period of time.  His accomplishments vary from in-work progress, to school, and his future career. He attends the Mechatronics Akademie at Volkswagen (MAV2). This is a dual-enrollment program that starts in junior year of high school and ends in senior year. The program is a partnership with Hamilton County Department of Education, Chattanooga State Community College, and Volkswagen Group of America. The whole idea of this program is for students with an interest in engineering to get their foot in the door of the Robotronics apprenticeship program.  Students complete high school courses, as well as technical courses such as welding, electrical engineering, Auto CAD, Industrial Equipment, and Industrial Safety, taken from the Robotronics program.  

Victor graduated from the program on May 7, 2019. He plans to continue his path with Volkswagen in the Robotronics program. With his graduation of MAV2, Victor has many skills such as Oxy-Fuel Welding, Oxy-Fuel Cutting, Shielded Metal Arc Welding, Gas Metal Arc Welding, and Gas Tungsten Arc Welding, for his future with Volkswagen.  He also has skills in the electrical engineering field working in high voltage situations, building basic circuits, and he is eligible for an OSHA30 license since completion of the industrial safety course. Victor is an outstanding associate, and we're excited to see what the future holds for him!


Associate Spotlight - Melgie

Melgie, known by her long-time customers as Polly, has been with the company since 1978.  She is a joy and  pleasure with which to work.  Our customers' days are brightened by her fun-loving personality and humor.  Every holiday, she dresses up to bring holiday spirit to the store.  She is always helping with kids' day and goes above and beyond. She is also our top collector during every fundraiser.  Each year, she volunteers with Big Hearted Angels at her church to make sure children, who might not otherwise, have a nice Christmas. We are truly blessed to have her in our #701 family.


Associate Spotlight - Cheyenne

Cheyenne began working at Food City #230, Chatsworth, GA, in December, 2017 as a part-time, third shift stocker.  That day was memorable because he told me he would be the best stocker we ever had!!  Later, Cheyenne became full-time and was placed in charge of the stock crew.  From there, he was recently promoted to Designated Assistant Manager, moving to day shift.  

Cheyenne has learned so much about the store operations, and he is very close to completing his management training classes.  He is constantly eager to learn new things.  We want to tell Cheyenne how proud we are of him and what an amazing job he is doing.  


Associate Spotlight - Duncan

Duncan, currently a Front-End Manager at Food City #214, first began as a cashier in January, 2019.  He has a bit of competitiveness about himself, and quickly progressed with Food City.  From cashier, he was promoted to FEM and CSC by June, 2019. Duncan soon entered the bagging contest at our local store, and from there, he moved to the district competition. Duncan’s motivation to win gave him the opportunity to attend the 2019 GFIA Best Bagger Contest in Destin, Florida. Duncan proudly represented Food City and finished in 4th place! We are very proud of him.

Duncan says he is ready for next year and now knows what to expect. He continues to better himself, not only as a competitor, but a great associate and leader, at #214.


Associate Spotlight - Zaniel

Zaniel, cashier at Ringgold, GA #214, has been accepted for the "From Here to Career Academy." The Academy program is through Catoosa County Public Schools (CCPS) and Georgia Northwestern Technical College (GNTC). The academy helps students graduate from high school with college credits, technical college credentials, superior professional skills, and authentic work experience to be extremely successful in post-secondary education and highly-skilled careers. 
Some of the requirements for being chosen for the Academy are maintaining a 2.5 GPA, exhibiting excellent character and work ethic by upholding the CCPS and GNTC code of conduct, behaving in a positive way that reflects the program standards, (both in and out of school), and remaining drug- and crime-free.  Zaniel shows great customer service and has a positive attitude here at Food City.  We know he will continue to do great things.  Zaniel, we are proud to have you on our team!​

Have you had your annual wellness physical with your doctor or PCP this year?  Make sure you get it before December 31, 2019, to ensure you get the lower weekly premium rate.

a message from Coach Phillip Fulmer

I’m thrilled about the recent announcement that Food City is now the “official supermarket” of the Tennessee Volunteers. We’ve enjoyed a wonderful partnership for more than 20 years, and we both share a common goal—to be the very best. I hope many of your associates will join us this fall at Neyland Stadium as we strive toward that goal, and I thank you all for making Food City an extraordinary partner.

Being the best is never an easy accomplishment, and I learned long ago that to be a champion in anything, you have to earn it. It takes hard work. It takes a commitment to each other and a willingness to learn and execute the basic fundamentals consistently. You have to learn how to set a goal and strive every day to meet that goal. You really do not need to have all the best players in order to have the best team. What you must have, however, is a group of players with a commitment to each other to be the best—one play at a time—and a commitment to perform with more passion than the opponent.

Being a Barista with Abbey

Abby, barista at Food City Starbucks

We recently sat down with Abbey, a barista in Starbucks at Hixson #703, and asked her to tell us about her experience.  

Q: How long have you been a barista?  A: Two years.

Q: What interested you in the barista position?  A: I just like making drinks. Throwing unrelated things together to make a great drink is magical.

Q: What are your main responsibilities as a barista?  A: Making the handcrafted drinks, pulling pastries for the next day, and cleaning the equipment.

Q: What is a typical day like for you?  A: When I first come in, I make sure everything is clean and that the morning prep work was done. Then, I restock and clean the entire area; it's like a clean slate for me. Throughout the day, I tend to customers. In the evening, I do the closing dishes, trash, and cleaning... a lot of cleaning.

Q: What do you like most about your work?  A: The people I work with; we know each other well enough so that busy times flow smoothly.

Q: What is most challenging about your work?  A: The sheer amount of cleaning. For such a small kiosk, there is a lot of equipment to keep up with, and it can be overwhelming on busy days.

Q: What is your favorite Starbucks drink?  A: Honestly, just a coffee Frappuccino. It's the most basic drink to make, but it really helps when you've had four hours sleep. 

Q: Is there anything else you'd like to tell us?  A: It's not as simple as some people make it out to be. There are a lot of drink combinations to learn to even become a certified barista. Sometimes, I still get curveballs where people want their drink upside down, in a tornado… it's crazy.​

Cleveland Kares!

Cleveland Kares!

The associates at North Cleveland #712 really do Kare!  In fact, each week 91.97% of our store associates contribute to our company’s Kare program to assist fellow associates in need.  To show appreciation for their generosity in giving and to encourage others to give to the program, HRC Rodna Blankenship recently held a “Thank You” luncheon for our store associates. We’re very proud of our team ​and the impact they are making in the lives of others!​

My Time at the Race

Racing is fun at Food City

Mrs. Jenny was our lucky winner for this year's race ticket giveaway,  She was given two tickets to the Food City 300 race on August 16 in Bristol. She is a huge NASCAR fan and couldn’t have been more thrilled to go. She not only took her husband, but a group of friends and family went with her. Since they won tickets to the Food City race, they reserved a local hotel room and went back to Bristol the following day to watch Saturday's race. Jenny had a wonderful time filled with laughter and excitement.

Jenny has gone to many races in the past; however, she said this one was different. Jenny told the store about wearing headphones so she could hear the drivers and spotters talk to each other and be ""up close and personal"" with the experience. “The crowd this year was unbelievably excited and more engaged than years past,” she said.  “When the winner crossed the finish line, the crowd exploded with joy!” Jenny will never forget this experience that Food City gave her.

Jenny has worked in our store as Signature Salad Coordinator for approximately 6 months, and we couldn’t be happier to have her!